Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Study Spaces for Finals

The library has a variety of study spaces available on all floors of the library to meet any need. Whether you need a quiet space to yourself, or want to work with a group on a presentation, we have you covered. Here's a list of the study spaces available by floor. Keep in mind that group study rooms do not reserve during finals, so all study spaces, except the Presentation Practice Room are first come, first served from December 8th - 14th.

All Libraries and Levels:
  • Computer workstations: Work on research, papers and projects on our computers. All computers are equipped with Adobe Creative Cloud, SPSS, Microsoft Office, web browsers and more.
  • Open seating: Get comfy or work around a table with your group!
Open Seating on the Upper Level

Computer Work Stations on the Main Level

Lower Level:
  • Presentation Practice Room: Practice your presentation with your group in a classroom-like setting. Please note that this room is just for practicing presentations. If you use it for something else, we may ask you to leave so that others can use the unique equipment in this room.
  • Collaboration tables: Work with a group on a large screen using your computer or the onboard machine. 
  • SmartKapp boards: Share the whiteboard with group members who aren't present.
Presentation Practice Room

SmartKapp Boards

Main Level:
  • Collaboration rooms: Glassed in rooms with a whiteboard wall and a collaboration table. Get busy with your group on any project.
  • Collaboration tables: Work with a group on a large screen using your computer or the onboard machine. 
  • Student Lounge: Comfortable seating and a work bench for studying with your laptop.
Collaboration Rooms

Student Lounge

Collaboration Table

Upper Level:
  • Individual study rooms: Get some alone time to focus!
  • Group study rooms: Work with a group. Rooms seat 6-8 and are equipped with whiteboards.
  • Quiet zone in the back of the Upper Level: Quiet open seating area.
Group Study Rooms

Student Lounge

Texan Hall Library (Fort Worth Campus):
  • Group study rooms: When not in use by tutoring labs, these rooms are available on a first come, first served basis.
Open Seating in the Texan Hall Learning Commons

Group Study Rooms

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Winter Is (I Mean, Finals Are) Coming!

Thanksgiving is just a week away, and that means final exams aren't too far afterward!

All Tarleton libraries will close for the Thanksgiving holidays at noon on Wednesday, November 23, and will reopen with normal hours on Monday, November 28.

At the Dick Smith Library, we are already open until 2 AM Sunday through Thursday nights (or more accurately, Monday through Friday mornings), so you won't see a real change until Friday, December 9.  The library will be open until 10 PM that night (instead of 8 PM), and will be open 8 AM to 10 PM on Saturday, December 10 (instead of the usual 10 AM to 6 PM).

All night study begins Sunday, December 11.  The Dick Smith Library will open at noon, and we won't close until 7 PM on Wednesday, December 14.  However, you will need your Texan Card to get into the library between midnight and 7 AM on those days.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

False News

Librarian Stephen Abram published a blog post about False, misleading, clickbait-y, and satirical "news" sources originally created by Melissa Zimdars, an assistant professor of communication and media at Merrimack College.  She also includes these tips for analyzing news sources:   
  • Avoid websites that end in “lo” ex: Newslo (from the link above). These sites specialize in taking a piece of accurate information and then packaging that information with other false or misleading “facts.”
  • Watch out for websites that end in “” as they are often fake versions of real news sources.
  • Watch out if known/reputable news sites are not also reporting on the story. Sometimes lack of coverage is the result of corporate media bias and other factors, but there should typically be more than one source reporting on a topic or event.
  • Odd domain names generally equal odd and rarely truthful news.
  • Lack of author attribution may, but not always, signify that the news story is suspect and requires verification.
  • Check the “About Us” tab on websites or look up the website on Snopes or Wikipedia for more information about the source.
  • If the story makes you REALLY ANGRY it’s probably a good idea to keep reading about the topic via other sources to make sure the story you read wasn’t purposefully trying to make you angry (with potentially misleading or false information) in order to generate shares and ad revenue.
  • It’s always best to read multiple sources of information to get a variety of viewpoints and media frames. Some sources not specifically included in this list (although their practices at times may qualify them for addition), such as The Daily Kos and Fox News, vacillate between providing legitimate, problematic, and/or hyperbolic news coverage, requiring readers and viewers to verify and contextualize information with other sources.
The post identifies and lists over 150 false new sites.   You might want to check before you post or share any false stories on social media!

