News

Welcome, Vikings! — A Guide for Students

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Getting Started at the Library

Ask a Librarian

The Library has many resources to make your fall term a success. Ask a Librarian if you have any questions.

digitaldisplaytechEquipment Checkout

You can borrow equipment from the Portland State University Library, including mobile device chargers, headphones, graphing calculators, laptops, and iPads from the 1st floor Circulation Desk.

More Information:
iPad, Laptop & Equipment Checkout
Library Services for Students

Quiet Floors and Study Rooms

Do you need a quiet place to study? The basement, 4th, and 5th floors are designated quiet floors to provide students with places to focus and study. Study rooms are available throughout the Library for a space to study, practice a presentation, or work on a group project. A special family study room is available for students with children. Check out keys from the 1st floor Circulation Desk.

More Information:
Study Spaces & Computers

Textbooks and Course Reserves

The Library has many textbooks available for checkout. You can search the Library Catalog to see if we have your textbook in the reserve collection behind the 1st floor Circulation Desk or on the shelves.

More Information:
Course Reserves
Library Catalog

Computer Labs

The Library has computer labs on the 1st and 2nd floors. Both labs have PC and Mac computers, wheelchair accessible stations, scanners, and color printers. There are also research kiosks available for visitors.

More Information:
Computer Labs

Research Help

askReference Desk

Get help with your research at the Library Research Center on the 2nd floor. Reference Librarians will assist you with all stages of your research including brainstorming topics, finding articles, citing your sources, and more. You can get research help in person or 24/7 online.

More Information:
Ask a Librarian

Writing Center Outpost and Learning Center

The 2nd floor is also home to the Writing Center Outpost and Learning Center. The Writing Center Outpost will help you with your paper at any stage of the writing process from 9 a.m. to noon weekdays, and the Learning Center will help you with tutoring, study skills, and many other services.

More Information:
Writing Center Outpost

Exhibits and Events

New Exhibit at the Library

Viking 1947

Coming in October: An exhibit on The Viking, the Portland State annual publication from 1945 through 1995. The Viking began as a traditional yearbook and grew to become a snapshot into life on campus and around town. In October, view the exhibit inside the library to see the history of Portland through the eyes of past Portland State students, faculty and staff.

Read the PSU Viking Yearbooks Online:
The Viking

Upcoming Library Workshops

Streamline your thesis, dissertation, or research paper. Our upcoming library workshops will help you master managing citations, literature reviews, and data management.

More Information:
Workshop & Tours

Fall Term Drop-in Workshops & Tours

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Upcoming Workshops

Managing Resources with Zotero and Mendeley

Description
Zotero and Mendeley are web-based and desktop citation and PDF management tools that make it easy to collect, organize and cite research materials. Both are terrific tools for anyone working on a research project, as they can help you manage your research materials from multiple sources and insert them into your documents with ease.

Dates Offered
Tuesday, October 11th 4–5:30 p.m.
Wednesday, October 26th 4–5:30 p.m.

Location
Library, Room 160
1st floor, across from elevators

Instructor
Michael Bowman

Research for Thesis and Dissertation Literature Reviews

Description
A thorough literature review sets the stage for success in a large research project like a thesis, dissertation, or grant proposal. This session will give students tips and strategies for conducting an effective and comprehensive literature review.

Date Offered
Thursday, October 20th, 12 – 1 p.m.

Location
Library, Room 160
1st floor, across from elevators

Instructor
Kim Pendell

Research Data Management

Description
Your research data needs care and maintenance in order to be effective and retain its viability. What file formats and organization should you use? What documentation should accompany your data so that you (and others) can re-use it in the future? What are the current standards in your field for adding metadata and prepare it for deposit in a repository? Learn the answers in our workshop!

Date Offered
Wednesday, November 2nd 4–5:30 p.m.

Location
Library, Room 160
1st floor, across from elevators

Instructor
Kim Pendell

Tour the Library

During the first 4 weeks of the term, guided tours are given Tuesdays at 11:00 a.m. & Wednesdays at 3:00 p.m.

Meet at the 1st floor Circulation Desk.

