Archive for October, 2008

Introducing RefWorks

October 19, 2008

Many of you may be familiar with RefWorks, the online citation and research management tool. At RDC, we have obtained a license to this product, so it is now available to our campus community.

For those new to RefWorks, this is a great tool for managing your research. As you search for materials (articles, books), you can export citations to RefWorks (after creating your personal account). Within your personal account, you can create different folders to manage your various research projects. From those citations, you can create bibliographies in the appropriate format (APA, MLA, etc.).

If you are in one of our article databases, you can save directly to RefWorks (works with almost every database we have). If you want to go directly to your personal RefWorks account, find the link on our find articles page. Or you can bookmark the RefWorks Login Centre – this is also the place where you can access the RefWorks tutorial (look in the upper right-hand corner).

If you have any feedback on this tool, please contact Kristine Plastow, Collections Librarian. via email or phone (403-342-3578).

Information Literacy support for faculty

October 7, 2008

Did you know… the Library offers information literacy support to faculty in a variety of ways, including information literacy workshops for your students and help with research assignment design. (more…)

Mind the gap

October 2, 2008

A recent study, commissioned jointly by the British Library and the Joint Information Systems Committee (JISC), found, unsurprisingly, that young people are lacking critical and analytical skills.

The report, Information Behaviour of the Researcher of the Future, deflates the myth that the “Google generation” (young people born or brought up in the Internet age, i.e. since 1993) is completely comfortable online, able to navigate anywhere and find anything, while older people stumble around. On the contrary, the report found that “factors specific to the individual, personality, and background are much more significant than generation.”

Another interesting finding from the report is that most users “power-browse” or skim material, using “horizontal” (shallow) research methods. Most spend only a few minutes looking at academic materials and few return to them. “From undergraduates to professors, people exhibit a strong tendency towards shallow, horizontal, flicking behaviour in digital libraries.”

Many academic institutions assume that young students know how to do research on the Internet, by virtue of their age. But while most are proficient users of Facebook and Wikipedia, they are not necessarily information-literate. They lack the skills to differentiate between authoritative information and amateur blogging. Most academic libraries are aware of, and eager to bridge, this gap.

Find out how RDC Library helps bridge this gap through our information literacy program.