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OCULA Spring Conference 2013

 

 

OCULA’S 2013 Spring Conference was a day filled with activities that definitely brought out the creative side of participants–like the button-making station which was abuzz all day.

 

Posterize is basketball term describing a player who dunks a ball with such finesse that it deserves to be depicted on a poster. At the OCULA Spring Conference on April 26, academic librarians met on Jordan Village to share the impressive information literacy and reference manoeuvres that are helping them score points with library users.

The day began with two rounds of poster sessions featuring 16 posters. Officially, each poster was billed as either print or digital. However, several innovative posters blurred the lines, including one by Peter Duerr and Kim Stymest from York University that looked like a print poster but could be transformed into an interactive digital poster using a smartphone app called Layar.

Carey Toane from Western University also added a twist to her presentation. Instead of pasting or projecting a poster onto the wall, she set up a reference desk with laptops and invited her audience to sit down to chat with her about chat reference. Toane’s decision to use participation as her format instead of paper or pixels epitomizes what poster sessions should be about: dialogue and discussion.

The energy generated by the morning poster sessions was channelled into hands-on activities in the afternoon. Conference attendees were encouraged to post tips on how to make effective posters on a post-it note board and make library-themed pins to adorn their jacket lapels.  Participants also divided into groups to debate pressing issues in assessment, reference, user experience, and eLearning. Each group was then challenged to create a new poster on the spot to summarize key points from their discussions. The conference ended with applause as each group had a chance to present their poster to their colleagues.

Posters and photographs from the day can be viewed on the conference blog.

 

Lydia Tsai is a User Experience and eLearning Librarian at Seneca College. She can be contacted at Lydia.Tsai[at]senecacollege.ca

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