Student Snippets A Window Into The Daily Life & Thoughts of SLIS Students

Classes

Adventures in Ethics

We’ve completed the first week of the of the Summer 2020 term everyone!  As you know, classes at SLIS are online for this term due to the pandemic.  I’m not going to lie; I came very close to forgetting it was the first week of classes last week.   If I hadn’t received an email from my professor announcing it was the first day of class last Monday, I would have completely forgotten.  I’m taking LIS 475: Organizational and Information Ethics this summer, and as is usual for Simmons summer classes, it is only seven weeks long, but is the same amount of work as a normal semester-long course. This means we cover two weeks-worth of material a week.  If you’ve read my past posts about summer classes, you know my feelings about this.  Summer classes have a lot of content in a very short amount of time. I’m not wild about the rushed feeling, but this summer, like last summer, there is no “locked” content, so I can see everything ahead of time.  In summer…


All About Paper

This summer, I’m taking LIS 447, Collections Maintenance, and I absolutely love it so far.  There are two parts to the class: the lectures, which explore the topic of the week and show how to do the repairs, and the hands-on part, where we get to do the repairs ourselves.  All of us were mailed a big box with the weekly materials before the class started, which included damaged books, different types of papers, newspapers, magazine ads, archival quality tape, and tissue paper.  We also bought a tool kit from the school bookstore, which included a cutting mat, ruler, retractable knife, paint brush, and other necessities.  I created a designated workspace for myself and laid all the tools and folders on a little table.  It’s been working out great, because it keeps all the tools and materials in one place and I don’t have to constantly pack and unpack all the materials.  I would probably lose something that way!  The first week, we repaired small paper tears with tape and glue, and last week we…


Seven Classes Down, Five to Go!

We are DONE with the Spring 2020 semester everyone!  Seven classes down, five to go!  This summer I’m taking LIS 475: Organizational Ethics.  I was originally going to take a different class, but due to the unpredictability associated to COVID-19, I switched classes.  This class looks very interesting—based on the description, I think it’s going to be more of a theory-based class and we’ll be covering a lot of interesting topics.  However, the class doesn’t start until June 15, so I have a bit of a break before school starts again.  Usually, when the semester is over and we come up on a break, I’m thrilled.  However, this time it is different because there is a pandemic happening. This now means that there is a gaping hole in my everyday routine.  The stay-at-home advisory has been extended until May 18, and my sense of time and structure during the pandemic has pretty much come from two things, school and work, and now one of them is gone until mid-June.  On one hand, it’s nice not…


End of Semester Round Up!

It’s the last week of class, and all of my work is done except for two small forum posts. I’m relieved to have everything done, but I’m also kind of sad because I really enjoyed my classes this semester. Collections Development was a straight up, pure library science class and I loved it. I looked at a ton of statistics, created budgets, and discovered ways to find information on new books and trends. I also learned how to use Twitter! I now use it regularly to check in with my local libraries and keep up to date with everything book related. Metadata was fascinating because it showed how all types of information can be classified and sorted. I loved creating records with XML (Extensible Markup Language). It’s kind of like a puzzle. I get to fill in the pieces and make sure all the names and categories are in the right order. I feel a great sense of accomplishment and excitement when I create a useful, error-free XML document. I know that might sound weird,…


A Great Group Project

I completed my group project for Metadata and honestly it was one of the most enlightening group projects that I’ve done.  Each group was assigned a different metadata schema.  This is usually how it goes for a group project, but what was different here was that the schemas were for unusual items like Tweets (Tweet Object Records), music (Music Encoding Initiative), cultural heritage objects (MIDAS Heritage), biological records (Darwin Core) and even math (MathML)!  I watched all the presentations and learned a ton about how metadata is used.  I did not know that you could create metadata for a math formula or that metadata for a simple Tweet contains huge amount of information, including the number of followers the person had at that time, the number of likes the tweet got, and how many times it was re-tweeted.  It was so interesting to learn how each schema described its resources.       My group was assigned PBCore, which is used to create metadata for audio and visual resources, like tv episodes or radio shows.  I enjoyed…


Almost to the Finish Line!

