SAA 2015 Proposed Discussion Topics

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How the Unconference Works
On August 19, during the morning Unconference Planning Session (11:25–11:55am), the full group of 100-120 attendees will decide what topics they would like to explore during the afternoon unconference sessions.  Below are some of the discussion topic ideas people submitted when they registered, but newly proposed topics can be put forth that morning as well.

There are 3 × 50-minute time-slots for unconference sessions, and 10 Meeting Rooms available — so if the group decides to break into 30 discussions, that’s possible.  It’s more likely that “natural affinity/clumping” will result in perhaps 15-20 break-out discussions to choose from.

Discussion Topic Ideas — Proposed by attendees at registration

Best practices for teaching emerging museum professionals to be educators.
Kate Blake (Toledo Museum of Art | Manager of Curriculum)

Hoping to find successful models and discover new ways to use the collections at my institution.
Brenda Burk (Clemson University | Head of Special Collections)

I am currently working on developing a teacher advisory committee and I would be interesting in learning about the experiences of other organizations working with teachers and developing student-centered/ school-centered programs.

I would love to see other educators sharing their best activities for inquiry-based teaching with objects and primary sources.

I would love to have a chance to talk with others about the NHPRC grant program, Literacy and Engagement with Historical Records,

How to work with faculty to integrate Special Collections materials into the curriculum.
Rebecca Petersen (Wake Forest University | Public Services Archivist)

Abigail Nye (University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee | Reference and Instruction Archivist)

Teaching older students and adults, particularly those who may not be as excited about learning about history. How do I make it seem interesting and exciting?
Rachel Harrison (Center for Jewish History | Processing Archivist)

What are the most common issues in teaching college students about primary sources?
What are some of the solutions?
Lisette Matano (Georgetown University Library | Manuscripts Archivist)

Ideas about how to take things ‘on the road’ to spaces not held by the Archives – classrooms, meetings, etc, and how to do it safely or virtually or using surrogates.

I’d like to hear how others describe their collections and how to use them.
Nora Murphy (MIT Institute Archives and Special Collections | Archivist for Reference, Outreach and Instruction)

Successes and challenges experienced when seeking/using primary resources that originate from and reflect the history of marginalized communities (specifically AHANA and LGBTQIA+ communities).
Natalie Jemiola Wilson (Ohio History Connection | Local History Corps Member)

Locating, analyzing, and working with primary sources for local history, public history, and historic preservation projects
Miriam Kahn (MBK Consulting | library educator and consultant)

Appropriate hands-on material.
Helen Wong Smith (Kauaʻi Historical Society | Director)

Collaborating with faculty
Collaborating with instruction librarians
Creating compelling, workable in-class exercises and assignments
How much do you have to know about what you are teaching (about the materials, about the subject matter, etc.)
Outreach ideas
Designing immersive semester-long archival labs
How to engage the Sciences and keep the Humanities interested
Encouraging/supporting innovative and interesting student projects/outcomes using your materials
Integrating digital and physical resources/collections
Creating learning outcomes/objectives and rubrics—what do we need to know about pedagogy and learning to do this work?
Erin Rhodes (Colby college | Archives education librarian)

I am interested in shortening our standard policies/procedures introduction in order to dive into active, hands on work with the collections even faster- but not sure how to effectively shorten this and still provide crucial information to novice undergraduate researchers.

I would also love tips on how to transition a few faculty hold outs away from the “show and tell” model to the discovery and creative construction of meaning model that better serves most students.
Jamie Nelson (DePaul University | Head of Special Collections and Archives)

I’d be happy to share (and would love to hear from my colleagues!) about my experience working with undergraduates, particularly first year students in their first term (a demographic I feel is easy to leave out of archival instruction but imperative to reach).
Samantha Crisp (Augustana College | Special Collections Librarian)

How to do what I’m doing better and assess it so the success of the program is obvious, beyond just numbers of sessions. Ideally this would be beyond the “usual suspects” (History, English, Art, other humanities) but focusing on the humanities is fine too!
Katherine Crowe (University of Denver | Curator of Special Collections and Archives)

How to demonstrate that teaching with primary sources was valuable… assessment, evaluation and demonstration to stakeholders and administrators that it is worthwhile.
Anne Ryckbost (Northern Kentucky University | Manuscript Processor)

