Last week, the Academic Success Centre (ASC) invited the RRC Polytech community to help name their new tutoring space. This modernized room, located within the Library at the Notre Dame Campus, is equipped to support tutoring and staff work areas.
So far, staff and students have submitted nearly 50 creative and diverse name ideas!
How will the final name be chosen?
After the campaign closes, managers will review the list of names. Then, staff in Library and Academic Services (Academic Success Centre, Library, Assessment Services), will be given an opportunity to vote for their favourite. When the results of the vote are in, it will be finalized by our leadership team, and we will make a public announcement in early January.
Thank you to everyone who has taken the time to submit an idea. If yours is selected, you will have the honour of knowing this name will be referenced a million times over and will become an integral part of the ASC and its services for years to come!
Light therapy, also known as bright light therapy or phototherapy, uses a light box to mimic outdoor lighting.
Exposure to artificial light helps adjust the body’s regulation of melatonin, a hormone that controls the body’s sleep cycle, and serotonin, a natural mood-stabilizing hormone.
Three main benefits of using light therapy are:
Improved sleep patterns
It is easy to use, safe (UV free), and can be done in your own home. The light box needs to be placed at a 45-degree angle, 2-3 feet away on a flat surface. For the best results, use consistently every morning for 20-30 minutes. You should start seeing improvements in your mood within 2-4 days.
Light Therapy is not recommended for everyone, consult a physician first if you have an eye disorder or are taking medications that may cause your skin to be sensitive to light.
Interested in “lightening” up your mood?
Light boxes are available at the RRC Polytech Library for a one-month loan period.
To reserve a light box, complete our AV Booking Form, requesting a light therapy lamp and selecting your preferred pick-up time and location.
The Academic Success Centre (ASC) is excited to announce the opening of its newly renovated space at the Notre Dame Campus (NDC). This space has been modernized and equipped to support tutoring and staff work areas. Now that the space is ready to use, it needs a new name to reflect the incredible teaching and learning that takes place in tutoring spaces.
We want your input to come up with a name that reflects the active and collaborative learning and review that happens here. If your idea is selected, you will have the honour of knowing this name will be referenced a million times over and will become an integral part of the ASC and its services for years to come!
Each year in Canada we observe Remembrance Day on November 11th. Originally observed as Armistice Day, it marked the signing of the armistice agreement to end the First World War, at 11 am, on the 11th day, of the 11th month, 1918.
In 1931, the name was changed to Remembrance Day in Canada. Traditionally marked by a moment of silence and ceremony, Remembrance Day honours the men and women who have served and currently serve Canada during times of peace, conflict and war. In Manitoba it is a statutory holiday.
The poem In Flanders Fields, by Canadian Lieutenant-Colonel and physician, John McCrae, gave rise to the poppy being forever associated with Remembrance Day.
Canada is not alone in marking this day; the United Kingdom, France, Belgium, Poland, Australia, and others also observe November 11th. Other nations observe similar days, such as ANZAC Day in New Zealand or Veteran’s Day in the United States.
National Aboriginal Veterans Day, November 8th
National Aboriginal Veterans Day was first observed in 1994 in Winnipeg, and has since spread nationally. It honours aboriginal contributions to service in the First and Second World Wars, the Korean War, and all military service. It is observed on November 8th each year.
“If we are to achieve a richer culture, rich in contrasting values, we must recognize the whole gamut of human potentialities, and so weave a less arbitrary social fabric, one in which each diverse human gift will find a fitting place.”
- Margaret Mead
When people think of ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder), autism, and other conditions, we often see those from a disease-based perspective originating from human brain science and outdated ideas regarding disability. These perspectives lack an anthropology or sociology framework and disregard individual differences from the standpoint of a diversity model.
The new Neurodiversity Library Guide provides learning resources to understand some brain conditions from a diversity perspective, highlighting how some cultural values affect our perceptions of these brain conditions.
In addition, without ignoring the challenges and barriers that individuals within the spectrum of neurodiversity navigate during every-day life, this guide takes a strength-based approach focusing on an individual’s hidden strengths and talents as a way to advance efforts towards inclusion and removing stigmas.
The Neurodiversity Library Guide includes sections on Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Autism Spectrum, Anxiety, Dyslexia, Mood Disorders, and Intellectual Disabilities. The content includes recommended books, articles, videos, and podcasts, as well as some additional College and community resources.
Special attention was paid towards selecting films and videos with testimonies sharing lived experiences within the spectrum of neurodiversity. Books can provide a foundation of knowledge, but it is the personal stories that can contribute to make emotional connections in order to build understanding and empathy.
