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April 18th

Registration 8:00 AM - 5:00 pm

Room: Wilson Hall Foyer

8:00 AM - 9:00 AM Free Breakfast, WAAL Business Meeting & Maximizing Your Conference Experience

Room: Wilson Hall B

All are welcome to breakfast and attend the business meeting to find out what your WAAL leaders have been up to this year and what is in the works for next year.

Maximizing Your Conference Experience

Nyama Reed, Whitefish Bay Public Library
Anne Moser, UW-Madison, Aquatic Sciences Center, Wisconsin Water Library

Are you a first-time WAAL Conference attendee? Do you have general questions about how to get the most out of your conference experience? Attend this orientation session for tips on navigating the conference, getting to know other professionals, and learn how WAAL and WLA can help you

9:00 AM Welcome from the WLA President, Scott Vrieze

Keynote 9:00 AM - 10:15 AM

Room: Richmond Hall


Virajita Singh

 KTP15 -color

10:15 AM - 10:45 AM

Coffee Break
Room: Wilson Hall Foyer

10:45 AM - 11:35 AM - 5 Concurrent Sessions

Room: Wilson Hall A
Keynote follow-up workshop-Design Thinking Applied (double session)

Dr. Virajita Singh, University of Minnesota

Following the Design Thinking/Design Making keynote, join this hands-on workshop in order to apply the Design Thinking methodology. In this two-hour follow-up session, participants will work in small groups to develop solutions to design challenges in academic librarianship, for example: How might we design optimal library services? How might we expand inclusion in the libraries? Each group will work through the first three stages of the Design Thinking process: Empathize, Define, and Ideate, with ample time for collaboration, sharing, and offering feedback. This workshop will offer you tools to collaborate with your colleagues in the libraries and your institution to complete the prototype and test your solution.

Room: Wilson Hall F
Mirrors of Process:  Adding Reflective Practice to the Information Literacy Classroom

Carrie Wade, UW-Milwaukee

Reflective practice is a pedagogical method of untapped potential in the information literacy classroom. This session will focus on ways to reorient instructional praxis away from a tutorial model and reimagine the role of the librarian as a facilitator. As librarians we have the potential to nudge students of all levels towards new ways of understanding information. One such way to do this is through building reflective practice into information literacy education. Attendees will receive examples, ideas, advice, and feedback on ways to make a classroom more reflective and engaged in the educational process for lifelong learning and critical thinking.


Room: Wilson Hall C
Small Talk is a Big Deal: Making Connections Through Conversation in Professional Settings

Jill Markgraf, UW-Eau Claire

Conferences are for connecting, launching collaborative relationships, and creating robust networks, right? Ideally, yes, but sometimes these outcomes are easier said than done. Conferences can be a source of anxiety and unmet expectations if you struggle with making those connections. What do you do at a reception where everyone seems to know someone, except you? How do you avoid the temptation to retreat to your phone or your room during those awkward unstructured mingling times? The art of making small talk and conversation is one that helps us get the most out of the conference experience. Despite its diminutive name, small talk plays a large role in building comfort and trust necessary for connection and collaboration. How do we strike up conversations with people we do not know? This interactive session will provide practical strategies for practicing the art of small talk, for managing the fear it may induce, and for using it as an on-ramp to meaningful conversation and connection. We will explore the unique skills and challenges that those who identify as introverts as well as those who identify as extroverts bring to the table. Whether you are well-connected or new to the game, learn about your role and responsibility in making the most of the conference experience. You will leave this session with concrete and comfortable approaches to try out during the rest of the conference. And don’t leave these strategies in Eau Claire! Take them with you and use them at campus events, in your community, and in other areas of your life.


