FEDLINK Technical Notes

September, 1997

Volume 15 Number 9


Paraprofessional Institute Offers Career Enhancement Opportunities

TECH NEWS--Building User-Friendly Web Sites--Part II: Look and Feel


FLICC/FEDLINK Educational Programs on Video

Editorial Staff

Paraprofessional Institute Offers Career Enhancement Opportunities

Over the past two years, FLICC and FEDLINK staff and members of the FLICC Education Working Group have developed a curriculum to train library technicians in key skills. The first FLICC/FEDLINK Federal Library Paraprofessional Institute, held on August 11-15, provided 75 paraprofessionals with a week-long primer on federal library processes. Speakers, panels, tours, and discussion groups outlined major library functions and addressed professional activities and educational opportunities for paraprofessionals.

Changing Roles for Paraprofessionals

Keynote speaker Bettye Smith asked attendees to consider the changes likely to affect paraprofessionals in todays workplace. She identified areas to watch for developments:

"Our parents would not recognize workplace expectations now," Smith said. Todays paraprofessionals must deal with constant innovations. An emphasis on computer-related tasks has increased the pace of work and retraining. More time in front of video display terminals leads to less time interacting with co-workers. "Its that face-to-face that were missing," said Smith. "Workers can feel isolated and disconnected."

Smith suggested strategies for paraprofessionals to succeed and reduce workplace stress. She urged the audience to learn how to dress, speak, and interact professionally to gain the respect of managers and library patrons. Paraprofessionals may become an effective liaison between agency staff and managers, Smith suggested, but they must learn to assert their opinions without engaging in disputes or office politics.

Smith said that it is essential to take on new roles as technology changes. "Do not accept new responsibilities with a grudge. Accept them with a smile, because what you learn today will take you further tomorrow. Every new task is stored up there in your c: drive," she said, tapping on her forehead. She advised paraprofessionals to deal with their stress and their managers through humor, deep breathing, exercise, self-education, hobbies, and relaxation.

Finally, Smith said, "If you can see the handwriting on the wall, prepare yourself for the future." Paraprofessionals should identify their skills and pursue new ones, and explore alternative employment options within their agencies, other agencies, contractors, or employment agencies.

The panel discussion that followed the keynote featured current and former paraprofessionals discussing the roles of library technicians. All o the panelists noted that the use of automation had greatly increased in their libraries, which opened up opportunities to learn new skills and shoulder more responsibilities. They also agreed on the importance of projecting a professional image. "We deal with members of Congress; so we have no choice but to be professional," said Karma Ester of the Congressional Reference Division (CRD). "When you have the knowledge and the skills and feel good about yourself, its not difficult to feel professional," added Rosette Rissel of the Naval Research Laboratory Library.

Two panelists, Gene Kinally and Paul Frank, recently took advantage of a Library of Congress career advancement program to move from technician positions to professional positions as catalogers for the LC Special Materials Cataloging Division. They both encouraged attendees to pursue further education whenever possible, to educate themselves through listservs and the Web, to join professional organizations, and to volunteer for team projects. Presentations from representatives of professional associations rounded out the institutes introductory session. The associations included the Council on Library/Media Technicians (COLT), a membership organization for library and media support staff; the American Library Association (ALA); the District of Columbia Library Association (DCLA); and the Special Libraries Association (SLA). For more information on these membership organizations, see links to their Web sites in the box on page 7. Contact the District of Columbia Library Association (DCLA) at (301) 530-7470.

Understanding Library Processes

Throughout the rest of the week, more than 30 speakers presented summaries on key aspects of library work. "In designing this program, we attempted to offer a broad overview of federal library processes, and to provide insight into the changing roles of technicians within those processes," said FEDLINK Network Program Specialist Steven Kerchoff, who helped plan the institute. "Technicians attending the institute gained a better understanding of how their specific responsibilities fit into the big picture."

Topics included:

Personnel Issues and Career Paths

On the institutes final day, speakers offered advice to help paraprofessionals understand their current job rankings and pursue career opportunities.