We are in Week 13 everyone! It’s the second-to-last week of the semester! We’re almost across the finish line! Usually at this point in the semester, I’m working on some sort of big final project to turn in at the end of the class, but oddly, this semester that’s not the case. I suppose you could call the Social Media Assignment my big project, as it was supposed to last until the end of the semester, but I actually met all the requirements for the project itself a while ago. Since my last post, I’ve completed my other two assignments, so all that stands between me and the end of the semester is some forum posts, readings, and lectures. This has been the strangest semester–and I didn’t even have to deal with too much disruption or transition as I was in an online class anyways. Even though the pandemic has been going on, and we’ve been surrounded by change, chaos, and uncertainty, LIS 453: Collection Development and Management has been one of my favorite classes…


It’s That Time Again

Fall registration is this week.  I always love registration time but this year I’m a little stressed out because the Fall semester is my last one at Simmons!  I only have three classes remaining–one summer class and two fall classes–but I’m interested in a lot of classes.  I’m trying to narrow it down and I am not succeeding.  For the summer semester, I’m taking LIS 447, Collections Maintenance.  It was supposed to be an intensive two week in-person class, but it, along with all the other summer courses, was moved online due to coronavirus.  It’s going to be interesting to do it online because it’s traditionally a hands-on class where you work directly with the books.  However, the professor emailed all of us who registered and said that she’s made some changes and is confident it will work online.  I was considering taking LIS 484, Theories of Information Science, to get the Information Science and Technology concentration, but I’ve decided not to do that.  I think I’ve taken a great mix of technology centered classes…


Still in Boston

It’s been over two weeks now since everything changed, starting with St. Patrick’s Day being cancelled. A lot of my friends went back home to their families during this hard time, but I am still in Boston. My parents keep asking when I will go visit them, but considering I am from Upstate NY, where there are a lot of cases, it is a bit scary to travel there. The hardest part is knowing that there are COVID-19 cases in my hometown in the Albany area. This is real, and so close to home now. I am not completely bored in Boston, as we are in the home stretch of the semester. When I get all of my work done for student teaching, I hope I can find a way to see my family. Today, I had a video call with my online technology class. It was my first time connecting with these classmates over Zoom – so nice to see their faces! The video call was a tutorial on how to prepare for doing…


Time Flies. And Stands Still.

It’s been another weird week, but I think I’m getting used to this new normal.  Some days have seemed endless, but others have flown by.  I’ve established a pretty good new routine and set a schedule for my job and my schoolwork.  I don’t usually schedule out my days, but it’s been the most effective way for me to remember everything that I need to do.  Otherwise, it’s too easy to get caught up in all the negatives and uncertainty and get nothing done as a result.  What I didn’t realize in the frenzy of the past three weeks is that there’s less than a month left in the semester!  I have two big projects to finish before then.  The first project that I have to finish is my group project for metadata.  It’s due next week, and we have already gotten a good start on it.  That’s the last big thing for that class, other than a few small assignments which I consider “easier” only because I get to do them myself and don’t…


Libraries, Twitter, and Me!

It’s week two of life during coronavirus, and I’m still struggling to focus on my schoolwork.  I’ve been using my phone calendar to set reminders for things I need to do, because I keep getting distracted.  I’m stuck in an endless cycle of hand washing, freaking out about the news, going to work, doing schoolwork, and stress eating ice cream.  That being said, I haven’t needed any reminders for one particular project for my collections development class: our Twitter assignment.  The initial assignment called for us to tweet pictures of interesting things at the library, like themed displays, or links to events at the library.  Sadly, I had only been tweeting for three days before all the libraries started cancelling events and eventually closed entirely.  But there has still been a lot to tweet about!  Because so many people are stuck at home and need things to do, they are turning to their libraries for help.  Libraries in turn are doing everything they can to help, and this is where Twitter comes in.  Libraries can…