Library News

Posted by on Wednesday, October 14, 2015 - 10:34am
The Turner House

National Book Awards Finalists


Karen E. Bender, Refund
Angela Flournoy, The Turner House,
Lauren Goff, Fates and Furies
Adam Johnson, Fortune Smiles
Hanya Yanagihara, A Little Life


Ta-Nehisi Coates, Between the World and Me
Sally Mann, Hold Still
Sy Montgomery, The Soul of an Octopus
Carla Power, If the Oceans Were Ink: An Unlikely Friendship and a Journey to the Heart of the Quran
Tracy K. Smith, Ordinary Light


Ross Gay, Catalog of Unabashed Gratitude
Terrance Hayes, How to Be Drawn
Robin Coste Lewis, Voyage of the Sable Venus
Ada Limón, Bright Dead Things
Patrick Phillips, Elegy for a Broken Machine

Young People's Literature

Ali Benjamin, The Thing About Jellyfish
Laura Ruby, Bone Gap
Steve Sheinkin, Most Dangerous: Daniel Ellsberg and the Secret History of the Vietnam War
Neal Shusterman, Challenger Deep
Noelle Stevenson, Nimona



Posted by on Wednesday, October 7, 2015 - 3:57pm

David Levy will explore the connection between today’s digital environment and mindfulness during an Oct. 21 talk at Appalachian State University. His presentation, titled “Mindful Tech: Finding Balance in an Age of Overload and Distraction,” will begin at 3:30 p.m. in Plemmons Student Union’s Parkway Ballroom. Levy’s talk is part of Belk Library and Information Commons’ Carol Grotnes Belk Distinguished Lecture Series.

Levy is a professor in the Information School at the University of Washington in Seattle. For more than 15 years, he was a researcher at the Xerox Palo Alto Research Center, exploring the transition from paper and print to digital media. At the University of Washington since 2000, he focuses on bringing mindfulness training and other contemplative practices to address problems of information overload and acceleration.

“Today’s digital devices and apps are both powerful and powerfully distracting. Indeed, it has become increasingly clear that they can serve both as instruments of learning and connection, on the one hand, and of distraction and disconnection, on the other,” he wrote of his talk. “The challenge we face is to use them to their best advantage, and to ours, and to understand when to use them and when to abstain from them.”  “For a number of years, through my research and teaching, I have been developing methods to help students (as well as faculty, staff, and adult professionals) investigate and improve their relationship with their devices and apps. In these remarks, I will present some of the I use in my courses and exercises seminars, also discussing the underlying philosophy, which aims to help us discover a more sustainable approach to living and learning.” 

Work by Levy and his colleagues has explored how meditation might affect multitasking in a realistic work setting. He has developed methods and exercises to help students, as well as faculty, staff and adult professionals, investigate and improve their relationship with their devices and apps and discover a more sustainable approach to living and learning.

His new book, “Mindful Tech: How to Bring Balance to Our Digital Lives,” will be published in January 2016 by Yale University Press.

He also is the co-author of the paper “The Effects of Mindfulness Meditation Training on Multitasking in a High-Stress Information Environment,” published in the May 2012 edition of Proceedings of Graphics Interface.


Posted by Geri Purpur on Monday, October 5, 2015 - 4:32pm
Get it done at the library

Study Space

  • Quiet study on 3rd floor with individual study desks
  • Group study rooms w/ collaborative technology tools


Research Help


Posted by on Monday, October 5, 2015 - 10:01am

Nineteen educators from 17 countries and four continents visited the Instructional Materials Center (IMC) last week. The Teaching Excellence and Achievement (TEA) Program is sponsored by the U.S. State Department's Office of Educational and Cultural Affairs. It brings teachers from diverse countries and cultures to the United States for an intensive, experiential program.

The group was welcomed by Margaret Gregor, Instructional Materials Center Librarian and Jewell Davis, Education Librarian, who each provided an overview of the resources and services provided by the IMC. Librarians Lisa Abbott, Elizabeth Cramer, and John Boyd also participated in the IMC orientation for the TEA Fellows. In the next six weeks, TEA Fellows who are already leaders in their respective countries will develop further expertise in the teaching of English as a Foreign Language (or the teaching of science), explore methods for student-centered learning, student assessment, and instructional technology. Fellows will also complete a 9-day field experience in a North Carolina school and participate in social and cultural activities.