Room: Wilson Hall D
Yes, You Should! Supporting Comics, Graphic Novels and Video Games in Academic Libraries

Cory Mitchell, UW-Stout

The impact of comics, graphic novels and video games in society is undeniable. The gamification of education is just one example of this impact, and the superhero industry is another. Comics, graphic novels and video games are not just for public libraries. Academic libraries should develop these collections for their stakeholders. The University of Wisconsin-Stout Library has built an extensive Comic and Graphic Novel collection and an impressive Video Game collection that have had a demonstrated impact.
With the help of faculty, these collections were developed to support the curriculum at UW-Stout and have shaped the library’s spaces, including a Comics Makerspace and the Gaming and Digital Innovation Lab. These collections are extremely popular with students, faculty and staff and have helped the library establish lasting relationships with stakeholders, including faculty. An added benefit of these popular, robust collections is that they get people in the door and they get used. This session will explore why the UW-Stout Library decided to create and support these collections and how they did it. Also, we will supply a road-map, including justification, to start or expand your own unique collections of comics, graphic novels and video games.


Room: Wilson Hall E
Accounting for Bias in Archives: Establishing Policies that Empower Student Researchers

Sarah Titus, St. Norbert College

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs states that in order for self-actualization to happen basic needs must be met: physiological needs, such as food and water, but also safety and belonging. The session will focus on the need for safety is paramount to higher level student learning. In this particular instance, we will be talking about safety in regards to identity and belonging. As an archive contains both the positive and the negative aspects of institutional history, an unexpected discovery of a problematic ideological item in a collection could jeopardize the feeling of stability for a student outside of dominant social identities. Historically, libraries and archives have aimed to be neutral spaces, however, many institutions have begun to wrestle with challenging the ideal of neutrality. One possible alternative would be to offer frameworks for understanding and contextualizing the spectrum of items that can be isolating: from bias to outright racist or sexist imagery. Identifying concerning materials and documenting them will allow for voluntary interaction or at least forewarning. Establishing this base for protocols encourages positive interactions with troubling history and enables student researchers to interact safely with the archives in full understanding of what they will find.

11:45 AM - 12:35 PM - 5 Concurrent Sessions

Room: Wilson Hall A
Keynote follow-up workshop-Design Thinking Applied (double session)

Virajita Singh, University of Minnesota

Following the Design Thinking/Design Making keynote, join this hands-on workshop in order to apply the Design Thinking methodology. In this two-hour follow-up session, participants will work in small groups to develop solutions to design challenges in academic librarianship, for example: How might we design optimal library services? How might we expand inclusion in the libraries? Each group will work through the first three stages of the Design Thinking process: Empathize, Define, and Ideate, with ample time for collaboration, sharing, and offering feedback. This workshop will offer you tools to collaborate with your colleagues in the libraries and your institution to complete the prototype and test your solution.


Room: Wilson Hall F
The Framework for Instructors and Administrators: Communicating the Value and Advocating for Collaboration

Kate Ganski, UW-Milwaukee

The Framework for Information Literacy in Higher Education calls for librarians, faculty and institutional partners to collaborate around teaching and assessing information literacy throughout students’ careers. For many libraries this call pushes against current models of instruction programs. While there has been a lot of discussion in our profession on embracing the Framework in our teaching, conversations on programs are not as robust. In this session, I will present the collaborative, institutional vision laid forth in the Framework and lead participants through cases and structured questions to construct possibilities for action at the institutional or programmatic level. This session will be useful for senior administrators, instruction coordinators, library liaisons, and librarians.


Room: Wilson Hall C
Transformative Experience: Promoting Student Success through Library Employment

Dr. Brittany Bell, Lawrence University
David Bosco, St. Norbert College

What’s our role in helping students succeed? While the need for students to have employability ‘soft skills’ is important to employers, so is the need for students to have an environment where they can develop these skills. Research shows that awareness of soft skills, increases the employability of college graduates. These can include skills related to communication, critical thinking, teamwork and leadership. In the Job Outlook 2018 survey, using data collected from the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) employers indicated that problem-solving, communication skills, and an ability to work in a team are the most desired attributes they seek in future employees. This session will discuss how the library worked in partnership with the Office of Career and Professional Development to develop a comprehensive career plan that helps students develop the soft skills employers desire post graduation. This plan helps students identify components of their library experience that can be transferable to any position. The plan also helps students think critically about their career path and further develop their resume. This presentation will include the successes and challenges experienced during the implementation process, our role in helping students during the process and how this plan can be beneficial for other colleges. 

