Charles Sturt University
Charles Sturt University


Monday, 7 December 2009

ADCS 2009 (Australasian Document Computing Symposium)

Summerfest 2009 The Fourteenth Australasian Document Computing Symposium (ADCS) was held in conjunction with The ARC Network in Human Communication Science (HCSNet) SummerFest at UNSW on 4 December. ADCS is a major forum for Australasian researchers and practitioners working in the areas of document management, information retrieval and digital libraries. This year's presentations covered a variety of topics within these areas, including collaborative recommender systems, text categorisation, sentiment analysis, search log analysis of Wikipedia use and information retrieval (IR) system evaluation. Mark Sanderson's plenary speech provided an overview of the history of IR evaluation in the construction of test collections and recent trends in user evaluations that move beyond simulations of search performance. Of particular interest are the papers that attempt to model human judgment behaviour, including Newman and Karimi's 'External evaluation of topic models' and Turpin and Scholer's 'Modelling disagreement between judges for information retrieval system evaluation.'

I had a chance to talk to other IR researchers who are also interested in user interactions with IR systems from RMIT and CSIRO. Since this conference is part of HCSNet week long big bang event, it provides the opportunities for connecting with related areas of research, such as speech and language technology and music communication science. Overall, this conference is well-planned and very successful in promoting innovative interdisciplinary research.

Posted by Ying Hsang

Friday, 27 November 2009

IR (Information Retrieval) Talk at CSIRO ICT Centre

sculpture Dr Ying-Hsang Liu gave a presentation to a group of researchers with special interests in information retrieval, data mining and document computing at CSIRO ICT Centre in Canberra on 23 November.

His presentation was concerned with the impact of state-of-the-art controlled vocabularies, exemplified by MeSH (Medical Subject Headings), on search effectiveness by different types of searchers in the genomics domain. The study suggested that MeSH terms were more useful for domain experts than for search experts in terms of the precision measure, even though domain experts did not perceive that MeSH terms were useful.

He also met several researchers at CSIRO whose current research projects range from distributed IR (also known as federated searching in information studies), enterprise search, patent classification, tweets as annotations to intelligent search tools for answering clinical questions. The knowledge sharing in this discussion group has stimulated many exciting ideas for future collaborative research.

Posted by Ying Hsang

SWITCH: Public Libraries in a Changing Environment

Suzanne Lipu reports that:

The Public Librarian's Conference (in Sydney Sunday 22 November 2009 to Tuesday 24 November 2009) went well, and the SIS booth was well attended. There were 290 delegates with a good number of local government councillors, 5 representatives from Wagga City Library, a couple of mayors, and of course lots of metro, regional and rural librarians (including an Indigenous Knowledge Centre librarian from WA). Many of the attendees were library managers and/or team coordinators. We had some excellent talks from Hugh McKay, Frank Panucci (Director, Community Partnership of the Australian Council of the Arts) and Michael Pascoe (a very entertaining and amusing presenter for an economist!). All other papers (including mine) was presented as part of either a Social Sustainability, Economic Sustainability, or Cultural Sustainability strand - 4 speakers in each - followed by an interactive panel with the audience for about half an hour. This was facilitated by Lucy Broad from the ABC and this arrangement fostered lots of discussions, and questions directed to me.

My talk focused on the new courses available, particularly the Community Networking strand (since these were public librarians) and as a result of the talk I got many queries about that strand, as well as the change in courses and other offerings.

Next year the South-West Zone of Public Libraries NSW Country will be holding a conference in Albury from 13-16 July at the Albury Entertainment Centre for those of you who might be interested.

Posted by Mary Anne.

Thursday, 26 November 2009

Usability Laboratory

labEarlier this semester Dr. Asim Qayyum of the School of Information Studies and Alice Ferguson of the Division of Library Services hosted an open house of the new Digital Library Usability Lab. The Lab has been setup to facilitate Human Computer Interaction (HCI) research and transform the experiences that people have with new technologies.
The objective is to study the needs of computer users to evaluate and develop technologies, and to ensure that the needs and practices of users are reflected in future software applications and information technologies. Primary activities will include carrying out research to study and design user interfaces, and to carry out usability studies. CSU Researchers can book the facilities available in the lab for project use.

Equipment available in the lab:

  • lab 2Three high end desktop PCs running on Windows XP, equipped with microphones, headset, and Webcam.
  • Morae 3 software with Manager, observer, and recorder modules to record interactions.
  • Two rooms to accommodate researcher and experiment participants.
  • One way mirror between rooms to facilitate observation.