The guide was developed by Fatima DeMelo (Information & Program Delivery) and Nora Sobel (Academic Success Centre). The content of the guide is based on the work of Thomas Armstrong, Howard Gardner, and Norman Doidge, and has been reviewed by staff from the Disability & Community Support program, and Student Support Services.
Library staff member, Rosemary Woodby, recently worked with three RRC Polytech Nursing instructors – Joanne Loughry, Krystal Boyce-Gaudreau, and Carla D. Andreamatteo – on the creation of specialized Library Guides for their courses. It was a rewarding experience for everyone, but most importantly, it made the learning materials required for these programs easier for their students to access.
Before diving into the benefits of Guides, are you familiar with what they are?
What are Library Guides?
Library Guides pull together and organize Library books, videos, and databases, along with a variety of online sources such as webpages, videos, and reports. Guides present all of this information in one place, where any student can access them. You can link to Guides in your LEARN site, and we can update content as needed.
“The guide has the potential to save the students valuable research time and cultivates a supportive and progressive learning opportunity… These essential research skills and increased exposure to credible resources will prepare our students to be practice ready when entering the workforce.”
— Joanne Loughry, Nursing instructor
At RRC Polytech, our mission is to help students succeed in their studies and move on to rewarding and successful careers. The greatest benefit of Library Guides is felt by the students, which is one of the main reasons our instructors request them. Feedback from Nursing instructors confirms this fact.
Krystal Boyce-Gaudreau describes her newly developed guide, Leadership, Management and Collaborative Practice, as a time-saving and learning opportunity for her students. Through the Guides, students are presented with a gateway to high-quality information categorized by topic, saving “students time searching through website and journal articles for relevant and appropriate resources.” Carla D Andreamatteo, who requested the Nutrition and Lifestyle Guide for her students, describes it as “a great one-stop location for students to access resources to assist with their learning in the course.”
Joanne Loughry requires her students to utilize several kinds of resources from varied sources. In her opinion, Library Guides help students learn to develop their research skills and gain exposure to navigating credible sources. In her words, “The guide has the potential to save the students valuable research time and cultivates a supportive and progressive learning opportunity… These essential research skills and increased exposure to credible resources will prepare our students to be practice-ready when entering the workforce.”
How does an instructor set up a Library Guide?
Guides are created by the Library staff member assigned to your program area, as listed in our Collection Development Contacts. You may send a request to your subject specialist directly, or send a general inquiry to the Library through our Contact Us page.
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Written by Linda Fox – Library Technician, Program Support and Promotion
Copyright Officer Ebony Novakowski and Academic Integrity Specialist Lisa Vogt talk about their roles at RRC Polytech.
Ebony: Sometimes people ask me what the difference is between copyright and academic integrity. Does that happen to you?
Lisa: Yes, sometimes people wonder if our roles are essentially the same. I think our work is quite different, although there are points where we overlap. Why don’t you tell me what being a Copyright Officer is all about?
Ebony: Copyright literally means the “right to copy” and generally refers to the exclusive right to produce or reproduce a work, or any substantial part of one. In Canada this right is enshrined in the Copyright Act.
Being the Copyright Officer at RRC Polytech is about raising awareness of Copyright, helping our staff and students navigate our institutional Copyright Policies. This enables them to interact with copyright materials as users and creators of content within our guidelines at RRC Polytech. Lisa, can you tell me about your work in Academic Integrity?
Lisa: As an Academic Integrity Specialist, my goal is to strengthen our institutional culture for academic integrity. I create educational resources that draw from the six fundamental values of honesty, trust, respect, responsibility, fairness, and courage. Building on these values teaches students the importance of demonstrating their own knowledge, skills, and abilities, and enhances the quality of education at RRC Polytech. Academic integrity values established through post-secondary education pave the way for students to be more successful in their future professions.
Are the policies around academic integrity and copyright the same at RRC Polytech?
Lisa: The S4 Academic Integrity Policy outlines the expectations for academic integrity and the procedures to follow when academic integrity has been violated.
Ebony: Our policies around Copyright at RRC Polytech are informed by the Copyright Act of Canada and there is a lot of interesting copyright case law across Canada and globally regarding Copyright. For example, between 2011 and 2018, a series of disputes took place about the copyright status of “monkey selfies” taken by macaques who stole equipment belonging to the British nature photographer David Slater and photographed themselves. In April 2018, the US appeals court affirmed that animals cannot legally hold copyrights in the US. Lisa are there any laws that apply to Academic Integrity in Canada?
