As part of my study school week in Aberystwyth we had Dr. Jane Secker, Learning Technology Librarian (such a great job title!) at LSE, as a guest speaker to talk to us about the adventures of LASSIE (Libraries and Social Software in Education). I have been following the LASSIE project with interest since last summer when the initial literature review was published – for those that don’t know the project looked at social (Web 2.0) software such as online reading lists, social bookmarking, blogging and social networking, and specifically how they can be used to support distance learners. During the course of the project however, it became evident that these services can also benefit full-time and part-time students as many choose to study from home.
Jane’s talk was extremely interesting for both people like myself who are familiar with social software, and also with beginners who may not have even heard of the term before the talk. I’ve mentioned before that it surprises me how little Web 2.0 and Library 2.0 are discussed on my course, so it was great to have the talk – there was a lot more talk afterwards and I didn’t feel quite so strange talking about how great Library 2.0 initiatives can be!
I’ve included a copy of Jane’s slides below or you can listen to the talk alongside the slides here.
The LASSIE reports are all available on the project website (they are very practical in nature and make interesting reading). Jane has also published recent articles in both Program and ALISS Quarterly.
Something which I found particularly interesting was how valuable Jane had found the project blog and that although it was set up for the project she still regularly blogs there and finds it very useful – I can certainly relate with that, blogging has become part of my life now and I regularly find myself thinking “Oooh, I’ll write a blog post about that”. 😀
Jane did mention that they were hoping to expand on the original LASSIE project and I certainly hope so, their practical approach to problems faces by academic libraries in the UK I’m sure will be of value to many other institutions.