Friday, May 30, 2014

Explore Activities for Summer Fun

How will you spend your free time this summer?  The Hobbies & Crafts Reference Center database is a great source for exploring your hobbies or finding new ones.  You can also check out the library's Discovery Tool for more books and articles on activities to fill your summer.  I have included a couple of books that the library has in our general stacks.

As our house is gearing up for summer I decided to check out this database to get some ideas to keep us busy.  I know there will be some outdoor activities we will be doing so I started out there.  They have an Outdoor Recreation category that includes hiking, camping, fishing, sailing, scuba diving, and much more.
Hiking and Backpacking
GV199.5 .H55 2008
Since we have a garden I then headed to the Home & Garden category.  I soon got distracted from the garden when I saw that there is a topic covering cake decorating.  We have been trying to learn how to decorate cakes and cupcakes so this will be a great resource for us.
My Cooking Class
TX771 .F3913 2011
After checking out the things I knew we would need I got curious and did some more exploring and found that you can even find out about handwriting analysis under the Science and Technology category.  For those hot 100+ afternoons there is a category on Indoor Recreations that includes topics on different types of games.  Other categories include Scrapbooking, Performing Arts, Needlecrafts, Model Building, Kid's Crafts, and more.

Passionate Gardening
SB455 .S816 2000

Brand New FAQs

We have a brand new FAQs page.

Topics addressed include:
--campus wifi,
--Texan card money,
---item checkout,
---course reserves,
--printing, and more.

Library FAQs

1. Go to

2.  Click Help & FAQs

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Maya Angelou (1928-2014)

Maya Angelou (1928-2014), was one of the most well-known persons of the 20th and 21st century.  She was a poet, autobiographer, playwright, educator, actress, dancer, singer, show-host, lecturer, feminist, political activists, and leader.
I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (E185.97 .A56 A3 1970), Angelou's first authobiography, which was nominated for the National Book Award is part of the collection at the Dick Smith Library.  Many of Angelou's autobiographies, as well as poetry, were inspired by her childhood in the years when discrimination and segregation were strong.  The strength of her close-knit family along shines through in her poems as illustrated by this poem,
Touched by an Angel
We, unaccustomed to courage
exiles from delight
live coiled in shells of loneliness
until love leaves its high holy temple
and comes into our sight
to liberate us into life.

Love arrives

and in its train come ecstasies
old memories of pleasure
ancient histories of pain.
Yet if we are bold,
love strikes away the chains of fear
from our souls.

We are weaned from our timidity

In the flush of love's light
we dare be brave
And suddenly we see
that love costs all we are
and will ever be.
Yet it is only love
which sets us free.

Angelou read her poem, On the Pulse of Morning, at the inauguration of Bill Clinton in 1993.  Only one other person, Robert Frost, has ever been invited to read their poetry at the inauguration of a president. Here is a small portion of this poem:

Here, on the pulse of this fine day
You may have the courage
To look up and out upon me,
The rock, the river, the tree, your country.
No less to Midas than the mendicant.
No less to you now than the mastodon then.
Here on the pulse of this new day
You may have the grace to look up and out
And into your sister's eyes,
Into your brother's face, your country
And say simply
Very simply
With hope
Good morning.

The Dick Smith Library’s collection of books by Maya Angelou includes:
Mother: A Cradle to Hold Me
PS3551.N464 M68 2006

                           The Heart of a Woman,
                           PS3551.N464 Z465 1997

Wouldn't Take Nothing for My Journey Now
               PS3551.N464 W68 1997


       I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
                       E185.97 .A56 A3 1970.

Maybe you'll be as lucky as I was when I received one of Angelou's books from my children on Mother's Day a few years back!

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Move Your Computer Like a Pro!

It's summer time, which means many of us in the Tarleton community will be moving. Whether that means moving from a dorm into an apartment, graduating and moving to a new town for your next adventure, or, for us in the library, moving into our new learning commons space (YAY!), you want to make sure your most valuable possessions make it safe and sound.

So, I though this recent article from Lifehacker on the best way to move your desktop computer came out at a great time, and I wanted to share it with you. It includes this video on how to pack a computer like a manufacturer and other great tips on keeping your computer safe.

