Sewanee: The University of the South

Library and Information Technology Services


November 11, 2016

“There’s nothing more valuable than knowledge.”

LITS updates and information to foster communication and collaboration campus wide.

Administration Office

Thankful for Work Study Students Pot-Luck Luncheon        

Contributed by Tim Garner

On Monday, November 21 please join us in saying “Thanks” to all the work study students in LITS.  We will host a Pot-Luck Luncheon that day from 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM in the first floor duPont Library lounge. Help spread the word to all your work study students!  

If you would like to bring a dish, please go to our sign up sheet to see what other staff members are bringing and make a note of what you will bring.  Viewing this list and signing up will help us ensure that ten people do not bring the same item!  If you have any questions please contact Kelly Andy or Tim Garner.

Save the Date! Holiday Luncheon on Tuesday, December 6

This is literally “hot off the presses” as I just received confirmation that our date is secured at The Sewanee Inn for 2016!  On Tuesday, December 6 all LITS staff are invited to gather at The Sewanee Inn from 12:00 - 2:00 for a special holiday luncheon.  While the date and time are set - the menu is not.  Look for more details to follow soon.

EMS Calendar Software Launch

EMS calendar software will be replacing our current reservation system, MRM (Meeting Room Manager), beginning in January, 2017. The new EMS system will simplify the reservation process for users and provide innovative new tools allowing us to reduce costs and increase productivity campus wide.  

The staff in Strategic Digital Infrastructure have been working diligently to ensure all of the back end components and connectors are in place while staff in Technology Access & Support transformed the Torian Room into a computer lab for the first round of training for Power Users during the week of October 31.  

Training for all University faculty and staff will begin November, 15 and run through December 21.  Three sessions per week will be offered allowing everyone a chance to give EMS a try before we go live in January.  You can find more detailed information and sign up for a training session on the LITS web page under Training.

Archives and Special Collections

Archives Pamphlet Collection

Contributed by Betsy Grant

Lately, I’ve been working through our extensive pamphlet collection. Some years ago, Annie Armour organized uncataloged pamphlets into chronological order. Each pamphlet was placed in an acid-free envelope; the envelope was labeled with bibliographic information and given a call number of the publication date and the first few letters of the author’s last name. They were then placed in pamphlet boxes. The chronological arrangement was useful as it provided a snapshot of what was occurring during a particular period of time. Events in the history of the University could be looked at in view of what was going on outside the University.

The collection consists primarily of University publications such as reports to trustees, financial statements, constitutions, alumni proceedings, trustees’ proceedings, baccalaureate and commencement addresses, etc.

However, in addition, there are many pamphlets that are connected to the University only through the author, such as sermons, addresses, published letters, by persons affiliated in some way with the University, addresses, publications about the Episcopal Church including many things from the Diocese of Tennessee, and miscellaneous other publications.

The pamphlets range in date from the mid-1850s when discussions about the founding of a southern university first began to the mid-1980s, although there are few publications from 1960-1980 compared with the amount from earlier dates.

The first batch of pamphlets were cataloged by me when Tom Watson was the interim director of Archives. These were primarily pamphlets from the 1920s-1940s. I’m now working my way through the rest of them. They are all being cataloged in OCLC and Sierra and are receiving LC call numbers. In addition, they are being re-housed into Mylar sleeves with the acid free envelopes providing stiffness to the Mylar. As many of the pamphlets are very fragile, the Mylar provides further protection.

When this project is finished, we will have provided many original records to OCLC, providing researchers with previously unavailable, valuable material.

Collections Management

Abigail Leal -  Work Study Appreciation

Contributed by Courtnay Zeitler

We could not run Circulation without all our dedicated work-study students, who are responsible for staffing the desk over 80% of the hours we are open each week. From 9 a.m. to 1 a.m, they punch in, week after week, to assist our patrons by delivering the best customer service on campus. Since Circulation initiated the Coursebooks on Reserve program over a year ago, our work-studies are very busy: they're constantly hopping on and off the counter stools retrieving all kinds of items, printing all kinds of documents, and finding the answers to all sorts of queries that come their way during a "normal" 2-hour shift.