What collections are similar in most college archives that people use, outreach with faculty, and techniques to use to get undergraduates interested in primary sources.
Katie Nash (Williams College | College Archivist)

Structuring assignments at the beginning of a semester that incorporate various primary sources.
Holly Smith (Spelman College | College Archivist)

Embedded archival instruction
Lisa Sjoberg (Concordia College | College Archivist & Digital Collections Librarian)

Successfully designing an assessment tool that measures the impact of instruction sessions with an emphasis on primary source analysis. I am seeking advice and input from my colleagues who have experience moving beyond basic statistic reporting (how many classes; how many students; what type of course; and how do students “feel” about the archives).
Morgen MacIntosh Hodgetts (DePaul University Special Collections and Archives | Special Collections Instruction Librarian)

ACRL Framework
Ellen Engseth (University of Minnesota | Curator, Immigration History Research Center Archives and Head, Migration and Social Services Collections)

Working with first-year students–really, their graduate student instructors–who say that we are asking too much of students whose basic research skills are a first priority and need attention before introducing primary sources.
Marc Brodsky (Special Collections, Virginia Tech | Public Services and Reference Archivist)

Using primary sources to teach critical information literacy.
Teaching within a social justice focus and how I as a privileged white person can incorporate Critical Race Theory into TPS activities.
What is the role of TPS in teaching English as a second language or in language support capacities?
Jenny Swadosh (The New School | Archivist)

Building and practicing pedagogy, assessment, workflows, partnering across libraries/archives in and outside of the institution.
Emilie Hardman (Houghton Library, Harvard University | Research, Instruction, and Digital Initiatives Librarian)

Specific techniques (e.g., topic & document selection, hands-on activities, guiding the conversation, etc. ) to intrigue and engage students
Jill Tatem (Case Western Reserve University | University Archivist)

How do you teach paleography to undergraduates
David Gary (Yale University | Kaplanoff Librarian for American History)

New ways to present the challenges of searching manuscript collections with little subject oriented access beyond dates to new researchers without making the process seem to daunting or overwhelming. Really, figuring out effective strategies for discovery in large manuscript collections is my interest.
Also interested in designing assignments that interest hard sciences and professional discipline faculty.
Chuck Barber (Hargrett Library, University of Georgia | Director for Public Services)

How colleagues are designing assignments that tap into e-records (born digital materials) in collections.
How to convince faculty in disciplines without a tradition of historical or archival inquiry for undergraduate coursework to collaborate and experiment with us.
Jill Severn (Russell Library University of Georgia | Head of Access and Outreach)

Medieval & early modern books and manuscripts. Book history. Integration of special collections into non-humanities curricula (either in survey courses for non-humanities majors or in STEM classes)
Sara Powell (Simmons College | n/a (MLIS candidate))

New and creative classroom exercise to enhance interest and learning.
Methods to assess learning outcomes and impact.
Christian Dupont (Boston College | Burns Librarian and Associate University Librarian for Special Collections)

How effectively to engage faculty members in making instruction sessions and assignments most impactful for students.
William Landis (Yale University Library | Head of Public Services, Manuscripts and Archives)

Embedded librarians, longer term teaching activities.
Jessica Lacher-Feldman (LSU | Head of Special Collections)

How others prepare similar workshops or projects, what resources might be available to help me get started. I’d also like to hear about particularly successful “teaching with primary sources” projects, assignments, and the like.
Annie Benefiel (Grand Valley State University | Assistant Archivist)

Ideas for how to make collections relevant to your classes and course work.
Hannah Miller (Georgetown University Law Library | Special Collections Librarian)

Outreach to the community, teaching for different ages and audiences, developing a for-credit special collections class out of the library, collection development for more effective teaching.
Miriam Intrator (Ohio University | Special Collections Librarian)

How to get classes to come in for more than one session. How to creatively incorporate materials into class sessions.
Elizabeth Williams-Clymer (Kenyon College | Special Collections Librarian)

Engaging novice users; customizing instruction sessions for specific groups; integrating with a curriculum
Rory Grennan (Florida State University | Manuscript Archivist)

