MU Librarians Author Chapters in New Library Instruction Book

Shelly McDavid, a library information assistant a the Veterinary Medical Library, and Rebecca Graves, the educational services librarian for the Health Sciences Library, co-authored two chapters, "Introduction to Learning Theory" and "Introduction to Instructional Techniques," which appear in Curriculum-Based Library Instruction: From cultivating faculty relationships to assessment (Medical Library Association Book Series), 2014. The book has just been released and was co-edited by Amy Blevins, a graduate of the MU School of Information Science and Learning Technologies.

Posted in Uncategorized

MU to Open Census Bureau Research Data Center In Ellis Library

Satellite center will make population, economic and health research more efficient for scientists

Oct. 07, 2014

Story Contact(s):

Nathan Hurst,, 573-882-6217

COLUMBIA, Mo. – The University of Missouri has received approval from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to become a satellite location for the new Research Data Center (RDC) to be located in Kansas City, Mo. Now, researchers from MU and around the Midwest will be able to access millions of files of census bureau data for research projects ranging from public health issues to economics. Hank Foley, senior vice chancellor for research and graduate studies at MU, says this new center will further position MU as a leading research institution in the region.

“Having access to the federal government’s immense database on our campus will allow MU researchers, as well as scientists from around the region, to perform important, complicated research that they otherwise would have to travel hundreds of miles and spend thousands of dollars to complete,” Foley said. “This new research center will be a priceless resource for advancing scientific study here at Mizzou and around the Midwest.”

Although best known for the nationwide census every 10 years, the U.S. Bureau of the Census collects millions of records of information on individuals and businesses based on a large number of specialized surveys, as well as providing access to data maintained by a variety of government agencies.  Although much of these data are made public, a large portion contain sensitive information, such as Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and medical records, which remains confidential to protect the privacy of individual Americans. In order to access this sensitive data for sociological, economic and public health research, scientists are required to receive certification from the census bureau and travel to an RDC, where they are closely monitored by government officials to ensure that the data remain confidential. Previously, Mizzou researchers were forced to travel as far as Chicago or Minnesota to reach the closest RDC. Colleen Heflin, an associate professor in the MU Truman School of Public Affairs and co-director of the satellite RDC at MU, says the new center will allow MU researchers to work much more efficiently.

“Spending time travelling hundreds of miles to gain access to this invaluable database can be quite expensive and time consuming,” Heflin said. “With this resource on campus, MU scientists can perform their research much more cheaply and quickly than they could formerly.”

“Having an RDC branch on campus will allow MU researchers to take on projects that would not be possible otherwise, opening up opportunities for important scholarly work as well as government and private grant funding,” said Peter Mueser, a professor in the Department of Economics in the MU College of Arts and Science and co-director of the MU RDC. “For example, RCD census data have detailed information on geography that was used in a recent study on the effect of hurricane Katrina on businesses in Mississippi.  Such RDC access is available at fewer than 20 sites nationwide, so MU will join a small elite group who have this kind of access.”

The University of Missouri has dedicated $1 million from the general operating budget: to finance the new facility, which will be located in Ellis Library on the MU campus; fund the salary of a census bureau employee to operate the RDC; create small grants for faculty to receive federal approval to use the RDC; fund several doctoral fellowships to train students in using the database; and begin a seminar series promoting the types of research in which the RDC is capable of assisting. The primary RDC, located in Kansas City, is funded by the Kauffman Foundation. While the MU RDC is technically a satellite center, it will allow the same access to census bureau data as the primary RDC in Kansas City. Chris Wikle, a professor of statistics at MU, says the new RDC will be a valuable resource for all kinds of research.

“The types of data available in an RDC allow us to more easily develop and check the techniques we are working on to improve research in specific areas that are important to scientists who are trying to do work in the social and political sciences,” Wikle said. “An example would be if social scientists were interested in comparing demographic data to the amount of crime in a particular neighborhood. The demographic data from a specific neighborhood might not normally be available to the public, but can be accessed through the methods we are developing with resources from the RDC.”

The date in which the MU RDC will be opened has not yet been named, but Heflin believes it should be operational within the next year.





Posted in Uncategorized

Friday Workshop, Oct. 17

Keep Current with Your Latest Research Without the Stress
Oct. 17 1:00 – 2:00 p.m.
Room 213, Ellis Library

Is trying to keep up with new developments in your field stressing you out? We’ll show you some tools that can make keeping up with the latest research easy and painless.

Rhonda Whithaus, Electronic Resources Coordinator

Registration Preferred.


Posted in Uncategorized

Homecoming Open House

On Saturday, October 25, visit Ellis Library after the Homecoming Parade from 10 a.m. to noon for refreshments, tours, family activities and free mini pumpkins. This event is free and open to the public.

