I feel that I have been neglecting my blogging a bit lately, but this has not been for lack of interesting things to report! Some of the highlights from the past couple of months include:
—A trip to Oxford with the other Cambridge trainees to visit some of the Oxford libraries. We had a really interesting day visiting the Bodleian Library and Radcliffe Camera, as well as the St John’s and Corpus Christi College libraries. It was also lovely to finally meet the current trainee from the Bod ‘in real life’ after having chatted at length on Facebook and Twitter :)
—The Cambridge Librarian TeachMeet event, which was a huge success and a really enjoyable evening. The aim of TeachMeet is for librarians to get together to share tips, techniques and ideas about teaching information literacy skills. The evening consisted of a series of short presentations on topics such as how to create eye-catching library posters, how to use QR Codes to promote e-journals, how to help both students and teachers use search engines more effectively, and how to embed information literacy within the curriculum. One of the most interesting presentations was on teaching essay writing skills to students via the medium of a jigsaw. The completion of the jigsaw served as a metaphor for the completion of an essay and I thought that it was a really clever concept. The video for that particular presentation can be found here and links to all the other presentations can be found on the TeachMeet website.
—A trip with the other trainees to London to visit the Guildhall Library and the Chartered Institute of Accountants Library, the latter of which gave us a really interesting insight into how libraries function within a business environment. Having never heard of the Guildhall Library before the visit, I was interested to learn that it is actually a public library which specialises in the history of London. I was extremely impressed when the librarian, Andrew Harper, told us that the library owns an original copy of Shakespeare’s mortgage contract, signed by the man himself – apparently a rare and important document because it is one of the few verified examples of Shakespeare’s handwriting.
In other news, Easter term has now begun at College and the library is the busiest that I have ever seen it. We have started offering the students tea and coffee in the library office every morning at 11am, so that they can have a break from their dissertations and exam revision – they definitely seem to appreciate this!
By this time next year it will be me who is dealing with revision and dissertations, as I now have a confirmed place at UCL and will be officially starting library school in September. I have also just had some unbelievably good news – UCL have said that they will nominate me for AHRC funding! At the moment I’m quite daunted at the prospect of moving to London, but I’m also extremely excited and really looking forward to starting the course. I just wish that all the set texts on my preliminary reading list came in e-book format – I’d much rather have a Kindle than have to travel to and from University on the tube with a heavy rucksack of books, but I suppose you can’t have everything!