The Library Channel: news, events, announcements

The Library Channel

Oct 16, 2018 ·

Travel to Chicago over spring break!

ASU Library, in collaboration with the Newberry Center for Renaissance Studies, is pleased to announce available funding to travel to the Newberry Library in Chicago with Seonaid Valiant, Ph.D., the Curator for Latin American Studies in Distinctive Collections at ASU Library.

Four ASU undergraduate students and/or graduate students will spend three days at the Newberry Library in Chicago from March 5 to March 7, 2019.

The curators and librarians at the Newberry Library will provide orientations on the history of the book, the history of Renaissance and Medieval collections, and Indigenous and colonial collections related to the history of the Americas and the Pacific Islands. Additionally, students will have time to research in the archives for materials related to their own projects.

To apply:

  • Explain why working with primary sources will assist you with your current or future projects (200 words).
  • Review the Newberry Library catalog ( and describe one particular document at the Newbery Library that you would like to examine (200 words).
  • Submit one letter of recommendation from a faculty member.
  • Applications and letters of recommendation should be sent to Seonaid Valiant at


Application deadline:
Friday, November 30, 2018

Attend an information session:
Friday, October 26, 2018
2:00 p.m.
Noble Library Instruction Room (105)

Questions? Email Seonaid Valiant at

Oct 05, 2018 ·

When Hayden Library, Arizona State University’s largest library, re-opens in 2020, its open-stack print collections will have a whole new look. 

The future display, curation and delivery of books at ASU, and how those books interact with the heavily digital-dwelling community in which they are present, is the focus of the Future of Print initiative, an exploration into the behaviors, needs and expectations of 21st-century academic library users.

Led by ASU Library, the initiative addresses specific needs of today’s public universities, and has resulted in a widely shared white paper and a three-year grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

Lorrie McAllister, Associate University Librarian for Collections Services and Analysis, and Shari Laster, Head of Open Stack Collections, is now leading the Future of Print into its next phase: experimentation.

Here, Laster discusses these experiments and how they aim to inspire new thinking around the design of inclusive, high quality and user-focused print collections for research and learning. 

Question: This fall, the library is experimenting with a series of collection experiments. Can you tell us more about them?

Laster: ASU Library has a lot of ideas about how people and books get connected together. We came up with a list we are calling “10 Compelling Ideas” and we’re trying out some of these ideas in different library locations and in other spots on campus. This fall, we have several mini-projects, or experiments, in motion.

Surprise Me! is a collection of poetry and drama at Fletcher Library on the West campus. The books in this collection are being shelved spine-backward in order to invite students to explore an unexpected collection. 

Another project, Vamos Argentina! Books, Tango and Meteors, is an exciting series of talks and events that is drawing attention to the collection of Argentine literature currently housed at Noble Library on the Tempe campus. 

At the Downtown Phoenix campus, we are featuring Health Humanities Horizons, a collection curated in collaboration with faculty whose research and teaching intersects with the CLAS certificate program in interdisciplinary health humanities.

We’re also cooperating with Barrett, the Honors College to assemble a mini-library in a student-friendly environment, in addition to planning a mini-collection for Hayden Library that’s all about the act of collecting, what we collect and why we collect. 

Q: With digital interfacing consuming more of our time and attention, what are some unique strengths of the print medium?

Laster: Books mean different things to different people. While digital content certainly has many advantages, accessing and using a book in print format is a specific experience that can bring about a different form of interaction with the content. We all have different ways of learning and absorbing information. We hope that allowing for the possibility of a book to “catch the eye” of a passerby will enrich the experience of our spaces.

Books also have a physical presence in library spaces. Print books are often considered an essential component to creating a thriving learning environment. For example, they can make a room more conducive to study and focus. This project takes into consideration which books we are presenting in and around spaces where students study and learn. By making parts of our collections more visible, we add another layer of learning where users can physically be immersed in the collections.

Q: University libraries have always been a source of academic support for students. How does this initiative, focusing on print materials, connect to the success of ASU students?

Laster: When Hayden Library re-opens in 2020, it will be a destination on the Tempe campus for studying, research and classroom learning. It will also be a place for the campus community to relax, take a break and explore new ideas. We want to create collections that make library spaces more welcoming and inviting. We also want to use print books to present new perspectives on academic disciplines and research, and to inspire innovation and discovery. By helping everyone who enters the library to see our collections in a new light, we also give them a new way to explore ideas that matter to their success at ASU.

