All posts by AAAL

U California vs Elsevier negotiations

I am very interested in the UC vs Elsevier negotiations:

UC terminates subscriptions with world’s largest scientific publisher in push for open access to publicly funded research Link

Many Alberta libraries have ‘Science Direct’ as the Elsevier package and struggle with the expense. Fortunately, there is real time tracking of cancellations in the academic library world but often financial disclosures are not allowed under confidentiality agreements in the contracts:

However, according to the list, Elsevier is the biggest target for cancellations and it is a worldwide process. ‘Universities in Germany canceled Elsevier two years ago. The university alliance in Sweden canceled last spring, and the university alliance in Hungary canceled in December. Several other national alliances in Europe are trying to negotiate too.’ University Librarian Jeffrey MacKie-Mason, co-chair of the UC team.

Additionally, the Canadian library examples in this recent Scientist article (2018) also describe significant efforts to renegotiate. For example, after renegotiating their deal in 2015, the University of Montreal has saved approximately $1 million CAD ($770,000 USD) per year:

From my perch in Athabasca, I will also continue watch these cases because what happens in California often sets a trend in the US and Canada. In this example the size of the UC Library systems is really significant, and the emphasis on OA as a platform is a novel approach that might work as so many U California faculty are on the editorial boards for the Elsevier journals.

Robert Hudson, Associate University Librarian, Learning and Research Services

Athabasca University Library


[By March 25]: Call for presenters for Spring AAAL meeting

The Alberta Association of Academic Libraries (AAAL) Spring 2019 meeting will take place on Friday, May 10, 2019. We’re excited to announce that Olds College Library is hosting the Spring AAAL meeting for the first time! This is a significant change for AAAL as we’ve historically held our Winter/Spring meetings in either Edmonton or Calgary. In keeping with our goal to try something new, we invite you to contribute to our program of professional learning and sharing with the theme of “Out of the Box”.

Out of the Box: We want to hear from AAAL library staff about new service/program design and delivery. If not something new, have you redesigned or reconceptualized an existing service? How did you get from idea to operation? Tell us! We invite staff from AAAL member libraries to submit a proposal to share your experiences, research, and lessons learned.

To add more variety to our learning events we are seeking different types of sessions including:

  • 5-7 minute lightning talk that is a quick overview of your ideas, experience, and programs/services.

  • 30 minute session that can include ideas, experiences, original research, engaging discussion questions or activities

We challenge you to think outside the box. Never been to a AAAL meeting before? Now’s your chance to connect with AAAL colleagues from across the province. And in Olds, Alberta. Let’s do this!

Please encourage your colleagues to consider this opportunity. We look forward to hearing from you!

Kind regards,

AAAL Workshop Committee: Angie Mandeville, Jessica Leslie, and Leeanne Morrow

7 Questions with Karina Dunn

This month’s issue of 7 Questions with AAAL Members features Karina Dunn, Assistant Librarian at Vanguard College Library | Schalm Memorial Collection.

kdunn21. When was the last time you were nervous?
Teaching Information Literacy to first year students in September. I still get nervous every year!

2. If you could learn to do anything, what would it be?
Surfing – Kite or Wind or just regular.

3. If you could be any fictional character, who would you choose?
The Doctor. Or one of their companions.

4. If you had to work on only one project for the next year, what would it be?
Our Social Media Presence (follow @vanguardcollegelibrary_books *shameless plug)

5. What is your proudest work-related accomplishment?
Finished my online MLIS degree at the University of Alberta in December 2018 after 5.5 years! Whoo!

6. What is your proudest non-work related accomplishment?
I had my second baby at home in a birthing pool with a midwife.

7. What is your favourite quote?
“When we tell our stories, we change the world” – Dr. Brene Brown

If you would like to be featured on our 7 Questions with AAAL Members blog, please sign up here!

Location Confirmed! AAAL Spring 2019 Meeting

Greetings AAAL members,

We are pleased to announce that AAAL executive is working to expand the meeting locations outside of the Edmonton/Calgary corridor. Olds College was selected to host the Spring 2019 Meeting on Friday, May 10.

Olds College was established in 1913 and since that time the College has focused on the agricultural needs of Albertans in both education and research. On their scenic campus, you can enjoy 25 acres of botanic gardens and constructed wetlands, you can spend time shopping at the campus brewery for local craft beer, the meat store for fine cuts and products, or the greenhouse which has fresh cut flowers and vegetables.

Have you been thinking about presenting at AAAL or are you just curious when you can register? By March 1 expect a call for presentations followed by the release of the meeting package and the opportunity to RSVP “yes” in early April.

We can’t wait to see you in the Spring!

The AAAL Executive + Committee Members


Art Exhibit at Concordia University of Edmonton Library

AbstractlandConcordia University of Edmonton Library has a new art exhibit and everyone is welcome to stop by to view the art. The art exhibit, Abstractland, is curated the Esplande Heritage Centre and is on loan to CUE Library by the Alberta Foundataion for the Art’s Travelling Exhibition Program until until February 20th.

Where: CUE Library, main floor
When: January 24 – February 20, 2019
Artist: Les Graff

7 Questions with Christina Wac

This month’s issue of 7 Questions with AAAL Members features Christina Wac, Public Services Librarian & Copyright Officer at Portage College Learning Commons-Library.

Wac_AAAL_7Qs_Photo1. If you could be any fictional character, who would you choose?
Matilda (Roald Dahl). As a kid, I used to stare endlessly at cereal boxes trying to move them with my non-existent telekinetic powers. I still think it would be really cool. Plus, I find her passion for books and knowledge seeking very relatable.

2. If you had to work on only one project for the next year, what would it be?
I would love to start a digitization project at our library and convert all of our VHS tapes to more accessible formats. We have a lot of unique resources that don’t get watched/used because of VHS obsolescence.

3. What are some of your favourite podcasts?
A Tribe Called Geek; 99% Invisible

4. What is your favourite thing to binge watch?
British period dramas are my guilty pleasure, but I also tend to watch a lot of sci-fi/fantasy shows as well. I’m currently binge watching Peaky Blinders and Star Trek: Voyager.

5. What do you do when you’re not working?
I’m often reading, gaming, or spending time with my 19-yr-old cat. I also enjoy yoga and travelling.

6. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would you go?
Probably somewhere in the U.K. I’ve been a couple of times and love the architecture and history (and the gorgeous libraries!). I’m also a fan of overcast skies and places that aren’t too hot, so I think it would be a good fit.

7. What was your favourite childhood cartoon?
For films, it’s a tie between Anastasia and Beauty & the Beast. For TV cartoons, I loved the animated X-MEN series.

If you would like to be featured on our 7 Questions with AAAL Members blog, please sign up here!

Public Talk at the University of Alberta

Jeff Moon, the Director of the CARL Portage Network, will be visiting the U of A campus on Tuesday, February 12. As part of his visit here he will be delivering a presentation in the morning for library staff entitled:  “Research Data Management Services in Canada: A CARL Portage Network Progress Update”.
We invite any interested library staff from area libraries to join us for his talk!
RSVP at the link below – session details are also included:
Please contact James Doiron, Research Data Management Services Coordinator at the UofA Libraries, with any questions: