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DRS / Veterans Services / Map Collection Project Update

DRS / Veterans Services / Map Collection Project (Public Works Project 719) Moves Forward

Plans are moving forward for the long anticipated project to move both disAbility Resources for Students (DRS) and Veteran Services to the first floor of Wilson Library.

The project  will allow the Libraries and Learning Commons to further collaborate with these services to better meet student needs and to make progress in their efforts to provide equal access to educational opportunities to students at Western.  

To accommodate the DRS / Veteran Services relocation, the Libraries’ Map Collection will move to the second floor of Wilson Library. Once renovated, the Wilson 2 East wing will support the Map Collection and its programming, microforms, and it will also provide an exciting new destination study space for all users. The relocation of microform scanners, cabinets, and other items currently located in Wilson Library 2 East will begin during the week of June 4, 2018.

These changes will involve some disruption. Wilson 2 East will become unavailable for use when contractors begin work to refurbish the space beginning the week of June 4th.  Changes include:

  • Temporary relocation of the microform scanners and supporting indexes to the area known as “the Corner” on the second floor of Wilson Library
  • Temporary relocation of microfilm cabinets to Wilson 283 (the area across from the Tutoring Center) Please note this space will be unavailable for use while cabinets are being moved.
  • Permanent relocation of The New York Times and Times (London) print indexes to Wilson 3 West
  • Permanent relocation of microfiche cabinets from Wilson 2 East to Wilson 180.
    Permanent relocation of some computers and printers currently located in Wilson 2 East  to Wilson 283 and 461

As part of this University-funded project, Western Libraries received funds to purchase full-content digital access (which includes fully searchable full-page views) to much of the most frequently used microform series currently located in Wilson 2 East. This means library users have improved access to this content from anywhere online at any time. To access the new digital content, search by title in OneSearch (remember to “Sign in for Full Access,” or see:

Beginning the week of June 25th, project work will occur in Wilson 2 East making the area unavailable to library users.  This includes some minor demolition, construction of staff offices, and the replacement of carpet and light fixtures. This work will be followed by new paint, new map cabinetry, and furniture. The Map Collection portion of the project is expected to be completed by the start of Fall Quarter 2018.  

Once the Map Collection is complete, construction will begin on the first floor of Wilson Library in preparation for the DRS and Veteran Services move, which is expected to take place during the Spring 2019.

Western Libraries staff and faculty appreciate your patience and understanding during this exciting transition.

Questions? Please contact

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Undergraduate Research Award Winners Announced!

2018 Award Winners Announced

Western Libraries is pleased to announce the winners of the 2018 Western Libraries Undergraduate Research Award.

  • Madelyn Merritt, for "Intention and Action: Facebook Unfriending Habits Following the 2016 Presidential Election." 
  • Asia Fields, for "Media Coverage of Transgender People Through Danica Roem’s Election Coverage."
  • Matthew Horn, for "Change in the Usage of 老 in Chinese Vernacular Literature."


Three awards are given annually to Western Washington University undergraduate students in recognition of their excellence and originality in creating research papers for courses taught across the colleges based on significant inquiry using library resources and collections.

Each winner of the Western Libraries Undergraduate Research Award receives a certificate, a cash award of $500.00, and publication of their prize-winning paper in Western CEDAR, Western Washington University’s institutional repository. Winners will also be recognized at a reception hosted by Western Libraries on a date still to be determined before the end of spring quarter.

Award applicants must demonstrate outstanding library research in the writing of their research papers, and winners are selected by an award review committee consisting of a variety of faculty members from Western Libraries and other disciplines at Western.

Congratulations to all three talented award winners! And a special thank you also goes out to the Award Review Committee (Elizabeth Stephan, Gabe Gossett, Brian J. Bowe, Coleen Laird, Janet Xing) and the students' faculty mentors, (Glenn Tsunokai, Brian J. Bowe, and Janet Xing).