Oregon Cultural Trust Grant Awarded to Special Collections: Preserving Historic Newspapers of Oregon’s African American Community

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The PSU Library is pleased to announce it has received a $5000 grant from the Oregon Cultural Trust to preserve and make accessible its historical collection of local Black-owned and published newspapers. The newspapers were donated to Portland State in 2012 by Charlotte Rutherford as part of the Verdell Burdine and Otto G. Rutherford Family Collection. The collection documents over one hundred years of Black community history in Oregon and includes photographs, scrapbooks, organizational records, personal papers, and publications. Its newspapers, dating from the 1910s through the 1980s, are a unique window to the national, regional, political and cultural context of their time. With photos and announcements of local events and ads from businesses, they also capture the vitality of the community over time. While in high demand by researchers, educators and students, regular use puts the original newspapers, many the only known print copies, at great risk. This grant will support the digitization of the collection to preserve it and make it available online. It will also fund the printing of full-size color facsimiles that can be safely shared at community events and in classrooms. The project will be overseen by the Library’s Head of Special Collections.

More Information:

PSU Library Special Collections & University Archives
African American History in Oregon: the Rutherford Family Collection

PSU Librarians Attend Summit to Improve Student Success with Open Textbooks

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Using open textbooks can save students hundreds of dollars per year. Creating awareness of open textbooks as an option remains a challenge, which is why PSU librarians Karen Bjork and Sarah Beasley attended the Open Textbook Network (OTN) Summer Institute Aug. 9-12, 2016 at the University of Minnesota.

The OTN, an alliance of nearly 250 colleges and universities across the country, supports developing strategies for advancing open textbook programs on their campuses. PSU joined the OTN in 2015. Over the last year, the OTN has grown by nearly 175 members. The institute focused on strategies to increase campus awareness of the negative impact high textbook costs can have on students’ academic performance.

Published under a Creative Commons license, open textbooks are available to students for free. Faculty can custom edit the textbooks to meet their needs. By using open textbooks, students can save thousands of dollars over a college career. The OTN has already saved students an estimated total of $3.1 million in textbook costs. PDXOpen, PSU Library’s open textbook project, has saved PSU students $61,000 since its first textbooks went online in 2015.

“Open textbooks eliminate the cost barrier between students and their learning,” said David Ernst, director of the Center for Open Education and executive director of the OTN. “The institutions in the Open Textbook Network are all committed to improving student success through the use of these textbooks.”

“Textbook affordability is a huge issue for our PSU students. Working with the Open Textbook Network helps us find solutions to decrease the cost of textbooks and course materials,’’ said Marilyn Moody, Dean of the PSU Library.

The Open Textbook Network also hosts the Open Textbook Library, the first searchable online catalog of open textbooks, many of which are reviewed by faculty at OTN institutions. Currently, more than 260 textbook titles (including PDXOpen books) are available for use.

More Information:

You may also contact Karen Bjork, Head of Digital Initiatives  or Sarah Beasley, Research and Instruction Services Manager.

Branford’s Bean Closes Aug 12

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getting coffee from a vending machine, 1969
Vending machine coffee at Portland State, 1969, from the University Archives Digital Gallery

The coffee and snack bar in the Library, Branford’s Bean, will close on Friday, August 12 and remained closed for the rest of the summer.

Branford’s Bean will re-open the week before fall term.

Apply to Attend OpenCon

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Portland State University Library and Research and Strategic Partnerships are pleased to sponsor a scholarship for one early career researcher to attend OpenCon 2016.

“OpenCon is more than a conference. It’s a platform for the next generation to learn about Open Access, Open Education, and Open Data, develop critical skills, and catalyze action toward a more open system for sharing the world’s information—from scholarly and scientific research, to educational materials, to digital research data. OpenCon 2016 will be held in Washington, DC on November 12–14.”

Eligible applicants must be early career professionals, with 10 years or less experience post-terminal degree in their field.

The scholarship recipient will agree to serve as an “open” ambassador at Portland State. This entails writing a short (no more than 750 words) blog post that will be used for the Library’s news, Research and Strategic Partnerships Quarterly Report, and other PSU communication channels to highlight your experience at OpenCon, and to further conversations in the PSU community about all forms of open.

Application deadline was August 15, 2016.

Notification of recipients will happen by September 30, 2016.

