Germanists Discussion Group Minutes – 2009 Midwinter

ALA Midwinter Meeting, Denver

Joint Meeting of the WESS Germanists’ and Social Sciences and History Discussion Groups
Sunday, January 25
10:30AM – 12:30PM


  • Chair: Heidi Madden (Duke University)
  • Secretary: Anna Shparberg (Rice University)”’
  • Claudia Alcala, Judy Alspach, Gordon Anderson, Margaret Brill, Kate Brooks, Paula Carns, Kate Gibson, Richard Hacken, Martha Hanscom, Allison Hicks, Sebastian Hierl, Sarah How, Peter Kraus, Jeffry Larson, Carol Leibinger, David Lincove, Thea Lindquist, Heidi Madden, Rebecca Malek-Wiley, Joe Marner, Megan McNitt, Jim Niessen, Ed Oetting, Louis Reith, Sue Roberts, Anna Shparberg, Sheila Smith, Ann Snoeyenbos, Chella Vaidyanathan, Brian Vetruba, Clara Waldrich, Agnes Widder…


GDG SSH Program

Introductions and announcements

  • Anna Shparberg will serve as Secretary/Chair elect for 2009/2010, and as chair for 2010/11 of the Germanists’ Discussion Group.
  • Jeffry Larson is the new German Studies Librarian at Yale University.
  • Program at the Chicago meeting 2009: please submit agenda items and ideas for a program for the Germanist discussion group to
  • The speakers started a short bibliography of instruction resources. Please consider contributing items of interest – email information to

Information Literacy Methods and Models for European Studies

1. Peter Kraus (University of Utah): “Information Literacy for German Language and Literature at the Graduate Level: New Approaches and Models.”
The paper presents the results of collaboration between faculty in the division of German Language and Literature in the Department of Modern Languages at the University of Utah and librarians at the J. Willard Marriott Library on teaching German Studies literacies.
2. Sue Roberts (Yale University): “Introduction to Library Research for History Majors.”
Sue Roberts described the design of a 90 minute required short course for history majors at Yale University.
3. Brian Vetruba (Washington University in St. Louis): “Demonstration of Libguides.”
Brian Vetruba provided an overview of “Libguides” for use in instruction. You can find information at the Libguide home page. Some of the guides linked from the WESS page are in the Libguides format.

4. Chella Vaidyanathan (University of Miami): “Library Instruction and Services through Blackboard.”
Chella Vaidyanathan demonstrated how course guides in general and Libguides in particular can be incorporated in Blackboard. Chella has “How to sheets” and FAQ instructions for incorporating library content in Blackboard; she is willing to share materials by email.
5. Heidi Madden (Duke): “Practice-based Discussion of a Western European Studies Literacy Curriculum.”
Heidi Madden highlighted teaching activities at Duke, such as:

  • The syllabus for a graduate course “Research without Borders” ; A sample Learning Inventory used to customize the course for each student – the sample is online.
  • The outline of a 90 minute short course on how to conduct a comprehensive, systematic, reproducible literature review;
  • A sample Libguide in German to support immersion based language teaching

The ensuing discussion showed great interest of participants in sharing tricks and tips, and it is hoped that we can use Germane for further discussion and sharing of ideas.

(minutes: Anna Shparberg, rev. Heidi Madden)