November 7, 2016

Experiences of a First Time Attendee Scholarship Winner

Ansley Stuart, was awarded SC/MLA’s First Time Attendee Scholarship, and shares her conference experiences.

The 2016 Southern Chapter Annual Meeting was a refreshing view of the future that health science librarians are helping to create.

As part of the scholarship I received, I was fortunate enough to attend the continuing education course on Open Access Publishing Models and Predatory Journals: PubMed and Beyond. From start to finish, this class was a wealth of information about open access journals. The instructors provided
their students with the basic knowledge of how open access journals are supposed to work and then let everyone know about the multitudes of ways that publishing model can be abused. The students also learned what red flags to look out for when investigating whether a journal is predatory or not.

The Annual Meeting’s paper and poster presentations offered a wide variety of original and reported information that truly focused on this year’s theme of “Re-Think IT”. There were many new and creative ideas on how to get better feedback from library users, how to make online content more accessible, different ways to reach distance users, and how to better organize library content. Not only were the presenters thorough researchers, but many were engaging public speakers as well.
The same can also be said of the general session speakers who encouraged health science librarians to think about the future not only to provide valuable information, but also to be valuable leaders. Librarians are well aware that being ignorant of one’s own ignorance is a problem that often needs an outsider to step in and guide people to better answers. While some presenters were more direct than others, everyone seemed to have the same underlying message to find those creative solutions of stepping in and being a better guide. In other words, “Re-Think IT”.

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