Posted by Kim

Sunday, 22 November 2009

ASIST 2009 Annual Meeting: Thriving on Diversity - Information Opportunities in a Pluralistic World

ASIS&TEach year the American Society for Information Science & Technology (ASIS&T) holds an annual meeting. It is a key conference for those working and researching in the field of information science and technology. Ideas and research are shared, networks formed and agendas set. The theme for the conference this year was "Thriving on Diversity: Information Opportunities in a Pluralistic World". This year I was privileged to attend the 2009 ASIS&T conference in Vancouver as an invitee to the Doctoral Seminar for Research and Career Development. There was such a wide variety of papers I won't attempt to do a summary, but from the Keynote presentation by Tim Bray of Sun Microsystems were three pithy lines which represent some of the topics. "The killer app of the Internet is people"; "What happens on the Internet stays on the Internet - forever" and "The culture of online is epistolary - we are in a golden age of writing ...".

graphsWhile at ASIS&T I met many interesting people, including Dr Heidi Julien from the University of Alberta who we will welcome as a visiting professor at CSU next year. I also met Chang Liu, who was co-author of a poster paper titled "To Search is to Believe: A Comparative Study of health Information Use" with our own Dr Ying-Hsang Liu. Attached is a picture of Chang Liu with their paper. There were many interesting and creative papers, panels and workshops. One particularly interesting session which focused on future directions for information behaviour research mentioned the work Dr Annemaree Lloyd is doing in the area of information practice as something to watch.

building Vancouver is a beautiful city. I did not really have the opportunity to explore, as I was only there for such a short period. I did, however, manage a daily walk, on one of which I discovered their very interesting city library building pictured here.
Posted by Mary Anne

Tuesday, 3 November 2009

Doctoral Paper Award - Congratulations Sally Burford!

The SIS Research Development Committee (RDC) is pleased to report that the winner of the SIS Doctoral paper award for 2007-2008 and the accompanying $500 prize is Sally Burford for her conference proceeding:

Burford, S. 2008, 'Understanding How Organisations Achieve Effective Web Information Architecture using a Grounded Theory Approach.' AusWeb 08: The 14th Australasian World Wide Web Conference, 5-9 April 2008, Ballina, NSW, Australia: Conference proceedings. AusWeb 08.

After reviewing the paper, the Committee agreed that it was an interesting paper on an interesting topic. We should acknowledge that Sally also received the best paper award at the AusWeb 08 conference for this paper. CONGRATULATIONS SALLY!

The RDC would like to encourage Doctoral students to take this Doctoral paper award as an incentive to publish their work as they progress through their studies and to submit their papers for awards as opportunities arise to do so.

November 2009 News

SIS Sponsors the ALIA Library Technician Research Award

Congratulations to Janette Telford, who, at the recent ALIA Library Technicians Conference was awarded the ALIA Library Technician Research Award. This award is sponsored by the School of Information Studies, and provides Janette with an opportunity to undertake a particular project of relevance to the role of library technicians in the broad library and information profession.

Janette's project is to see if there is a career path for Library Technicians or must they upgrade their qualifications to Librarian or Teacher Librarian to progress in the profession.  It is important to obtain an overview of the current state of the library and information management sector in relation to both Library Technicians and Librarians.  Also the project will include comparing Library Technicians who have upgraded their qualifications to other degrees and those Library Technicians who have not.

Janette is the loans coordinator at Australian Catholic University, North Sydney Campus. She has been involved with ALIA for more than 15 years, is an ALIA Associate Fellow, and has presented papers at numerous Library Technician Conferences, including Rivers of Opportunities and other workshops run by the ALIA Library Technician NSW Group.

For two years (1989-1990) Janette was a volunteer at the Atenisi University in Tonga.  During that time she catalogued the university's library material, conducted library education classes in both the university and high school, helped to organise library week for the island of Tongatapu (including a performance before the King of Tonga's grandchildren!) Since then she has been involved in numerous activities including in 2000 supervising customer service staff during the Olympics and working in the Olympic Village in the library during the Paralympics.

Clearly Janette's project is of great interest to the SIS, and we hope she will keep us up to date with her progress.

Dr Mary Anne Kennan receives an ASIST paper commendation

Mary Anne Kennan received an Honourable Mention for her PhD thesis from the American Society for Information Science and Technology (ASIS&T). Her thesis is titled Reassembling Scholarly Publishing: Open Access, Institutional Repositories and the Process of Change 
As a part of the award she was invited to participate in the 2009 ASIS&T Doctoral Seminar for Research and Career Development at the 2009 ASIS&T Annual Meeting in Vancouver in November.