Thursday, November 10, 2016

New Database: CQ Researcher

Are you looking for quality information on a current events topic? If so, then the library has just the thing for you: CQ Researcher. This is an excellent resource for in-depth reports on a wide variety of subjects such as: health, social trends, criminal justice, international affairs, education, the environment, technology, and the economy. You can find it on the A-Z Database List.

As with most databases, you can use keywords to search for reports or you can browse for reports by topic.
Each report is broken down into several sections such as: background, pro/con, chronology, bibliography, etc. The pro/con section provides perspectives from opposing sides of the issue, which can be helpful if you're writing an augmentative paper. The bibliography section is a useful tool for locating additional sources on the topic.
CQ Researcher is a great place to start research on any current events topics. Check it out and let us know what you think. If you need assistance with this or any other library resource then contact us at 254 968-9249 or

Monday, November 7, 2016

Voting Locations in Erath County

                      November 8, 2016 General Election

                                                             7:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
                    ** (any voter can vote at any one of the following locations

                        on Election Day, regardless of where you reside)**

100 W.Washington St.
Stephenville, TX 76401

1505 W. Frey Street
Stephenville, TX 76401

988 Wolfe Nursery Rd.
Stephenville, TX 76401

1200 Glen Rose Highway
Stephenville, TX 76401

219 S. Grafton
Dublin, TX 76446

21261 N FM 219
Lingleville, TX 76461

406 CR 156
Stephenville, TX 76401

4142 FM 913
tSephenville, TX 76401

175 Holt
Bluff Dale, TX 76433

200 CR 421
Stephenville, TX 76401

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Voter Documents After the Civil War

As we near Election Day, there has been much talk about who is eligible to vote and what forms of identification or documents someone needs to be able to vote. This may seem like something new but various documents were required in the past. For Erath County resident James Ferguson and others who lived in states that had made up the Confederacy they had to take an Oath of Amnesty before having their rights restored including the right to vote.

President Lincoln offered a general amnesty in 1863 and President Andrew Johnson, continued Lincoln’s policy in 1865. The purpose of the amnesty was to restore rights to individuals who lived in states that formed the Confederacy. Among these rights was that to own property, with the exception of slaves. There were certain individuals to whom the amnesty did not apply such as former officers in the Confederate forces above a certain rank and those who owned property in excess of $20,000. These individuals could be pardoned under a special petition. Part of the amnesty was to swear an oath where the individual swore:

"I, _____, do solemnly swear or affirm, in presence of Almighty God, that I will henceforth faithfully support and defend the Constitution of the United States and the Union of the States thereunder. And that I will, in like manner, abide by and faithfully support all laws and proclamations which have been made during the existing rebellion with reference to the emancipation of slaves, so help me God."

In order for an individual to vote in either local, state, or federal elections individuals had to take the Oath of Amnesty. Once the oath was taken and individual’s rights were restored. A certificate was issued stating that the individual had taken the oath and their name was placed on the register of voters.

In the James Ferguson papers, in the archives, are his Oath of Amnesty certificate and his Register’s Office Oath. His Oath of Amnesty certificate (below) states that he has taken the Oath of Amnesty, prescribed by President Andrew Johnson in front of a witness and his name placed on the list of voters.

The Register’s Oath (below) is a two-sided document with the oath on one side and the certificate on the other side. The oath states that he is twenty one years old, has not committed a felony, participated in any rebellion or civil war against the United States, or given aid or comfort to the enemies of the United States, and “will faithfully support the Constitution and obey the laws of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, encourage others to do so. So help me God.”
So as you go to the polls to vote think of James Ferguson and what he had to do in order to vote.