Lisa: First of all, the “monkey selfies” case you described is fascinating! This is a good demonstration of the difference in our work. When it comes to Academic Integrity Canadian students must follow the rules set by their school’s policies in order to continue as a student of that institution, as there are no laws governing academic integrity in Canada. Although, I can recall at least one Canadian case where the RCMP was called after a student sent an impersonator to write their exam. In contrast, New Zealand, Australia, and the United Kingdom have laws prohibiting the advertising and sale of completed academic work through services often called ‘essay mills.’
Where are points of overlap in copyright and academic integrity?
Ebony: Instructor resources, such as assignments, lesson plans, and slides are all Copyright material. Sharing these resources outside the context of your coursework, such as on a file sharing site, without express permission can violate the copyrights of the work as well as academic integrity. It is important to remember that instructor materials as well as traditionally published materials such as your textbook are Copyright works and subject to the Copyright Act of Canada as well as our copyright policies at RRC Polytech.
Lisa: Exactly! When students share their assignment files online, both you and I are concerned as the student is violating copyright AND creating opportunities for academic misconduct. Students who take someone else’s work and submit it as their own, violates the RRC Polytech S4 Academic Integrity policy. And, if an instructor finds their assignment or answers to an assignment have been shared publicly, they may request the removal these documents to maintain their copyright and reduce the risk for academic misconduct.
Another area of overlap is Open or Creative Commons materials. Researchers and practitioners in the academic integrity community often apply Creative Commons licenses to resources that can be shared. So when you and I connect, we usually talk about appropriate sharing of information – either materials that can be shared broadly or materials that should not have been shared broadly.
Ebony: Appropriate information sharing is important, it would be very difficult to learn anything without sharing information, what both our positions seek to do is ensure that when materials are shared this is done in an honest and legal manner that supports learning. That means respecting copyright law and academic integrity and being aware of our policies here at RRC Polytech. International Open Access Week is a time for the wider community to coordinate in taking action to make openness the default for research and to ensure that equity is at the center of this work. Open Access Week is from October 25th through the 31st.
Lisa: Exactly! As members of a learning community, we need to work together respectfully. We do this by completing our own work and giving credit for the source of ideas or materials that are not ours. Sharing becomes a problem if someone presents the work of another as if it were their own. This week, educators across Canada are recognizing Academic Integrity Week to promote academic integrity in post-secondary education.
What are some of the different services that are offered by the Copyright Officer and Academic Integrity Specialist?
Ebony: I conduct copyright outreach to faculty and provide Copyright Consultations for instructors and students who wish to use specific copyright materials. I can be booked by instructors for in class workshops on the basics of copyright and intellectual property for students. I can also assist instructors in finding open resources to use for teaching and instruction. Open or Creative Commons materials have less copyright restrictions which can serve both instructors and students who need to adapt and reuse materials.
Lisa: Supporting faculty and students in a learning environment that builds on the six fundamental values is the heart of my work. I offer a series of resources that instructors can use to integrate academic integrity into class discussions, including an interactive module and presentation slides. I also deliver workshops to support the development of academic integrity in classes. Instructors can request a consultation to determine the best approach or ask questions on what to do when academic misconduct is suspected. When academic misconduct occurs, I advise on how to respond so the learning process can continue for both student and instructor.
Ebony: More information on copyright please visit Library Copyright Page under Faculty Supports or contact me by e-mail with questions at any time. Instructors can also book me as a guest speaker for their class.
Last spring, if you were to look at our old Library website, you would be looking at a somewhat dated “Library-centric” web, with two Academic Support departments, and new features, i.e., LibAnswers and LibCal, tacked on. We knew our web site was due to be reorganized, and at the same time given a fresh look and feel. As with many changes, the summer period gave us a window of opportunity when there was a break in classes. How could we take advantage of this opportunity and create a new-look website designed with our users in mind?
We began by looking toward user-centric design principles that have been the cornerstone of effective web design for decades. Some web sites look great, but are completely ineffective to their users. We wanted to avoid this, and achieve a greater level of usability. So, we began by studying users.
On our Library web site, the greatest metric we had were analytics of what users did on our site. Where did they go? What did they click on? Generally, top traffic resources on our website were: OneSearch, A-Z List, Ask Us, the Academic Services landing page, Tutoring, Supports for Students, Library Subject Guides, Workshops, Self-Directed Learning Modules, Stem Centre, and College Readiness.
We took this information as a starting point, and began to develop two personas that represent Library web users: Average Student User and Average Instructor User.
