Current Awareness Tools for Grants Facilitators


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Powerpoint from a two-hour workshop on current awareness tools presented to grants facilitators at the University of British Columbia. The workshop covered RSS and how it can be used to:

* follow news stories and blogs
* learn of funding opportunities and upcoming conferences
* be notified of new articles and dissertations on a topic
* receive Table of Contents for the latest issue of a favorite journal
* find out when new books have arrived in the library

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  • SA
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  • SA- focus on RSS, but many of these
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  • I won’t spend too much time on google alerts as it is pretty straighforward like all google products
  • Current Awareness Tools for Grants Facilitators

    1. 1. Grant Facilitators workshop (April 29, 2010) Susan Atkey Librarian, Koerner Library ( Sally Taylor Librarian, Woodward Library (
    2. 2. Workshop Objectives <ul><li>To begin discussion: “How do you stay current?” in your field? </li></ul><ul><li>To introduce you to RSS as a way to keep up-to-date. </li></ul><ul><li>To help you identify which alerts will work best for your needs </li></ul>
    3. 3. <ul><li>How do you currently stay up-to-date in your field? </li></ul><ul><li>Share one web site or blog that you use in your work. </li></ul>Introductions
    4. 4. Today’s Agenda <ul><li>1) RSS </li></ul><ul><li>2) Six types of alerts </li></ul><ul><ul><li>News & Blogs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Funding & Conferences </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Articles by topic or author </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Journal Table of Contents </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>New Books </li></ul></ul>
    5. 5. What is RSS? RSS In Plain English An excellent 4-minute video introduction to the how and why of RSS URL: http://
    6. 6. RSS: A quick review <ul><li>What is RSS? A technology that automatically updates when new content is published. </li></ul><ul><li>What do you need? </li></ul><ul><li>1. An RSS reader (aka feed reader) </li></ul><ul><li>Popular readers include Bloglines, Google Reader </li></ul><ul><li>2. An RSS feed </li></ul><ul><li>Many journals, publications, blogs, news sites, podcasts, and videos offer RSS Feeds. Look for these icons: </li></ul>
    7. 7. Scenario One <ul><li>Do you want to: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Get up-to-the-minute results on news stories and events? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Keep informed of new posts by favourite bloggers? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Be notified of updates to favourite websites? </li></ul></ul>
    8. 8. Solution: News and Blogs alerts <ul><li>Most news sites and blogs allow you to subscribe via RSS. </li></ul><ul><li>You will be notified as new content appears on the site. </li></ul><ul><li>This is especially useful for blogs which typically don’t follow a fixed publication schedule. </li></ul><ul><li>Line between news and blogs can be blurred. </li></ul>
    9. 9. Examples <ul><li>News: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>CBC </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>New York Times </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Blogs: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>UBC Public Affairs – media releases </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Chronicle of Higher Education – many! </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Medical Writing, Editing and Grantsmanship </li></ul></ul>
    10. 10. Google Alerts <ul><li>Google Alerts are email updates of the latest relevant Google results (news, web, blogs, etc.) based on your topic. </li></ul><ul><li>Now RSS too! </li></ul><ul><li>http:// /alerts </li></ul>
    11. 11. To set up a Google Alert
    12. 12. Hands-on <ul><li>Set up an alert for: </li></ul><ul><li>News or blogs </li></ul><ul><li>(10 minutes) </li></ul>
    13. 13. Scenario Two <ul><li>Do you want to: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Get notified when conferences or new sources of funding are available that fit your profile? </li></ul></ul>
    14. 14. Solution: Community of Scholar databases <ul><ul><li>COS PapersInvited: search for upcoming conferences, special journal issues and student competitions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>COS Funding Opportunities: search by funding type, requirements, activity location, citizenship </li></ul></ul>
    15. 15. COS: setting up an alert <ul><ul><li>Search either database </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Click “Alert Me” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Create a My Research account </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Select RSS or email for delivery </li></ul></ul>
    16. 16. Hands-on <ul><li>Set up an alert for: </li></ul><ul><li>Conferences and funding </li></ul><ul><li>(10 minutes) </li></ul>
    17. 17. Scenario Three <ul><li>Do you want to: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Keep on top of new research that is being published in a variety of disciplines without having to search each database? </li></ul></ul>
