Schedule for the joint ArLiSNAP & VREPS virtual conference

We hope you can join us this Saturday for the webinar Visualizing the Future: New Perspectives in Art Librarianship. This virtual conference is a joint effort between ArLiSNAP and VREPS, which are the student / new professionals groups of ARLIS/NA and VRA, respectively. Registration is free and open to all here.

A schedule of speakers and presentations is below. For more information, visit the ArLiSNAP website or email Molly at schoenm[at]umich[dot]edu.



Join Us for Visualizing the Future: New Perspectives in Art Librarianship!


Our virtual conference is now open for registration! Check out our full line-up of spectacular speakers here.

This virtual conference will take place on Jan 17, 2015 at 1:00 PM EST.

Register now!

ArLiSNAP and VREPS are proud to present our virtual conference, Visualizing the Future: New Perspectives in Art Librarianship. This event will serve as a venue for students and new professionals to present, share advice, and discuss the future of our evolving profession. For a full schedule and list of presentations, please visit

This event is free and open to all; attendees do not need to be members of ARLIS/NA or VRA. Registration will close two hours before the start of the webinar. For assistance, please contact Additional information about webinars is available on the ARLIS/NA Learning Portal.

This webinar will be recorded, and the video will be made available on the ARLIS/NA Learning Portal within two weeks after the webinar.

One Month Until the ArLiSNAP / VREPS Virtual Conference!

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Mark your calendars!

The virtual conference will take place on Saturday, January 17th, at 1pm Eastern – 12pm Central – 11am Mountain – 10am Pacific. This event will be free for all to attend. See your fellow students and new professionals present their work; learn about new initiatives in art archival groups; and get the best job hunting and career development tips from new art librarians!

Stay tuned during the next few weeks for the full schedule and link to register for the event. For more information, visit the ArLiSNAP website.

The Institute for Research Design in Librarianship (IRDL)

This June I had the privilege of participating in the inaugural Institute for Research Design in Librarianship (IRDL) at Loyola Marymount University, and I would like to encourage any and all VREPS members interested in conducting original research to look into this opportunity. IRDL is part of a three year IMLS grant funded project to provide a learning opportunity and support system for librarians who want to improve their research skills. In response to a documented lack of research preparation in library school curricula, Kristine Brancolini and Marie Kennedy conceived of the institute to be a research design boot camp and an opportunity for library researchers to develop personal learning networks.

Participants applied between December 1, 2013 and February 1, 2014 with proposals for research projects that they were interested in pursuing. Throughout the institute, participants applied what they were learning to their research project so that they could pursue it after returning to their institutions. The institute was all-expenses-paid for participants and took place between June 16th and 26th on the Loyola Marymount campus in Los Angeles. Participants lived in on-campus apartments and spent their days in conference rooms and computer labs in the library.

The institute’s curriculum covered both qualitative and quantitative research methods, data collection, and data analysis as well as the process of formulating a research question, writing a literature review, designing study instruments, and navigating the publishing process. An additional focus of the institute was on personal learning networks and the tools and platforms for achieving and maintaining meaningful professional relationships in online spaces. The instructors included Lili Luo and Michael Stevens (both Assistant Professors at the San Jose State University School of Library and Information Science), and Greg Guest, Lead Instructor at Social Research Solutions.

The daily routine of the institute combined instructional sessions, lectures, and writing sessions during which participants had time to consult with the instructors and one another about their projects. Breakfast and lunch were catered on weekdays and doubled as opportunities for the participants to bounce ideas off one another. Some evenings included reading assignments or exercises related to the next day’s curriculum but, for the most part, participants were free to use the hours after 5pm as they liked.

The participants’ projects varied widely but it was impossible for me not to notice how underrepresented visual resources were among the research topics. I would highly recommend IRDL to any VREPers out there who have in mind a project or a study they would like to pursue. My project, a comparative study of user- and cataloger-assigned subject terms for images, was something I had been interested in doing since library school and IRDL offered me the perfect opportunity to finally develop and pursue it with my institution’s support. Among the other projects, the topics of information and data literacy, library instruction, and assessment were heavily represented.

IRDL is aimed towards academically appointed librarians and curators with little to no research experience with the aim of reconciling the lack of research design taught in library school with the research and publishing expectations present in most promotion and tenure processes. The application process involves writing an application form, cover letter, an abstract, a description of the project you’d like to pursue, a CV/resume, and a letter of support from your library director or dean.

The institute as a whole is an intense experience with long days and an enormous amount of material to absorb in a short amount of time but I found the experience and the content helpful and empowering. In addition to the crash-course in research design, the institute offers an extraordinary system of support among participants and instructors to help you move forward with your project once you’ve returned to work. To track social media discussions about IRDL on twitter and the participants’ blogs, see the IRDL blog, which links to much of this material.

Aside from the ability to design and publish interesting and meaningful research, I found that the institute enabled me to bring a critical eye to library literature that I wasn’t capable of before. This has made me a more rigorous reader and a more thoughtful researcher because it requires me to constantly review what I learned at IRDL and put that education to work by thinking about others’ projects.

If you’re interested in learning more about the experience or want to discuss a potential IRDL project, please feel free to email me (hmm88_at_cornell_dot_edu). I am happy to help and always eager to hear about other peoples’ projects!

ArLiSNAP Virtual Meeting


This Saturday, August 16th, ArLiSNAP (Art Library Students & New ARLIS Professionals) is having a virtual meeting, and they have invited VREPS to join in. We’ll be talking about recent VREPS activities as well as discussing possible collaboration opportunities between VREPS and ArLiSNAP. The ArLiSNAP quarterly virtual meetings are a chance “for members to get together and catch up, as well as discuss projects.”