Q: How can people participate in these experiments/mini-projects?

Laster: Visit the collections and leave us feedback! Visitors can expect to see emoji stickers for a quick shortcut to speaking your mind. Anyone can borrow the books on display, so pick up and check out what looks interesting to you. 

We also want to hear from the ASU community about the library collections that make you feel welcome in our spaces. Anyone is welcome to send me a note at

Oct 01, 2018 ·

Inclusion is at the heart of Arizona State University’s mission as a public research university deeply committed to an open, adaptive and accessible education, and research that is use-inspired and applicable to the world’s challenges.

Championing these values, Open Access Week is an annual global event that aims to make scholarship open and accessible to all.

Anali Perry, the Scholarly Communications Librarian at ASU Library, specializes in open access as a practice guiding the university’s scholarly output. Here, she discusses its significance.

What are some of the barriers open access faces in reaching the community?

One major barrier is that most research results, like journal articles or monographs, are not available in an open access format. This isn’t only true of ASU - most research institutions struggle to manage the copyright, collection, and description complications that arise from trying to provide open access in a comprehensive way to the research produced at their institution. It’s a struggle because authors do not always retain the copyright to their work when they sign a publishing agreement and they are most likely restricted from posting the final published version in an open access repository, which makes it more difficult for a systematic collection of published research by the library, for example. This places a greater burden on authors to voluntarily provide the appropriate version of their publications, or to ensure they retain the rights they need when they sign publishing agreements. I want to clarify, though, that currently existing publishing models contribute to these complications. The publishing industry is highly profitable, so they are very invested in maintaining the status quo.

For Open Access Week, we’re hosting a screening and discussion of a new documentary, Paywall: The Business of Scholarship, as a way to engage in conversation about the publishing industry and how it helps, or harms, access to scholarship. The ASU community can also join us for coffee and conversation exploring different scholar expectations, perceptions and practices for sharing scholarship around the world. 

What responsibilities does ASU have to the community to ensure that open access not only exists, but is also readily available?

Providing open access to scholarship is perfectly aligned with ASU’s charter, defining what we do by who we include and how they succeed. Open access enables that inclusive mission by allowing anyone, whether in Mesa, Arizona or in Macedonia, to read and learn from the amazing work done by the ASU community. Most people in the world don’t have easy access to journals unless they are affiliated with a university. This means that policy-makers, doctors, teachers and many others, make decisions based on knowledge that is available, not necessarily the best, most recent, or most innovative information. It also means that we are missing out on hearing from voices around the world who may be blocked from participating in the scholarly conversation through lack of funds, institutional support or governmental intervention. We don’t have to look far to find examples of people who lack access to current scholarship – ask Arizona’s elementary school teachers, ask your doctor, or think of our native nations who may not even have reliable internet connections.

Our responsibility is to consider who we are excluding when we make decisions on where to publish our work, who we are trying to reach, and how that knowledge can be used.

How can ASU ensure that open access to research is able to serve the most people in the community?

ASU made a great first step last year by passing an Open Access Policy, encouraging faculty to make their work openly available. We can continue on this path by finding mechanisms to easily collect and share our scholarship, and provide easy access to the community. We already have a statewide portal at, but we need to be able to work with staff and faculty at ASU in order to get the scholarship in there!

ASU student Dava Newell contributed to this story. 

Sep 17, 2018 · Exhibits

A new book display of poetry and drama at Fletcher Library is encouraging the ASU community to take a chance on a book.

Immune from judgment, all books in this display are shelved spine-backward in an effort to encourage discovery and serendipity. Featured poets include Joy Harjo and Juan Felipe Herrera.

“Surprise Me” is the first book display in a new series of collection experiments, part of the Future of Print initiative at ASU, which looks at new and innovative ways to present print materials to library visitors.

Students, staff and faculty are invited to "explore the unknown" during normal library hours at Fletcher. "Surprise Me" will be located on the ground floor of the library through October 15.


Sep 13, 2018 ·

The popularity of data science has grown steadily over the last decade with the advent of big data and the much-buzzed-about analyses of Nate Silver. 