    18. 18. Solution: Saved Search Alerts <ul><li>A Saved Search Alert is based on a search in a database, group of databases, or at the publisher’s website. </li></ul><ul><li>The search is run at specified intervals and you are alerted if any new articles on your topic are available. </li></ul><ul><li>You can set a search alert using any index available in the database, e.g., keywords, authors, journal title, etc. </li></ul>
    19. 19. Solution: Saved Search Alerts <ul><li>Many of the databases that UBC Library subscribes to offer an alerting service, including databases from the large vendors like EBSCO, CSA, ProQuest, ISI, and OVID. </li></ul><ul><li>All databases can be accessed through the Indexes and Databases A-Z list on the library home page (under e-Resources) </li></ul>
    20. 20. Setting up a Search Alert via EBSCO <ul><li>Let’s walk through a Saved Search Alert using the EBSCO database Academic Search Complete (ASC) as our source. </li></ul><ul><li>Find Academic Search Complete in the list of indexes and databases </li></ul><ul><li>See handouts for step-by-step instructions </li></ul>
    21. 21. Hands-on <ul><li>Set up a Saved Search Alert for your research topic </li></ul><ul><li>via a subject database </li></ul><ul><li>(10 minutes) </li></ul>
    22. 22. Scenario Four <ul><li>Do you want to: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Keep up-to-date with a few key journals in your field? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Be notified about all articles that are published in a key association publication without having to constantly visit the library or the publisher’s website? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Be notified when a new journal issue is out, and what the contents are? </li></ul></ul>
    23. 23. Solution: Table of Contents (ToC) Alerts <ul><li>Tables of Contents of selected journals are sent to you when a new issue is released </li></ul><ul><li>You don’t need to come to the Library to browse the most recent issue </li></ul><ul><li>You usually need to create an account and sign in to save and edit alerts </li></ul>
    24. 24. Journal Table of Contents Alerts <ul><li>To find your journal, you can: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Search the UBC Library journal list for the title, or </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Google the journal title </li></ul></ul>
    25. 25. Journal Table of Contents Alerts <ul><li>If the journal is available online, follow the link to the ejournal page to see if they offer alerts </li></ul><ul><li>To find the alert service at the publisher’s or journal’s website, look for terms like: </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>alert(s) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>subscribe </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>notify me </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>email Table of Contents </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>set email alert </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>RSS or RSS feed </li></ul></ul></ul>
    26. 26. Journal Table of Contents Alerts <ul><li>Let’s set up a Table of Contents Alert for the journal Research in Higher Education starting from the UBC Library journal list </li></ul>
    27. 27. Journal Table of Contents Alerts <ul><li>Go to the Print & Electronic journals link on the library homepage and look up the journal … </li></ul>
    28. 28. Journal Table of Contents Alerts
    29. 29. Journal Table of Contents Alerts <ul><li>Click the orange RSS icon (or register for TOC alerts by email) </li></ul><ul><li>If necessary, login to your account (many publishers require you to register and account with them in order to set up an alert) </li></ul>
    30. 30. Hands-on <ul><li>Set up a Table of Contents Alert for your favorite journal via the publisher’s website </li></ul><ul><li>(10 minutes) </li></ul>
    31. 31. Scenario Five <ul><li>Do you want to: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Get notified when new items (books, videos, music, maps) in your area are added to the UBC library collection? </li></ul></ul>
    32. 32. Solution: New Materials at UBC <ul><li>The UBC Library New Materials and Resources page allows you to see new materials added to the UBC Library collection in your area </li></ul><ul><li>http:// </li></ul>
    33. 33. Solution: New Materials at UBC <ul><li>Click the “New Materials and Resources” link on the library homepage </li></ul>
    34. 34. Solution: New Materials at UBC <ul><li>Set your parameters: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Subject </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Call number range(s) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Branches </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Format </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Languages </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Click the RSS icon to generate an RSS feed </li></ul>
    35. 35. Hands-on <ul><li>Set up an alert for: </li></ul><ul><li>New resources at UBC Library </li></ul><ul><li>(10 minutes) </li></ul>
    36. 36. For further help: <ul><li>UBC Library Guide: Current Awareness Tools </li></ul><ul><li>Ask Your Subject Librarian: http:// </li></ul>