Dr Anne Lloyd delivers keynote address at Motesplats infor framtiden

SwedenDr. Anne Lloyd from the School of Information Studies has returned from Sweden, where she delivered the keynote address at Motesplats infor framtiden (translated as Meeting place). This conference is aimed at Scandinavian information science researchers and library practitioners. Anne also presented research seminars for staff and students at the Swedish Library and Information Science School at Hogskolan I Boras. While in Sweden, Anne also participated in a two day research planning meeting for the International Information Literacy Research group at the University of Gothenburg, funded by an EU Nordforsk grant. The group's membership is made up of researchers from Finland, Sweden, Estonia, Denmark and the UK. While in Hogskolan I Boras, it snowed causing a flurry of photos!

Sally Burford is the winner of SIS Doctoral Paper Award 2007-2008

The SIS Research Development Committee (RDC) has announced the Sally Burford the winner of the Doctoral paper award for 2007-2008. Sally's topic was "Understanding How Organisations Achieve Effective Web Information Architecture using a Grounded Theory Approach."

SIS staff members @ national/International meets

Asim Qayyum/Ying-Hsang - Oz-IA in Sydney, Oct 2009.
Asim Qayyum/Roy Sanders/Bob Pymm/Damian Lodge at Lib Tech in Adelaide, Sep 2009.
Mary Anne Kennan & Bob Pymm - IIM Conference, Canberra, Oct 2009.
Anne Lloyd - Motesplats infor framtiden, Sweden, Oct 2009.
Bob Pymm -
Television archiving - managing the move from analogue to digital"   LIDA (Libraries in the Digital Age) Conference, Zadar, Croatia 25-30 May 2009
"Realistic expectations? The distance learning experience of undergraduate Library and Information Studies students over their first year of study"   ALIA Library and Information Technicians" Conference, Adelaide, September 2009
"A virtual archive: The September 11 Digital Archive at George Mason University, Virginia, USA."  Australian Society of Archivists Conference, Brisbane, October 16 2009 (paper not yet available)
Philip Hider/Bob Pymm/Damian Lodge - "Empowering users: what we can do to facilitate creation, discovery, sue and transformation of our collections?"   Hobart, Nov 5 2009.
Roy Crotty - ASLA National Conference,Perth &RIVPAT TL conference, Leeton, Nov 2009.

John H Lee award for excellence in the use of technology

The School of Information Studies presented their annual award, the John H Lee award for excellence in the use of technology, at the ASLA(NSW) February PD occasion to Cecily Trevillion of St John's High School Nowra.

September 2009 News

SIS Announces New Curriculum

Read about how the School is expanding the curriculum of its three main courses.

Bachelor of Information Studies

The School of Information Studies has the largest and most successful information programs in Australia, and we offer the Bachelor of Information Studies by Distance Education only. This revitalised and expanded degree provides a core information studies component, along with optional specialisations in:

  • Librarianship;
  • Information and Knowledge Management;
  • Records and Archives Management

The BIS is open to school leavers, to TAFE Library Technician graduates, and to anyone with an interest in working in the library and information professions. For school leavers, another option is to complete a degree in another area and then study the Master of Information Studies part-time with CSU to gain your professional library qualification.

Most study materials and interactions are online, and students must have quality access to the internet in order to complete course requirements. The BIS has one compulsory Residential School of 3-4 days, held in Wagga Wagga at the beginning of each year.

Master of Information Studies

The School of Information Studies has the largest and most successful information programs in Australia, offering a comprehensive program that fits prospective graduates to a wide range of information related careers. The entire postgraduate program, all available via distance education, during 2009 has been revised and expanded to provide a focused core of study comprising nine compulsory subjects, along with a four subject optional specialisation in:

  • Librarianship;
  • Children's Librarianship;
  • Library Leadership;
  • Community Networking;
  • Information and Knowledge Management;
  • Records and Archives Management and
  • Applied Research

The MIS is open to those with an undergraduate degree in any discipline. Students may exit the Masters course after completion of the core nine subjects with a Graduate Diploma or go on to complete the Masters degree by taking four more subjects which may be focused on one of the specialisations above or from across the range of subjects offered for those who do not wish to specialise.

Most study materials and interactions are online, and students must have quality access to the internet in order to complete course requirements. Study is usually taken on a part-time basis following a recommended program but there is considerable flexibility available in order to meet the needs of those wishing to take a different approach.

Master of Education (Teacher Librarianship)

As a result of the school review undertaken by the School of Information Studies in 2008 and the subsequent curriculum renewal process undertaken in 2009, a number of changes to the Master of Education (Teacher Librarianship) program have been approved for commencement in 2010.