Enjoy and good luck to those who are moving!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Graphic Novels (and Manga!)

I wrote a post about the library's graphic novel collection a couple years ago. Happily, our collection has expanded since then! Click here if you'd like to browse what we have in our catalog.

A few examples:

Avengers Forever (Busiek, Pacheco) - This has Captain America, Hawkeye, Giant-Man, the Wasp, Yellowjacket, Captain Marvel, Songbird, and more.

Thor (J. Michael Straczynski, Olivier Coipel) - Another one for all you Marvel fans. We own volumes 1 and 2.

Mixed Vegetables by Ayumi Komura - For those who have asked in the past - we now have a few volumes of Japanese manga! This series is about a pastry chef's daughter and a sushi chef's son.

Bake Sale by Sara Varon - This stars anthropomorphic foods - the main character is a cupcake, and his best friend is an eggplant.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

You Don't (Always) Have To Read The Whole (Print) Book

Do you avoid searching for books when you have a paper because you're short of time?
Your desired information can often be located within a book chapter.  It may only be a few pages long.

Once you have found your book on the shelf, there are 2 quick ways of looking for information:

1)  The table of contents (front of the book)
This is a list of all the chapter and section titles in the book.
You can sometimes tell by the titles if your topic is included.
Let's say your topic is the Watergate scandal, and that you have selected this book: Richard Nixon and His America, by Herbert S. Parmet.

Let's take a look at the table of contents:

Table of contents
Unfortunately, none of the chapter titles look helpful. Time for our second option.

2). The index (back of the book)
This is an alphabetical listing of all the topics covered in a book.
A good index can be extremely helpful.

To use an index:
--Flip to the back of the book.
--Look up your word alphabetically. 
Next to it, you will see page numbers where your topic is mentioned.
--Go to those pages.
Note:  If you can't find your topic, try looking up related words.

"Watergate scandal" is in the index.

Library Database: WorldCat

Did you know that the library has access to several databases on a wide variety of topics? With so many choices, the A-Z database list may seem intimidating. 
Here's a quick look at one of the databases which is helpful and easy to use: WorldCat.

Let's start with what you can do with WorldCat (and no, it's not a database of cats; however, you could find an abundance of resources on cats and wild cats if you're curious).

WorldCat is "the world's most comprehensive database of library materials" which means you can look up any item to see libraries who possess it within their holdings. This is extremely useful for people who use TexShare as they can find a local library to check out materials from when they are not near a Tarleton library or if a Tarleton library does not have an item they are seeking.

Here's a look at WorldCat's Advanced Search. From this search page, you can look up an item by title, author, material type, ISBN, ISSN, etc. You also have other choices such as limiting the results to year, item type, language, number of libraries, and more.

Here's an example of a search for a book by title. The title, Zelda: a Biography, is one that we have in the Tarleton Libraries' holdings. 

When you select search, WorldCat will automatically select Tarleton Libraries as your default library so you should see Tarleton Libraries displayed within the availability results first.

WorldCat is a helpful tool to use especially if you know the exact item that you're seeking. If you are a frequent TexShare user, I believe that you should become familiar with this database as it could save you a trip or help you locate an item faster.

If you have any questions about WorldCat or how to use it, contact the Reference Department: 
(254)968-9249 or

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Learning Commons Renovation Timeline

Here's a timeline (created with TimelineJS) of the Learning Commons renovation project.  Check this post later for updates to the timeline!

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Dallas ComicCon & Icons of the American Comic Book

Dallas Comic-Con 2014 Program

Dallas ComicCon is coming this weekend. You will find special guests like the cast of Firefly and Star Trek: The Next Generation. Stan Lee will also be in attendance at this years Dallas ComicCon. There are activities like the Cosplay Masquerade and there will be shops to purchase comic books and more.
Can't make it it ComicCon this weekend? The library has Icons of the American Comic Book. You will find the two volumes in the reference collections along with a few other comic book encyclopedias. Take your library experience to the next level and come dressed as your favorite characters (cosplay) while you read over the reference books! 