Room: Wilson Hall D
Using LibGuides CMS (and Some Free Tools!) to Create and Manage Your Library's Website

Amy Manion, Waukesha County Technical College

How long do you normally have to wait for another department on campus to make requested changes to your library website? Don’t you wish you controlled your library’s website yourself, so you could make changes to it immediately whenever you want to or need to? WCTC Library’s wish came true last summer when it upgraded its regular LibGuides subscription to Springshare’s LibGuides CMS, and then used that CMS (and a few other tools) to create its own website. In addition to acquiring authority over content, there is the added benefit of a content management system that is library-centric. From images of book covers to embedded search widgets for databases to a filterable A-Z database list to LibChat—library assets are now integrated for easy use by students right in the new highly functional website. You are probably already familiar with how flexible and easy it is to use LibGuides to create online library research guides; the same is true for using LibGuides CMS to create a website. It is not necessary to know HTML and CSS to design a feature-rich website, but tech-savvy users have the option to code and customize further if desired. One thing that is out-of-the-box is a website that is mobile-friendly and accessible. Finally, Springshare’s responsive customer service support staff ensures your website will look and function exactly the way you wish. This presentation will also feature free photo editors, color detection tools, websites, and a smartphone camera that were used to create a visually appealing, dream-come-true website.

Room: Wilson Hall E
Capturing LGBTQ+ Stories from Dane County Through a Campus-Community Partnership

Michele Besant, UW-Madison
Scott Seyforth, UW-Madison
Karla Strand, UW-Madison

The University Archives at UW-Madison hold a growing community archive that documents the LGBTQ+ community in Dane County, WI. Starting as a campus-community oral history project in 2007, the archive began collecting physical materials, audio/video, photographic media, and other ephemera in the fall of 2015. To date, the majority of the collection development, donor relations, and fundraising is spearheaded and executed by the community members of an advisory group, while the care and maintenance of the collections is handled by the archives staff and students. Presenters will discuss the origins of the community archive, overall challenges and opportunities, and collection strengths and gaps. We wish to spread the word further about what is already available for research and may be of interest to others across the state. And we will invite discussion of campus-community collaborations. Such collaborations can be valuable for everyone AND are certainly not without challenges for all involved. What community collaborations are academic librarians involved with across the state? How are such collaborations sustained? Come share your stories as well as hearing ours. The presenters, members of the advisory group, will share an outsider insider perspective from both being community members and connected to the UW-Madison libraries.

12:45 PM - 1:45 PM

Luncheon with Eau Claire Improv Company and Award Winners

WAAL Scholarship Winners and WAAL Information Literacy Award presentations
Room: Richmond Hall
Tear Down This WAAL!

We’d like to tell you what to expect, but we can’t because it will be made up on the spot. Join members of Eau Claire’s improv community for fun and games and spontaneous silliness, all inspired by your (voluntary) contributions!

Eau Claire Improv Company is a network of area professional and amateur improvisers. Members have performed at local, regional and national events, including the annual Eau Claire Improvfest. The group is aligned with the Chippewa Valley Improv Network, which hosts monthly drop-in improv jam sessions for beginning and experienced improvisers

1:45 PM - 2:15 PM - The Little Big Read

Room: Wilson Hall A

To help jump-start conversation at WAAL 2019, we have The Little Big Read. Listen to or read one of four items before the conference. Sign up for your choice at SignUpGenius. Bring your thoughts on the item you choose and jump into the mix in Q&As where tables will be themed by article. Start your devices, please. Let the reading and discussion begin!

