Friday, November 10, 2006

Commit to one book? Are you crazy?

Title: The College Student’s Research Companion
Author: Arlene Rodda Quaratiello

Reyn has informed me that for a librarian, my level of reading is abysmal. I tried to explain to him that I have a commitment problem. I cannot seem to commit to just one book. Therefore, I am reading something like five or six books all at once. He seems to think that isn’t a good excuse.

So, I told him I finished a book recently but it was for work and would bore the readers of this blog to death. He said the one rule of this blog is that you have to write about everything you read, so I just want to let you know in advance that I blame reyn for this post.

I read the above book to get ideas for the class I will be teaching in the spring. As you may be able to guess, the class will be about how to do library research. Unbelievably exciting, I know.

And that just about describes this book (keeping the sarcasm in mind, that is). I reread various paragraphs 5, 6, even 7 times before the information sunk in. Not because it was difficult but because it was boring. Perhaps that's partially because I already know all this stuff...

I also wonder as to who the intended audience is. Today's college students don't feel like taking the time to read a book about doing research before they actually do the research itself (and I don’t blame them). Hell, we can barely get them to use anything other than Google. I also thought that perhaps this was meant to be a textbook for a class such as mine. However, after reading it I know I won't be using it as one (actually, I decided to be nice and not have a required textbook this time around. They better be grateful!).

She also discusses some things that I definitely wouldn't bother with. For example, somehow I suspect that today's college students don't need an explanation of what surfing the Web means. They also don't care about who the various database providers are as long as you tell them which database they should use to find the article they need NOW. In addition, she talked about CD-ROM indexes. Does anyone even use those anymore?! Did they in 2003 when this book was written? I doubt it.

Basically, as if you couldn't really tell from all I wrote above, I don't recommend you read this book. However, I do recommend that if you ever need any research help, you ask a librarian. :D

posted by Kate at 10:06 PM


Blogger Elizabeth said...

"Arlene Rodda Quaratiello" - with a name like that, you'd think a book would have to be romantic and exciting! Guess not.

Anyway, just want to concur in the opinion that your reading level is completely shameful! Lazy!

11/11/2006 1:54 AM  
Blogger ket said...

Well, I certainly won't be reading this one...

However, I'm totally with you on the reading 5-6 books at once - they're all strewn about my apartment, some with random objects inside to hold my place, others propped open, but none of them finished.

Plus the 4 or so that I *have* finished but haven't reviewed. It's so much more fun to read than review, so I keep putting it off...

11/12/2006 2:23 PM  
Blogger Kat said...

elizabeth - you'd think it would be exciting, but no. really, judging by the title, you'd know it wouldn't be exciting. and hush up about my reading level already. :P

ket - i've found that it helps if i start the reviews as i read the book. by the time i get to the end, i just want to move on to the next book, but if a review is already mostly written, i just finish it off and post it. :) of course, it probably takes me longer to read books than it does you.

11/12/2006 2:51 PM  

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