in ALA2011, Libraries/Info Sci, Presentations, Tech

Panel on using virtual focus groups at ALA 2011

As co-chair of LITA’s Distance Learning Interest Group, I’m really excited to point out the panel session we’re running at ALA this year!

Using Virtual Focus Groups in Distance Learning & Online Environments
Monday, 6/27 from 1:30-3:30
Morial Convention Center, Rm 333
ALA Annual Conference, New Orleans, LA

We have a great panel lined up, all of whom have practical experience running virtual focus groups. And that’s including (if conference center wi-fi permits) one presenting remotely – we’ll try and practice what we preach 🙂

Depending on how bold I feel on the day of, I may try to ustream the whole panel via my phone. I’ll be sure and post the link on this site if we do.

Here’s the program in the conference scheduler:

More details are after the cut. Note that the last 15 minutes are reserved for the brief annual DLIG meeting. Hope to see you there!

Gathering information about the library needs of students who are taking courses online or off-campus can be challenging. This program will focus on the use of virtual focus groups to gather student and faculty reactions to existing and future library services and gain a better sense of how these students research and what they find challenging.

The program will feature three librarians who will describe virtual focus group projects that they conducted at their own libraries. These projects, targeted at online and distance students and faculty members, were used to determine awareness of library resources, service needs of distance populations and to inform web site redesign. Panelists will discuss recruitment of participants, technology used for conducting the focus groups, challenges they faced and evaluation post-focus group. A fourth panelist, Dr. Janet Salmons, author of Online Interviews in Real Time (Sage 2010), will participate remotely, and will demonstrate and discuss the use of visual features of online meeting space such as shared whiteboard for interactive focus groups.

This session will provide an opportunity for librarians who work with distance, online and face-to-face students and faculty to connect with one another and share experiences with assessment methods. We’ll have plenty of time for Q&A and audience interaction. The panel session will be followed by a brief DLIG business meeting.

Panelists Include:
Stefanie Buck, Ecampus and Instructional Design Librarian, Oregon State University.
Barbara Mann, Assistant Director for Public Services for Information and Library Services, University of Maryland University College Library.
Janet Salmons Ph.D., Graduate Faculty member, Capella University School of Business and Technology and scholar-practitioner and consultant through her company, Vision2Lead, Inc.
Diane Wahl, Librarian for Planning and Assessment, UNT Libraries, Denton, Texas.

Moderated by LITA-DLIG Co-chairs:
Chad Haefele, Emerging Technologies Librarian and Computer Science Subject Specialist, University of North Carolina, Davis
Lauren Ray, Research Commons and Educational Outreach Services Librarian, University of Washington Libraries, Seattle, WA,

Thanks, and hope to see you there! The last 15 minutes of the program are reserved for the brief annual DLIG meeting.