Tuesday, February 14, 2017





"Admissions officers are running out of calibration devices. . . .All else being the same or similar, the essay suddenly becomes meaningful because it becomes a tie breaker."
Barmak Nassirian, associate executive director of the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers, The New York Times, Jan. 9, 2011.

College and university applications often require a personal essay, and many students panic when faced with writing one.  Help is available, though.  Green River College will offer a Personal Statement Information Session, on Thursday, February 23rd, at noon.  Further information and online registration can be found at http://www.greenriver-events.info/public/index.php?eID=4321.

Holman Library also has resources that can help.  Some examples, from the Essential Skills Collection:

Write Your Way into College. New York, NY: LearningExpress, 2010.                                    (378.1616 W956 2010)
Hernández, Michele A. Acing the College Application: How to Maximize Your Chances for Admission to the College of Your Choice. New York: Ballantine Books, 2007. (378.1616 H57a 2007)
Grossberg, Blythe N. Applying to College for Students with Add or Ld: A Guide to Keep You (and Your Parents) Sane, Satisfied, and Organized Through the Admission Process. Washington, DC: Magination Press, 2011. (378.161 G878a 2011)
Get It Together for College: A Planner to Help You Get Organized and Get In. 2015. (378.161 G394 2015)
Springer, Sally P. Admission Matters: What Students and Parents Need to Know About Getting into College. 2013. (378.1617 S769a 2013)

Websites
Advice for Writing Application Essays - from Purdue Online Writing Lab - https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/978/04/
Essays That Worked – sample essays from Johns Hopkins University - https://apply.jhu.edu/apply/essays-that-worked/

7 Effective Application Essay Tips to Take Your Essay from Meh to Amazing - https://www.petersons.com/college-search/application-essay-tips.aspx

Monday, February 6, 2017

February is African American History Month

"Time begins the healing process of wounds cut deeply by oppression." - Rosa Parks

Rosa Parks (center) riding at the front of a newly integrated bus following the 1956 Supreme Court decision outlawing racial segregation in public transportation. Don Cravens/Time Life Pictures/Getty Images.

Rosa Parks is just one of the many African American people whose voice influenced significant changes in history. Rosa's story, her lived experience with oppression, and her refusal to live with such hatred and restrictions, literally changed the world for the better.

In writing about her refusal to give up her seat on a bus to a white man back in 1955, Parks writes, "I had been pushed around all my life and felt at this moment that I couldn't take it any more" Again she wrote, "I want to feel the nearness of something secure. It is such a lonely, lost feeling that I am cut off from life. I am nothing, I belong nowhere and to no one" (Rosa Parks Papers). Oftentimes, it is through great desperation and a longing for a more free and just life, that change takes place. Our nation is undergoing significant changes today, and there are many voices crying out in desperation for much needed change.

The old adage states that if we, as a whole, cannot learn from our mistakes, history is doomed to repeat itself. Perhaps taking a moment to look back to one of the greatest changes to American history during the Civil Rights era can help us gain some useful perspective - perspective of where we were, what has happened, what has been sacrificed and lost, what should be celebrated and honored, and what we're still needing to overcome and improve.

Take some time this month to celebrate African American History Month by learning about the lives and events that brought about much needed change in history. Stream videos through the library's databases, check out some books from the library or search through online collections of journals and letters, like the letters written by Rosa Parks, using the links below.


Available at Holman Library, Main Collection
(779.9973 T531 2014 )

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Librarians Vs Misinformation

Librarians Vs. Misinformation

With so much access to information, so many links to click and articles shared on social media, how do you evaluate the trustworthiness of what you’re reading or watching?

Technology companies such as Facebook and Google are under pressure to curb the amount of “fake news” they show to their users. But a recent blog post from the American Library Association’s Office of Intellectual Freedom warns against using censorship as a tool to fight misinformation. Instead, the author encourages “educating our communities on how to evaluate information for themselves.”

An upcoming course at University of Washington is looking to do just that, by calling BS in the age of big data. Their website (warning: there is a swear word!) includes the syllabus, as well as case studies with great examples of how accurate data can be misrepresented or misunderstood.


If you have questions about the validity of your source, you can consult Holman Library’s research guide on evaluating sources (or ask your local librarian, of course). The following infographic, created by the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions, and based on information from Factcheck.org, is also a great reminder to keep close at hand. 


Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Let Your Voice Be Heard

The dust has begun to settle from the 2016 election cycle. The President has been inaugurated. Protesters have begun to march.

No matter which side of our divided country you stand on, citizens and activists are at the center the movements.

Check out the following resources to help you become more engaged:

Becoming a Citizen Activist: Stories, Strategies & Advice for Changing Our World by Nick Licata (former Seattle City Council Member)











The Good Citizen: How a Younger Generation is Reshaping American Politics by Russell J. Dalton











This is an Uprising: How Nonviolent Revolt is Shaping the Twenty-First Century by Mark Engler and Paul Engler

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Computers, classes, and study nooks - oh my!

Are you looking for the perfect on-campus study spot, an open computer, or wondering where your next class in the library is meeting? We have some resources that can help you figure out where to go in real time!

Live Computer Lab Maps for Holman Library and Tech Center

 You can check what computers are available at Holman Library Info Commons Lab and the Tech Center Open Lab any time the computer labs are open for business.

To find these maps, you can visit the "Use the Library" tab on Holman Library's homepage or the library's web page for information on Technology in the Library.

Tech Center (TC) lab is entirely open computers available for quiet study. In Holman Library's Information Commons (IC) lab, the computers in the main room are open for student use when the library is open.

Computers are also available in the HL 213 and HL 217 classrooms in the library when classes are not scheduled-- see below for more on how you can check this in your PJs!

See when library classes are scheduled (and when they are not)


In addition to being able to find what computers are available in the library and TC labs right now, you can also see what classes are coming soon in the library classrooms! This is a great way to plan ahead if you'd like to use the silent study room to work on a Canvas class or do some research.

The Library Instruction calendar is available on our website- you can see how long a class is scheduled for by clicking on the class' title.


Still searching for that perfect study space? Try our campus guide!

If you'd like to search beyond Holman Library and the Tech Center for the perfect study space, we can help you find even more options on campus, too. Just check out our Campus Study Spaces guide, complete with photos of each area and notes about when they are open.

Happy Studying, Green River!


Friday, January 6, 2017

Taking on cognitive bias in 2017

Image by Geralt via Pixabay.


With a slew of fake news controversies behind us and a new year ahead, here’s an idea for a New Year’s resolution: Think about how you might be wrong.

Behavioral economist Richard Thaler made this suggestion last year in a podcast interview. In it, he discusses a number of cognitive biases (or mistakes in memory, reasoning, or evaluating information due to previously held preferences and beliefs) that affect our decision making. Among them was confirmation bias, or the tendency to seek out and quickly believe information that supports what we already thought to be true.

According to Thaler,
“One of the reasons we’re overconfident is that we actively seek evidence that supports our views. That’s true of everybody, that’s part of human nature, so that’s one reason we’re overconfident; we’re out there looking for support that we’re right. We rarely go out of our way to seek evidence that would contradict us. If people want to make a New Year’s resolution, it would be to test their strong beliefs by asking what would convince them that they were wrong, then looking around and seeing whether they might find some evidence for that.”
Confirmation bias is only one of many ways our own thought processes can interfere with our critical thinking skills, and it's worth thinking about how these factors may change the conclusions we reach.

For more information on cognitive bias and related topics, check out this fun, Mental Floss graphic or the library resources below.

Monday, December 5, 2016

Winter break is fast approaching! Are you looking for a great book to read?




Pick up your free copy of our One Book, How Does It Feel To Be a Problem? Being Young and Arab in America by Moustafa Bayoumi. (Free to students with SID)

If you've already read the One Book, here are a few related books, articles and films. 
If you want more, take a  look at our library research guide!

Burqas, Baseball, and Apple Pie by Ranya Tabari Idliby 
 Call Number: 305.697 I19b 2014


Sacred Ground: Pluralism, Prejudice, and the Promise of America by Eboo Patel 
 Call Number: 204.5 P295s 2012
New York Times Article
by Scott Anderson/Photographs by Paolo Pellegrin
Aug 2016

Do Muslim Women Need Saving? by Lila Abu-Lughod
Call Number: Main Collection 305.4869 A166d 2013

The Nation Magazine Special Issue
Co-edited by Moustafa Bayoumi and Lizzy Ratner
July 2, 2012