Video: TedxUWLaCrosse - "A librarian's case against overdue book fines"

Article: Angell, K., & Tewell, E. (2017). Teaching and un-teaching source evaluation: Questioning authority in information literacy instruction. Communications In Information Literacy, 11(1).

Article: Barr, P., & Tucker, A. (2018). Beyond saints, spies and salespeople: New analogies for library liaison programmes. In the Library with the Lead Pipe.

Article: Young, W.H., & Brownott, C. (2018). Toward a more just library: Participatory design with Native American students. Weave: Journal of Library User Experience 9(1).

2:15 PM - 4:00 PM

Poster Session and Dessert Reception

 Room: Wilson Hall B

4:00 PM - 4:50 PM - 5 Concurrent Sessions

Room: Wilson Hall E
Aid Your Aides

Caitlyn Konze, Viterbo University

Aides and students can be a library’s best and most necessary resource. Todd Wehr Memorial Library at Viterbo University relies on students to be our front desk presence, process a large volume of interlibrary loan requests, and act as information triage. This session will cover high impact practices for both academic and public library entry level positions, training tips, and an interactive Q & A about the success and challenges of these positions. Encourage and invest in your aides, and they will make your library shine.

Room: Wilson Hall F
It's a Trap! How to Avoid Giving Legal Advice in Reference Services

Jaime Healy-Plotkin, Wisconsin State Law Library
Carol Hassler, Wisconsin State Law Library

Librarians can be at the front lines of the legal system. Helping students and the public to access legal information and resources can be complicated. Where is the line between research help and giving legal advice? How can you determine which sources are authoritative or up to date? Join reference librarians from the Wisconsin State Law Library to learn how to help your users, while avoiding giving legal advice. This session gives examples and practical tips for helping users with legal research. Explore common problems encountered in a legal reference interaction, and bring your questions for our librarians. Teaching students and users how to research the law has its own challenges. Presenters will discuss legal research primers and basics for students, tips to help evaluate resources, and methods for developing succinct handouts and instructional materials. Handouts will include a summary of the presentation, phrases to avoid when providing legal reference help, and a legal research instruction bibliography.

Carol Hassler, Web Services Librarian, has over ten years of legal research instruction experience with the Wisconsin State Law Library. She also provides reference services to users, and develops handouts and marketing materials for the library. She was recently awarded the Distinguished Service Award from the Law Librarians Association of Wisconsin (LLAW).

Jaime Healy-Plotkin, Cataloger, works to provide access to information at the Wisconsin State Law Library and helps with the library’s reference services. She is active in the Wisconsin library community by serving as President of the Madison Public Library Board, Trustee on the South Central Library System Board, and Chair of the Association of Wisconsin Special Librarians.


Room: Wilson Hall C
Maximize Your Mentorship Relationship(s)

Leatha Miles-Edmonson, Marquette University

Having reliable mentorship relationships can propel forward the careers of not just new librarians, but also librarians at various stages in their careers. This program will highlight tips, tricks, tools, and contracts to establish or improve mentorship relationships. Come prepared to network, engage and interact. You may just establish your own new co-mentor relationship at this presentation.

Room: Wilson Hall D
Exploring the Effect of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusivity Administrative Policies on Library Book Usage

Roxanne Backowski, UW-Eau Claire

In 2018, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire made a policy decision unprecedented in higher education. Shared governance approved a personnel measure that requires that all faculty and staff are evaluated on their contribution to the university efforts toward equity, diversity, and inclusivity (EDI). Prior to that changes to the liberal education core framework were implemented including new EDI curriculum requirements. At the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire’s McIntyre Library, higher rates of use of EDI related eBooks seem to be occurring. This led us to start exploring the question—have these administrative changes had an impact on the use of library collections, specifically regarding book usage related to EDI topics? This session will share the quantitative and qualitative research methods used and the project’s progress. Presentation attendees will be actively engaged throughout the session with discussion prompts to stimulate conversation on collection assessment and diverse materials.


