Accessing Zines & the Alternative Press: An Instructional Workshop (outline)
INSTRUCTIONAL WORKSHOPAccessing Zines + the Alternative PressSara Grozanick | LIS620-Advanced Reference | Final ProjectObjectives • Teach basic and intermediate research skills in the situated context of zines and alternative press • Link Library’s collection of zines, radical newspapers, and alternative periodicals to scholarly work • Liaise and outreach to History, Media Studies, and Women’s Studies departments • Promote the use of Library resources in tandem with relevant Web sourcesInformation Literacy Skills • Defining “zines” and “alternative press” • Ability to identify zines and alternative press publications • Ability to distinguish between different catalog searching methods • Introduction to LC Subject Headings and forming a subject search • Print and electronic indexes for finding alternative publications • Introduction to the Library Zine + Alternative Press wiki as a resource • How to conduct a database search (AltPressIndex) • Directories and bibliographies (including bibliographies on the Library wiki) • Ability to notice and articulate the types of information found in these reference sources • Ability to notice and articulate the differences in depth, coverage, and focus of the resources usedMaterials Used in the Lesson • Zine + Alternative Press Research Guide wiki • University X Library catalog • Worldcat • AltPressIndex electronic database
Unfolding of the Workshop• Group Introductions [10 minutes] o Name? o Year? o Discipline?• Alternative Press: Definitions + Overview [PPT slide 2, 15 minutes] o What is the alternative press?Librarian should pass around primary documents as examples. o Do you notice defining characteristics? o Do these publications seem different than mainstream media? How so? o Why might you want to use these materials in your research?Facilitate discussion of these questions, cite published definitions of“alternative press,” but acknowledge the interpretive nature of terms.This is an opportunity to gauge student understanding and comfort-levelwith the topic.• Zines: Defintions + Overview [PPT slides 3-5, 15 minutes] o What is a zine?Again, librarian should pass around primary documents as examples. o What roles can zines serve in academic research? (Zines as historical artifacts.)Facilitate discussion, refer to defining characteristics, generaldefinitions.• Searching the Catalog [slides 6-10] o Catalog search strategies: LCSH KeywordEmphasize differences in cataloging practices—particularly for zines—from library to library.
o How Zines are cataloged at University X; what this means for searching the catalog. o Issues with alternative press LCSH—relative to the time period during which the publication was cataloged.Introduce students to WorldCat, explain its purpose as a Union Catalog,have them practice doing sample subject searches and note differencesin the subject headings used.• Other Discovery Tools: Reference Resources o Why might a bibliography or index be a more useful first step than turning to the catalog to locate alternative publications? Cross-referencing GranularityLibrarian should do a sample search of AltPressIndex, and then havestudents do searches of their own, using expert search techniques.Also introduce print reference sources, like bibliographies, indexes tomicrofilm collections of underground newspapers, etc.