Be the first to like this
Presentation given at 243 ACS National Meeting, Spring 2012, in San Diego.
Given the tightly subject matter packed curricula, it is often difficult for librarians to obtain time for scientific information instruction. While this situation exists since several years at ETH Zürich, we have developed a two-pillared strategy which on the one hand tries to meet the students where they have information needs, on the other hand to create tools and services that offer improved access to sources.
First, our scientific information instruction includes basic and advanced lessons that are integrated in chemistry, pharmaceutical sciences, and material science lab courses. These problem-oriented units (including hands-on literature searches for the lab experiment) are taught by qualified scientific staff from the Information Center and accompany students for their Bachelor course, starting in the first term. They are complemented by supporting material for major databases on the web site and individual end-user support. We will review this approach and discuss strengths and weaknesses.
We are also investigating new ways to improve how students assess information. For this, we have carried out a large study with second-semester students who had to rate the German Wikipedia and Roempp Online chemistry encyclopedia with regards to content on chemical thermodynamics, and will report results.
Second, since teaching chemical information is focused on the most important sources, it must be complemented with information services that support the user in locating and judging the appropriate source. As an example, we will present a recently introduced textbook portal that integrates with our library navigator.