The admission criteria for the Master of Education (Teacher Librarianship) program have been altered so that four year trained teachers no longer require one year of teaching experience before they enter this course. Three year trained teachers with one year's teaching experience are now eligible to apply for entry to the Master of Education (Teacher Librarianship). As a consequence the Master of Applied Science (Teacher Librarianship), which included the Graduate Diploma in Education (Teacher Librarianship) as an exit point, is being phased out.

The number of subjects in the Master of Education (Teacher Librarianship) program has been reduced from nine to eight. The two four point subjects, ETL510 Professional Experience and ETL506 Professional Portfolio, have been combined into one eight point subject, ETL507 Professional Experience/Professional Portfolio, in the new course structure. All subjects are now eight points and the course is sixty-four points.

Two restricted electives, ETL525 Knowledge Management and ETL411 ICT Experience, are being made obsolete and replaced with INF441 Principles of Knowledge Management and INF506 Social Networking for Information Professionals. Most subjects are undergoing some revision. As subjects are now offered almost entirely online and with a range of avenues of online communication and instruction, optional residential schools will no longer be offered from 2010. In the future there may be some optional off campus workshops in locations such as Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra.

From 2010 the structure of the Master of Education (Teacher Librarianship) program will be:

Core subjects

  • ETL401 Teacher Librarianship
  • ETL501 Information Environment
  • ETL503 Resourcing the Curriculum
  • ETL504 Teacher Librarian as Leader
  • EER500 Introduction to Educational Research
  • ETL507 Professional Experience/Professional Portfolio
  • ETL505 Bibliographic Standards in Education

Restricted elective subjects (choose one of the following)

  • ETL402 Literature in Education
  • ETL523 Information Policy Issues
  • INF441 Principles of Knowledge Management
  • INF506 Social Networking for Information Professionals

Internal survey confirms that WE ARE THE NUMBER ONE!

The School of Information Studies has surveyed the 2006-2008 issues of the sixteen Library and Information Studies journals ranked A* for the ERA exercise. It found that of the 53 articles authored by researchers from Australian universities with LIS schools or departments, 19 (32%) emanated from CSU. SIS was the leading contributor by a long way - second was UTS with 12. A high proportion of staff in SIS are publishing at A and A* levels.

New SIS Staff Members

SIS welcomes two new staff members, Dr. Ying-Hsang Liu and Dr. Kim Thompson.

Ying-Hsang has recently completed his doctorate at Rutgers University in the field of information retrieval. He has teaching experience at Rutgers and Pratt Institute (New York), and has been involved in various research projects with faculty at Rutgers. He has an MA in Linguistics from the National Tsing Hua University in Taiwan, and a BA in Library Science from the National Taiwan University. Dr. Ying-Hsang will be based in Wagga.

Kim M. Thompson received her MS and PhD degrees in Library and Information Studies from the Florida State University (FSU) and her BA in English from the Brigham Young University (BYU). Dr. Thompson has been an associate researcher for the Information Use Management & Policy Institute at FSU, a visiting instructor at St. Catherine University in St. Paul, Minnesota, and an Assistant Professor at the University of Missouri in Columbia, Missouri, where she also worked with the university's Information Experience Lab doing usability analysis. Dr. Thompson has taught at the post-secondary level since 1995 and her research focuses on subjects related to physical, intellectual, and social information access.

Visiting Professor for 2010 ~ Prof Heidi Julien

Professor Heidi Julien of the School of Library and Information Studies, University of Alberta, Canada to visit SIS as a visiting professor in 2010.

The School of Information Studies has been successful in their funding application to CRGT to support a 2010 visit of.  Professor Julien has similar research interests to those of a number of SIS staff and is a highly respected academic in the field of Library and Information Studies.  The application was supported by eleven staff in the SIS, including the three proposers, Kirsty Williamson, Joy McGregor and Philip Hider.  The total amount of money applied for has been awarded

Report from Annemaree Lloyd on Information Literacy

Dr Annemaree Lloyd recently led a discussion around information literacy and talked about how Information literacy has been proclaimed by UNESCO as core literacy for the 21st century and one that underpins other forms of literacy.
"The concept of information literacy has been written about in the library and information science, school library and lifelong learning sectors for over 30 years. However, the practice of information literacy remains under-theorized and most research in this area is approached from a library-centric perspective that focuses on the individual and skill development, rather that attempting to identify the underlying socio-cultural dimensions that enable or constrain its emergence."