In 2012, the Harvard Business Review coined data science “the sexiest job of the 21st century.” This year, USA Today named it one of the fastest-growing, highest-paying jobs in the U.S.

Leaders in the technology industry, from commerce to computing, are intently focused on getting as much knowledge from data as possible.

Now, the wrangling of data to uncover solutions, make predictions, formulate deeper questions and identify opportunities has found a home at the university library.

Michael Simeone, director of Data Science and Analytics at ASU Library, sees Arizona State University as an ideal ecosystem for the applications of data science and the library as a critical resource to support it.

The key, he says, is collaboration.

“Data science isn’t done in isolation. It’s inherently collective and interdisciplinary, which is why ASU is the perfect place for it,” said Simeone, an assistant research professor affiliated with the Biosocial Complexity Initiative, the Department of English, the Institute for Social Science Research, and the School of Sustainability. “My focus at the library is connecting researchers with information and with each other.”

Along with fellow data scientist David Little, Simeone aims to spread that message Sept. 17–21 as part of Data Science Week, a series of open-house events for students and faculty to gauge interest and raise awareness about the new library lab and the research and partnership opportunities it can foster.

Read the full story at ASU Now.

Sep 11, 2018 ·

Come speak out on behalf of the books, ideas and works of art that have been banned, censored or challenged throughout human history.

In recognition of Banned Books Week, an annual celebration of books and our right to read them, ASU Library is hosting a Read Out, a public reading of books, newspapers, plays and other texts that have been banned, challenged or restricted in some way, or that speak to the issue of freedom of speech. 

The Read Out will take place from 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., Tuesday, Sept. 25, on the north side of the Memorial Union on the Tempe campus.

The theme for this year’s Banned Books Week, sponsored by the American Library Association (ALA), is “Speak Out.” 

Events related to Banned Books Week are set to take place at all ASU libraries on all campuses during Banned Books Week, which is September 23-30, 2018.


Sep 06, 2018 ·

Beginning Sept. 10, Fletcher Library on the West campus and the Polytechnic Library on the Polytechnic campus will stay open until midnight.

The new midnight hours are part of ASU Library's commitment to support student success. 

Fletcher Library hours are as follows:

Monday-Thursday: 7:30 a.m. to 12:00 a.m. (midnight)
Friday: 7:30 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
Saturday: 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Sunday: 12:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Polytechnic Library hours are as follows:

Monday-Thursday: 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 a.m. (midnight)
Friday: 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Saturday: 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
Sunday: 12:00 p.m. to 12:00 a.m. (midnight)

 For more detailed information on library hours, visit

Sep 05, 2018 ·

ASU Library is launching the Unit for Data Science and Analytics on September 17 to connect and support researchers from across the university – and we want to hear from you! (Take the survey.)

Tell us what kind of opportunities you’re interested in – learning, research, collaboration – and we’ll be in touch with ongoing and available projects that engage machine learning, data visualization, text and data mining, network analysis and more.

And don’t forget – September 17-21 is Data Science Week at ASU!

Data Science Week is a chance to learn more about data science and the opportunities for research and collaboration it can foster.

Questions? Contact Michael Simeone, Director of Data Science and Analytics at ASU Library.

Aug 27, 2018 ·

In 2012, Sen. John McCain donated his papers to Arizona State University. The archive, known simply as the McCain Collection, is expected to grow dramatically over the next few months.

More than 800 boxes of his materials — records, photographs, correspondence — await shipment from his offices in Maryland and Washington, D.C., to ASU Library, where they will be accessible to scholars, historians and the public for generations to come. 

Beginning with his election to the U.S. House of Representatives and first term in 1983, these historic materials offer a glimpse into the senator’s 35-year career in American politics, including his 2008 presidential campaign. 

ASU archivist Renee James, the curator of the Greater Arizona Collection, explains the significance and scope of the collection in an ASU Now story published August 26.

Aug 20, 2018 ·

student using computerDue to the renovation, all computers on the concourse (main) level of Hayden Library are temporarily unavailable.

Computers on the lower level of Hayden, downstairs in rooms L50, L60 and L62, are available to ASU students when classes are not in session.

Additional access to computers on the Tempe campus can be found at Noble Library, Computing Commons, Coor Hall computer lab and the Goldwater Center.

We apologize for this inconvenience.