by Kristine Lloyd
The blooming of dogwoods and the lengthening of our days signal the time of year when our summer associates will unpack their bags and take residence in our hallowed law firm halls. With a year or two of law school under their belts, they may have mastered the art of googling and picking the proverbial caselaw needle from the haystack, but their awareness of alternative resources is limited.
Westlaw and Lexis are staples of the daily law school diet. Even if summer associates don’t know how to use these resources cost-effectively, they know how to use them. What they don’t know about are all of the practice group specific resources that law schools either don’t subscribe to or do not regularly market to students. As Laura Justiss laments, law students are rarely exposed to alternatives to Westlaw and Lexis.
Continue reading 'Summer Associate Training: What’s Lady Gaga Got to Do with It?'»
by Philippe Cloutier
The Center for Computer-Assisted Legal Instruction (CALI) database offers a range of lessons catering to law students’ learning needs. As a librarian resource, CALI is considered a good method for getting us up to speed on a new practice group, legal field or concept, etc. And with AALL membership you receive free access to CALI lessons. It’s a powerful resource that is regularly updated and simple to use.
CALI deserves even greater consideration as a go-to tool for planning instruction sessions in your own library. CALI can supplement your planned session topic and offer further knowledge to ensure that you are covering areas pertinent to your topic. It can also function as a launching pad for finding a topic and developing new sessions. Furthermore, each lesson contains a “teacher’s guide,” breaking down the lesson and its questions and answers. A Virgil in your pocket so to speak. Continue reading 'Teaching Toolbox: CALI'»
by Kristine Lloyd
Even though it’s a little like taking exams after the holidays, I must admit that I like the January start dates for our new associates. It makes the long, resolute month a bit more ceremonious. It’s like a houseful of new guests to whom you get to show your wares and tell your stories.
As part of our first-year associate orientation, I teach Cost-Effective Strategies for Using Lexis and Westlaw. While I have met many a rep who can conduct a mean training class, we decided a couple of years ago that it might be an interesting experiment to teach our own cost-effective research class. After smoothing out the process in Seattle, we were able to offer the training firmwide this year, with local librarians available to answer follow-up questions. I thought I’d mention a few of the reasons why I enjoy teaching this class and why you might consider incorporating such a class into your first-year orientation program. Continue reading 'Taking the Reins: Teaching Lexis and Westlaw the Librarian Way'»
by Erin Hoffrance
I came across this blog post, “What I want LIS students to know,” and I thought: not only is this valuable for current, future, and recent LIS students, it is a great reminder for those experienced information professionals as well. The author of the post, Jill Hurst-Wahl is an Assistant Professor of Practice in Syracuse University’s School of Information Studies, a 2011-2013 candidate for the SLA Board of Directors, and a digitization consultant and owner of Hurst Associates, Ltd. Continue reading 'Continuing Education'»
by Kristine Lloyd
One of the greatest challenges to web-based training, besides the technological issues, is facing an audience as hushed as a group of theatre-goers. Sure, the geographical reach is endless, although you don’t get to whisk off to Paris anymore for a day on Avenue Montaigne and a one-on-one orientation, but teaching to a group of zombies does not always instill confidence in your professorial prowess.
How can you overcome the challenges of teaching to an invisible audience? I can only speak from my own experience, both from trainings I have conducted and trainings I have attended, but here are a few tips on keeping your audience engaged: Continue reading 'Are You There, Patron? It's Me, the Librarian'»
by Kerry Fitz-Gerald
Before heading to AALL, I will be in Boulder, attending the second annual Boulder Conference on Legal Information: Scholarship and Teaching. The goal of this conference is to create a pedagogy in support of the Boulder Statement on Legal Research Education.
In preparation for the conference, I’ve been thinking quite a bit about information literacy and teaching legal research. As a teacher, I find there is a real conflict between the need to teach particular skills, like how to find a case or a statute, and the need to teach broader skills, like how to identify and use an unfamiliar database. Usually, by the time one’s taught the basic skills, there’s no time to teach anything more ambitious. Continue reading 'Teaching Legal Research'»
by Cheryl Nyberg
Teaching and training library users are bread and butter items on the task menus of many law librarians. Since few librarians are born teachers, most of us have to work at developing and improving our skills. We worry about how to get and hold the audience’s interest, how to make our examples relevant to their experience, and how best to deliver information in a way our listeners will retain and use it. Continue reading 'So You Think You Can Teach?'»