Education

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In 2007-2008, AALL continued to progress in supporting and developing high quality educational programming and partnerships to enhance the continuing professional education of our members.

Member-Driven Approach to Education

This year, the Committee on Continuing Professional Education continued to implement the successful AALL/BNA Continuing Education Grants Program (CEGP), which had been approved by the Executive Board the previous year. The purpose of the program is to encourage program development and promote sharing among AALL entities.

We are pleased to announce this year's AALL/BNA Continuing Education Grants Program award recipients. Congratulations to the following AALL members and entities:

  • Private Law Libraries Special Interest Section for a two-part Web seminar series on cost recovery
  • Southern California Association of Law Libraries for a program on assessing and navigating legal risk in law libraries
  • Kate Fitz, public services librarian at Sacramento County Public Law Library, for a program that serves as an introduction to Second Life law librarianship
  • Melanie Solon, law librarian at Berks County Law Library, and the Pennsylvania County Law Librarians for a program on answering the common pleas of the self-litigant
  • Colorado Association of Law Libraries for a spotlight program focusing on career: Travel Tips for the Road to Success
  • Government Relations Committee for Comprehensive Online Tutorials the Easy Way Webinar
  • Minnesota Association of Law Libraries for The Law Library 2.0 program
  • Technical Services Special Interest Section for Redesigning Technical Services: Working in a Hybrid Environment Webinar
  • Virginia Association of Law Libraries for Preservation Jeopardy Web site learning game
  • Western Pacific Chapter of the American Association of Law Libraries for speaker expenses for a WestPac meeting.

An Energizing Meeting

Ribbon CuttingAALL's 101st Annual Meeting gave attendees the chance to feel energized about their profession, explore new possibilities in law librarianship, and evolve in their careers. Beautiful Portland, Oregon, provided a backdrop for nearly 2,000 attendees to choose from among more than 70 educational programs and workshops packed into four days. Keynote speaker David Pogue, technology columnist for The New York Times, enthralled the audience during the Opening General Session, as he predicted the new gadgets and gizmos that will change our lives. And the Exhibit Hall showcased products from 112 information vendors.

New to the Exhibit Hall was AALL's Member Services Booth. The booth served as a gateway to the AALL Activities Area, which held information about AALL committees, special interest sections, chapters, caucuses, and much more. The raffle drawings, Meet the Candidates forum, and awards recognition all took place in the booth area. Additionally, the AALL Archives exhibit featured a retrospective of Bob Oakley's career and advocacy work for AALL.

A new, more interactive format was implemented for the Members' Open Forum in Portland. The Members' Open Forum is held each year immediately following the AALL Business Meeting and provides an opportunity for members to raise questions and discuss issues without following the requirements imposed by parliamentary procedures. Under the new format, the AALL Executive Board responded to questions and comments when it appeared that this would be helpful. Karl Gruben, law library director and professor of law at St. Thomas University Law Library, served as moderator.

Diversity SymposiumThe 2008 AALL Diversity Symposium, "Developing Diversity: Exploring Innovative Approaches to Recruitment into the Profession of Law Librarianship," was held on July 12. The symposium included a provocative discussion of diversity, how it is defined, and how it can be achieved. A panel of experts led a dialogue with the audience to assess our progress thus far, hear about innovative programs that aim to recruit members of diverse groups into law librarianship, and plot a course for the future. Attendees left with concrete examples of diversity initiatives to implement in their own libraries.

AALL took progressive steps this year to "green" the conference, lessening the negative impacts of the event on our environment. Registration bags made of recycled materials included a refillable water bottle to use in place of disposable cups at the water stations; print-on-demand kiosks for handout materials featured double-sided printers and post-consumer recycled paper; plastic name badges were collected and recycled; and much more. Photos from the 2008 meeting are now available on AALLNET.

Free Continuing Professional Education Online

The CPE Audio/Video Broadcasts page in the Members Only Section of AALLNET now holds more than 50 free audio and video sessions of continuing professional education. Programs cover a wide range of topics, from "A Law Librarian Q & A on Legal Technology" to "Teaching the Teachers Conference" to "The Creative Conflict Resolution Toolbox," as well as programs from the 2007 Northeast Regional Law Libraries Meeting.

Educational Support

AALL continues to initiate and support research and continuing education in law librarianship. The Association's numerous scholarships and grants recognize efforts made by law librarians and provide new opportunities to members. In 2007-2008, AALL awarded eight scholarships and 27 grants for a grand total of $18,910 given in support to its members.

