Web 2.0: What is working for you?

As part of a plan to teach Web 2.0 and multimedia tools to user services staff at our health sciences library, I would like to get feedback from MAC members who use such tools in their library work or teach them to others.

This would include tools such as RSS feed aggregators, blogs, wikis, social bookmarking, online citation management, podcasting, YouTube, and other online applications.

I’d like to know the following:

1. Key ways Web 2.0 tools help you do your work (examples of how tools have helped you, your unit, or users accomplish tasks and achieve goals)

2. Best way(s) to help others learn to use these tools effectively

3. Specific tools you particularly recommend

4. Other suggestions or thoughts

To respond, please add your comment to this post, OR

Email me at bob_ladd@unc.edu to respond privately by email or to set up a phone appointment.

Thanks for your time and input!

Bob Ladd

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  1. Bob, blog comments are an incredibly useful tool in getting that all important audience participation. During this year’s PCL informatics lectures with 200 first year medical students, my colleague Laura had the inspired idea of posting three questions to the library blog and asking the students to post in the comments box under each question the references they found from doing their own databases searches. Laura then commented on how good/bad the references were i.e. foreign language, 20 years old, etc. teaching the students important information literacy principles. They loved this kind of immediate feedback. I followed Laura’s example last week when I presented to a class of 25 DC high schoolers on health information on the internet – I got a round of applause at the end and positive feedback because I had made the class interactive.

    1. Thanks a lot Paul. I’m excited that I have already gotten three comments on this post. I’m hopeful that this will encourage more participation in the blog overall.

      I’m interested to learn that you have found blog comments to be a effective way to make instruction interactive… definitely worth thinking about!

  2. 1. Key ways Web 2.0 tools help you do your work (examples of how tools have helped you, your work group, or users accomplish tasks and achieve

    The Jameson Blogspots allow me to get out CME and Library information to physicians and students. I created to Blogspots: One blog is for CME and Library and the other is for the School of Nursing. It gives the student and medical staff a source to find information in one place pertaining to resources for CME and research.

    2. Best way(s) to help others learn to use these tools effectively.

    I have orientation every year for students. For the freshmen, I have a brief time during orientation week, and then during computer orientation I get more specific on resources. For seniors, there is a brief time during their orientation and then I get more specific during the Psychology rotation. The student do a presentation on topic for the Psych and for their last Med Surg. I show them how to obtain the resources and how to utilize Google Docs.

    In using Google Docs spreadsheets for my library survey, I was approached by the IT department to show another department how to use the form feature to create a “survey” form for extended patient days. They now use it to keep track of the whys and whos of patients staying longer than the projected days.

    3. Specific tools you particularly recommend

    I found blogs are most helpful. As a solo librarian, I am finding difficulty fitting the wiki into my relm. I like to use Google Docs for sharing materials.

    4. Other suggestions or thoughts
    The use of the blogs has made me more popular…which is a good thing.

    1. Thank you Lori! I’ll have to check out your blogs.

  3. Hi Lara, Thanks for the great feedback about using Google Reader and RSS. It’s good to know that students and users are finding them helpful.

  4. Lara, I’ve experienced how RSS feeds are one of those web 2.0 tools that people have to try to get it. When I present in a computer classroom it’s easy to just ask people to log into their gmail account, then take them through signing up for an RSS feed or two, et voila. But talking to people about RSS feeds in a non-computer lecture hall, particularly in the middle of an omg I need to get across all of this stuff in 20 minutes orientation, I get a lot of blank stares and feedback asking why is RSS helpful for me? I suppose the answer is to follow up with the audience with a tutorial email.

  5. Hi Amy, I want to take a look at your wiki… thanks for sending the link. I use Google Reader along with iGoogle, but I’ve never tried Newsgator… I need to check that out too. And thanks for adding your comment to this post.

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