Posted in Uncategorized

Friday @ the Library Workshop, Oct. 10

Managing and Sharing Your Research Data
Oct. 10 1:00 – 2:00 p.m.
Room 213, Ellis Library

This session will provide an overview on facilitating the access and reuse of your research data. Learn how to comply
with funding agency policies; create data management plans; and submit data sets to MOspace, MU’s digital institutional

Registration Preferred.

Kate Anderson, Head, Zalk Veterinary Medical Library

Posted in Uncategorized

Mizzou Must-Reads

For the 175 year anniversary of the University of Missouri, MU professors recommended 175 influential books. See the display near the scanners on the first floor to browse and check out these influential books.

For a full listing of the books go to The books are broken out into different categories: autobiographies/biographies, fiction, nonfiction, philosophy/spirituality, plays & poetry, science and social sciences.

Happy Reading!


Posted in Uncategorized

Friday Workshop, Maximizing Your Research Identity and Impact

Oct. 3
1:00 – 2:00 p.m.
Room 117, Health Sciences Library

Utilize ORCID, Google Scholar Profile, MOspace, h-index, impact factors and more to maximize your professional impact. Learn how to set up accounts and make these tools work for you!

Janice Dysart, Science Librarian
Rebecca Graves, Health Sciences Librarian

Posted in Uncategorized

Fridays @ the Library Workshop, Business Plan Essentials

Sept. 26 1:00 – 2:00 p.m.
Room 213, Ellis Library

Learn about resources, data, and services available to use in your business plans. We’ll cover free online sources as well
as those available to people with a current MU ID. 

Gwen Gray, Business Librarian

Registration Preferred.


Posted in Uncategorized

New Quiet Study Area on the First Floor of Ellis Library!

A new quiet study area opened on the first floor of Ellis Library. Room 156 – formerly a work room in the West Reference office area for graduate students and library staff  – has been converted into public space for quiet study. It is available for quiet study all hours that Ellis library is open. Thanks to funds from the Student Fee Capital Improvement Committee, the room was repainted and now has eight tables and seating for about 26 people. Check out the lovely new study space! 

Posted in Uncategorized

Traveling Exhibition Tells the Story of Abraham Lincoln’s Struggle to Meet the Constitutional Challenges of the Civil War

“Lincoln: The Constitution and the Civil War,” a traveling exhibition opening at the MU Law Library on September 18, 2014 examines how President Lincoln used the Constitution to confront three intertwined crises of the Civil War—the secession of Southern states, slavery and wartime civil liberties.  The MU Libraries and the MU Law Libraries are co-hosting the exposition.

Lincoln is widely acknowledged as one of America’s greatest presidents, but his historical reputation is contested. Was he a calculating politician willing to accommodate slavery, or a principled leader justly celebrated as the Great Emancipator? This exhibition provides no easy answers. Rather, it encourages visitors to form a nuanced view of Lincoln by engaging them with Lincoln’s struggle to reconcile his policy preferences with basic American ideals of liberty and equality. This exhibition develops a more complete understanding of Abraham Lincoln as president and the Civil War as the nation’s gravest constitutional crisis.

Abraham Lincoln was elected President of the United States in 1860, at a time when the nation was on the brink of war. Lincoln struggled to resolve the basic questions that divided Americans at the most perilous moment in the nation’s history: Was the United States truly one nation, or was it a confederacy of sovereign and separate states? How could a country founded on the belief that “all men are created equal” tolerate slavery? In a national crisis, would civil liberties be secure? President Lincoln used the Constitution to confront these three crises of war, ultimately reinventing the Constitution and the promise of American life.

“We are delighted to have been selected as a site for this exhibition,” said Jim Cogswell, Director of Libraries.  The Director of MU’s Law Library, Randy Diamond is equally pleased with the opportunity to co-host this exposition.   “As a new president, Abraham Lincoln was faced with enormous challenges. This exhibition shows how Lincoln struggled with issues of secession, slavery and civil liberties—all questions our country’s founding charter left unanswered. Each section of the exhibit features information about a different aspect of Lincoln’s presidency. For example, the section about slavery examines the various policy options Lincoln once embraced and how his thoughts about slavery evolved over time. Most importantly, the exhibit helps visitors understand why Lincoln’s struggle with the Constitution still matters today.”

The National Constitution Center and the American Library Association Public Programs Office organized the traveling exhibition, which was made possible by a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH): great ideas brought to life. The traveling exhibition is based on an exhibition of the same name developed by the National Constitution Center.

The traveling exhibition is composed of informative panels featuring photographic reproductions of original documents, including a draft of Lincoln’s first inaugural speech, the Emancipation Proclamation and the Thirteenth Amendment.

The libraries are sponsoring free programs and other events for the public in connection with the exhibition. “Lincoln: The Constitution and the Civil War” will be on display at the law library until October 31, 2014.


Posted in Uncategorized