Archival literacy competencies, such as the ones I and my co-authors developed based on a national survey of history faculty, archivists, and librarians. Particularly I’m interested in hearing constructive criticism and feedback as well as brainstorming about ways to implement the competencies into instructional practice. I would like to hear from others (such as Dina Kellams at IU) about the types of competencies they have crafted that look at matching competencies according to the level of learner (such as first-year, senior, etc).
Sammie Morris (Purdue University | Associate Professor/Director)

What are best practices for teaching upper level history students good, practical research methodologies for primary source collections research? I would also like to hear how others plan their lessons, develop learning outcomes, and make time to think deeply about these steps when so many other “shop” responsibilities (donor relations, processing, staff management, reference duties) constantly loom! Also, how much teaching is sustainable? Are there limits? If so, how do we prioritize and set them?
Tracy Grimm (Purdue University Libraries – Archives and Special Collections | Hilton Archivist for Flight and Space Exploration)

What are the logistics of practical, successful primary source teaching projects/programs at the undergraduate level? What are some strategies for advocacy and facilitating interdisciplinary use of a specialized collection (e.g., Catholic collection)?
Jillian Slater (University of Dayton | Librarian/Archivist)

What do you do when you don’t have a mastery of the subject matter? What is your contribution then?
Mattie Taormina (Stanford University | Head of Public Services)

“Teaching collections” folks have pulled together.
Dina Kellams (Indiana University Archives | University Archivist)

The new ACRL Information Literacy Framework.
Carey Beam (Indiana University, Wylie House Museum | Director)

How to teach others to teach with primary sources.
Melissa Hubbard (Case Western Reserve University | Head of Special Collections & Archives)

How best to circumvent the challenges of preparing an educational program in the archives that is scalable on the fly. With such limited information from teachers in advance, it’s been a consistent challenge to appropriately prepare content for the program without a clear knowledge of the students’ learning level.
Sierra Green (Heinz History Center | Archivist)

Using rare book collections in instruction
Tyson Koenig (Special Collections & Archives, Southeast Missouri State University | Archival Assistant)

Creating successful partnerships with faculty
Getting the most out of one-shot instruction sessions
Gordon Daines (Brigham Young University | Supervisor of Reference Services/Department Chair)

Pro-active ideas about teaching about archives and primary resources for community programs. Many times we wait to be approached and then we say yes. I want to do more approaching!
Christina Moretta (San Francisco History Center, San Francisco Public Library | Photo Curator / Archivist)

What different instructors have done when they have different class lengths. What are some things that you absolutely feel like you must cover if you have a short time period?
The flipped classroom and how people have implemented it. Are you requiring readings ahead of time and if so what? What software are you using if you have questions they must answer?
Credit based special collections classes and what the course looks like.
Katie Richardson (Cal Poly Pomona | Special Collections and Digital Curation Librarian)

How people are incorporating digital surrogates and tools, as well as about cross-institution collaboration. I’d be really interested to know if relationships with professors have grown into deeper coursework or curricula.
Tal Nadan (The New York Public Library | Reference Archivist)

Strategies for engagement, as well as assessment.
Best practices for working with K-12 groups (chaos often ensues!).
Rachael Dreyer (American Heritage Center, UW | Archivist, Reference)

Assessment is a big topic at our university. How are other folks assessing their instruction sessions, including assessment of student learning?
I’d like to hear others’ ideas on how to work with professors to develop interesting assignments.
Sarah Keen (Colgate University | Head of Special Collections and University Archivist)

Sharing actual policies and procedures they have developed around instruction
Favorite workflow and management tools
Robin Katz (UC Riverside | Outreach + Public Services Librarian)

Better strategies for engaging undergraduates in my library instruction opportunities.
Florence M Turcotte (University of Florida | Literary Manuscripts Archivist)

Pitching primary sources to professors, rather than waiting for them to find me.
Angela White (IUPUI | Philanthropic Studies Archivist)

Teaching primary sources through social media.
Teaching primary sources with games.
Liza Posas (USC Libraries | LA as Subject Coordinator)

Basic pedagogical strategies or methods, since I have no training as an education and learning more about ways to evaluate the efficacy of instruction sections.
Sarah Bost (University of Arkansas at Little Rock Center for Arkansas History and Culture | Student Success Archivist)

How people motivate students and faculty who really aren’t interested.
In institutions that aren’t highly selective, how much do you think you can cover in a short, one-shot class? What can you cover? What do you need to cover?
Carrie Daniels (University of Louisville | Director, Archives & Special Collections)

