2022 Miniconference

The NEOS conference will again be held online.

The conference is for all staff of the NEOS Library Consortium and is free to attend. It’s a chance for the NEOS community to share ideas and new approaches to library services.

(Registered participants will receive a Zoom link for the conference.)

Thursday, June 2, 2022

1:00 pm


Libraries: a Place of Solace and Knowledge
Norma Dunning

Norma Dunning is an Inuk writer, professor and grandmother. Her second collection of short stories titled Tainna: the unseen ones, received the Governor General’s Award for literary fiction in English (2021). Annie Muktuk and Other Stories received the Danuta Gleed Award (2018), the Howard O’Hagan Award and several others. Her second collection of poetry Akia – the other side releases in July of 2022 and her first work of nonfiction Kinauvit? – what’s your name  releases in September 2022. She lives in Edmonton.

2:00 pm


2:15 pm

Lightning Talks

From Human Library to Living Library: Interrogating the Language of the Human Library
Liz Fulton Lyne and Sheena Sereda, NorQuest College

Since their inception in Denmark in 2000, Human Libraries have become a popular means for libraries and other organizations to promote safe and open dialogue around social stigma and prejudice. NorQuest Library organized its first Human Library in 2015 and it has since become an annual event. While feedback from participants through the years has been overwhelmingly positive, we heard some less positive feedback this year that challenged us to reconsider the “human library” as an idea and the language we use to describe it. 

Alberta Research-Data Information Network (ARMIN)
Dan Mirau, Concordia University of Edmonton

ARMIN, the Alberta Research-Data Management Information Network, is a new collaborative effort, led by a research team at the Concordia University of Edmonton, to support tri-council eligible organizations within Alberta develop institutional research data management strategies in compliance with tri-agency policy. This short talk will focus on what ARMIN is, where it is at, and how you can get involved. 

Good, Not Perfect Citation
Leah Townsend, NorQuest College

De-stressing the citation conversation through a communications campaign that focuses on reducing the expectation of perfection in both students and instructors.. 

3:00 pm


3:15 pm

Clearing a New Path: Transitioning Away from RefWorks at the University of Alberta Library
Kara Blizzard, Sarah Shaughnessy and Megan Kennedy, University of Alberta

In 2021, the University of Alberta Library (UAL) cancelled its RefWorks subscription and transitioned to a new model for providing reference management software support to library users. We will explain why UAL moved away from RefWorks, what was involved in the transition, how we are supporting users now, and lessons we have learned through this process.

3:45 pm

From Aspiration to Realization: Evolution of a Reading List Service
CJ de Jong, Lucinda Johnston, Alanna Scott, Natasha Nunn and Kim Frail, University of Alberta

Interested in user-focused service development? Using the example of implementing the University of Alberta Library’s new reading list service, this session will consider the evolution of our policies and procedures, relationships with campus partners, the user experience,  and promotion and education.description

4:15 pm


Friday June 3

9:30 am

Welcome and NEOS Updates
Sheila Clark, Burman University and Weiwei Shi, University of Alberta

10:00 am

Microsoft Excel: A Powerful Reporting Tool
Myrna Dean, Concordia University of Edmonton

Excel has many powerful features for displaying data in new ways. We’ll briefly look at pivot tables, conditional formatting, sorting, and other tools for gaining insight from reports data.

10:30 am


10:45 am

Lightning Talks

Long Road, Bright Future: Burman’s Journey to a New Library
Wilmer Tenerife, Burman University

Burman University recently built a new library building that opened in January 2022.  Join us as we examine the challenging and rewarding journey to that point.

Maskwacis Cultural College’s Indigenous Open-Source Annotated Guide Education Resources Guide
Nikki Sauvé, University of Toronto

This presentation will detail the creation of Maskwacis Cultural College’s Indigenous Open-Source Annotated Guide.  It will explore what necessitated this project as well as what patterns were identified throughout its completion.  As well, it will emphasize the importance of projects like this, especially highlighting the value in promoting place-based resources. 

Launch: Linked Data Implementation Plan
Ian Bigelow and Sharon Farnel, University of Alberta

The University of Alberta Library has been leading in the transformation to linked data and recently launched a Linked Data Implementation Plan (LDIP).  Given that LDIP has implications for NEOS, this lightning talk will give a high-level overview of it, but also zoom in on objectives and impacts for the short term.

11:30 am

Honouring the Truth, Reparative Cataloguing for the Future: Decolonizing Description to Improve Our Users’ Experience
Brian Stearns, University of Alberta, Gisele Ramgoolan, NorQuest College and Nicole Palanuk, Yellowhead Tribal College

Implementing subject headings that are more respectful of Indigenous peoples and topics is one of NEOS’s strategic priorities. Learn about the work that the Decolonizing Description Working Group has accomplished in the past year and what remains to be done going forward.

12:00 pm

Finding a Good Way: Starting our Library’s Indigenous Initiatives Team
Debbie Feisst and Anne Carr-Wiggin, University of Alberta

The University of Alberta Library’s Indigenous Initiatives Team was established to put into place the recommendations from various consultations and information gathering sessions. Team members will describe how we are aiming to walk on a good path towards decolonization and Indigenization, and the challenges we are finding. The session will include a discussion of best practices and journeys towards decolonization in participants’ NEOS member libraries.