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New SensusAccess Service Now Available

Partnership Results in New Service for Students with Disabilities

Beginning spring 2018, Western Washington University students, staff, and faculty will have a new service available to them. SensusAccess is a conversion service that makes documents searchable and accessible for individuals who use text-to-speech technology. This service allows users to convert inaccessible documents, such as course readings or assignments, into accessible versions at any time. You can learn more about and begin using this service by going here:

In order to access documents used in everyday life, such as syllabi or admissions paperwork, individuals with specific kinds of disabilities may need to employ text-to-speech technology to read the document. However, the document first needs to be formatted to ensure that the assistive technology can read and deliver a coherent report of its contents to the person with a disability.

Historically, all requests for document conversion for accessibility purposes had to go through Western’s disAbility Resources for Students. But now with SensusAccess, students, staff, and faculty can create accessible versions of their documents as needed. Typical conversion rates vary due to a variety of factors but the usual turnaround time is less than 24 hours -- and the service is free for Western users! SensusAccess is intended as a self-service solution and complements existing accessibility services at Western.

Everyone at Western is encouraged to use this service when creating or reformatting educational or informational documents. Here are a few examples of how SensusAccess can be used:

●     Faculty and Instructors: When you assign course readings that are formatted as scanned articles or PDFs, you can create an accessible version using SensusAccess. You can also learn more about PDF accessibility principles here: and available training here:

●     Staff: When you create informational documents, or if you need to convert an existing document into an accessible version, you can e-mail the newly accessible document to the student or colleague upon the completed conversion.

●     Students: If you ever need an accessible version of your course materials, you may use the SensusAccess service.

Prospective users should know that SensusAccess is perfect for documents under thirty pages or so. However, if there are print-impaired individuals who require the conversion of large texts into accessible versions, these individuals should contact the disAbility Resources for Students office for assistance and support [insert hyperlink:]

SensusAccess services at Western are made possible through an innovative partnership between Western Libraries, Web Communication Technologies (WebTech), and the disAbility Resources for Students office. SensusAccess is one example of several University-wide efforts dedicated to improving accessibility at Western in order to co-create an inclusive educational environment by providing a new tool to address a common problem.  For more information, please see:  Western Digital Accessibility.

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Connecting Communities

Connecting Communities Through Service April 28

The Teaching-Learning Academy (TLA) invites students, faculty, staff, and community members to come together for a day of service on Friday, April 28, 2017. Sign up to volunteer during a time of your choosing for one of four different organizations, located both on and off campus.  (Note to WWU staff: this is a great opportunity to use all or part of your “Community Service Day” benefit!)

In 2014, the TLA proposed the creation of a trust-building event in response to that year’s BIG question: How do we ignite individual passion, purpose, and potential to co-create a culture of trust?  The result was an annual spring day of service as part of National Volunteer Week. Besides providing some important service hours to the chosen organization, this event also offers Western employees, students, and community members an opportunity to develop and sustain ongoing relationships by connecting people to local organizations through service to the community.

Volunteer projects include:

  • Lend a Helping Hand: Harriet Spanel Park in the York Neighborhood (off-campus)
  • Comfort Kids Project: The Bellingham Sock Monkey Project (on-campus)
  • Volunteer Chore Program (off-campus)
  • Kitchen Items Drive for House 2 Home (off-campus)


Sign up online to reserve your spot! For more information, go to: or email

Here’s hoping you’ll join us in service and show how we are all Active Minds Changing Lives!