Library News

Library NewsNational Library Australia News: Copies Direct

Did you know you can request a book from any library? For a small fee, NLA can provide you with copies of articles, chapters, whole books, even photographs, pictures, maps, manuscripts, music and sound recordings. If they're available, they can get them. For details see

Sunshine Coast library users 'kicked out for lewdness'

ANGRY residents have called on a local council to install internet filtering software on public library computers, as staff continues to throw men out for lewd behaviour while accessing internet pornography. More details at,28348,25891268-5014239,00.html

Fullbright Press Release

Dr. Kim M. Thompson, Lecturer at Charles Sturt University, has been awarded a Fulbright Scholar grant to lecture at the Universidad Pedagogica Nacional Francisco Morazon (UPNFM) of Honduras during the 2009-2010 academic year, according to the United States Department of State and the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board.

Dr. Thompson will help develop curricula and teach courses in the library science degree program at the UPNFM as a means to strengthen the information infrastructure of Honduras and provide improved information access for Hondurans throughout the nation through better librarianship in school, public, academic, and special libraries.

Dr. Thompson is one of approximately 1,100 U.S. faculty and professionals who will travel abroad through the Fulbright U. S. Scholar Program.

The Fulbright Program, America's flagship international educational exchange program, is sponsored by the United States Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Since its establishment in 1946 under legislation introduced by the late Senator J. William Fulbright of Arkansas, the Fulbright Program has provided approximately 294,000 people - 108,160 Americans who have studies, taught or researched abroad and 178,340 students, scholars and teachers from other countries who have engaged in similar activities in the United States - with the opportunity to observe each others' political, economic, educational and cultural institutions, to exchange ideas and to embark on joint ventures of importance to the general welfare of the world's inhabitants. The Program operates in over 155 countries worldwide.

Recipients of Fulbright awards are selected on the basis of academic or professional achievement, as well as demonstrated leadership potential in their fields. Among the thousands of prominent Fulbright alumni are: Muhammad Yunus, Managing Director and Founder, Grameen Bank, and recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize in 2006; Javier Solana, Foreign Policy Chief, European Union; Ruth Simmons, President, Brown University; Craig Barrett, Chairman of the Board, Intel Corporation; Alejandro Jara, Deputy Director-General, World Trade Organization; Raoul Cantero, Justice, Florida Supreme Court; Renee Fleming, soprano; Gish Jen, Writer; Daniel Libeskind, Architect; Aneesh Raman, CNN Middle East Correspondent; and Sibusiso Sibisi, President and CEO, Council for Scientific and Industrial Research in South Africa.

Fulbright recipients are among over 40,000 individuals participating in U.S. Department of State exchange programs each year. For more than sixty years, the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs has supported programs that seek to promote mutual understanding and respect between the people of the United States and the people of other countries. The Fulbright U.S. Scholars Program is administered by the Council for International Exchange of Scholars.

For further information about the Fulbright Program or the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, please visit our website at or contact James A. Lawrence, Office of Academic Exchange Programs, telephone 202-453-8531, or email

July 2009 News

PhD student Terry Asla has article published

Terry Asla, a PhD student in SIS has recently had an article published with Dr Kirsty Williamson in an A* journal. The article is based on the work of both of Terry and Kirsty. The details are as follows:

Williamson, K. & Asla, T. (2009) Information behavior of people in the fourth age: Implications for the conceptualization of information literacy. Library and Information Science Research, Vol. 31, No.2, pp. 76-83.

Congratulations on your book, Arthur!

Dr. Arthur Winzenried has just published a book with Mal Lee. "The Use of Instructional Technology in Schools, Lessons to be Learned" examines teachers' use of the major instructional technologies over the last century - from the days of silent film, radio and slide shows through to the modern interactive whiteboard and the Web. It explores the reasons why so few teachers have used these technologies and why, even in today's digital world, the most commonly used classroom tools are the pen, paper and teaching board.

The Informed Librarian features article by Asim

The Informed Librarian Online has selected an article co-authored by Dr. Asim Qayyum with University of Tennessee researchers as a Featured Article for their April 2009 issue. This issue offers their premium members full-text access to the article "Aqui y alla (Here and There) Information-Based Learning Corridors between Tennessee and Puerto Rico: The Five Golden Rules in Intercultural Education". The article was authored by Bharat Mehra, Suzie Allard, Asim Qayyum, & G. Barclay-McLaughlin, and first appeared in the journal Education for Information, v. 26, issue 3, p: 151-168, 2008.

Development commences on EU funded project

Dr Annemaree Lloyd from the School of Information Studies visited the University of Gothenburg in April to commence work on the development of an EU funded project. In 2008, Dr Lloyd was part of an international team that received NordForsk funding. The funding is being used to support the development of an international project which will examine information practice and information literacy across three countries (Sweden, Finland and Australia).