The university has now hosted 100 TEA Fellows, and is one of four U.S. universities nationally selected through a competitive process to implement a Fall TEA Program. This year's TEA Fellows are from the following countries: Armenia, Cameroon, Honduras, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mali, Mongolia, Niger, Russia, Senegal, Thailand, Tunisia, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, and Zambia. Their teaching experience ranges from seven to 31 years.



Posted by on Tuesday, September 29, 2015 - 9:51am
Banned Books Week

Warning! Banning Books Restricts Our Freedom To Read

The American Library Association (ALA) promotes the freedom to choose or the freedom to express one's opinions even if that opinion might be considered unorthodox or unpopular and stresses the importance of ensuring the availability of those viewpoints to all who wish to read them.

A challenge is an attempt to remove or restrict materials, based upon the objections of a person or group. A banning is the removal of those materials. Challenges do not simply involve a person expressing a point of view; rather, they are an attempt to remove material from the curriculum or library, thereby restricting the access of others. As such, they are a threat to freedom of speech and choice.

Belk Library is highlighting Banned Books Week with a display of challenged and banned books in the center of the library on the main floor, and with a banner proclaiming Banned Book Week above the entrance to the library.

Books Challenged or Banned in 2014-2015

Frequently Challenged Books

Isabel Allende's "The House of the Spirits" challenged in Watauga County



Posted by on Tuesday, September 22, 2015 - 5:07pm

Come join us for the Books Are Fun Book Fair in the Borkowski Reading Room, Belk Library and Information Commons.

  • Thursday, September 24, 11AM - 5PM
  • Friday, September 25, 8AM - 1PM

 Over 250 great titles at unbelievable prices, you are sure to find something for everyone.

Product categories include: children's story books, cookbooks, New York Times best sellers, stationery & scrapbooking, music collection and much, much more.

Come visit to see our great selection of books and gifts. Our new fall lineup is in stock and Christmas is just around the corner.

Cash, all debit and credit cards, checks and post-dated checks accepted.

Proceeds go to the Richard T. Barker Friends of the Library.

For more information contact Lynn Patterson at 828-262-2087

Posted by on Wednesday, September 9, 2015 - 9:39am

Two library employees, Lynn Patterson and Russell Paige, have received the 2015 Appalachian State University Service Award. Each year four individuals from across campus are recognized for their contributions to the University that go above and beyond the ordinary.

Lynn and Russell exemplify employees whose great attitude enriches the campus community, and whose work has been an asset to students, faculty, and co-workers.

The two were honored at convocation held September 3, 2015 at the Holmes Convocation Center. Lynn Patterson works in Administrative Services, and Russell Paige works in Learning and Research Services.



Posted by on Thursday, September 3, 2015 - 12:35pm

Religion in Public Life: Virtue or Vice? A multidisciplinary discussion moderated by Thomas B. Ellis (Department of Philosophy and Religion)

Friday, September 11, 2015 - 3:00 - 6:15
Belk Library & Information Commons, Room 114

3:00-4:30pm "Religion and Public Education" 

  • Mark Venable (Biology): "Child Abuse in Science Class"
  • Laura Ammon (Philosophy & Religion): "Does Religion Belong in the Public School/University?"
  • Jack Kwong (Philosophy & Religion): "Is It Good to be Open-Minded About Religion?" 

4:45-6:15: "Religion & Government"

  • Sandie Gravett (Philosophy & Religion): "Why Religious Literacy Matters in Public Life"
  • Andy Koch (Government & Justice Studies): "What Does Darwin Really Mean for Philosophy & Politics?"
  • Randy Reed (Philosophy & Religion): "Rage Against the Machine: Millenials and the Future of Politics in the US"
  • Jeffrey Bortz (History): "Capitalistm, Religion, and Moral Monday" 

Sponsor: Department of Philosophy/Religion
Book Cover: Religion and the American Constitutional Experiment

Posted by on Wednesday, August 26, 2015 - 10:40am
Upcoming workshops

The following online workshops are currently scheduled for fall semester

August 27 - Navigating Library Databases - 10:00-11:00am  Register Here

September 3 - An Overview of Primary Sources - 10:00-11:00 am Register Here

September 23 - eBooks Training - 3:00-4:00pm Register Here

September 24 - Using the Morningstar Database for Personal Investment Research - 3:00-4:00pm Register here

October 6 - Better Google Searching in 30 Minutes - 2:00-3:00 Register Here

October 8 - Searching Education Databases: Education Source and ERIC - 4:00-5:00pm Register Here

October 28 - Searching Education Databases: Education Source and ERIC - 5:00-6:00pm Register Here

See our Workshops page for more information:

What if I cannot fit a session into my schedule?