Annette Gohlke of Library Benchmarking International explained how the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) hiring processes have changed in the last four years. A 1995 law authorized the agency to delegate competitive examinations to other agencies and streamline classification and qualification standards. Gohlke outlined the evaluation system for the 1411 standards, which apply to the Library Aid, Library Technician, Lead Library Technician, and Supervisory Library Technician positions. The evaluation system classifies positions by assigning points within nine factors and subfactors:

She provided attendees with the point system for each factor, and advised them to analyze their position and compare it to the point ranges for various grades. She also advised paraprofessionals to compare their position descriptions against their current duties, and to let managers know if there are any discrepancies.

Both implementation of the Microcomputer Assisted Rating System (MARS), and the replacement of Standard Form 171s with non-standard personal resumes have streamlined OPMs rating process. Gohlke urged library technicians to update and edit their resumes,and to make sure that their current resume is on file if they decide to apply for a different federal position.

The institutes final panel focused on career paths for library technicians.

Michelle Lee, Vice President of the Information Sciences Division of Scientific and Commercial Systems Corporation (SCSC), described part-time, temporary, and temp-to-perm opportunities available with this systems development and staffing corporation.

Lee Rowe, Information Specialist, LC, Congressional Research Service (CRS), discussed on-the-job training programs. He advised paraprofessionals to research affirmative action and detail programs within their agencies. Barbara Salazar, Senior Research Librarian, CRS/CRD, discussed the MLS degree and other formal education. She suggested the USDA Graduate School, the Catholic University of America, and the University of Maryland as options for paraprofessionals based in the DC area.

For links to continuing education programs offered by FLICC and FEDLINK, OCLC networks, the American Society for Information Science (ASIS), and the SLA, as well as a directory of institutions offering accredited MLS programs, see the FLICC/FEDLINK Web site (http://www.loc.gov/flicc).

Videotapes of the Federal Library Paraprofessional Institute will be available through the National Library of Education. FLICC/FEDLINK plans to repeat the institute in 1998.

Useful URLs for Paraprofessionals
     ALA: http://www.ala.org
     COLT: http://colt.ucr.edu/
     FLICC/FEDLINK: http://www.loc.gov/flicc/
     Library Support Staff Resource Center: http://www.lib.rochester.edu:80/ssp/contents.htm
     Occupational Outlook Handbook--Library Technicians: http://stats.bls.gov/oco/ocos113.htm
     SLA: http://www.sla.org
          Note: The following files are in WordPerfest 5.1 format; save them to your hard drive and open in a word processing program:
                    OPM and Annotated Standards: http://www.loc.gov/flicc/mmissue.html#item5



Building User-Friendly Web Sites

Part II: Look and Feel

By Jessica Clark

The first article in this FEDLINK Technical Notes series, "Building User-Friendly Web Sites: Site Structure," addressed the need for careful planning, the construction of logical navigation schemes, and the importance of user feedback when building a site. This article discusses the creation of a site's "look and feel," which includes a consistent and harmonious color palette, a design grid, signature images, graphical headers and footers, uniform buttons and pointers, and typographical elements.

Although planning and design often happen in tandem, it is better to work on developing a site's structure and mission before adding visual elements. Careless design may do more harm than good--cluttered pages or unrelated images can repel the user and make a site look unprofessional. Successful Web design promotes visual logic through a consistent system of graphic elements which guide users through the site and reinforce the site's identity and goals.

Creating a template

A design grid is a template for placing titles or headers, footers, buttons, navigational bars, text blocks, and graphics on each page. The grid should lead the user logically through the page--from left to right, and from top to bottom. Consistency in page design helps users recognize where they are and predict how they will find what they need. By developing a design template, site designers also speed up page creation and maintenance processes.

Centering individual graphic elements in the grid can create a patchy layout. When in doubt, align text and images along the left, and create visual interest by varying the lengths of headers and the size of illustrations. Try to incorporate strong visual contrasts without overwhelming the viewer. Subtle, natural colors are best for backgrounds, but make sure that text and link colors contrast sharply with the colors or images behind them. Limit the use of background images, and of bold or neon colors except for emphasis.

The graphic style of the site should emerge from the site's content, the agency's mission, the subject focus, and previous agency design standards. A simple way to establish continuity is to use a "signature" graphic or logo in the same place on every page. Keep logos simple, however, as complex line drawings do not translate well to the computer screen. Why? While the typical magazine page displays objects at about 1,440,000 dots per square inch, typical screens display objects at about 5,200 dots per square inch--300 times less resolution.