For more information, visit the invitation on the ArLiSNAP website:

Meeting time is 1pm EST. To join in on the meeting, email Ellen Tisdale at ellen.j.tisdale (at) gmail (dot) com.

Summer Educational Institute

Registration is open for SEI 2014 (the Summer Educational Institute for Visual Resources and Image Management): Places traditionally have filled up quickly for this intensive workshop that specifically addresses the requirements of today’s professional in hands-on and lecture modules.

SEI 2014 will be held at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign from June 10-13, 2014. The curriculum includes sessions on intellectual property rights, metadata, imaging, project management, and digital preservation. We are happy to announce that once again this year five scholarships will be sponsored by the Samuel H. Kress Foundation and you’ll find instructions on applying for the scholarships on the SEI website. Kress Scholarship applications are due by February 7, 2014.

SEI is suited to information professionals new to the field, current or recent graduate students, and more experienced professionals eager to respond to fast-changing technological advancements and job requirements. Graduates of SEI 2013 felt it was well worth the investment, providing perspectives not typically covered in graduate library science curricula. They praised the expertise and preparedness of the instructors, and also appreciated opportunities for sharing problem-solving perspectives, especially in the “Think Camp” session on the final day.  In the post-SEI survey one participant summed up the experience, saying “I have already implemented some of the things I learned. And I met like-minded individuals with whom I feel I can network.”

Follow SEI on Facebook

Please contact SEI co-chairs Amy Trendler ( or Meghan Musolff ( with any questions.

Amy Trendler

Architecture Librarian

University Libraries

Ball State University



Meghan Musolff

Special Projects Librarian for LIT and

Publishing Omeka Coordinator

University of Michigan Library


Free Webinars on Audiovisual Conservation and Care

Badges for Webinar Series at Connecting to Collections

The online community, Connecting to Collections, has added three new courses on topics relevant to the care of audiovisual materials to its free webinar series Caring for Yesterday’s Treasures–Today. Each course consists of 4 to 6 webinars spread over a few weeks. Participants are encouraged to submit questions relevant to their collections. If you attend all of the webinars and complete some simple assignments, you’ll receive a certificate of completion.

Courses now available for registration:

Even if you can’t make the webinars, you might take a moment to browse through the resources or sign up to be part of the community. You can find numerous links to authoritative information on the care and management of different types of materials from photographs to natural science specimens and even information on emergency preparedness.

Keep up with VREPS: Join the Listserv

As VREPS really gets going and forms a more robust community, we’re going to start sharing news and conversations on the VREPS dedicated listserv. It’s focused toward those of us who are students or are in our first years of the profession, so we can discuss many of the struggles and challenges that might seem irrelevant to more seasoned veterans. Some of the news from the VREPS listserv will also be published here on the VREPS blogthe main listserv, VRA’s Facebook and Twitter, so even if you don’t want to sign up for the listserv you can still get some updates. However, we’d hate for you to miss out on any group news, special opportunities or discussions, so below are instructions for joining. If you don’t have a VRA membership, but you’re still interested in the listserv contact Heather Lowe directly.

1. Sign into your VRA Memberclicks account.

When you registered with the VRA, you got an username and password. Use these to login under ‘My VRA.’

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2. Click on ‘E-Lists’ under the ‘My Features’ tab on your profile page.

Once you log-in, you should see the page below, follow the E-lists link to manage your listserv subscriptions.

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3. Click subscribe on the VREPS list line.

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4. Add in your preferences and email address. Then Save.

If you want to receive email messages from the group without logging into My VRA, click the checkbox next to email delivery, then add your preferred email address.

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5. After you sign up, you should see VREPS under the Subscribed E-Lists in your profile.

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Coursera: free online courses from top institutions

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Coursera is a free massive open online course (MOOC) system. This means that you can take online courses from top professors at all over the country. Coursera is a great supplement to traditional professional development. It’s free, doesn’t take more than access to the internet, and can fit into the schedule of a student or full-time worker. You can watch lectures at your own pace, test what you’ve learned and interact with a global community of hundreds of other students. The subjects range widely from computer science to art history. Some upcoming courses that might be of interest to VRA professionals are:

Metadata:   September 2013 – taught by Jeffrey Pomerantz of  The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Live!: A History of Art for Artists, Animators and Gamers: October 2013 – taught by Jeannene Przyblyski of California Institute of the Arts

Comic Books and Graphic Novels: TBD – taught by William Kuskin of the University of Colorado Boulder

Learning to Program, Crafting Quality Code: March 25, 2013 – taught byJennifer Campbell and Paul Gries of theUniversity of Toronto

Publishing Research Demystified

6639aea80d779539915b811cdc171c00As a librarian or visual resources professional, there are many reasons to publish scholarly papers. At many universities, library positions are considered faculty posts and are subject to tenure requirements similar to professors.  Even if you are not under such constraints, publishing can be an important component of asking for a raise, a reclassification, or simply a means of reaching out to one’s peers. Whatever your motivations might be, the early stages of your career are a great time to pursue publication opportunities.

Are you in library school? Did you just graduate? Chances are you might have a research paper in your portfolio that would only need a few revisions to make it suitable for publication.

Are you facing a problem that has you perplexed in your new job? Perhaps others have the same questions. Documenting your solutions and exploring how other institutions solved their problems can easily turn into a paper.

To find out more about how you can go from a having a research paper to having a published paper, attend the Publications Special Interest Group Meeting at the VRA Conference in Providence. The session will be an open-format discussion about publishing in the visual resources field. The meeting is at 12:05 pm to 1:25 pm on Wednesday April 3 organized by Marlene Gordon, Senior Associate Curator of Visual Resources at Wayne State University, and moderated by John Trendler, Curator of Visual Resources at Scripps College and VRA Public Relations & Communications Officer.