SBHS Tertiary Prep Tutorials 2014 – Week 2 – Managing Resources

This week we are focusing on:

Managing Resources – How to use databases effectively for research, how to get the best out of your academic library


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SBHS Tertiary Prep Tutorials 2014 – Week 1 – Managing Research

This week we are focusing on:

Managing Research – Google search strategies, including an introduction to Google Scholar and evaluating websites.

This is the Livebinder with resources to support this unit.
Click here to open this binder in a new window.

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Procrastination …….. I’ll get back to you on that ……..

I really enjoyed this week’s sessions.
When the question about procrastination came up during discussion I have to admit to a level of surprise at the number of you who admitted to being procrastinators …… so this one’s for you all!

Procrastination Workshop


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Searching Online

Thanks to everyone who has attended the first two sessions of Tertiary Prep.  If you’re keen to re-watch the Shift Happens video clip I showed last week, you’ll find the link in the Session 1 page.  If you want to know the background to this Shift Happens movement you’ll find a link to their Wiki on the Information Society page or you could even type “Shift Happens” into YouTube and see the variety of different ones you can watch.

During one of our sessions last week I introduced Zite, an online magazine which encapsulates the idea of the spirit of the time or embracing a particular thought or idea prevalent at a moment in time.  This is an app for your i-phone, smart phone or tablet and you can customise it to your own particular interests.  It’s worth taking a look.

To wrap up the key points of this week’s session:

  • Pre-research
  • Selection of keywords for in-depth searching
  • Brainstorming of words with similar meanings to widen search
  • Have a research plan
  • Write down successful search phrases
  • Take note of other terms to use for extending your search during background reading
  • Consider using a variety of sources including books, encyclopaedias, journal articles, databases, different search engines

You’ll find more information about this with links to resources in the Researching Online Tutorial page for session 2.

During one of our sessions this week I spoke about the concept of the filter bubble in Google.  Eli Pariser describes it very well and it’s worth a watch.  It’ll make you think about how the flow of information is being controlled in a way that’s not obvious.  Is this important to scholarly research?

I also strongly encouraged this group (and now all of you!) to take a look at Ted Talks. This non-profit organisation is all about ideas that are worth sharing – TED stands for Technology, Entertainment and Design.  There are many “Top Lists” (just Google “Ted Talks” to find them) or you can take a look down the left-hand side of the Ted Talks website main page to find different categories to choose from.

To get you started:  Here’s links to three of my personal favourites – One to do with my work as an educator, one to do with my love of reading and one to do with my love of singing and choirs.  If you find one that you love, please comment on this post and share it with everyone.

Finally, why not comment on one thing that you’ve already learned so far during our sessions that you either didn’t know before or its reminded you about it, and how you might use it.

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Pre-Unit Survey

Thanks to all of you who have signed up to the 2013 Tertiary Prep Unit.  I just want to you know how awesome I think you all are and how much impressed I am that you have all chosen to spend one of your study periods each week for the next six weeks preparing yourself for the next stage in your education journey.

So that I can be as prepared and responsive to what you would like us to cover in these session as possible, could you take a couple of minutes to fill out this survey before this Friday.  It will really help me with my planning for the next few weeks.


Also, this website has been set up for you all.  I hope you will reflect and discuss here on anything that comes from this unit.  I will post here regularly with anything useful from each of the three weekly sessions together.  Remember, these will be driven very much by you; your comments and observations and I’ll do my best to share across the three groups the “good oil” that comes from them.  I will also put any links I share during our time together so please visit the site regularly as it will be updated often.

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Details for Term 3 Sessions

Tertiary Prep starts next week (from 23rd July)!  I’m very excited to be getting these sessions underway for 2012.

Due to numbers, Tertiary Prep sessions will be running for six weeks, with the same tutorial topic running for the three session options offered each week.

They are being held in the Library Classroom during Period 2 on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays

Week 1:   Information – What’s it all about?

Week 2:   Researching – advanced use of Google and Databases

Week 3:   Effective note-taking and study techniques

Week 4:   Citation, bibliographies and reference lists

Week 5:   How to get the best out of your academic library

Week 6:   Wrap up and Road Trip!

These tutorials will be interactive and driven by you, so come prepared to share, discuss, note and above all …. learn something new!

I will be updating the website each week with relevant information pertaining to each of the sessions as well as feedback, insights, reflections I gather from your input.  Any resources discussed or shared will also be added so you can use them when you want to.  In order to make sure you see anything new added, please subscribe by clicking on the Follow button at the top right-hand side of the page

I will be blogging along the way, so feel free to add any comments or reflections of your own you want to share.

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Tertiary Prep Promotion 2012

This is the poster just up this week to promote the Tertiary Prep sessions beginning in Term 3.  I think I’ve cracked the problem of when to offer it.  Already 18 students signed up and the posters have only been up for a day.

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New Resources Added

Work is continuing on this site in preparation for the tutorials starting with students for this year in May.

I have been continuing to add resources as well as creating a new page under the Resources tab called Note Taking.


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Tertiary Prep at Hargest for 2012

This is the 3rd year in the development of the Tertiary Prep tutorials at James Hargest College.

It has been very much a work in progress.  I realised as part of my continuing work on providing seamless transition of information literacy and research skills across our campuses, year levels and curriculum areas that preparing our motivated senior students, whose plans are to further their education after leaving Hargest, was a crucial part of a larger picture.

This voluntary series of six tutorials sets out to highlight for and engage students in aspects of their learning that will bridge the gap between what they currently know and what they need to know to be successful learners in the tertiary environment.  Interest for the past two years from my Year 13 students has been high and last year I was grateful for the input from Simon Hart the Learning Services Librarian at the Bill Robertson Library, Otago University whose willingness to listen and contribute ideas and suggestions has helped in my thinking and planning. 

So there is no shortage of enthusiasm, passion or desire. Sustainability has been the stumbling block.  So to help transition this concept into something that works for the students and the library staff (i.e: me!) the plan for the 2012 school year is to offer the sessions to Year 13 students as part of Study Centre this year, while also offering them to Year 12 students who all share a study period once a week, while developing online work for our more motivated students who are unable to attend either of these sessions.

I’m extremely excited about being able to present my work to date to the delegates at the upcoming LILAC Conference in Glasgow during April but I’m even more excited about talking with other passionate secondary and tertiary librarians who will no doubt have been working and developing programmes with this “bridge-building” in mind.

I am certain how important the Tertiary Prep tutorials are as part of our whole school approach to literacy and learning.  It’s now about finding the right mixture of time and approach to make it sustainable and embed it into our James Hargest Libraries Information Literacy Programme.

Tutorials will kick off for 2012 in Term 2.  Watch this space!!

Posted in Planning, Programme Development | 2 Comments