Author Archives: Karen Kronenberg, J.D. MLS

Check out these new additions to the Coastal Library collection!

We’ve added new books! To view a table listing the new print resources that the library received since the start of September, 2013, click Continue reading below. Most of the items listed there can be found in the General Collection and checked out for up to three weeks by members of the Coastal Community.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to stop by the Reference Desk on the third floor of the Library & Technology Center or contact the Reference Librarians via email, telephone (904.680.7612), or the Ask a Librarian form.

If you think we should consider adding something to the collection, please feel free to recommend it here (Coastal ID login required).

Continue reading

Look for our Contest on Facebook!

Every Fall semester, the Library puts out a give-away cart full of books that students can have free on a first-come, first-serve basis. Students have found copies of required textbooks, great study aids, and other valuable material on this cart. One per customer, please!

This Fall, we have more books to give away than ever before; so many we do not have enough book carts to hold them all. To make the process more manageable, we are having a contest. The prize: first crack at all the materials we are giving away. Not only do you get to see and select from our give-away books before everyone else, you can have as many books as you can carry by yourself, without the aid of a case or cart!

The give-away cart roll out date and contest rules will be announced on Facebook. Here is the Library Facebook page. Follow us on Facebook to start the contest ahead of the pack!

Fireworks – Related Darwin Awards

The Library wishes you a fun, happy, and safe Independence Day.

For examples of how NOT to celebrate safely, check out the Darwin Awards website. Like many sites, they have a search box at the bottom of their homepage. The Advanced Search link describes how to search the site using Boolean connectors like “AND.”

Enter the term “fireworks” into the search box for some cautionary tales!

Free Software for You – and its Good!

All of us have been inundated with offers of free software we can install on our phones, tablets, and laptops. I’ve gotten a little cynical about it: legal publishers are eager to offer free apps and browser extensions as a way of marketing themselves. Still, some of it is actually pretty useful. Lexis Advance and WestlawNext are available through proprietary apps that work well.

Occasionally, free software can even be great! How would you like the chance to download software that is used daily by virtually all the “AmLaw 100” law firms; software that would cost you approximately $400.00 for a single-user license?

You can. CaseMap is available through LexisNexis, and all students can download it from their LexisNexis homepage. After logging on, go to the “Free Downloads” tab, and then look under “Litigation Tools” for CaseMap. Once you install it, open it, and click on the CaseMap Quick Start Tutorial on the right hand panel to get started. Any questions? Your librarians are here to help.

Exam Day Jitters

What is the best way to deal with exam jitters?

Google, Bing, Duck Duck Go, Ask.com, and other sources will give you common wisdom and anecdotes about various techniques that have worked for other test takers. These may work for you.

But what if you want some no-nonsense, scientifically reliable, double-blind-tested techniques? If so, the best way to find them is to start by carefully selecting a source that contains that kind of material. You may have to try several sources until you find a good one.

I knew I wanted to find an article that contained carefully researched methods of dealing with test-day jitters. I was not interested in studies that simply measured anxiety levels. I wanted articles that would give me reliable advice. I settled on ProQuest eLibrary. I knew this source contained a range of newspapers and magazines that could have articles describing how to deal with exam jitters that would be properly sourced. I found the following tips from Sue Shellenbarger, Toughest Exam Question: What is the Best Way to Study?, WALL ST. J. ONLINE, Oct. 26, 2011.

  • If you are taking the exam in an unfamiliar place, visit the room in advance.
  • Set aside 10 minutes beforehand to write down your worries. Expressing yourself in writing will unburden you.
  • Envision yourself in a situation you find challenging and invigorating. Then switch your mental image to the testing room and imagine yourself feeling the same way. With practice, you’ll be able to summon up more confidence on test day.

Google Search by Image

(No, I am not talking about Google Image Search, although I like that feature. Google Image Search will respond to your Google search with images from the web. I used it to find this great blog that compiles cartoons about libraries and librarians: http://librarycartoons.wordpress.com/.)

Google Search by Image is a new feature that allows you to use an image as your search. You can drag and drop your image if it is online, or type in its URL. If the image is not online, you will need to save the image to your hard drive, and then upload it. Firefox and Chrome add-ons are available to make the process easier. They have a video on how it works here:  http://www.google.com/insidesearch/features/images/searchbyimage.html.

Do you have a picture of a building, and need to know what it is? Have a picture of a vehicle, and need its make and model? Give Google search by image a try.

Aron Swartz, Open Access, and Libraries

The tragic suicide of Aron Swartz has put the Open Access movement in the spotlight. Open Access is the practice of providing free, unrestricted access to scholarly work through the internet. Proponents of open access to scholarly journals argue that since taxpayers fund almost all research, they should not have to purchase the results of that research from a private publisher.  Journal subscription costs are born by libraries, who are increasingly saying “No,” to expensive journals. For more discussion of open access, see this web page by Peter Suber, Director of Harvard’s Open Access Project: http://bit.ly/oa-overview

The CRAP test.

I like to follow blogs about libraries and research. One of my favorites is Lisa Gold: Research Maven. Lisa is a professional researcher, who explains research concepts well. Check out her colorful post, “The CRAP test for evaluating sources,” for a good explanation of how to decide if a source you have found can be relied upon. If you click the “Highlights” link at the top of her page, you can see a list of her most notable posts. My favorites are, “Spell-check is evil, but funny: The Cupertino Effect,” “Let’s talk about search,” and “In praise of browsing.”

Do you need to keep track of a research subject?

If you are writing an ALWR this semester, there may be new developments on your ALWR topic before the due date. Your professor will expect that you research your topic diligently throughout the semester, and deal with any new developments appropriately in your paper.

If your ALWR paper concerns doping in sports, you probably heard about Lance Armstrong’s confession as it happened. But what if your paper concerns proposed SEC regulations, or the activity of the Senate Banking Committee? You can’t count on this material being big news, and you do not have the time or inclination to repeat the same searches in the same search engines every day. You might be thinking, “If only I could arrange for news on my topic to be delivered to me automatically!”

Congratulations. You can set up alerts to do exactly that. Go to the Google Altert page here: http://www.google.com/alerts, and fill out the simple form. Lexis and Westlaw also provide this service. See instructions on how to set up alerts in Westlaw here, and in Lexis here.