12:30 pm Closing

If you have any questions please contact a member of the NEOS Continuing Education Committee.


Ian Bigelow is the Head of Cataloguing Strategies at the University of Alberta Library (UAL). He completed his MLIS at Western University and has undergraduate degrees in mathematics and classical studies. He is currently a member of the NEOS Technical Services Committee, PCC Policy Committee, PCC Linked Data Advisory Committee, Canadian Committee on Cataloguing, Share VDE Advisory Council, Share VDE Sapientia Entity Identification Working Group, Share-VDE National Libraries Working Group, and the Sinopia Users Group.

Kara Blizzard is a librarian at the University of Alberta’s Augustana Campus Library. She coordinates the library’s chat service and is a member of the Research Impact Team and the Teaching and Learning Committee.

Anne Carr-Wiggin is the NEOS Manager and coordinates Indigenous Initiatives at the University of Alberta Library. She is the Co-lead of the UAL Indigenous Initiatives Team with Debbie Feisst. She is of Scottish and English heritage and came to this area as an adult.

CJ de Jong is the Head of Access Services at the University of Alberta Library, supporting one of the major research collections in Canada by coordinating interlibrary loan, course materials, circulation, shelving, stacks maintenance, and high-density storage.

Myrna Dean is the Technical Services Coordinator at Concordia University of Edmonton Library. She has the best job in the library: buying books and spreadsheets! On her own time, she enjoys knitting, running, craft beer, and audiobooks.

Sharon Farnel (MLIS, PhD) is the Head of Metadata Strategies at the University of Alberta Library (UAL) where she works to ensure the discoverability, accessibility, and preservation of cultural resources and knowledge products. She teaches at MacEwan and the UofA in metadata, digital libraries, and information organization. Her research interests include community driven knowledge organization, critical approaches to descriptive standards and practices, and linked data as applied in the library context. She is currently a member of the CRKN Preservation and Access Committee, Co-Chair of the NISO Information Creation and Curation Topic Committee, Technical Contributor to the Linked Infrastructure for Networked Cultural Scholarship (LINCS) project.

Debbie Feisst is Head, Faculty Engagement (Sciences, Engineering & Business) at the University of Alberta Library where she was previously an Education Librarian for 10+ years. Debbie is Co Lead with Anne Carr-Wiggin for the Library’s Indigenous Initiatives Team. 

Kim Frail is a Public Services Librarian in the Rutherford Social Sciences and Humanities Library. She has been involved with integrating library services into the University of Alberta LMS since 2012.

Liz Fulton-Lyne (she/her) is Library Chair at NorQuest College, and co-chair of the NorQuest Living Library Committee.

Lucinda Johnston is a Humanities and Social Sciences liaison librarian for the departments of Music, Drama and Linguistics at the University of Alberta, with an interest in user engagement and encouragement.

Megan Kennedy is a librarian at the University of Alberta’s Health Sciences Library. She works with researchers and students in the Faculty of Nursing and the Department of Geriatric Medicine in the Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry.

Dan Mirau is Library Director at the Concordia University of Edmonton and a member of the NEOS Executive, Return on Investment Task Force, Ebook Interlibrary Lending Task Force, and Return on Investment Task Force. A former chair of NEOS and The Alberta Library and board member of the Council of Prairie and Pacific University Libraries, Dan is currently serving as a member of the Alberta Research-Data Management Information Network (ARMIN) team, formed to support small Alberta tri-agency eligible institutions comply with new research data management requirements.

Natasha Nunn is the UX Librarian at the University of Alberta Library, where she focuses on accessibility, user-focused service design, and human-computer interaction.

Nicole Palanuk has been the Manager of Library Instruction and Services at Yellowhead Tribal College for 8 years. In her role she is responsible for all aspects of library services including cataloguing. Nicole was raised in Northern Ontario and is a member of Timiskaming First Nation.

Gisele Ramgoolam is a Library Technician and has worked at NorQuest College Library for the past eighteen years. She works in both public and technical services including cataloguing, collection development, and BLUEcloud Analytics.

Nikki Sauvé is a settler Canadian of mixed European ancestry. She is currently a student at the University of Toronto’s Master of Information program where she specializes in Library and Information Science. During her studies, she completed a practicum project at the Maskwacis Cultural College.

Alanna Scott is the Interlibrary Loans and Course Materials Lead in Access Services at the University of Alberta Library.

Sheena Sereda is an Instruction Librarian and Co-Chair of the NorQuest Living Library Committee.

Sarah Shaughnessy is a librarian at the University of Alberta’s Bibliothèque Saint-Jean and for the departments of Sociology and Political Science. She is co-chair of the library’s Open Education Team and is currently a SPARC Open Education Leadership fellow.

Brian Stearns is the monographs cataloguing librarian at the University of Alberta. In this role, he is responsible for authority control, and is the former chair of the American Library Association’s Subject Analysis Committee.

Wilmer Tenerife has been the Library Technician at Burman University since July 2007. As such, he wears many hats and currently lives in Lacombe with his wife and 2 dogs, 3 cats, and 4 chickens.

Leah Townsend is an instruction librarian at NorQuest College in Edmonton. Her current areas of focus are web design, library & IT service unification, and taking the pain out of the citation process.