Texas Library Association’s contract with Neal-Schuman Professional Education Network is winding down, so I’m letting librarians know about some of the upcoming courses still available through that service. These courses are live library-related trainings with an expert instructor, but they are all either by conference call or online to avoid travel costs.
Topics include web design, copyright, maps, and RSS.
Early-bird registration through TLA means a 10% discount – but more than that, Neal-Schuman does not mind if you pack a room with as many library staff as you can. It would still be one registration fee even if 10 or 20 people (or more) participate in one room. Audio conferences normally cost $85 and web conferences normally cost $109, but again you have both the TLA discount and the possibility of multiple participants on one registration. For a web conference, you could hook your computer to an LCD projector and put 10 people in a room for only $9.81 per person.
A registration link is included with each course description below. There are more courses offered on their home page, but I’ve picked out the ones of special interest to academic libraries.
Library Web Site Usability Tools and Techniques: the Essentials
Thursday, September 11th, 2:00 pm
1-hour Web Conference with Terry Nikkel
Ask typical users where they being their research on just about any topic, and nine out of 10 will tell you they use the Internet, for example Google, Yahoo!, or Wikipedia. Maybe two out of 100 will say they use the library. Despite the abundance—and accuracy—of information available on library Web sites, users often discover quickly that they involve confusing terms and syntax, or convoluted navigation and search procedures. One poor experience, and the library will lose yet another user to more familiar, intuitive information portals.
Copyright Issues in Distance Education
Friday, September 12th, 1:00 pm
1-hour Audio Conference with Arlene Bielefield
Copyright is an issue that has remained on the leading edge of information because of the amount currently available. The Internet, distance education, and continuing emergence of new technologies are only a few examples of influences causing librarians and educators to be wary about copyright matters. Copyright is further complicated by legal verbiage that perplexes many. So where does a practicing librarian, educator, or promising researcher look for copyright information?
Cool Tools for Library Webmasters
Tuesday, September 9th, 1:00 pm
1-hour Web Conference with Darlene Fichter and Frank Cervone
Tech Tuesdays: Talking with Techies Series
The Hidden Potential of Maps
Wednesday, October 1, 2008, 2:00 pm ET
1-hour Web Conference with Danial Duda
Many people may not realize how rich a resource a map can be. A map is one of those resources that can answer many questions for many people: genealogists, historians, political scientists, sociologists, emergency response teams, police departments, military, and creative writers. This session will explain and give examples of these different approaches and where you can find more information about them.
Fast and Easy Site Tune-ups
Tuesday, October 7, 2008, 1:00 pm ET
1-hour Web Conference with Jeff Wisniewski
Looking for ways to speed up, clean up, and optimize your site with minimal effort? These 35 1-minute upgrades show you how to fine-tune your sites code, design, and structure to make your site faster, more flexible, and more standards-compliant. Do one, do 10, or do them all to maximize your sites performance in minimal time.
The Secret to User-Centered Web Sites: Cheap, Easy & Effective Usability Techniques
Tuesday, October 21, 2008, 1:00 pm ET
1-hour Web Conference with Erica Reynolds
Effective usability studies start before you ever write a line of code or design a single graphic. By using a variety of card sorting techniques and paper prototypes you can save tons of time, money, and stress. Discover the super-secret advantages for creating useful and usable Web sites and engaged staff and users by doing iterative testing. Take away tips to save you time and apply the results of your tests.
Creative Commons (CC): Copyright Alternative?
Tuesday, October 28, 2008, 1:00 pm ET
1-hour Web Conference with Michael Sauers
With the debate over copyright raging, with some calling for the end of the “all rights reserved” regime, and libraries feeling like they’re caught in the middle, just what are the alternatives? CC is the most respected alternative available today with its idea of “some rights reserved” as set by the content creators themselves. Sauers talks about the principles of Creative Commons, shows how you can easily apply it to your intellectual property today, and how you can use CC to find material that you can legally reuse in the creation of new content.
Recent Trends in Digital Licensing
Thursday, November 6, 2008, 1:00 pm ET
1-hour Web Conference with Tomas A. Lipinski
With the advent of full-text digital content becoming much more accessible in terms of quantity and quality, librarians are finding they need to become increasingly knowledgeable about negotiating various types of licenses. There is a lot to learn, and there are frequent changes and new formats to deal with! This session will introduce participants to key concepts and trends in the licensing of information content, as well as services for the library and related information settings. It includes a review of the law and the practice of licensing. An introduction to on-line contracting is included i.e. the EULA (end-user license agreement) common with many Web sites. The speaker has just completed researching and writing a full book on this topic, which should be available by the date of this session.
RSS: Let the information find you – then pass it on!
Tuesday, November 25, 2008, 1:00 pm ET
1-hour Web Conference with Wendy Rodgers
RSS technology has been around for 10 years. Depending on where you look, it either “hasn’t really caught on” or it is “the next killer app”. RSS feeds are an effective method of what one writer calls “information trapping.” Another suggests that “as technological awareness grows [about tools like RSS], Googling anything becomes less necessary.” Taking advantage of RSS is now easier than ever. Libraries can deliver RSS feeds as an information service to users, or use RSS for professional development and current awareness for staff. Attend this session to find out what RSS is, how to consume it, how to deliver it, and how it can benefit your library.