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Special Interest Group Archive: High School to College Transition 8/16/2016

These are the notes from meetings dating back to 2015.

August 16,2016

The second meeting of the High School to College Transition SIG was held on August 16th, 2016 at SENYLRC. 

  • Rebecca Gerald was facilitator
  • There was no formal agenda for the meeting. The group chose a few topics from the first meeting to discuss. 

Some common topics that emerged included:

  • Documentation
  • Citation Management Tools and their use in High School vs College (NoodleTools)
  • Lack of consistent documentation styles from faculty member to faculty member
  • The value of scaffolded Information Literacy instruction 
  • Methods for getting students into the library and reducing library anxiety in students
  • Potential HS-College Transition Workshop to bring high school teachers, college faculty, and librarians together


NoodleTools ( is a program used frequently in high schools. It is a citation management tool but also a means of helping students to synthesize the content of their sources. NoodleTools. 

  • Students engage in a multi-step process with NoodleTools. 
    • First they must identify the type of source the want to cite - this can be challenging for both high school and college students. Then they must fill in the required fields to produce the citation.
    • In the next 'note card' students copy and paste sections of the source's text 
    • In the second 'note card' students summarize the text they copied and pasted
    • In the third 'note card' students write about this content in their own words and speak to how they will use it in their assignment. 
  • As plagiarism is still prevalent on college campuses this is an important skill to teach students. It was mentioned that it is important to remember to teach the skill and not the tool. 

Getting Students in the Library

There was some brainstorming in relation to how to alleviate student's library anxiety. 

  • Fun equipment like button makers are popular among students
  • Newsletters
  • Personal Librarian Programs
    • There are many models and much literature about the topic
    • At SUNY New Paltz librarians send out print letters with business cards to students before the start of the semester. Students will come to the library holding the business card in search for their personal librarian. 
    • Some models have a library open house or orientation for students. Think about how do you reach students in a way that is warm, when planning. 
    • Get faculty to think about the library as a resource for them. Help faculty with their own research. This will result in that faculty encouraging students to use the library.
    • Book covers are a popular item the library can give away to students. 


Documentation was a topic that commanded much of the discussion. 

  • Though NoodleTools is used often in high schools, it is not often used in colleges. Students will use free citation management tools like Easybib or tools the library offers like Refworks.
  • It is important to discover students' personal information management style. Some students simply like to use their email, a wordpress, or a word document. 
  • It can be challenging to teach citation when there is not much consistency among faculty. Often, it it is necessary to send the student to the faculty person because they may interpret the rules differently (ex. include doi or not to include doi)
  • Teaching WHY citation is important, rather than the mechanics of the citation, is key.
    • So others can find the sources that helped you (Experts helping experts!)
    • To give credit where credit is due
    • Engage in the scholarly conversation on the topic 
  • Students get so wrapped up in the mechanics they overlook the "why." Having a conversation with faculty about easing up on deducting points for things like a misplaced comma may help.


  • Opportunity - work with art teachers to introduce the importance of attributing images and artwork. There is an elective being offered this fall at Millbrook about copyright and art. 

HS to College Transition Workshop

A working group was established to plan a series of workshops about the high school to college transition. 

Working Group Members:

  • Kim Hooper (Wappingers Central School District)
  • Joan Binzen (Millbrook School)
  • Madeline Veitch (SUNY New Paltz)
  • Lara Patel (SUNY Orange)
  • Rebecca Gerald (DC BOCES)
  • Tessa Killian (SENYLRC)

The workshops could occur during the spring or summer at local colleges and high schools. Some potential locations include:

  • Monroe-Woodbury
  • SUNY New Paltz
  • Mount St Mary College
  • John Jay
  • SUNY Orange's Newburgh Campus

Next SIG Meeting

Tuesday, January 24th from 12:00pm-3:00pm at SENYLRC

Snow date: January 25th same time and place


Scaffolded IL Instruction

  • There is often a lack of scaffolded IL instruction in both high schools and colleges. Librarians work with the time allotted to them by the teacher or faculty. 
  • The IFL ( has been formally adopted by New York State, but it does not mean that every district is using it. 
  • According to the IFL, students should be exposed to documenting sources as early as 3rd grade, when working with reference materials. 
  • Often instruction is by the demand of the teacher or faculty.
  • Joan from Millbrook has begun working with departments with research requirements to establish some scaffolded instruction. 
  • When scaffolded instruction occurs it seems like it's not generally institution wide. It results as a collaboration with specific divisions or departments. 


High school librarians asked, "What do college librarians want to see in their incoming freshman?"

  • Students who are not hesitant to ask the librarian for help. Go find the librarian!
  • Research is not a linear process
  • Types of sources: how they are produced, why they are produced, who produces them
  • Let students know that the library has resources purchased with their tuition dollars - use them!

Discovery Tools:

  • Librarians will discuss faceting to help students understand how they work.
  • Seems like discover is best for narrow or obscure topics. A broad topic brings up an overwhelming number of results. 
  • Having the support of a librarian or faculty person while student is searching is important.
  • Millbrook library just purchased discovery after a two month trial. They surveyed the students and the responses where overwhelmingly positive.
  • Some discovery tools include EBSCO, Summon, and Proquest


  • User Experience.  Char Booth and Aaron Schmidt write about it frequently.

Transgender Students

  • Rebecca attended a workshop at ULSTER about working with transgender students. There was a panel consisting of two transgender persons from the area, a parent of a transgender person, a lawyer, and others.
  • This is a topic being addressed at institutions and it is important to continue these conversations. As librarians some things to think about include collection development (include fiction books about transgender people and about this topic in general in the collection), sensitivity when directing people to restrooms, having gender neutral restrooms in your building..
Southeastern NY Library Resources Council
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Phone: (845) 883-9065