AALL Research Grants Awarded to Five Members

The AALL Research Committee selected the following grants for funding in 2008 by the AALL Research Fund, an endowment established by LexisNexis

  • Jill Duffy, research librarian at the U.S. Supreme Court Library, and Elizabeth Lambert, pro se staff attorney at the U.S. District Court, Eastern District of New York, $2,383 for their project, "Dissents from the Bench: A Compilation of Oral Dissents Issued by the U.S. Supreme Court Justices"
  • Karen E. Kalnins, reference librarian at Oklahoma City University Law Library, $700 for, "Oral Histories of Oklahoma Judges and Attorneys"

The Research Committee also selected two research projects to be funded by the 2007 AALL/Wolters Kluwer Law & Business.

  • Dr. Joel Fishman, assistant director for lawyer services at the Duquesne University Center for Legal Information Allegheny County Law Library, $1,325 for his project, "Index to State Judges' Inductions, Memorials, etc., from the Official State Court Reports"
  • Syracuse University College of Law H. Douglas Barclay Law Library's Christine Demetros, reference/student services librarian, and Wendy Scott, assistant director for faculty and outreach services, $1,630 for their project, "Merging Reference and Circulation Services: The Savior or Undoing of Reference in Academic Law Libraries"

Changes for AALL Spectrum

AALL Spectrum had a new change in content this year. Starting in September 2007, the Chapter News, Committee News, SIS News, and Membership News columns moved from the magazine to AALLNET. The new format allows members to get more news delivered faster. Members can sort the news by type, date, and keyword and can submit items easily to news editors.

New Monthly E-newsletter

Beginning in September 2007, AALL's new monthly e-newsletter kept members up-to-date with the latest Association news and information about events, educational opportunities, advocacy efforts, and other items relevant to law librarians. Delivered on the third Thursday of every month, the e-newsletter also includes quick links to more news and resources found on AALLNET.

HeinOnline Offers Free Online AALL Publications Archive to Members

HeinOnline recently partnered with AALL to add the American Association of Law Libraries Newsletter (1970-1996) and the American Association of Law Libraries President's Newsletter (1954-1970) to HeinOnline. The complete volume sets are available to AALL members for free through the Members Only Section of AALLNET. This new AALL Collection also includes full issues of AALL Spectrum (1996-present) and Law Library Journal (1908-present). The collection is a valuable archive of AALL publications through the Association's 100-year history.

Law Library Journal Turns 100

Throughout 2008, LLJ celebrated its 100th birthday with special features about its history. At Portland's Annual Meeting, the centennial was celebrated with a reception in the Member Services Booth area, complete with cake, ice cream, and refreshments.

RSS Feeds Now Available for AALLNET

This year, AALL began to offer several RSS feeds that include headlines, summaries, and links back to AALLNET for the entire article. RSS, which stands for Really Simple Syndication, is an XML-based format for content distribution. It provides our members with a new and easy way to keep up-to-date with AALL. Subscribing to the feeds is easy: simply copy the feed's URL into the RSS reader of your choice and you are subscribed to that feed. RSS feeds are the perfect way to keep up with new job postings, news about colleagues, and the latest from chapters, SISs, caucuses, and committees.

AALL Salary Survey Results Available

In October 2007, the AALL 2007 Biennial Salary Survey and Organizational Characteristics was made available for free in the Members Only Section of AALLNET.

The ALL-SIS, PLL-SIS, and SCCLL-SIS wrote customized descriptions for the job titles listed in the survey. Also, for the first time, AALL offered an online version of the survey to make completing the questionnaire easier and more convenient for members. The response rate was 65.4 percent; our highest in ten years and nearly double the 2005 rate.

New Edition of the Price Index Now Available

In 2007, the AALL Price Index for Legal Publications, 4d., was made available in the Members Only Section of AALLNET.

This year's Price Index includes 2006 pricing information for more than 500 titles. The table-based report also includes details for the mean cost of titles and percentage increases over previous years for serial publications, legal periodical, loose-leaf services, commercially published court reporters, and supplemented treatises.

Winners of the AALL/Lexis Nexis Call for Papers Competition

Eight law librarians submitted papers for the 2008 Call for Papers competition. As always, the quality of the entries made for a fine competition, and the award winners should be duly proud of their accomplishment:

  • Judith Lihosit won the Open Division for her article, "Research in the Wild: CALR and the Role of Informal Apprenticeship in Attorney Training."
  • Julie Jones won in the New Member Division for her article, "Not Just Key Numbers and Keywords Anymore: How User Interface Affects Legal Research"
  • I-Wei Wang also won in the New Member Division for her article, "Schoolhouse Rock is No Longer Enough: The Presidential Signing Statements Controversy and its Implications for Library Professionals"

The winning authors discussed their articles at the AALL Annual Meeting in Portland.