For questions, please contact Emily Ford, Urban & Public Affairs Librarian and Scholarly Communication Co-Coordinator.

Dark Horse Collection Reaches 10,000

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darkhorselogo_optimizedAs of Friday, July 15, 2016, Portland State University Library has cataloged more than 10,000 titles from Dark Horse Comics.

As the official archive of Dark Horse publications, Portland State University Library began cataloging Dark Horse books, comics, graphic novels, and more in 2007, and the work continues to this day.

Dark Horse gives copies of all materials produced by Dark Horse to PSU Library, resulting in a complete and preserved collection of the Dark Horse corpus. It is a unique browsing and research collection of comic books, graphic novels, collected editions, related books, statues, figures, and other materials.

Cover image from Call of Duty Black OpsCataloging Technician Teresa Stapelberg cataloged the 10,000th item, one of the variant covers for Call of Duty: Black Ops III, #1.

The browsing collection is available on the third, fourth, and fifth floors of the Library, along the curved windows. There is one copy of every Dark Horse comic book, graphic novel, collected edition, and book. The collection is available for reading in the Library or for checkout.

The research collection contains one copy of every Dark Horse comic book, graphic novel, collected edition, book, print, poster, statue, figure, and all other products. The research collection is available by appointment in Special Collections on the Library’s first floor.

The Dark Horse Comic Collection at Portland State University Library provides a unique legacy for Oregon’s premier comics company.

Learn more about the Dark Horse Comic Collection at Portland State University Library. 

Karen Bjork Named 2016 IR All-Star

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Congratulations to Karen Bjork, named a 2016 IR All-Star! This recognition comes from Digital Commons and bepress, the company that provides the platform for PDXScholar, the institutional repository (IR) of Portland State University.

Karen BjorkKaren is the Head of Digital Initiatives in PSU Library and manages PDXScholar and the Digital Initiatives Unit.

The announcement from Digital Commons says it best:

“We are very pleased to announce the first of our 2016 IR All-Stars: Karen Bjork, Head of Digital Initiatives at Portland State University. Over the past several years Karen has been a vocal and enthusiastic member of the Digital Commons community, most especially with her tireless advocacy for cost-saving Open Educational Resources.

PDXScholar’s core mission is to provide a publishing outlet for scholarly work that does not fit other publication models. Since 2013 this has included PSU-authored open textbooks, created in response to the campus-wide ReTHINK PSU Provost’s Challenge and subsequent funding. Karen, with the help of her team, developed and managed the entire process, including vetting submissions, working with authors to complete and edit their manuscripts, and ensuring the addition of final touches like cover art. There are currently eleven books in the repository’s PDXOpen collection and more on the way in the coming months.  This initiative has already saved students $59,000. This collection is a clear way for the library to align with key campus missions.

“Textbooks are just one of PDXScholar’s strengths. According to Marilyn Moody, Dean of the Library,

‘Karen… has a proven track record of inspiration efforts to make our collections vibrant. Karen also has an innovative and ongoing approach to engaging stakeholders in order to support their scholarly communications needs. She works with faculty, students, and staff with tact, humor and patience.’

Under Karen’s direction, PDXScholar has become an extensive and diverse repository with over 12,000 papers and nearly 725,000 downloads in the past year.

Indeed, Karen has worked hard to develop a wide range of collections, including partnerships with Special Collections and University Archives as well as with a number of research centers and institutes on campus. PDXScholar also boasts a wide range of traditional faculty papers, campus conferences and symposia, and journals and newsletters. At a school that prides itself on high-quality student work, Karen has recognized and highlighted the value of undergraduate research and projects, making sure to prominently feature a variety of undergraduate work in PDXScholar as well.

One of the things we most appreciate about Karen is her willingness and eagerness to share her strategies and her passion for repository management. Last fall, she presented an informative bepress webinar about her work with Open Educational Resources at Portland State, and she has presented on related topics at a variety of conferences. Most recently she helped coordinate the first Northwest Institutional Repository User Group, held at her home institution. We look forward to continuing to work closely with Karen in the future as she continues to push PDXScholar to the forefront of university repository standards.

Please join us in congratulating Karen on all her hard work!”

We are delighted to see this recognition of Karen’s work and her many contributions to Portland State University. Congratulations, Karen!