Need assistance?
Email or call 254/968-9249.

Tell us who your favorite comic book character is @tarletonlib

Monday, May 12, 2014

Summer Hours are Here

The library starts operating under summer hours today.  Take a look and see when we're open so you can start planning your study sessions.  Be sure to stop by the upper level Information Desk if you need any help with your classes this summer.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

“Were” or “Was”; “Myself” or “Me” and Library Resources

Were”: In writing a sentence which pertains to being wishful, use “were”, not “was” in the phrase, “If I were going to become a good student, I would study a lot.”  The key is being wishful or having a possibility of.

Was”: In writing a sentence which uses the past tense verb of “being”, write, “I was a good student because I studied a lot.” The key is being in the past.

Myself”: Using the word “myself” in a sentence of this type is incorrect: “If you have any questions, get in touch with myself or the secretary.” 
Me”: The sentence should be “If you have any questions, get in touch with me or the secretary.” 

What’s the key? Ask yourself how the sentence would be if you were the only one involved.  The resulting sentence is “If you have any questions, get in touch with me.” Simple!

When, then, should you use “myself”? Use it to give extra emphasis to your statement such as in this sentence, “I, myself, would rather study than get poor grades.”

Library Resources: If I were going to become better with my usage of these words, I, myself, would look in and use some of the 903 resources!

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Coming Soon to the Library's Shelves: Hairstyles!

We always have interesting new books being added to the collection, so I figured I'd spotlight a few. If you love vintage hairstyles or hairstyling in general, you're going to love these. Each of these books contain step-by-step, illustrated instructions on how to create various hairstyles and will be available for checkout soon!

The Art of Finger Waving by Paul Compan - Includes such styles as "The French Cocktail Bob," "The Varsity Bob," and "The Extreme French Swirl."

 Vintage Hairstyling: Retro Styles with Step-by-Step Techniques by Lauren Rennells - This book includes full-color pictures and is a lot of fun to look through, even if you don't plan on recreating the hairstyles. It also includes sections on how to do vintage makeup and nails.

 Beautiful Braids by Patricia Coen and Joe Maxwell - Like the title says, this one is all about braids. It includes braiding tips and step-by-step line drawings.

Wig Making and Styling: A Complete Guide for Theatre & Film by Martha Ruskai and Allison Lowery - Okay, so this one isn't quite hair, but it's close. It includes information on how to create a wig from scratch, alter an existing wig, and more. Oh, and it also covers facial hair!

Monday, May 5, 2014

#TSUFinalsFrenzy - All-night Study Hours


All-night Study Hours has started at the Dick Smith Library!

Come on over and find a place to study!

Thursday, May 1, 2014

What is peer review?

Have your professors ever asked you to look for "peer-reviewed" articles to use for your paper? Perhaps you nodded thoughtfully and took notes, all the while wondering, "What the heck is peer review?!"

What Is It?
First, you should know that an academic journal is a periodical (newspaper, journal, or magazine) with articles written by academics or scholars on a specialized topic.

Second, although most periodicals have an editing and review process, academic journals with peer review take this a step further.  Published articles must pass a rigorous review by the scholar's peers, who are experts on a given topic.  Peer reviewers often use criterion such as research methodology, relevance to the field, the author's credentials, and more. 

Academic/scholarly vs. peer-reviewed journals
The phrases academic journal, scholarly journal and peer-reviewed journal are often  used interchangeably*.  However, not all academic journals use peer review. 

How to check your article for peer review
If you click Peer-reviewed when searching any of our databases, the articles in your results should fall into this category. 

To double-check that your article is peer-reviewed, enter the EXACT title (with quotation marks around it) into Ulrich's database (click Databases: A-Z on our homepage to find it).  If it is peer-reviewed (also known as "refereed") you will see a black and white referee shirt icon like the one in the picture.

Note: multiple search results for the same title often occur for different formats, such as print, online, and microform.  For a more detailed search, use the Advanced Search feature.

A "referee shirt" icon indicates that a periodical is peer-refereed (or reviewed).

*Some academic or scholarly journals can also be "open-access," which means that you do not have to be subscribed to a database to read them. Here is an example.