Archive for the ‘trends’ Category

Fake News – Can You Recognize It?

November 29, 2016

With all the news surrounding the spread of fake news, it’s hard to avoid the subject. Facebook has been under scrutiny for the spread of fake news on the site, which has prompted a plan to cut down on the amount of fake news the site hosts. It seems that fake news is easy to write and send out to millions of eager readers every day, but are you prepared to spot the real from the fake?

A study recently conducted by Stanford History Education Project provides evidence that not very many of us are able to spot the fake! The study tested students in high schools and universities across the United States and found that a majority of students are not able to detect fake news on social media and news websites.

Think you can do better than the students who were tested? Take a look at the examples provided in the study and see if you get them right!

If you need a refresher on how to evaluate what you’re reading online, take a look at our Research Guide for tips to guide you on your search for reliable information.

Good luck out there and happy reading!

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Welcome to the Brave New World: Tracking your Altmetrics

February 18, 2014

A great question came my way last week from a faculty member looking to track the impact of a recently published, award winning article. With all the different ways people discuss and engage with scholarship, its is easy to see why academics would want to know all the ways their work is being engaged with, and not just how many times an article is being cited.

This beyond-traditional means of measurement is called Altmetricsand it acknowledges how scholars have an impact far beyond how many times a given article has appeared in someone else’s References list.  How about how often the article/author has been mentioned on Twitter? Or how many people have saved the article in Zotero, Mendeley, or CiteULike?  What about the number of times your conference slides were viewed on SlideShare?

All of these (and more!) contribute to the impact of your scholarly work- but it may seem daunting to check them all on a regular basis.  Certainly, you can set up alerts and track them individually- but- and I’m sure you know where I’m heading!- why not try an aggregator?

ImpactStory does just that- it aggregates your reach across websites. By bringing together your mentions from a variety of sources, it gives you a more complete picture of how your scholarship is contributing to the conversation in your field.

Come and see me if you’d like to chat more about this- we’re interested in how we can best support Faculty Scholarship at Red Deer College!

What Device do You Prefer When Surfing the Web?

March 28, 2013

This week I came across this Adobe Digital Index report, which reports that “After ana­lyz­ing more than 100 bil­lion vis­its to 1000+ web­sites world-wide, Adobe Dig­i­tal Index has dis­cov­ered that global web­sites are now get­ting more traf­fic from tablets than smart­phones, 8% and 7% of monthly page views respec­tively.”

Reading the report got me wondering – what device do you prefer to use to access the Web (and especially the Library’s website)?

Let us know in the comments.

Are We Still Capable of Thinking?

April 27, 2010

In his article, “Don’t Touch That Dial!: A history of media technology scares, from the printing press to Facebook,” Vaughan Bell addresses the fear and suspicion that arise each time a new technology emerges: how is this going to affect our ability to think?

“These concerns stretch back to the birth of literacy itself. In parallel with modern concerns about children’s overuse of technology, Socrates famously warned against writing because it would ‘create forgetfulness in the learners’ souls, because they will not use their memories.'”

Imagine what he would think of calculators, automatic spellcheckers, and the internet! But is technology really so bad, or are we simply resistant to change? Bell argues that there is always going to be some form of new technology that “scares” us. But this fear will only persist until something else comes along — a newer, scarier technology.

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Is a Future Without Libraries OK with You?

March 22, 2010

Lorne Daniel posted a column on the Life as a Human website last week, pondering the question of whether libraries as an institution would be invented today.  The post is too interesting for me to try to summarize it here, so I’ll just recommend that you read it, and then let me know what you think.  Would we invent libraries now, if we didn’t already have them?

What’s Next?

January 22, 2010

What’s Next is a trends report offering clear, concise and non-sensationalist commentary on trends in society, business, science & technology, government and the environment. Each issue covers trends across twelve sectors and speculates about future risks and opportunities.

I’m drawing your attention to this web site, not because I think you should subscribe (though subscriptions to each current issue is free), but because of the fascinating Trend Maps.

There’s the 2010+ Trends and Technology Timeline, the Innovation Timeline 1900-2050, and the Extinction Timeline 1900-2050.

They are almost impossible to resist exploring.

“They have never used a card catalog to find a book.”

September 8, 2009

Just in time for the start of the new school year, Beloit College has published its latest Mindset List, providing “a look at the cultural touchstones that shape the lives of students entering college.”  Some are silly, but some might give you pause as you’re finishing up last minute preparations for the start of classes tomorrow.

For instance, I like the idea of a world in which “chocolate chip cookie dough has always been a flavour choice.”  How about you?

To tweet or not to tweet?

April 28, 2009

Twitter is a free social networking and micro-blogging service that allows users (“Twitterers”) to send and read other users’ updates (“tweets”). Tweets are text-based posts of up to 140 characters which answer the question, “What are you doing?”

You may be asking yourself what this has to do with post secondary education? To find out about Twitter and its potential place in post secondary education, have a look at 7 Things You Should Know About Twitter, published by ELI (Educause Learning Initiative).

RDC Library is tweeting. Follow us.

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.

Issues affecting libraries in 2008

March 13, 2008

In an earlier post, I talked about the ACRL 2007 Environmental Scan, which identified the top ten assumptions for the future of libraries. The publication also identified a number of emergent issues; “issues that, while not yet fully established in the scholarly literature of the field, were regularly represented both in the professional literature and in informal channels for scholarly and professional discussion (e.g., Weblogs). Many of these “emergent issues” are already of considerable local significance in our libraries and will be of increasing importance in years to come.” Here is the unranked list of emergent issues: (more…)