Abigail Leal, a junior, from Houston, Texas, has served as a Circulation assistant for her entire tenure at Sewanee.  She is the first generation in her family to go to college and is a biology major. Since she came to Sewanee two and a half years ago, she has been an excellent leader at the circulation desk. We are lucky to have Abigail. Here's a few questions I asked her:

Staff Profile - Tammy Smartt

Tammy Smartt pic.jpgTammy Smartt has worked at duPont Library for almost 34 years (she must have started as a small child!)  Tammy has been instrumental in several recent projects in Collections Management over the past year – most notably the Reference withdrawal project and working on reduction of print serials.

When asked what has changed in her job since she started, Tammy said almost everything! She did note that she was very glad we don’t have to file catalog cards anymore.  If Tammy had not worked in the library, she said her dream job would be as a Nurse.

See Tammy’s answers to some of our questions:
What is the strangest thing in your desk?  
Pumpkin Halloween lights.

What would you change on our Library Facebook page?  
Add pictures and bios of staff.

If you could spend one week anywhere in the world, where would you go?  Would you visit a library while you were there?    
The countryside in Ireland and probably would not visit a library.

Do you have any pets?  What are their names?  
A 15 year old cat named Biscuit. However, he only answers to “Cat” if he bothers to answer at all.

What song or recording artist makes you smile?  
 “Shake” and “Flawless” by MercyMe.

What movie or tv series would you recommend to other LITS staff to watch?  Midsomer Mysteries or The X Files.

Do you have a favorite recipe you can share with other LITS staff?  
Turtle brownies.

What is your favorite kind of cake?  
Pineapple upside down cake.

Information Literacy and Instructional Technology


Contributed by Amanda Sprott-Goldson


Zotero is a free tool that lets you collect, organize, cite, and share your resources. With a simple download, Zotero can sense content in your web browser and save it, whether you’re looking at TigerSearch, a database, or

Zotero puts everything you save into a single, searchable interface where you can add PDFs, images, audio or video files, snapshots of webpages, and almost anything else.

Once you’ve collected and organized your resources, Zotero helps you to cite them with drag and drop services for citations.

And finally, Zotero allows you to share your collections with others, through open or closed, public or private groups.

The Research Help librarians (Dann, Heidi, and Amanda) recently used Zotero to help at least 16 students with projects on sex trafficking for an Anthropology course. The professor contacted Amanda and gave us a head’s up that we should be expecting students with this topic for the countries of Tanzania, Colombia, the United States, China, Mexico, and Nepal. We collected information on sex trafficking in all of the countries and shared them with each other through Zotero. Then, when the students started showing up, a part of each of our research consultations was to email each student the link to the group for their country’s research.

Due to Zotero’s functionality, we were able to collect, organize, and share relevant resources with our students very easily, resulting in them getting better, more complete information for their projects.

  School of Theology Library

Remus the Bookworm

Contributed by Romulus Stefanut

11_11_Remus.jpgLet me introduce you to a new library character: Remus, the Bookwork. Despite what is written in history books about the (in)famous assassination of Remus (at the hand of Romulus), Remus is still alive and well since the founding of the Roman Republic. Yet, he is slightly metamorphosized or re-incarnated, should you prefer a religious term.

What is he doing in his bookwormish world, on the 3rd floor of duPont? Well, there are four cardinal dimensions of his work: up, down, left, and right (unlike Greg’s Virtual Reality six dimensional world!).


Teaching and Research (30%)
He teaches a class called Theological Bibliography, Research, and Writing, he also prepares library guides for various classes that need research help. Most recently, a couple weeks ago, he was invited to give a talk about Exegetical Sources and Resources for Dr. Wright’s Foundations of the Old Testament. Obviously, he needs to spend some weekly hours with books feasting on them for his classes. As far as research, his bookwormish appetite is in the area of Information Seeking Behavior. Actually, he will present a more or less digested paper, based on his findings next summer at the ATLA, that is the American Theological Library Association. He is also working quietly on a paper about Quiet Study Areas in Academic Libraries.