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'Old Stone' @Pickford Film Center 4/11 + Q&A 4/13

Masters of Asian Cinema: Old Stone, April 11 @Pickford Film Center + Q&A with Director Johnny Ma April 13

The next Masters of Asian Cinema film is Johnny Ma’s 2016 debut feature, Old Stone.  It will screen on Tuesday, April 11 at 6:30pm at Pickford Film Center, 1318 Bay Street in Bellingham.
Ma began his film career as a documentarian and studied and worked extensively throughout the US and Canada. Old Stone, winner of the Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television's Best First Feature Award,  is an assured first feature, often described as a “neo-noir.”
The story features a taxi driver named  Lao Shi who accidentally hits a motorcyclist.  When emergency services are slow to respond, he tries to help out by taking the victim to a nearby hospital, unleashing a series of terrifying consequences.  
Co-sponsored by Western Libraries and the Pickford Film Center, the Masters  of Asian Cinema series continues the rich tradition that began with the Masters of Japanese Cinema series, one of the Pickford's longest running and most popular series. Each film in the Masters of Asian Cinema series begins with an introduction from select speakers including local professors, artists, and educators.Old Stone will be introduced by Baozhen Luo, who teaches in WWU's Sociology Department and who introduced Jia Zhangke's Mountains May Depart for the series last November.
Additionally, Professor Luo and  series curator Western Washington University librarian Jeff Purdue have been in contact with Ma, and as a complement to this screening, Ma will be available for a  Q&A session via Skype on Thursday, April 13 at 4pm at WWU in Miller Hall 152.  Ma is currently in Beijing doing pre-production on his next feature, and is looking forward to talking with students and others about Old Stone.  
For more information about these events or about the Masters of Asian Cinema series, please contact
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Calling WWU Undergrads!

Western Libraries Undergraduate Research Award

At Western, undergraduate students have unparalleled access to research opportunities that are supported by faculty mentors. Western Libraries views the research work of undergraduate students as being tremendously valuable, both in terms of the teaching and learning experience the research process creates, and also because of the research outputs students themselves generate.

Western Libraries seeks submissions for its Undergraduate Research Award, which is given annually to three students (or student research project groups) who demonstrate outstanding library research in the writing of papers for Western Washington University college credit courses that were taught during either fall or winter quarters of the current academic year. 

Each award winner will receive $500.00 and publication in Western CEDAR, Western’s institutional repository. Western Libraries invites all undergraduate students enrolled at Western to submit their research papers for consideration by April 17, 2017. Submissions can be representative of any discipline, as long as they include an original thesis supported by ample research and demonstrate exceptional ability in identifying, evaluating, and synthesizing sources.

For submission details, please see the Undergraduate Research Award page.

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Intersession & Holiday Hours

Intersession Hours December 10 - January 3

Western Libraries will be closed weekends but open Monday through Friday from 8:30am to 4:30pm beginning December 10th through January 3rd. The Libraries will also be closed for holidays on Monday, December 26th and Monday, January 2nd.

Additional areas with special intersession hours are listed below:


Map Collection

Open M-F 11am to 3pm Dec. 12th -16th  (closed weekends)

Closed Dec. 19th – Jan. 3rd


Special Collections

Open M-F 11am to 4pm Dec. 12th – 23rd  (closed weekends)

Closed Dec. 24th – Jan. 2nd


Center for Pacific Northwest Studies

Open M-F 8:30am - noon/1:00 - 4:30p.m. Dec. 12th - 23rd (closed noon-1:00pm & weekends).

Closed Dec. 24th – Jan. 2nd


University Archives

Open M-F 8:30a.m.-4:30p.m. Dec. 12th - 23rd (closed weekends, archival research by appointment only).

Closed Dec. 24th – Jan. 2nd


Canines on Campus!

Canines on Campus Return to Western Libraries

Beginning Monday, November 28 through Thursday, December 8, Western Libraries will once again be joined by members of the “Canines on Campus” registered therapy animal program. Teams of our favorite humans and animals (which still include Smokey the cat!) will be located in the gallery space at the end of the Skybridge on the Wilson side of the library, off and on between the hours of 10 a.m. and 8 p.m. during both the week preceding and the week of final exams. 

A schedule which includes the names of the volunteers, photos of the animals, and the times when they will be available for visiting, will be posted on an easel in the designated gallery area beginning the morning of Monday, November 28. 