Using tables for layout

The eyes span of movement at normal reading distances averages three inches--about half the length of a line of text in a typical browser window. Web site designers can shorten line lengths in a few different ways: by using the "PRE" tag and inserting hard returns; by bracketing text with the "BLOCKQUOTE" tags; or by using "TABLE" tags to set up their design grid.

Tables provide more design flexibility than the other two options. Once a design grid has been created with "TABLE" tags, it can easily be adapted to create new pages, and provides a backbone for other content and graphic elements. Creating tables can be complicated at first, especially if the site designer is writing HTML code by hand. It is best to sketch out a table layout, perhaps using graph paper, insert the tags into your diagram, and then include them in your code.

Designers of the Yale C/AIM Style Guide describe how they developed the sample grids for their manual at http://info.med.yale.edu/caim/manual/pages/design_grids.html. Web designer Lynda Weinman also discusses the use of tables for page layout in Designing Web Graphics 2: How to Prepare Images and Media for the Web. Weinman has written several books on Web graphics; for more information, see http://www.lynda.com/.

No matter how carefully a page is laid out, however, it will not always look the same. Differences between browser and screen displays, and user-selected preferences such as font size and image display will alter the appearance of the Web site from terminal to terminal. Before you decide on a grid to design your entire site, test it on as many systems as possible.

Typographic tips

Despite recent changes in HTML standards, Web design still offers fewer choices of fonts and type sizes than design for the printed page. Web designers must master basic typographic principles and the judicious use of header and style tags to create attractive, legible, balanced online documents.

Good typography depends on strong contrast between individual text blocks, as well as between each text block and the space surrounding it. Too many bold text blocks create as much visual monotony as too many long, dense paragraphs. Long strings of capitalized words are also difficult to read, because readers use the contrast generated by the ascending and descending shapes of lower-case letters to quickly scan lines of text. Introduce contrast carefully, however, as the combination of very large headers with small text can be jarring to the viewer.

To judge your use of type, squint at your finished page:

A final cautionary note about text display--be careful when transferring text from word processing or page layout programs to HTML. Special characters such as quote marks, apostrophes, and accents may disappear or change into different characters in translation. Open your document in a browser and read through it one final time before posting it for the world to see.

Other common design errors:



Cataloging and Technical Services Update

OCLC has acquired Blackwells Authority Control Services and will work with current Blackwell customers to ensure a smooth transition. OCLC will further automate and integrate aspects of Blackwells 20-year-old Authority Control Services to expand OCLCs newer Authority Control Service.

Authority control is used to correct, update, and modernize key bibliographic access points such as names, subject headings, and series. It contributes to cataloging efficiency and provides higher-quality search results for end users.

Resource Sharing Notes

As announced, OCLC will discontinue ILL ME Plus at the end of November. On December 1, 1997, users will not be able to access the OCLC ILL system or its customer support. To avoid interruptions in workflow, all ILL Micro Enhancer users need to be fully operational with ILL ME for Windows before December. The ILL ME for Windows upgrade costs $99 per workstation (Product code SOF9330), or $349 for a site license upgrade (Product Code SOF9329).

A record can now remain in the new Review-In-Process category in Interlibrary Loan for up to 30 days. OCLC had always planned to support this increased use of the new category as more libraries began to implement the use of the FirstSearch/ILL link and the new Direct ILL functionality. However, when several members recently suffered flood damage, OCLC rapidly implemented the change. The FirstSearch/ILL link allows end users to send ILL requests from FirstSearch to the librarys ILL Review file; Direct ILL allows the library to select categories of end users that can send ILL requests directly to partner libraries.

Telecommunications Reminders

Reference Additions

OCLC has enhanced the FirstSearch World Wide Web interface to make searching in specific indexes and use of advanced searching techniques more visible and easier. OCLC also installed software changes to enhance the responsiveness of the Web interface.

The Basic Search Screen now includes a drop-down menu of keyword indexes available for the selected database. For example, A single click reveals WorldCats publisher index. The Advanced Search Screen also allows users to pick indexes, including phrase indexes, from drop-down menus, and makes it asy to use Boolean operators and to combine searches from multiple indexes. Search limits remain visible and easily accessible.

