ARLIS/NA 49th Annual Conference has ended
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Tuesday, May 11 • 2:00pm - 3:20pm
05. Converging at a Time of Crisis: Adaptive Teaching Strategies

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While adapting to rapid change is hardly a new challenge for art librarians, the COVID-19 pandemic has presented perhaps the most dramatic example of fundamental disruption in recent times. This led to some major challenges to be overcome, but also opportunities to develop and test new ideas. In this session, presenters will showcase a number of adaptive strategies for delivering services during this extraordinary period and share lessons learned. Presentations will cover topics including remote instruction, online orientations, and video tutorials.

Moderator: Marsha Taichman

Making an Impression: Teaching Letterpress History and Technique through Fostering Local Collaboration and Student Creativity

This presentation shares takeaways from my experience teaching a semester-long course on letterpress that aimed to introduce first-year students to campus resources and develop relationships with their peers. As a metadata librarian who works on digital collections, the pandemic offered an opportunity to highlight digital letterpress resources held by the university and institutions across the state. Librarians who do not have liaison or instruction responsibilities but who want to find opportunities to teach may find this presentation particularly applicable. Teaching the course demonstrated that the skills I employ in cataloging, like considering word choices and translating visual information into text, can be helpful to students in evaluating and talking about art. In planning the class, I also reconsidered the convention of a guest lecture being an uncompensated “honor.” Finally, it proved that making connections with the art community can have significant personal and professional impacts that can be paid forward.

Speaker: Meredith Hale

Creative Collaboration in the Time of COVID: Flipping the Art Library Classroom

This presentation will review active learning strategies and feminist pedagogy in an online setting by providing a case study of a flipped instruction model for a large introductory course in Contemporary Art. As a subject liaison to four departments, it became clear when instruction shifted to the online space that engaging with students in the “classroom” would depend on active collaboration with faculty members. Using a combination of asynchronous instruction, breakout rooms, and synchronous research support, the librarian and faculty member in this instance were able to address research concerns and anxiety throughout the semester rather than in a single one-shot session. This presentation will reveal how the current COVID-driven virtual environment has given us an opportunity to consider how to tackle future one-shot sessions as a more deeply engaged exercise.

Speaker: Courtney Hunt

Remote Control: Innovative Instruction in a Virtual Space

When the physical library spaces were shuttered, the shift to virtual services provided an unexpected opportunity for cross-library collaboration. With the creation of a new virtual orientation a reference librarian partnered with a bibliographer to co-present. This joint effort allowed a chance for participants to learn about recent additions to the collection and introduced researchers to traditionally less public-facing librarian roles. Reference Librarian Annalise Welte and Bibliographer Simone Fujita, enthusiastic library ambassadors, worked together to create a collaborative and creative approach to the intern orientation session. The new format provided an opportunity to candidly address topics not previously included in the session, such as efforts to diversify the library collection, in an approachable manner with pop cultural references woven into the dynamic session.

Speakers: Simone Fujita and Annalise Welte

Strategies for Creating and Maintaining Effective Library Video Tutorials

COVID-19 has dramatically changed the ways in which art librarians reach their patrons, and audiovisual aids have become critical tools as research activities have moved largely online. Many librarians have needed to quickly develop yet another new skillset: video editing. This presentation will take a practical look at developing video tutorials for different audiences and contexts. Attendees will learn how to use design thinking principles to create videos that suit unique use cases and allow for easy reuse and updating in the future. A case will be made that a little forethought and planning, as well as the judicious use of techniques such as callouts and subtitles, can go a long way in bringing utility, accessibility, and clarity to video tutorials.

Speaker: David Greene


Marsha Taichman

Visual Resources and Public Services Librarian, Cornell University Library

avatar for Meredith Hale

Meredith Hale

Metadata Librarian, University of Tennessee
avatar for Courtney Hunt

Courtney Hunt

Art & Design Librarian and Assistant Professor, The Ohio State University Libraries
avatar for Annalise Welte

Annalise Welte

Reference Librarian, Getty Research Institute
avatar for Simone Fujita

Simone Fujita

Bibliographer, African American Art, Getty Research Institute
avatar for David Greene

David Greene

Liaison Librarian, McGill University
Art History // Communication Studies // Architecture // Urban Planning @ McGill University2021 President, ARLIS/NA-Montreal-Ottawa-QuebecLooking forward to meeting you!

Tuesday May 11, 2021 2:00pm - 3:20pm EDT