Annual Conference, June 28, 2008

ACRL – MLA Int’l Bibliography in Academic Libraries
Discussion Group Minutes
ALA Annual Conference, June 28, 2008
Clarion Hotel: Orangewood 1 Room
Anaheim, CA

Turnout at the 2008 Annual MLAIB DG was good at roughly 35 attendees. A change of venue may have adversely affected attendance. Participants were Barbara Chen, Editor of the MLAIB; Duncan Campbell, ProQuest; Janet Weber, OCLC-FirstSearch; Jim Draper, Gale; Craig Brandt, EBSCOhost; Aline Soules, CalState-East Bay; and Liorah Golomb, Convener.

The presentations given by the four vendor representatives are linked to their names.


Agenda Item 1: 2008-2009 Group Convener

Liorah Golomb introduced Gregory Heald, who succeeds her as Group Convener. Gregory is Head of Instruction Services at University of Northern Colorado.


Agenda Item 2: What’s New at the MLA International Bibliography:
Barbara Chen, Director of Bibliographic Services & Editor, MLAIB

  • 67,000 records were added this year.
  • MLA is considering eliminating the print version of the bibliography after 2008. Support for this decision was unanimous, although there was concern that the experience of seeing how the bibliography is organized is not possible in the electronic format.
  • Indexing of JSTOR’s Asian Studies collection is complete.
  • In April the MLA began adding publisher-created abstracts to the MLAIB Online and two interns were hired to input abstracts from the 1970s.
  • Soon MLA members will be able to search the MLA Directory of Periodicals from the MLA’s website.
  • The MLA continues to award 10 fellowships annually to bibliographers. Applicants must belong to MLA and be able to make a 3-year commitment to add 100 records per year from 5 journals. The award is presented at the end of the three years. Two librarians are among the 2008 fellows.
  • There was some discussion about the possibility of forming a librarian discussion group within MLA. Jim Kelly initiated this discussion on LES-L. Barbara is very supportive of this effort.
  • In response to audience questions about the MLAIB and WorldCat, Barbara informed the group that so far MLA records are not available via WorldCat. Full bibliographic records will be available via subscription WorldCat if the user has the MLAIB on any platform.


Agenda Item 3: Updates from MLAIB Vendors

    • The Chadwyck-Healey platform has added publisher-provided abstracts, which are searchable by keyword in Standard and Advanced Search modes. CSA has also added abstracts, searchable using AB=[term].
    • A limiter for websites has been added.
    • Chadwyck-Healey now sorts results by publication date rather than by accession number.
    • Customers can now customize database groups on the CSA Illumina platform.
    • In April, publisher-provided abstracts began being added along with a new search field, AB.
    • Evaluative content such as cover images is being added.
    • In 2009 OCLC will integrate NetLibrary, FirstSearch, and Catalog of Art Museum Images Online (CAMIO). Cross-searching will be available via WorldCat but a subscription will still be required.
    • MLA and OCLC are working together to make subject headings from the MLAIB record metadata available to unauthenticated users.
    • There will be a new Article tab.
    • Gale launched a new platform that now can cross-search Gale Virtual Reference Library, LitFinder, Twayne, Scribner, Literature Resource Center, and MLAIB.  The MLAIB component of the platform is not quite complete at this stage, with link resolution the key remaining element.
    • Gale increased its indexes and limiters and also made them browseable.
    • Faceted searching was added along with new multiple sorting options, new search within options, easy bookmarking, linked thesaurus, DOI, and links to JSTOR and Gale full text.
    • New tabs to sort results by type of work (criticism, book review, etc.) and number of results.
    • Publisher abstracts were added which display and are searchable in full text and keyword searches. They can also be searched using a new Publisher Abstract field in Advanced Search.
    • EBSCO is releasing a new product called EBSCOhost 2.0. The new interface is significantly more user-friendly due to the use of collapsible lists, pop-up windows, and columns. Limiting by date will be done using a simple slider. Related images are included in results list when the customer also has an EP full text product (via EP’s Smartlinking process.). A magnifying glass icon makes it possible to preview a record without clicking into it.
    • The Language limiter is now a list, rather than a text box.
    • It will be possible to filter a result list by Publication Type
    • There is a new Citation feature.
    • Visual search is still supported and has been improved.
    • Literary Reference Center will be compatible with the MLAIB.


Agenda Item 4: MLAIB DG Member Activities

Aline Soules and Liorah Golomb presented a brief slide show in which they revealed results of some searches done on five MLAIB Online platforms. They explained that it was not always possible to compare searches accurately because of inconsistent names of search fields and search rules (e.g., whether a keyword phrase search required quotation marks or not). Nonetheless, they explained that were trying to search as a general user without an MLS would. There was much interest in this research. Liorah and Aline will present at MLA in December.


Attendees expressed a desire for vendors to provide instruction tools such as PDF User Guides. While some vendors already do this, many do not, and it adds to librarians’ workload to have to create guides and keep them updated.


Minutes prepared by Liorah Golomb, 2007-2008 Convener of the ACRL-MLAIB Online in Academic Libraries DG, July 9, 2008.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: