Trust Students, Suspect Algorithms

A Deep Dive into the Dubious Claims of Online Test Proctoring

By Adam Beauchamp

When universities across the United States reacted to the coronavirus pandemic by shifting to remote instruction last spring, many of us quickly adopted new technologies to keep our courses running. Now, as we prepare for another semester of remote instruction, we have an opportunity to reassess these tools and ask ourselves if they still meet our educational needs and comport with our values. In this time of heightened stress and trauma, I suggest that we abandon technologies or practices that create an adversarial relationship between teachers and students. These include plagiarism detection software, technologies that track students’ movements, and classroom policies that privilege compliance over learning, what Jeffrey Moro refers to colorfully and astutely as “cop shit.”

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A Reading List on Anti-Racism and the Black Lives Matter movement at FSU Libraries

At the FSU Libraries Popular Literature Committee, we want to fight for equity, inclusion, and to provide a safe space for our students and employees who are Black, Indigenous, and People Of Color (BIPOC) to come and be heard and respected.

We will not stand for racism at FSU Libraries and we are committed to providing a place to facilitate conversations and a space for learning about racism, inequality, and the struggle of BIPOC in America.

Below is a list of books currently available for students and employees of FSU at FSU Libraries through our curbside pickup (and some digitally) now. This list has been researched and cross examined with other lists from similar institutions, as well as a list published by Ibram X. Kendi who is a professor and the director of The Antiracist Research and Policy Center at American University.

While normally the Pop Lit committee only highlights the books we have in our Popular Literature collection, we felt it was important to provide the titles on this list including those from the general and electronic collections as well as Pop Lit. All of the titles below are linked to the FSU catalog for quick and easy access.

Furthermore the Pop Lit Committee will be allocating the remainder of our special funds to purchase more books on this topic to further provide resources for our students and staff so we can have a true open, honest, educated, and vulnerable conversation and work together to erase systematic racism and further the conversation outside of our walls, into our classrooms, homes, social groups and more.  We stand with our BIPOC students and coworkers. We stand against inequality, police brutality, and racism. We will continue to the best of our ability to keep our entire FSU Libraries family safe and give everyone the chance to educate themselves and be better.

UPDATE: This selection of new orders of Popular Literature books on this topic can be found here

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7 LinkedIn Learning Skills to Master This Summer

Hi everyone, this is Courtney again, the STEM Libraries GA, along with Emily McClellan, the STEM Libraries Outreach Associate, to talk about ways we can continue our learning and professional development throughout what promises to be a unique semester. It’s often said that we should try to control how we react to the things we can’t control. While that’s a lot easier said than done, we wanted to share some opportunities that you may find helpful while continuing to learn and grow throughout the summer.  While the world is constantly shifting and changing around us, finding stability can be hard. If you’re looking for a professional goal you can achieve this summer, try a LinkedIn Learning training to keep you grounded and focused as we continue to work from home. 

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3D-printing COVID-19 face shields at the FSU Libraries

Due to the shortage of readily-accessible personal protective equipment for first-responders and healthcare providers around the world, many involved in maker communities have responded by crowd-sourcing ways of rapidly manufacturing makeshift equipment to fill in the gaps while supply chains can respond. This is happening at the local level as well — Tallahassee’s local makerspace, MakingAwesome, and several departments at FSU began exploring ways of leveraging various rapid-manufacturing technology available on campus (such as 3D printers, desktop laser-cutters, and more) to answer this call. By the end of March, a partnership between the FSU Innovation Hub, FSU College of Medicine, High Magnetic Field Laboratory, Master Craftsman Studio, University Libraries, and MakingAwesome was formed, and The iHub began coordinating the donation materials such as sewn face masks and 3D-printed face shields at the beginning of April. This partnership was spearheaded by FSU College of Medicine faculty Dr. Emily Pritchard and iHub director Ken Baldauf.

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Preparing for Online Finals

We may not be on campus, but the library can still be one of your first stops as you prepare for finals. We’ve worked hard to get as many services as possible online, and we’re here to help in any way we can!

Library tutoring service are available through Zoom for all the usual subjects and hours. The library offers assistance in chemistry, math, physics, modern languages, and several other subjects. If we don’t cover the class you’re looking for, you can also reach out to ACE for additional help.

Especially since circumstances have closed campus libraries, we want to help you arrange the space you’re in. As finals approach, the space you’re going to use to work in is going to get more important. Check out this short article from Huffington Post for tips to set up your workspace.

Below are some more quick tips on preparing yourself for the upcoming online finals, but that’s not all. We’ve also compiled a list of learning resources with study tips, courses, and links to services available through campus programs and various partners.

But studying isn’t the only important element to preparing for finals. Giving your mind a chance to rest is also key. This is why our usual stress busters events are going online this semester, and they’ll be live on April 22!

The events team has created fun and relaxing virtual activities, all of them inspired by Keanu Reeves. You can find them on and after April 22 by visiting lib.fsu.edu/online-stress-busters.

Library Tutoring is on Zoom

The Strozier Library Learning District late-night tutoring has moved online. Due to the recent closure of the FSU campus, we’re now on Zoom! The Learning District is still providing students tutoring on all the usual subjects and operating during our regularly scheduled times, but students can now ask us questions from their own living rooms.

Attention, Students! We’re still here to help!

What is Zoom?

Zoom is an online video conferencing application, and most FSU courses have switched to Zoom lectures and classes. This application also allows the Learning District tutors the chance to chat with students and help subjects in real time no matter where each person is located.

If you need assistance figuring out Zoom, start with this page of FSU’s Information Technology Services site or Zoom’s official help center.

How can I find FSU Zoom tutoring?

From the main tutoring home page, details on hours and how to connect to our tutors are on the Online Tutoring page. During active hours, you can also reach most of our tutors directly by visiting this page for the Zoom link.

What subjects are being tutoring?

The Learning District offers chemistry, math, and physics. We also have our Expanded Subjects tutoring which covers economics, English, and other humanities.

What time is tutoring?

Zoom tutoring for STEM subjects is available Sunday-Wednesday from 8:00 p.m. EST to midnight EST.

Other subjects may be available between 6:00 p.m. EST and midnight EST, Sunday through Thursday, but specific hours vary by tutor, so check the calendar on this page for details.

Getting to know your science librarians

My name is Courtney Evans, and I am a graduate assistant in the STEM Libraries department at FSU Libraries. I typically work with our subject librarians to provide research and learning support to STEM scholars. However, today, I wanted to take some time to introduce you to our science librarians while giving you some information about what types of services and resources are available to the STEM students, staff, faculty, and researchers in the FSU community. 

While our library buildings are currently closed due to concerns related to COVID-19, the FSU Libraries team is still available to help meet the teaching, learning and research needs of our scholars. We have extensive resources and services available to you from home. From research guides to consultations with subject librarians, we are still here for you. STEM librarians are available to support research and learning for students and faculty in STEM disciplines. Their names are Denise A. Wetzel, Dr. Nicholas Ruhs, and Kelly Grove, and they’re typically located in the Dirac Science Library when libraries are physically open. 

As a graduate assistant for the STEM Research and Learning Services Department, I took time to interview our subject librarians in order to learn more about some of the projects that they work on and the services that they continue to offer students. 

From left to right: Denise Wetzel, Nicholas Ruhs, and Kelly Grove
Your STEM librarians!

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