A second set of enhancements to the FirstSearch Web interface improves record navigation. A user may request to "go to" a particular record in a set, or tag specific records, to scroll through chosen records, print, or e-mail them, all in one action. A search history is also available.

Internet Protocol (IP) address recognition for OCLC Reference Services via the World Wide Web, including the OCLC FirstSearch service and OCLC FirstSearch Electronic Collections Online service, is now available. Used for log-in authentication, IP address recognition allows participating libraries to add a service keyword to the Reference Services Uniform Resource Locator (URL), where their address and service type will be checked before they automatically log into the appropriate service.

Libraries with current FirstSearch or Electronic Collections Online accounts who wish to request IP address recognition for OCLC Reference Services via the Web should complete the electronic form available at http://www.oclc.org/firstsearch/documentation/ip/

From the desk of Susan Tarr: BEGINNING THE NEW YEAR WITH OCLC

                                                                                                       September 26, 1997


As we embark on a new fiscal year, I want to take this opportunity to thank you for your contributions to improved bibliographic control and resource sharing through the federal library OCLC network.

I also want to explain an element of the OCLC/FEDLINK fiscal relationship that becomes an issue at the start of every fiscal year: Because of our special relationship as a network within the OCLC cooperative, we have committed to paying all legitimate billing charges on behalf of FEDLINK members on a monthly basis. According to the Anti-Deficiency Act, it is improper for FEDLINK to pay an invoice before the funds have been deposited by the member libraries using the services. Due to the annual nature of appropriations and the necessity for an annual registration process, every fall brings a certain amount of anxiety about timely OCLC registrations and Interagency Agreement (IAG) executions. By the time we pay the October OCLC bill, all FEDLINK OCLC members must be registered and their funds committed. As with other vendors, OCLC has no authority to provide FY1998 service unless your funds have been committed, and FEDLINK has no legal authority to pay your OCLC bills.

This year we started publishing registration reminders in the June issue of FEDLINK Technical Notes and in an Information Alert on July 25 (IA97-12). The FEDLINK registration booklet was distributed in early August, and it appears that most agency appropriations are on track for timely approval by the President. Now we need you to submit your registration form as soon as possible for your OCLC usage, as well as other vendor services, and to make sure your IAG is expeditiously signed by your agency. Because delinquent member accounts place the entire FEDLINK program in jeopardy, this year we will be firm about blocking OCLC usage if your agency has not signed the IAG by November 28.

Please help us operate your federal library network "by the rules" by processing your FY1998 registration and signing your IAG before November 28.

                                                                                                       Susan M. Tarr
                                                                                                       Executive Director, FLICC

P.S.: As of September 26, more than 400 OCLC members had already registered for FY1998. To all those who have registered, thank you for your prompt action! We are eagerly awaiting your signed IAGs.


image of video cassette

Educational Programs
on Video

The National Library of Education (NLE) is helping FLICC/FEDLINK extend educational opportunities to FEDLINK members outside the DC area. Through a special cooperative agreement with FLICC, NLE has cataloged the video recordings of many FLICC/FEDLINK educational programs and will lend these programs to FEDLINK members through the OCLC Interlibrary Loan Subsystem. NLE will also enclose a copy of the printed resources furnished to participants in the live programs.

Below is a list of the most recent FLICC/FEDLINK programs that are available for Interlibrary Loan through te National Library of Education (OCLC symbol NIE). For the current list of the entire cataloged series in the OLUC (On-line Union Catalog), users can enter the derived search: vid,ta,of,f<F11>.

FEDLINK 1997 Spring OCLC Users Group (5/2/97): 2 videotapes (2 ½ hours)--provides important information on new OCLC products and services such as: OCLCs TCP/IP -based telecommunications options; pricing plans for FY98, including cataloging fixed-fee options; OCLCs replacement program; upcoming version of Windows-based software packages; Electronic Collections Online and its preview program; enhancements to the interlibrary loan system; changes to the FEDLINK OCLC training program; and brief updates on other OCLC products and services.

FEDLINK Spring Membership Meeting (5/2/97): 2 videotapes (3 ½ hours)--features reports and updates on FEDLINK services, including: enhancement and redesign of the FLICC/FEDLINK Web site; end-user training; FLICC Working Group reports; and updates on current FLICC/FEDLINK projects.