Librarians can schedule one-on-one sessions either in person or online to accomodate scheduling conflicts. Fill out the RAP request form and a librarian will contact you.





Posted by on Thursday, August 20, 2015 - 9:48am

The American Cultural Center (ACC) established at Northeastern University (NEU) in Shenyang, China, by Appalachian State University continued a second year of sustainability activities that included presentations and film discussions led by faculty from Appalachian.

The center was launched in May 2013 with an initial $100,000 grant from the U.S. Department of State. Activities have continued with two subsequent $50,000 annual grants. Appalachian is one of 24 U.S. universities to receive the U.S. Department of State grants to open an American Cultural Center at a Chinese university.

Dr. Xiaorong Shao and Mr. Allan Scherlen, faculty members in Appalachian’s Belk Library and Information Commons, and Dr. Wen Zhao, dean of the Foreign Studies College at Northeastern University, co-direct the ACC.

Five professors from Appalachian traveled to China in May to give presentations and lead film discussions during American Cultural Week at NEU. The group also conducted similar lectures and film showings at centers located at Shanghai University and the University of Shanghai for Science and Technology, as well as the Appalachian partner university Beijing International Studies University.

Faculty participating in this year’s program were Dr. Jennifer Westerman from the Department of Sustainable Development, who presented on eco-literature and environmental justice; Dr. Gregory Reck from the Department of Anthropology who addressed the cultural constructions of human nature and the effects of global capital on climate change; and Dr. Beth Cramer, Dr. Xiaorong Shao and John Boyd from the University Libraries who led film discussions and talked about American higher education, graduate studies in the U.S. and writing for publication.

In addition, Dean of Libraries Joyce Ogburn spoke on trends and issues affecting academic libraries in the United States and visited the libraries at Northeastern University and Fudan University in Shanghai to discuss future collaboration opportunities between our institutions.

“The trip gave us the opportunity to affirm the relationships between the libraries. We also found many common challenges facing libraries in both countries,” Ogburn said.

To date, 22 faculty members have traveled from Boone to China to participate in the international program. “All presentations and film sessions were well received by the students and faculty members in the host Chinese universities,” Shao said. “The students were very active in most sessions and willing to share their ideas about the environment issues facing our two nations,” she added. Appalachian representatives also noted how the Chinese students participated in active learning and discussion – a style of learning to which many of the students are not generally accustomed.

The grant provided books and documentary films related to sustainable development for ACCs at Shanghai University and University of Shanghai for Science and Technology as well as books related to American classic literature for the ACC reading room at NEU. In addition, Appalachian hosted two visitors from NEU this summer, while Dr. Jeanne Dubino from the Department of Cultural, Gender and Global Studies returned to teach at Northeastern University from May to July this year as a Fulbright Scholar. Dubino was the ACC exchange professor in 2014.

Shao and Scherlen plan to organize future American Culture Center programs and invite Appalachian faculty to share their expertise about American culture with audiences at NEU and other universities in China. Plans are in progress to apply for a fourth year ACC supplemental grant from the State Department.

A video about this year’s American Culture Center program and activities associated with American Cultural Week prepared by Northeastern University can be seen at

About the American Cultural Center at Northeastern University

Appalachian has had a relationship with Northeastern University since 1981 when former chancellor John E. Thomas initiated an exchange program with what was then called Northeast Institute of Technology. Appalachian was the first university in the United States to develop a bilateral relationship with a Chinese university that was not initiated at a government level following China’s Open Door Policy of the late 1970s.

The American Cultural Center is jointly operated by Appalachian State University and Northeastern University, which is now considered one of China’s top 50 universities. The Center officially opened in May 2013 and has an office and a reading room with approximately 7,800 books in English, 3,500 books in Chinese, 68 magazines and journals in Chinese, 89 magazines and journals in English, and 1,400 films and music CDs. Since its inception, the Center has successfully implemented 15 major programs and more than 68 activities in collaboration with Appalachian, Ping Pong Productions, Fulbright Scholars, and the U.S. Embassy in Beijing and the U.S. Consulate General in Shenyang, other ACCs and universities in both China and U.S.