Archive for March 15, 2011

LibGuides: Information is a Candle in the Dark

We love sharing great examples of librarians using LibGuides/CampusGuides to publish high quality, timely information. When we saw Kathy Park’s guide about the tragic events in Japan, we were inspired by its breadth, quality, & currency – so we’d like to share her work with the community. Check out the COM Library’s guide to the Japan Earthquake & Tsunami:

http://libguides.com.edu/japan

From Kathy:

To be honest, one feels helpless in these tragic situations. As librarians there is always something we can do – we can compile and provide access to good quality information – it’s what we do best.
Especially for major tragedies, our patrons want to know more beyond just the latest news. How were people affected? What was it like to be there? How can this happen… and how can I help? This guide (and others like it) is a direct result of interacting with our patrons.

Using embedded media, this guide is able to continually update and evolve to reflect the changing situation in Japan. Highlights from this guide include an interactive Google map (which provides links to video and more information), and excellent RSS feeds. In the future, Kathy plans to add a page about Japan, and another on nuclear power (which is emerging as a significant part of the story), and will continue adding new angles as the situation evolves.

We love sharing these success stories – as Kathy mentions, “Every time I create a new guide, I blog it. I use twitterfeed to send the blog post to our Twitter & Facebook accounts, and I use the text from our blog to email every user on campus”. And the results are tangible – using Kathy’s links, patrons have donated to victims of this and other catastrophic events, and students have access to an incredible source of research help, akin to a time-capsule of an event.

Much like the GOSIC (Gulf Oil Spill Information Center) guide we shared back in July ( http://guides.lib.usf.edu/gulf-oil-spill ), these guides represent the best of what LibGuides has to offer. We’re proud to be able to offer librarians a fast & flexible tool to rapidly share their knowledge with their communities. We also love to share, and Kathy has graciously agreed to allow other LibGuiders to re-use her excellent content in your own sites. For more information, check out our Best Of site: http://bestof.libguides.com/collections