Theological Research & Reference (30%)
Although Remus’ summer started quietly after his metamorphoses to Sewanee, TN, when the school started he was fortunate to get a lot of interest and interaction from library staff, students, faculty, alumni etc. So far, he had over 110 appointments ranging from walk-ins with a quick question to complex research questions about primary source materials. He also trained about 6 graduate work-study assistants to help him with various bookwormish matters.


Collection Management (30%)
Every week Remus does some book selection via Gobi. He also keeps up with what has been published in the theological bookwormish world. His vision is to live in an e-Library with books that rot no more, thanks to digital preservation. Full text access to e-resources will add a complete new dimension to his life and to yours, as well. Till that glorious day, he needs to find a new way to represent himself within the e-book iconography.

Public Service (10%)
Being part of various groups and committees is what a bookworm likes best. These take him out and about, away from his bookwormish environment and into the real world of non-fiction.

Strategic Digital Infrastructure

SDI Director Search Progresses

Contributed by Tim Garner

The search for the new Director of SDI was in high gear this week.  Members of the hiring committee, Vicki Sells, Doug Williams, Mary Wilson, Paul Wiley, Romulus Stefanut, Terri Williams, Connie Patton, and Karen Meridith conducted the first round of interviews with the top five candidates via video conference calls.  Afterwards the committee agreed that there were clearly three top contenders for the position.  Due to the upcoming holiday breaks we will attempt to have these three candidates visit campus before Thanksgiving if possible, or as soon after as their schedules allow.  LITS staff will have opportunities during each visit to meet with the candidates and offer feedback to the committee before a final selection is made.  Details for these visits will be shared as soon as they are confirmed.

Technology Access & Support

The Use of Audience Response Systems (AKA: Clickers) at Sewanee

Contributed by John Skidmore

TAS recently utilized the Poll Everywhere (P.E.) software package to survey audiences at DebateWatch 2016. The multi-day event was a series of limited seating viewings of the 3 Presidential and 1 Vice Presidential debates held at the Sewanee Inn. Attendees were treated to dinner while they watched a livestream of the debates. Immediately following the debates, without the interference and influence of any commentators, attendees discussed what their impressions of the candidates were and answered a series of Poll Everywhere questions about the candidates’ performance. DebateWatch was sponsored by Sewanee’s Center for Speaking and Listening, the Office of Civic Engagement, No Labels, Sewanee College Republicans and Sewanee Democrats.

Based on the success of Poll Everywhere with DebateWatch, TAS has done some exploration into the possibility of adding P.E. into the classroom environment here at Sewanee. P.E. is a real-time question and response software suite that allows audiences to respond to questions via an app downloaded for free on their smart phones (there is a fee to the University, however). The San Francisco-based business hopes their software is able to “Conduct formative assessments, increase student engagement, and foster deep learning with an easy, clicker-free student response system.”

Currently about half a dozen Sewanee professors are using Turning Technologies RF LCD clickers (purpose built devices that resemble hand-held TV remote controls)  in their classrooms. These are purchased through the bookstore as required for given courses, such as CHEM 120, CHEM 202, BIOL 275. At the end of the term, students, can of course, sell them back to the bookstore, and other students will have the option to buy either new or used, just like a textbook.

P.E. can be a “clicker free” solution to classroom question/response activities by leveraging the now ubiquitous smart phone as the user interface. Instructors can incorporate poll/survey questions into their Powerpoint, Google Slides, or Keynote presentations. Students then have the option of texting a response, using a URL to respond, or using the P.E. App (available on iOS and Android App Stores). Students download the app and “register” with P.E. With an entire class of registered users, instructors have the flexibility of having graded events, spontaneous quizzes, and other polls that give the instructor an instant “azimuth check” of how well their class is handling the lessons and materials.  A concern noted by two Sewanee professors using the more traditional clickers, is that they do not want to have students distracted from lessons by text messages and other communications that may be coming in on their smart phones during class. Thus, there does not appear to be a one-technology-fits-all solution but the experiment has exposed us to an alternative that would appear to have merit for use in some circumstances.

Suggestions or ideas for the LITS Newsletter? Please contact Vicki Sells, or x3220 or Tim Garner at, x1265.

© The University of the South

Library and Information Technology Services

Sewanee, Tennessee