Although teacher-centered learning and problem-based learning underpin my teaching philosophy, I am flexible in how I employ both of these methods in the classroom. Regarding teacher-centered learning, to a certain extent, I choose what the students will learn, how the students will learn, and how the students will be assessed on their learning. I create a syllabus for each class that I teach, complete with weekly readings, in-class assignments and presentations, grading rubrics, and final projects. With class lectures, my selection of class readings and assignments as well as my structuring of the class I control student learning. I provide teacher-centered learning to provide my students with a knowledge base for the digital curation issues and topics that I think they should care about. I combine this teacher-centered learning with problem-based learning where students learn about a subject through the experience of solving an open-ended problem found in course content. I approach problem-based learning in my teaching by assigning work for students that places students in charge of their own knowledge acquisition while also enhancing group collaboration and communication. For example, I regularly assign group presentations and group projects, where students work together to master the content that I have them read and present that content to the class. I also assign students as discussion leaders. Discussion leaders create discussion questions for the class and actively engage students in discussion about class topics and readings. I guide the students through these activities, asking questions to push the boundaries of their thinking as I watch them grasp the material that we focus on throughout each semester.
I also believe in exposing students to real-world examples and introducing students to practitioners who are actively engaged in the type of work that they will do after graduating from IU. To address this aspect of my approach to teaching, I have, for example, reached out to my colleagues from all over the world to ask if they would speak to my students about their work. Specifically, I integrated a digital curation speaker series into the class, including video conferences and in-person presentations with hands-on exercises from pioneers in the field of digital curation who are currently employed at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Library and Archives, The Library of Congress, Data Archiving and Networked Services, MIT Libraries, IU Libraries, Butler University Libraries, and the University of Maryland. Additionally, to expose students to high performance computing resources as they relate to digital curation, I liaised with University Information Technology Services (UITS) at Indiana University to provide tutorials in which students learn how to produce and also preserve big data with some of the fastest supercomputers owned by any university in the world, including Karst and Big Red II.
My research also informs my teaching. For example, one of my research interests involves Trustworthy Digital Repositories (TDR). In my digital curation course, I have students play the role of a digital repository staff member who is responsible for self-auditing a digital repository and creating a report that could be used to apply for certification as a TDR. I have assigned research that I have published about the perceived benefit of certification of TDRs by actual digital repository staff as a way to help students understand the importance of repository certification to the digital curation research community. I also actively engage students in research to help them make connections between what they are learning in class and the larger digital curation community. For example, in Fall 2016, a group of students wrote papers about the Media Digitization and Preservation Initiative (MDPI) at IU. We used these papers and our interest in the project as a starting place for a more in-depth case study analysis of how that initiative handles digital curation. In this research, we used the Digital Curation Centre (DCC) Curation Lifecycle Model as a lens for analyzing each of the MDPI project’s actions. Using the DCC Curation Lifecycle Model for our research was significant because I framed the entire class around that model; each week we studied a different component of the model until we had studied the entire model.
At ILS, I have served as instructor of record for two required courses for our Master’s of Library Science degree, Evaluation of Resources and Services (Z505) and Perspectives on Librarianship (Z550), as well as one required course for our specialization in digital curation, Digital Curation, which I have taught at the master’s level (Z586) and doctoral level (Z764). In addition, I have also led independent directed research for master’s (Z602) and doctoral students (Z703).
Z505 Evaluation of Resources and Services (Taught Fall 2015)
Z505 examines the applied evaluation of library resources and services, including collections, document delivery, technical services, reference services, and overall library performance. Emphasis is placed on the available methods and methodological issues. The checklist method, availability studies, document delivery tests, use studies, applied bibliometrics, and the use of automation are covered. Additionally, each of my twenty-two students worked on a semester-long project where they created a research proposal. Students submitted high-quality research proposals on topics ranging from random sampling of the physical collections at the James H. Keller Library of archaeology and ethnohistory at Indiana University to use of the Ideal Deductive Model as a frame for analyzing the diversity of public libraries’ LGBTQ holdings to applying the ACRL framework for assessing library instruction using faculty collaboration, research logs, and rubrics. The class also focused on applying specific statistical methods and concepts to the evaluation of library resources and services, including: levels of measurement; reliability and validity; central tendency and dispersion; probability, hypotheticals and significance; correlations; chi-square; interrater reliability; and z- and t- tests.
Z550 Perspectives on Librarianship (Taught Spring 2017)
Z550 provides an overview of the library as a social institution, historically, currently, and for the future, within social, economic, political, and cultural contexts. Z550 focuses on both the institution (e.g., academic, public, school, or special libraries) and the materials in the many formats (including the evolution of communication media) and their users to create an understanding of the role and importance of libraries.
Z586/Z764 Digital Curation (Taught Spring 2016, Fall 2016, and Fall 2017)
Z586 exposes students to digital curation, the maintenance, preservation and addition of value to digital research data throughout its lifecycle, using hands-on experience and real-world examples. I use the Digital Curation Centre (DCC) Curation Lifecycle Model as a guide. Students learn about all the functions of digital curation described by the model, including the following concepts: conceptualize; create or receive; appraise and select; ingest; preservation action; store; access, use, and reuse; and transform. Students also learn about and interact with various computing infrastructures and digital curation technologies, including: DSpace, Brown Dog, BitCurator, Karst, Big Red II, JetStream, and Phydo. The doctoral component of the course focuses on supervising the doctoral students as they conduct a digital curation research project and write the results of the project up for publication in a peer-reviewed journal or conference proceedings.
Z602/Z703 Directed Research (Taught Z703 Fall 2016, Z602 Fall 2016 and Spring 2017)
I also have gained experience supervising research on an individual basis by serving as instructor of record for independent studies at the master’s (Z602) and doctoral (Z703) levels. Independent studies at the master’s level have focused on topics such as the role of social media as a government record and current social media preservation practices, using the 44th President of the United States of America’s twitter accounts and tweets as they relate to the Presidential Act of 1978 as an example. Independent studies at the doctoral level have exposed students to multiple facets of the research enterprise including: research design; data collection instrument design and pretesting; data collection; data analysis; and preparing research reports for peer-review and journal article submission.