The Salish Sea: What's in a Name?

Posted on: Tuesday, October 11, 2016 - 1:54pm

Topic(s): Updates, Events

Fall 2016 "Speaking of Maps" -  Bert Webber

(photo of Bert Webber courtesy of Bert Webber)

Bert Webber, founding fellow of Western’s Salish Sea Studies Institute and professor emeritus of Geography and Environmental Social Sciences, will give a presentation titled “The Salish Sea: What’s in a Name?” from 4-5 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 26 in the Map Collection area (Wilson Library 170) of Western Libraries. This event is free and open to the public.

Webber is a retired professor from Western’s Huxley College of the Environment who came to Western in 1970 with a particular interest in looking at estuaries as ecosystems. Webber will discuss the origin and meaning of the name “Salish Sea,” which recognizes the Salish Sea Estuarine Ecosystem, and refers to the combined waters of the Strait of Georgia, the Puget Sound and the Strait of Juan de Fuca. Webber was involved in the process of naming the Salish Sea, which started in the late 1980s and was completed in 2010. Webber also assists in the program development of Western’s Salish Sea Studies Institute, which was established in the fall of 2015 in response to the need for dialogue and action regarding the health of the Salish Sea.

The Salish Sea crosses international and jurisdictional boundaries, and the Institute focuses on bringing together the efforts of Canada, the United States, the First Nations, and Lummi Nation to collectively learn more about the sea so it can be protected and restored. The Institute hosts the Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference every other year in April, which offers participants an opportunity to present scientific research on the sea’s ecosystem that can be used to guide future actions. Conference proceedings are later shared and made freely accessible online via their publication in Western CEDAR, WWU’s institutional repository, (  

Home to 7 million people, the Salish Sea faces environmental and public health challenges from industrialization, climate variability, and human activity, and Webber will explore the role of the Salish Sea name in raising awareness of these issues. His talk will focus on the significance of recognizing the Salish Sea Estuarine Ecosystem, and will touch on the development and purpose of the Salish Sea Studies Institute.

This event is co-sponsored by Western Libraries and Huxley College of the Environment, and is offered as a “Speaking of Maps” program, which are quarterly talks held in the Map Collection area of Western Libraries and are designed to highlight the use and value of maps in research, in teaching and learning, and in daily life. 

Students, You Can Help Us!

Posted on: Thursday, September 29, 2016 - 2:25pm

Topic(s): Updates, Events, Resources

Please Help Us Improve the Library Website


Western Libraries is currently working to develop a new and improved website, and YOU can help!

We hope you can share a few minutes of your time and help us determine what changes we should make to improve the experience of using the Libraries’ website.  

The Libraries will host a "Usability Outreach Table" in the library on the second floor of Haggard Hall (near the Circulation Desk) from 1pm to 3pm on Oct. 19, 20, 25, & 26. 

Your feedback from participation in user testing will directly inform subsequent development decisions and will give us useful information that we will incorporate into the website design. So please consider dropping by to share your important feedback with us, or feel free to contact us to arrange another time that is convenient for you. 

We appreciate your help! For more information, please see  or email

Creating Open Education Resources

Posted on: Wednesday, October 19, 2016 - 3:01pm

Topic(s): Updates, Events, Resources

Interested in creating your own textbook which can be shared with students at no cost to them?  

Join the editors of the new textbook, The Research Process: Strategies for Undergraduate Students, as they discuss how they created an edited anthology, collaboratively written by specialists across the library, to support undergraduate student research.

This special event is being held as part of Open Access Week, and is geared towards faculty and instructors who may be interested in creating or collaborating on their own open access textbook. 

Join us at 4:00pm on Thursday, October 27th in Western Libraries Special Collections (Wilson Library 6th Floor) to learn more about publishing through WWU’s Institutional Repository, Western CEDAR, a service available to all faculty authors associated with Western. An electronic toolkit of resources, including templates, will also be provided during this session. 

Debates & Election Coverage

Posted on: Monday, October 3, 2016 - 11:19am

Topic(s): Updates, Events

Democratic & Republican Presidential Candidate Debates & Election Coverage

Western Libraries and the Learning Commons will host a viewing area for anyone interested in watching the upcoming Democratic and Republican Presidential Candidate Debates, in addition to live coverage of the election results in November. The viewing area will be located in the Learning Commons on the second floor of Wilson Library in the area outside of Zoe's Bookside Bagels. Dates and times are listed below: 

TLA Dialogue Sessions

Posted on: Thursday, September 22, 2016 - 9:38am

Topic(s): Updates, Events, Resources

Teaching-Learning Academy dialogues begin Oct. 5 & 6

The Teaching-Learning Academy (TLA), the campus-wide dialogue forum to study and enhance the learning environment at Western Washington University, begins the third week of fall quarter. Whether student, staff, faculty, or community member, everyone is invited to participate!

Grounded in the scholarship of teaching and learning, the TLA's central mission is to create a community of scholars who work together to better understand the existing learning culture, to share that understanding with others, and to enhance the learning environment for everyone. Engaged in studying the intersections between teaching and learning, TLA members include faculty, students, administrators, and staff from across the University, as well as several alumni and community members.

The TLA is now in its sixteenth year, and participants continue to report that it’s a great place to connect with others outside of their departments, and to learn more about Western’s teaching and learning culture. Many say it also gives them a chance to take a breath and just listen to what others (especially students) really think. Others express satisfaction in being able to advance real action steps in making Western an even better place to teach and learn.

Fall quarter is when TLA designs its “BIG” question to study for the rest of the year, so it’s a great time to get involved. The TLA welcomes everyone and offers four dialogue group options to accommodate busy schedules: Wednesdays and Thursdays from noon to 1:20 p.m. and from 2 p.m. to 3:20. Dialogue groups begin meeting Oct. 5 or 6, and meet every other week in the Learning Commons (Wilson Library 2 West) for a total of five sessions during the quarter.

While the sessions are 80 minutes long, attendees are welcome to come for whatever time they have available. Many faculty and staff who cannot stay the entire time will participate for the first 50 minutes as there is a logical break then.

For more information, see  To sign up for a regular dialogue group and get on the listserv, email (Students: there is also an opportunity to participate in the TLA for LIBR practicum credit. For more information, contact

The Teaching-Learning Academy (TLA) at Western Libraries is a Learning Commons partner and the central forum for the scholarship of teaching and learning at Western Washington University. 


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