Room:Wilson Hall A
Bulk Data in Humanities Research

Randi Ramsden, Wisconsin Historical Society

The growing number of online databases and the seemingly never-ending stream of information they provide do not only improve accessibility but also offer us new ways to explore historical collections. This workshop explores the intersection of digital humanities and data analytics using bulk data harvested from Chronicling America. In 2015 the Wisconsin Historical Society (WHS) joined the National Digital Newspaper Program, a partnership between the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and the Library of Congress (LC) to provide access to historic newspaper published between 1789 and 1963. NEH awards support state projects to select and digitize historically significant titles that are aggregated and permanently maintained by LC at Chronicling America. Through this website, historic newspaper pages are freely available and keyword searchable. To date, over 14 million pages of newspapers have been made accessible representing 46 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. She will instruct a workshop on how to search, harvest and manipulate data from Chronicling America. The workshop will include hands on experience harvesting bulk data from the site, formulating and refining queries using Excel pivot tables and analysis of the data through a humanities lens. This workshop is appropriate for all skill levels, no previous experience with data analytics is necessary.

5:30 PM - 7:30 PM WAAL Dine Around

Meet in the hotel lobby

Local Restaurants

Not sure where to go for dinner? Let food and networking be your guide! All of the restaurants are within walking distance of the hotel, although you are welcome to drive. New this year! Sign up to reserve your spot ahead of time on SignUpGenius. Meet in the hotel lobby.

The Lakely: A farm to table restaurant with a seasonal menu, The Lakely provides an upscale dining experience. The menu features soups, salads, sandwiches, entrees, and the Scandanavian-inspired “koldtboard,” a choose your own relish tray.
Stella Blues: Casual spot offering Cajun fare, including gumbo, jambalaya, and etouffee.  Signature martinis & mojitos.
Houligans: Steak and seafood casual fine dining in a worn-in woodwork environment.
Thai Orchid: Unique Asian fare. Local favorites include the Pad Thai with chicken or the delicious Drunken Noodles. Vegetarian friendly.
Ninja: Chill place with authentic Japanese & Chinese cuisine.  Vegetarian friendly.
The Informalist: Inside The Lismore and known for the wood-fired pizzas, expect fresh ingredients from regional farms throughout the menu. Vegetarian and vegan friendly.
Livery:  Also known as the Cowtown Saloon for its historic livery stable. Serves American comfort food with a twist.


7:30 PM - 8:45 PM  - Evening Activities

*7:30 PM - 8:45 PM     Storytime for Adults: Why Should Kids Have All the Fun?

Room: Richmond Hall

Theresa Holford, UW-LaCrosse
Barry McKnight, LaCrosse Public Library

Storytime isn’t just for kids! Learn how UWL Murphy Library and La Crosse Public Library, in partnership with a local brewery, attract standing room only audiences, which range in age from 20s to 60s+, to a monthly program where librarians from public, academic and school libraries read aloud short stories, essays, book excerpts based loosely on monthly themes. You’ll discover how the partnerships between local libraries, businesses and the arts enrich the cultural life of the community, and how easy it is to replicate this program in your community. Because showing is better than telling, there will be a live simulated demo of an adult story time session. Free to attend for all librarians in the Chippewa Valley! Sign up here or just show up. Cash bar available.

*7:30 PM - 8:45 PM    Pop Culture Trivia at The Plus

Pursue trivial matters at the restaurant right across the street from The Lismore with fellow librarians! Sign up here.

Suggestions For “On Your Own” Evening Entertainment

*7:30 PM    UWEC Presents: Progressive Performance at the Pablo Center

Attend a non-traditional concert from UWEC Music and Theatre department faculty at the new Pablo Center.  Tickets are $5 for adults and can be purchased at (For website and marketing here is the direct link:

*9:00 PM    Clear Water Comedy Show at The Plus

General admission tickets are $5 and available at the door.

*     New WAAL members are especially welcome at all events.  Come meet fellow members – old and new – in a casual, fun setting.

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