Our library is using the ACRL Framework to enhance the current information literacy program; however, the University Archives is falling behind, because we struggle to see how we fit with the threshold concepts. When Faculty want to use the Archives, they only want a “show and tell”; however, we’d like to start engaging students with contextual inquiry about the piece, instead of focusing on its old leather binding.
Furthermore, we have a number of digital collections we’d like to promote and start teaching with, Faculty only seems interested in our rare book collection. How do we promote our digital collections are good resources for our students?
Madeline Sheldon (Valparaiso University | Library Fellow & Visiting Assistant Professor)

How do I transition from “Hey look, college kids, look at all these cool things we have!” to something more focused and interesting? What are some strategies to help teach with collections and build relationships when teaching/outreach is not actually part of your job (i.e. you are a processor who laments the cool resources that go untouched)?
Jane LaBarbara (WVU Libraries | Assistant Curator of Archives & Manuscripts)

Low-budget, free, and/or Open Source software or platforms to develop newbie archives and primary-source repositories for low/no-budget or startup archival efforts
Innovative ways that teachers — from K-16 to community-based and extension education — have worked to integrate primary source analysis, archival research and collection digitization projects into the life of the classroom.
Jess Holler (western kentucky university/upenn; intern at ohio history connection | graduate student; intern)

How other folks are using primary sources for teaching in the sciences, and if/how to get funding!
Wendy Wasman (Cleveland Museum of Natural History | Librarian & Archivist)

Archival Information Literacy sessions
Rossy Mendez (Princeton University | Public Services Project Archivist)

What do teachers need, want from primary source materials.
Deirdre Joyce (Central NY Library Resources Council | Coordinator, New York Heritage Digital Collections Project)

Developing new exercises or assignments, meshing library and archival instruction, working with teachers and professors
Rachel Grove Rohrbaugh (Elizabethtown College | Archivist)

Collection development (purchase or gift) with an eye to classroom use. How can we identify appropriate materials to buy? How to build such collections?
Diane Windham Shaw (Lafayette College | Director of Special Collections and College Archivist)

Facilitating increased collection use and access as a result of assignments, working with classes across multiple repositories
Lindy Smith (Music Library and Sound Recordings Archives, Bowling Green State University | Reference Archivist)

How can we broaden our teaching to other disciplines besides the usual suspects of English and History? What are some examples of teaching with primary sources in Engineering, Math, and other STEM-type courses?
Alix Norton

Teaching with either a variety of materials or whole collections, as well as lesson planning that encourages higher level thinking.
Angel Diaz (Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority | Archivist)

Other librarians out there that teach primary source instruction for classes that are not necessarily doing archival research, and how they work that into an instruction setting.
Rachel Santose (SUNY Canton | Instruction and Assessment Librarian / College Archivist)

How to guide the researchers most effectively during their limited time in archives (often 20-40 minutes) for not only finding what they need, but also to better understand the value of referencing primary sources, and what these are specifically in an archives setting.
Sarah Herguner (St. Catherine’s School | School Archivist)

Digital archives instruction – how is it that being incorporated into “traditional” archives and primary source teaching?
I’m also interested in hearing from others about how wider collaborations work in their institutions – is there co-teaching? How do you find partners?
Caitlin Christian-Lamb (Davidson College | Associate Archivist)

I would be interested in discussing creating description for various types of researchers and archivists/teachers. I would also be interested in discussing how to select collections for processing that can aid in education and outreach efforts.
Ruth Bryan (University of Kentucky Special Collections Research Center | Dir of Technical Services & University Archivist)

Teaching a for-credit course from the archives.
Gabrielle Dudley (Emory University | Instruction Archivist &QEP Librarian)

What can we as archivists do besides the standard show and tell with our collections to get students and faculty more interested in and using our primary sources, such as activities or academic exercises?
Victor Fleischer (The University of Akron | Head, Archival Services)

Integration with curricula; Common Core; digital literacy
Jefferson Bailey (Internet Archive | Director, Web Archiving)

What do teachers want/need from archivists? How can archivists better meet these needs?
Are the Common Core standards proving to be a helpful guide for archivists as they develop K-12 programs?
What are some ways students can participate in the archives?
What are some thoughts on K-12 web archiving?
JoyEllen Freeman (Clayton State University | Graduate Student)