Midwinter Conference, January 25, 2014

ALA Midwinter Meeting, 2014
Saturday, 25 January  |  10:30 am – 11:30 am
Philadelphia, PA | Pennsylvania Convention Center,PCC-115 B

Convenor : David Oberhelman

I. Introductions

Oberhelman convened the meeting at 10:33 and introduced the vendors as well as Barbara Chen, Director of Bibliographic Services at MLA and Editor of the MLAIB.

II. Vendor updates

  •  Ryan Bernier, EBSCO
    Bernier discussed the MLAIB on the EBSCOhost platform.  There were not many new upgrades since his last report at the ALA Annual 2013 Discussion Group meeting.  He also gave a brief demonstration of the EBSCO Discovery service.  The EBSCO platform has a new, simplified look, and in the future will include added content such as media files in the search results.
  •  Stephen Brooks, ProQuest
    Brooks briefly discussed the MLAIB search interface on the ProQuest platform.  There have not been any major changes or upgrades since ALA Annual 2013.  He then showed the new start page and interface for Literature Online (LION) which includes the MLAIB along other indexes such as ABELL and other digital content.  The interface now resembles other ProQuest products and has improved navigation to the various content areas in LION.  There is also an improved mobile interface.
  •  Kate Hanley, Gale | Cengage Learning
    Hanley is the new MLAIB representative at Gale/Cengage Learning, and introduced herself to the audience.  She will attend future meetings with news about upgrades and other changes to the MLAIB in the Gale interface.

III. MLA update (Barbara Chen)

Chen reported that 74,381 records were included in the 2013 file of the MLAIB, and now her office is working on the 2014 file.  There were three focus groups at the 2014 MLA Convention in Chicago, and there is still ongoing discussion about dissertations.

A new, online-only edition of James Harner’s Literary Research Guide will be released by the MLA in 2014.  It will be available for individual or institutional subscription.

Chen also discussed the MLAIB tutorials available on the MLA website (http://mla.org/bibtutorials) and also on the MLA’s YouTube channel (http://www.youtube.com/user/ModernLanguageAssoc).  She showed the audience the new MLAIB tutorial, “Searching the MLA International Bibliography versus Using the Library’s Home Page Search Function” (http://youtu.be/u-JExIii4Bk).

IV. Discovery services and the MLAIB

The discussion focused on using discovery services such as Summon, Primo, EBSCO Discovery, etc. with or in place of the MLAIB.  The attendees shared their experience with teaching both the MLAIB and discovery services in classes, and how they combine both tools to do both broader, interdisciplinary searches and more focused, literary-only searches.

V. Topics for Annual

Oberhelman asked attendees to share ideas for the discussion group meeting at ALA Annual with Sarah Wenzel.  He also showed the attendees the new discussion group website maintained by Dawn Childress:  https://mlaibdg.wordpress.com.  Anyone interested in being a contributor should contact Childress using the contact information on the page.

The meeting was adjourned at 11:30.


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