FEDLINK Institute on Library of Congress Subject Cataloging (4/21/97-4/23/97): 8 video tapes (18 hours)--a three-day program that offers a fundamental understanding of the basic concept underlying the Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH) and the Library of Congress Classification (LCC). The institute does not cover Dewey Decimal Classification. The institute familiarizes students with Library of Congress (LC) subject cataloging tools sufficiently to use them when conducting LC subject cataloging at their agencies. Senior cataloging specialists conducted the institute.

1997 FLICC Forum on Federal Information Policies: Clear Signals? Telecommunications, Convergence and the Quality of Information (3/6/97): 3 video tapes/resource materials (6 hours)--examines the consequences of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 and its possible effect on libraries. Distinguished speakers from Congress, agencies, private industry, and public interest groups address the convergence of entertainment and information providers; opportunities for providing universal access to Internet services; the quality of online information resources; and strategies for online searching, information filtering, and streamlining information systems.

1997 FLICC Information Technology Update: Spinning the Intranet Web (1/29/97): 3 video tapes/resource materials--explores what Intranets are, how they work, and why agencies are creating them. Greg Bean of Johns Hopkins University and Denise Duncan of Logistics Management Inc. explain how to plan, manage, and build Intranets, and representatives from the Naval War College and the FCC demonstrate their Intranets.

Getting the Word Out: Marketing your Librarys Information Services (12/10/96): 3 videotapes/ resource materials (6 hours)--helps federal libraries to market the value of information services within their own agency and to promote the role of the professional librarian.

Legal Resources on the Internet (12/5/96): 2 videotapes/no resource materials (3 hours)--discusses key legal resources available on the Internet and on legislative, executive and judicial bulletin boards. Cosponsored by FLICC and the Special Interest Section (SIS) of the DC Federal Law Librarians Society.

Writing Position Descriptions for Librarians (10/30-10/31/96): 5 videotapes/resource materials (12 hours)--teaches librarians about the new OPM classification series to enable them to work with their agencys personnel specialist.

Briefing: FEDLINKs New Technical Processing Services BOA (10/29/96): 3 videotapes/resource materials (5 ½ hours)-- explains how FEDLINKs newest vendors apply personalized cataloging specifications to current or retrospective conversion cataloging for books, serials, visual materials, sound recordings, computer files, interactive multimedia, musical scores, and maps.

Dangerous Liaisons? Partnering with Computer Professionals to Create Digital Information Services (9/24/96): 3 videotapes/resource materials (6 hours)--explores how librarians and information technology staff can form the information services team that an agency needs to fulfill its external and internal information objectives.

Electronic Journals Today (9/10/96): 2 videotapes/no resource materials (6 hours)--disusses what is happening in the world of electronic journals. Speakers representing publishers, distributors and libraries, involved in the creation, acquisition, dissemination and management of e-journals bring you up-to-date on current developments.

Clause and Effect: Negotiating License Agreements for Digital Publications (8/1/96): 2 videotapes/resource materials (3 ½ hours)--instructs how to negotiate with digital publishers. Speakers discuss the basic issues about database and software licensing, and provide strategies for ensuring that licenses are appropriate for the federal context.

FEDLINK Institute on Descriptive Cataloging (7/29-8/2/96): 13 videotapes/resource materials (39 hours)--presents a fundamental, structured approach to AACR2 concepts.

Just in Time: Making Real Choices--Interlibrary Loan vs. Document Delivery (7/22/96): 3 videotapes/resource materials (6 hours)--vendors, federal librarians and other experts discuss the options for access to materials outside a librarys own collections, and the effectiveness of interlibrary loan vs. document delivery.

Copyright in the Digital Age: Issues and Applications for Federal Libraries (5/21/96): 3 videotapes/resource materials (6 ½ hours)--discusses copyright issues, policies and laws involved in the mounting of electronic journals, digitizing of library collections, and the hosting of Internet sites.

Internet Brownbag Discussion Series: Reference Service by Email: Part II. (5/9/96): 1 videotape/resource materials (2½ hours)--discusses a broad array of topics, including: establishing an email reference service, reference policies, "interviewing" patrons by email, management and workload issues, referrals, and patron expectations.

Copyright Brownbag Briefing Series: Project MUSE and Electronic Journals (4/23/96): 1 videotape/resource materials (2½ hours)--features an online demonstration of the Project MUSE electronic journals system that is making the full text of Johns Hopkins University Press journals available via the Internet. Examines text designed for on-screen reading, color illustrations, multimedia feature, hypertext links, subject indexing according to LCSH, Boolean full text and author/title/keyword searching, and printing on demand.

Internet Brownbag Discussion Series: Internet-Accessible Resources for Library Technical Services: A Tour of the Library of Congress MARVEL Gopher (4/12/96): 1 videotape/resource materials (2½ hours)--Susan Morris, assistant to the director for cataloging and Internet coordinator for the Cataloging Directorate at LC, leads a "guided tour" of LC MARVEL menus, with stops at Cataloging, Acquisitions & Serials, Interlibrary Loan at LC, Z39.50, and FLICC. Excursions to other libraries online catalogs and online catalogs and a vast array of resources on the Internet are included.

FLICC End-User Training Series I: CD-ROM Instruction Brownbag Discussion. (2/12/96): 1 videotape (2½ hours)--Linda Baltrusch, Systems Librarian for the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, and FEDLINK Network Librarians examine how librarians can 1) help end-users feel comfortable with CD-ROM technology and searching language and 2) enable them to work effectively and independently with CD-ROM technology.

Interlibrary Loan and Document Delivery (12/4/95): 1 videotape (2½ hours)--audience discusses pros, cons, cost considerations, and alternatives of using OCLC ILL Fee Management. Also reviews OCLCs Custom Holdings and how to determine favored lending partners, and discusses experiences using FirstSearch and other online methods to obtain documents.

This Library is Closed...The Balance Sheet on Federal Agency Libraries. (11/13/95): 1 videotape (2 hours)--addresses two central questions: If your library closes tomorrow, what would your customers (e.g. agency management, staff, other agencies, the public) GAIN and what would they LOSE? What are you doing to let your agency know this?

Copyright Brownbag Briefing Series--Part 1: Update on the Copyright Scene (11/7/95): 2 videotapes (2½ hours)--Mary Levering, LCs Associate Register for National Copyright Programs, gives an overview of the challenges of interpreting copyright principles in the electronic environment, and an pdate on the activities of the Intellectual Property Working Group of the National Information Infrastructure, the Fair Use committee, and the Copyright Office.

Cataloging Interactive Multimedia (07/27/95): 3 videotapes and workbook (5½ hours)--provides instruction on authoritative cataloging and tagging practices applicable to Interactive Multimedia. Instructor: Ann Sandberg-Fox.

Cataloging Computer Files (07/26/95): 3 videotapes and workbook (5½ hours)--provides instruction on authoritative cataloging and tagging practices applicable to the OCLC MARC Format for Machine Readable Data Files (MRDF). Instructor: Ann Sandberg-Fox.

1995 FLICC Forum on Federal Information Policies, The Life Cycle of Government Information: Challenges of Electronic Innovation (03/24/95): 4 videotapes (6½ hours)--examines the effects of technology on Government information life cycle and suggests innovative ways to respond to the challenge of new information realities. Renowned author and futurist Alvin Toffler shares his vision of the multifaceted impact of the shift in society and the information industry.

Internet Brownbag Series II: Tools for Searching the Internet (11/28/95): 1 videotape (2½ hours)--reviews "Web Worm", "Web Crawler", and "Veronica" and discusses how automated Internet search tools measure up and how they compare to subject-oriented resource guides.

FEDLINK 1995 Fall OCLC Users Group Mtg. (11/08/95): 2 videotapes (2½ hours)--reviews new services and enhancements for future release by OCLC, emphasizing cataloging, collection development, and the Internet. Topics include: ILL Custom Holdings, PromptSelect, Bib Notification, Authority Control Services Strategy, Harvard Resource File, Internet Cataloging Project, and NetFirst.

FEDLINK 1995 Fall Membership Meeting (11/08/95): 2 videotapes (3½ hours)--discusses the National Archives and Records Administrations implementation of the Government Information Locator System (GILS) and reports on the Government Printing Office and its ACCESS Program as a point of access for GILS. The agenda includes updates from FLICC, its working groups, and LCs Contracts and Logistics Services.

Internet Brown Bag Discussion Series: The Next Step--Putting Internet to Work in the Federal Library (11/02/95): 1 videotape (2½ hours)--Topic #1 "Providing Reference Service by Email" examines questions like: Does it work? What types of questions are best suited to "email reference"? What are the best ways to track questions and answers? What happens to the reference interview/negotiation process?

Mass Deacidification for Paper-Based Collections (10/26/95): 1 videotape (2 hours)--discusses the history of mass deacidification and status of its research, examines the role of mass deacidification in preservation programs and the related selection criteria and funding issues.

Federal Library Collections Management Series: The Great Preservation Debate: To Digitize or to Microfilm (09/20/95): 2 videotapes (5½ hours)--examines the pros and cons of using microfilm and digital technologies to preserve recorded information; discusses effective, cost-efficient methods for preserving valuable books and documents; explains options and analyzes short-and long-term implications affecting preservation policies and funding.

1995 Information Technology Update: Understanding Information Technology Regulations and Standards and Putting them to Work (09/12/95): 3 videotapes/resource materials (6 hours)--presents some of the actors and thinkers most closely involved in the development and implementation of relevant regulations and standards as they apply to the library profession.

Internet Resources at the Reference Desk (08/02/95): 3 videotapes/resource materials (6 hours)--examines the browsing environment of the Internet, provides an overview of Internet materials and tips on staying current, and discusses federal librarians use of the Internet and what references are best in electronic form.

Cataloging Interactive Multimedia (07/27/95): 3 videotapes and workbook (5½ hours)--provides instruction on authoritative cataloging and tagging practices applicable to Interactive Multimedia. Instructor: Ann Sandberg-Fox.

Cataloging Computer Files 07/26/95): 3 videotapes and workbook (5½ hours)--provides instruction on authoritative cataloging and tagging practices applicable to the OCLC MARC Format for Machine Readable Data Files (MRDF). Instructor: Ann Sandberg-Fox.

Soaring to Excellence (02/14/95-06/06/95): 5 videotapes/resource materials (10 hours)--discusses requirements and issues that affect library technicians in todays library; serves as a core program for professional growth and for developing skills and knowledge to become a contributing member of the professional library team (teleconference).

Preservation of Photographic Collections (12/05/94): 2 videotapes/resource materials (5 hours)--focuses on the structure of photographs and typical deterioration problems; addresses the establishment of preservation priorities for photographic collections with discussions on appropriate environmental levels, handling practices, and storage enclosures for all types of photographic materials and formats.

DIALOG New BOA Terms (10/20/94): 1 videotape/resource materials (1½ hours)--DIALOG describes its new pricing categories and the new rank, report, target, map, alert, ERA and electronic delivery services features of the system so that federal librarians can make the most effective and least costly use of the DIALOG system.

International Video Conference on the Electronic Library (10/04/94): 1 videotape /resource materials (2 hours)--provides a forum for the 18,000 libraries participating in OCLC to discuss the broad professional implications of the next stage of the electronic library--in reference, cataloging, resource sharing, electronic publishing and education.


Editorial Staff

FEDLINK Technical Notes is published by the Federal Library and Information Center Committee.
Send suggestions of areas for FLICC attention or for inclusion in FEDLINK Technical Notes to:

FEDLINK Technical Notes
Federal Library and Information Center Committee
Library of Congress, 101 Independence Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20540-4935

Phone (202) 707-4800    Fax (202) 707-4818

FEDLINK Fiscal Operations:
Phone (202) 707-4900    Fax (202) 707-4999

Executive Director: Susan Tarr    Editor-In-Chief: Robin Hatziyannis
Writer/Editor: Jessica Clark    Editorial Assistant: Mitchell Harrison

FLICC was established in 1965 (as the Federal Library Committee) by the Library of Congress and the Bureau of the Budget for the purpose of concentrating the intellectual resources of the federal library and related information community. FLICC's goals are: To achieve better utilization of library and information center resources and facilities; to provide more effective planning development, and operation of federal libraries and information centers; to promote an optimum exchange of experience, skill, and resources; to promote more effective service to the nation at large; and to foster relevant educational opportunities.


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