Spring 2013 Classes

Spring 2013 classes have started (early, I know) and I thought I’d share my syllabi.

This semester, in Projects in Digital Archives, we will be again working with the Archives of the American Joint Jewish Distribution (JDC) and the dance critic Barbara Newman. In Digital Libraries, students will be working on creating new digital libraries and designing a funding campaign through Kickstarter.kickstarter We will be using the NDSA collection of Kickstarter projects as inspiration for the projects we will be creating this semester. Should be fun!

LIS 665-01 Projects in Digital Archives
LIS 665-02 Projects in Digital Archives
LIS 693-01 Digital Libraries

Teaching at Metro NY Library Council

Take my class at Metro NY Library Council: Planning and Managing Digital Library and Archives Projects.

Class Description:
Is building a digital collection enough? What comes next? How do we guarantee long-term access? Can we afford to do this? These and other issues will be considered in this workshop designed for both librarians and archivists interested in creating or maintaining digitization projects within their institutions. The first part of the workshop will be dedicated to establishing a purpose, perspective and strategy for your digital project so that it has the best chances for community impact and success. How will your digital collection be made meaningful and interesting to patrons? What learning goals motivate your effort? What about born-digital material? The second part will be dedicated to establishing a solid technical, organizational and resource infrastructure needed for the successful execution and maintenance of your digital project. This section will cover issues such as long-range budgeting and funding, ensuring technical elements as well as human resource infrastructure, adopting sensible standards, and ensuring legal and ethical compliance. And lastly, the course will conclude with strategies for evaluating your digital project for its efficacy.

Who should attend:
Librarians, archivists, and students interested in launching or maintaining digitization projects

By the end of this program, participants will:

  • Be able to develop a strategy for a successful digital project
  • Have the necessary information to evaluate their technical, organizational, and resource infrastructure for digital project readiness and make adjustments to ensure readiness.
  • Be able to evaluate their digital project for effectiveness
  • Be able to make legal and ethical judgments related to digitization

Digital Libraries, with a touch of Sci-Fi and Architecture

I am looking forward to this Spring’s course, Digital Libraries. It is considerably changed from the last time I taught it. One of the new aspects of digital libraries that we will be considering are the spatial dimensions, which has been prompted in large part by the growth of mobile technology that brings digital collections to physical space (e.g., using historical photograph collections in real space). Not unsurprisingly, the integration of informational and physical spaces is of interest to architects. vinge.jpg To further explore this area, we will be collaborating with Prof. Carla Leitao course Architecture and Information Spaces, which she teaches in Pratt’s Graduate Architecture program. Together, we will be reading Vernor Vinge’s Rainbows End, a work of science fiction that depicts the world is 2025. I am looking forward to this exploration.

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Using virtual space to compensate for lack of physical space?

columbia_university.jpgBelow you will find a paper I wrote based on some work I did back at Teachers College. I hope you enjoy it.

Cocciolo, A. (in press). Alleviating physical space constraints using virtual space? A study from an urban academic library. Library Hi Tech, 28(4).

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to investigate if virtual space can be used to alleviate physical space constraints for group collaboration in an urban academic library environment. Specifically, this paper looks to uncover if library users will turn to library-provided virtual space when there is a scarcity of physical space.
Design/methodology/approach – This project discusses the design of the physical and virtual environment, and then measures the use of this environment quantitatively over a 47-month period (2005-2009).
Findings – Results indicate that physical spaces for group collaboration are in very high demand, whereas virtual ones are not. A scarcity of physical collaboration spaces does not lead users to library-provided virtual space, but rather to work around the scarcity in the physical world.
Originality/value – Highlights the value of library as a gathering place and the ways in which virtual collaboration space cannot easily take the place of physical collaboration space.

My Dissertation

Although it has been done for a few months now, I realized I never posted my dissertation here. So here it is, enjoy!


Advances in information and communications technologies (ICTs) have empowered individuals to share their intellectual, cultural, and creative expressions with wider and more diverse audiences than ever before. This has been made possible by a variety of factors, but most saliently by what has been termed Web 2.0, which is a set of design patterns for structuring websites so that they can be actively shaped and influenced by the interactions and contributions of users (e.g., YouTube, Facebook, and MySpace). These changes have been described as creating the conditions necessary for shifting society from a consumer culture to a participatory culture. This emerging cultural formation has been hypothesized to have a great deal of potential for advancing education and learning by moving the locus of activity from existing power relationships (consumer/producer, expert/novice, and teacher/student) to one that focuses on the individual’s empowerment and willingness to construct and contribute to one’s cultural and physical reality. Despite this potential, there is little research that looks to understand how such ICTs deployed into specific communities do (or do not) make possible these goals.

This study aims to understand the relationship between ICTs and their potential for creating and sustaining a participatory culture, particularly by pointing to a set of factors that highlight the existence of and mediate involvement in a participatory culture. To understand this relationship, this study analyzes an Web 2.0 technology that was used electively by a graduate school community for a two-year period of time (September 6, 2006 to September 6, 2008) by N=2,580 students, faculty and staff. The factors that mediate involvement include: communication across organizational structures, spaces for alternative discourses to develop and integrating interpersonal networks. The study concludes that Web 2.0 technologies promote the formation of participatory cultures by making the cultural, intellectual, and creative work of a community visible, and that visibility in turn encourages individuals to participate.

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