Current Awareness and Professional Aids

For Science Librarians




Journal Routings

Journal TOC & Alert Services

Electronic Journals

Professional Organizations




Things to Watch & Know

Keeping Up

General Internet Links of Interest




Journal Routings for Science Librarians

Librarians at ISU can sign up to have newly-arrived issues of journals routed to them. Most librarians have 5-10 individual titles routed to them regularly. The following is a composite listing of the titles currently being routed to science librarians at ISU.

Against the Grain

American Libraries



Collection Building

Collection Management

College & Research Libraries

College & Research Libraries News

Computers in Libraries

Cyberskeptic’s Guide to Internet Research



IFLA journal

Information Bulletin – Western Association of Map Libraries

Information Science & Technology Abstracts

Information Technology and Libraries

Information Today

Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology

Journal of the Medical Library Association

Libraries & Culture

Library & Information Update

Library Journal

Library Quarterly

Library Trends


Publishers Weekly

Quarterly Bulletin of the International Association of Agricultural Information Specialists

Reference & User Services Quarterly

Reference Librarian

Reference Services Review

Science & Technology Libraries

Science News

Serials Librarian


Journal Table of Contents & Alerting Services

Many journal publishers offer researchers the ability to be notified when something of interest has been either published or added to a database.  These can be things on a specific topic(s) or from a specific journal(s) and are usually referred to as “saved searches” or “alert services.”  Definitions and terminology vary from one publisher to another, as does the frequency of the notifications. 


The ISU Library currently has a page of instructions for setting up alerts in major scientific databases and journals.  In other libraries, it will vary immensely depending on which journals a given library subscribes to and which software interfaces are available…but, in general, there are 2 ways to locate instructions: 


1) Go to the homepage for your local library.  Log into whichever database/journal is of interest to you – e.g., Library Literature or The Reference Librarian.  Once the database or journal page has loaded, look for a HELP or INFO button.  Instructions for saved search or alert services are usually provided as part of the help screens; however, keep in mind that these services are not available for all databases.


2) Go to the journal publisher homepage (a search of the journal name on Google should quickly identify their location).  Look for a link labeled “journals” or “electronic journals.”  Once you get to the main journals page, look for links labeled “alerts” or “my account” and follow directions for setting up these services with that particular publisher.  Most publishers will provide alerts free to anyone, even if your local library does not have a subscription to the journal, but it usually requires a registration process because they will need to have your email address and preferences on file.


Some electronic journal publishers likely to be of interest to librarians include:

American Library Association – Products & Publications section


Haworth Press


Project Muse




Electronic Journals

Issues in Science & Technology Librarianship


Sci-Tech Library Newsletter (from Stephanie Bianchi at the NSF – a great way to keep up on new Sci-Tech Internet sites and free e-books. The annual Christmas and Halloween editions cover links to science-related sites dealing with these 2 holidays – quite humorous.)


SciCentral Gateway (science news)



Professional Organizations for Science Librarians


American Chemical Society has a Chemical Information Division

American Library Association (ALA)

Association of College & Research Libraries (ACRL – a subsection of ALA)

Within ACRL – there is also a Science & Technology Section (STS) –

Atmospheric Science Librarians International

Engineering Libraries Division of ASEE

Geoscience Information Society

Iowa Library Association (ILA)

ILA also has an ACRL chapter for Iowa academic librarians

and a Health Sciences Subdivision

Medical Library Association (MLA)

MLA also has a Midwest chapter

Special Libraries Association (SLA)

SLA has a variety of divisions – each with their own websites – including:

Biomedical & Life Sciences



Environment & Resource Management

Food, Agriculture & Nutrition

Materials Research & Manufacturing

Natural History Caucus

Petroleum & Energy Resources

Pharmaceutical & Health Technology




USAINU.S. Agricultural Information Network


There are also a number of organizations dealing with more specialized aspects of librarianship such as Information Literacy, Bibliographic Instruction, Collection Development, Reference, Serials, Cataloging, etc.  Consult the Library Associations page from the Internet Library for Librarians for additional organizations.





LIBREF-L (listserv for reference librarians)


STS-L (listserv for SciTech librarians)





Confessions of a Science Librarian


The Information Literacy Land of Confusion


It’s a Blogs World (a basic introduction to blogs for librarians)


The Kept-Up Academic Librarian – Helping Academic Librarians “Keep Up” With News and Developments in Higher Education


LISNews – Librarian and Information Science News


The SciTech Library Question


Weblogs: Their Use and Application in Science and Technology Libraries (by Randy Reichardt and Geoffrey Harder)


To identify additional weblogs of interest, consult Library Weblogs





ABCs of RSS – (by Gerry McKiernan) a PowerPoint presentation


Getting Started with RSS: The Fifteen-Minute Tutorial - If RSS hasn't made sense yet, Karen Schneider's directions will "get you from baffled to 'ah hah' in less than fifteen minutes." – list of some of the most popular library-related RSS feeds


RSS and News Aggregators:  What do you really need to know to keep up?  (By Steven J. Bell – speaks against librarians needing to use RSS to “keep up”)


RSS for Non-Techie Librarians (by Steven M. Cohen)


RSS:  Less Hype, More Action (by Roddy MacLeod – gives good general overview & ideas for exploiting the potential of RSS)


For a good example of RSS feeds in action – check out the Hennepin County Library RSS offerings.  Their option to get RSS feeds from new content added to their subject guides is particularly nifty.



Things to Watch & Know


Alternative methods of peer review:

o   Arms, William Y.  What are the Alternatives to Peer Review?, Journal of Electronic Publishing, August 2002.

o   Harnad, Stevan.  The Invisible Hand of Peer Review, Exploit Interactive, issue 5, April 2000.


Copyright and Fair Use:

o   Overview – from Stanford University Libraries website on Copyright and Fair Use

o   Copyright Tutorial from the Crash Course in Copyright at UT-Austin


Crisis in Scientific Publishing – includes sections on Faculty Comments, Proposals for Change, Non-Profit and Scholarly Ventures, Open Access, Peer Review, Promotion and Tenure Impact, and the Big Deal.


Digital Millennium Copyright Act:

o   Overview – from UCLA

o   Association of Research Libraries info page on DMCA


Text messaging use in reference services:

o   TXTing Librarians @ Curtin – excellent overview of text messaging and how to set up a text messaging service for reference questions


The Up-to-Date Techie Librarian:  Six Resources Every Techie Librarian Should Use – from Tame the Web (a blog), January 24, 2005


The USA Patriot Act in the Library


Twelve Techie Things for Librarians 2005 – from Tame the Web (a blog), January  12, 2005.



Keeping Up


Bell, Steven J. 2000.  To Keep Up, Go Beyond:  Developing a personal professional development plan using e-resources outside the bounds of library literature.”  College & Research Library News, vol. 61, no. 7, p. 581-584.  This author also maintains a Keeping Up website.


Google SciTech news page


Vine, Rita.  2004.  Staying up to date in the ever-changing Web search world: refine your Web-searching skills.” Information Outlook, vol. 8, no. 3, p. 30-34.



General Internet Links of Interest


All that JAS: Journal Abbreviation Sources


Best of the Web


CISTI – large Canadian scientific library – many of their materials are not listed in OCLC – useful for conference proceedings verification if not on WorldCat


Digital Librarian


Internet Library for Librarians


Librarian’s Internet Index


Librarian's Resource Centre


Library Anecdotes, Facetiae, Satire, Etc.


Linda Hall Library – large science library in Kansas City – collection contains a lot of society publications, very old technical reports and proceedings as well as journals.   Their library catalog is called Leonardo.


Openly Jake (allows you to search by journal abbreviation)


Pinakes - a subject guide launch pad – has some annoying pop-up ads but also has a very handy search feature and lots of great links for general facts and news


Scholarly Societies Project


STS Continuing Education on the Web – database training guides and professional education tools


Those Dark Hiding Places: The Invisible Web Revealed



HOMELast updated:  March 5, 2006  c95mycom

Created on:  June 2004

Links last checked:  June 17, 2007

©2007, Lorrie Pellack - Send questions or comments about this page

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