During this two-week period, this space will be reserved exclusively for the registered Canines on Campus therapy animal program, and animals who are not official Canines on Campus volunteers are not permitted in this area. Additionally, Western Libraries would like to remind everyone that while service animals are welcome in the library, pets are not permitted inside library facilities.

Therapy animals have a special aptitude for interacting with people, providing affection and comfort during their visits with the public. The therapy animals who are part of the Canines on Campus program are registered through several different agencies and have met certain standards of skills and aptitude. Whatcom Therapy Dogs and Dogs on Call are the two organizations which provide volunteers to the Canines on Campus program.

Stop by the library to say hi and de-stress when you are in need of a break from studying for finals, working on projects, or writing those last few papers!

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Mountains May Depart - 11/15

Masters of Asian Cinema Tonight @Pickford Film Center

The next film in the Masters of Asian Cinema series (formerly known as the “Masters of Japanese Cinema” series) is Jia Zhangke’s 2015 Mountains May Depart.  It screens today, Tuesday, November 15th at 6:30 pm at Pickford Film Center, 1318 Bay Street.  

Jia Zhangke is often described as one of the most exciting filmmakers working today.  Starting in 1997, his first three features were made without official approval but garnered increasing attention on the international festival circuit.  Mountains May Depart is reminiscent of his 2000 masterpiece Platform in that it looks at a changing China over the span of several years.

The story charts the lives of several characters from 1999 to 2025, most notably Shen Tao, played by the luminous Zhao Tao, Jia’s wife, who has appeared in every one of his films since Platform.  Also featured (in the 2025 storyline) is the legendary Taiwanese actress/director Sylvia Chang.  As with all of Jia’s films, Mountains May Depart manages to combine a sympathetic but unsentimental focus on the lives of ordinary people with gorgeous cinematography and formal inventiveness.

Co-sponsored by Western Libraries and the Pickford Film Center, the Masters of Japanese Cinema series was one of the Pickford's longest running and most loved series, featuring some of the best films in World Cinema with movies that span both decades and genres. The Masters of Asian Cinema series promises to continue that rich tradition.  As series curator and WWU librarian Jeff Purdue explains,

“Far from living in a time of the death of cinema, as some film writers seem to love to claim, we’re in a golden age of film, though you might have to haunt film festivals and other out of the way places in order to find the good stuff.  And that’s just what this series aims to do – to bring several films to town during the course of the year that might otherwise not come here.”  

Each film in the series begins with an introduction from select speakers including local professors, artists, and educators. This film will be introduced by Baozhen Luo, an associate professor of Sociology at Western and an ardent film lover. She was born and raised in China and came to the U.S. over 13 years ago to pursue her graduate degrees.  She studies and teaches culture, community and citizenship in contemporary Chinese society and in the U.S.  She uses films frequently in her teaching and research. Baozhen also hosts a column in Chinese for a digital news magazine based in Shanghai discussing social issues related to population aging. She has also given a TEDx talk exemplifying the impact of the intersectionality of classism, sexism, and racism on her personal journey of self-searching in China and the United States.  

For more information about this series or to learn about upcoming featured films, please, contact 

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Help with Citations!

Fall 2016 Citation Clinic Nov. 14-18

While it is true that any time is citation time in the Hacherl Research & Writing Studio, you can also pick up handouts and get some extra help with all of your citation needs during the Fall Quarter Citation Clinic.  


Having trouble with difficult online citations? Wondering how to cite a source within a source?


Stop by the Citation Clinic held in the Hacherl Research & Writing Studio  any time between 2pm and 4pm  during the week of November 14th through the 18th for answers to all of your citation questions!


Join us to learn some tips and tricks, or just drop in for one-on-one assistance with your citation needs. We can help you with APA, Chicago/Turabian, MLA, or any other citation style.

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