Built with Library users in mind
Average Student User wants to…
Discover and borrow Library materials.
Browse for Academic Supports.
Access digital resources such as electronic articles and databases.
Discover and attend Library and ASC workshops.
Refer to a course-related subject guide.
Access Tutoring services.
Access a Library service.
See when the Library is open.
Find study space.
Book AV equipment, laptops and chargers.
Locate an instructor-recommended resource.
Ask a question or get help.
Learn how to cite.
Average Instructor User wants to…
Discover Library materials and resources for planning, research
Set up course reserves.
Access a Library service such as ILL or Digitization.
Refer their students to Library or ASC workshops.
Refer their students to specific ASC resources.
Request materials for their courses and students, i.e., Suggest a Purchase.
Book AV equipment, laptops and chargers.
Find copyright information and help.
Get Academic Integrity advice and assistance.
Ask a question or get help.
With these two personas in mind, we began a three phase process.
Phase 1: Content reorganization. A cross section of library staff were brought together to make decisions about the web site organization and hierarchy. With our user personas in mind, staff individually performed card sorting exercises and compared results. This group also investigated other academic Library web sites. The final product was a new main menu structure, built with users in mind.
Phase 2: Home page re-design. With our users in mind, a second working group reviewed the information and features on the current Library home, and formulated a plan to build a more modern and concise home page. This group also took the time to review other academic websites, and recommended features which we could adopt for our new home page.
Phase 3: Overall web site re-skin. A smaller team of experts worked on a new header, footer and colours for the new site. The goal was to give the new Library web site a fresh look, new colours, and improvement in accessibility.
A cornerstone of this project was to involve many people from across Library and Academic Services. Each one of the above teams consisted of different people, thus enhancing our staff’s ability to influence decisions made in the new web site design. Their awesome contributions are reflected throughout the new web site.
The site is built with accessibility in mind, and accomplished through accessibility features built in to the LibGuides platform, and attention to detail in the added customizations. Our current home page tests as 100% accessible in the Google Lighthouse tool.
We are planning focus groups this fall, where we hope to further determine how our patrons use our web site, and gauge the effectiveness of our new site design. In doing so, we expect slight revisions to the current web site, and an update of our personas.
Thank you to all of the staff and students who attended the virtual Long Night Against Procrastination on Wednesday, April 7, 2021. It was an encouraging evening, where students benefited from help desks, workshops, and wellness activities. The evening commenced with a Welcome Session in which Bettina Allen and Alan Chorney gave a quick tour of the event. Fred Meier gave a short speech, providing a dose of encouraging words and Elder Una said a blessing which set the tone for an uplifting evening.
A total of 54 students registered for the event. The most popular sessions were the Writing Help Desk hosted by Academic Success Centre, the Kahoot Game put on by RRCSA, and the workshop “Job Search: What Gets You Hired” presented by Student Employment Services. Congratulations go out to Riley Pritchard, who won the prize draw for a $20 gift card!
We have a few staff photos to share with you. As you can see, we had a lot of fun with virtual backgrounds!
To our students:
Our thoughts are with you, as you wrap up the term and set out to find employment and apply the skills you’ve acquired at RRC. We wish you opportunities that land within the paths of your dreams. Best of luck!
Your key to accessing the online Library is the Library’s website. From academic supports and services to resources and news, this is the gateway to everything related to the Library. Click the button below to check it out.
Tip 2: Our Online Service Desk
Access our online service desk by clicking on the Ask Us bubble on the Library’s website. This begins a chat with a real person in real-time during regular Library hours. If you submit a question after hours, you will receive a response when the Library opens again. You may also browse common answers to our most popular questions here: Popular questions.
Tip 3: Our Digital Collection
Explore our digital resources with OneSearch, which is the tool that searches the entire Library collection. We have thousands and thousands of online resources that you may access 24/7.
Library Guides are a great starting point for exploring the Library’s collection. Guides are a collection of resources and links on a specific topic, gathered together by a Library professional. A good place to begin is with our Library 101 section, which will help you get the most out of your Library experience. Otherwise, you may search the guides or browse by subject. Guides can draw you to new and unexpected resources, leading you to explore information in greater detail.
Tip 6: Our COVID-19 FAQ
Have questions about service changes during the pandemic? For example, wondering if physical books may still be borrowed? Indeed, they can! This is the kind of information you’ll find on the COVID-19 FAQ page.
We’re Here for You!
The Library and Academic Success Centre’s number one goal is to help you succeed at Red River College. Through chat and virtual meetings, we will meet you WHEREVER you are during these difficult times!
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