Reduce stress by reading.

by Georgi Bordner, Head of Technical Services

Come to the Library for all your relaxation-reading needs.(2)

Come to the Library for all your relaxation-reading needs.(2)

Are classes, deadlines, or work responsibilities creating a lot of stress in your life? Take time out to read! According to a 2009 study by the University of Sussex, “Reading is the best way to relax, and even six minutes can be enough to reduce stress levels by more than two thirds.”1 The research shows that reading works even better than listening to music or going for a walk, because the distraction of concentrating on reading does more to ease the tension in the muscles and heart. But it works best if it’s a book or magazine you enjoy, so your textbooks might not do the job!

If you’re looking for some leisure reading material, the Library can help! You might start by browsing the current periodicals on the first floor. There you’ll find a variety of popular magazines, as well as recent publications in many different subject areas that you might find interesting. Any of these will give you an opportunity to relax in a comfortable chair in the Library while spending a few minutes reading.

If you’d rather select a book that you can spend more time reading at home, the Popular Collection on the second floor is a good place to start. The Christian novels and other books in this small collection were chosen especially for the leisure reading enjoyment of the Regent community.

If you prefer other types of fiction or non-fiction books, the Library offers a wealth of options. You might choose a biography, or maybe some classic literature, or the current book club selection, as recommended in a recent blog article on slow books. Also, don’t forget to peruse the new book shelves, located to the right of the main stairs on the first floor.

It doesn’t really matter what you choose, as long as it’s something that interests you.

Don’t let stress get you down – Read!

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1Andy Chiles, “Reading can help reduce stress, according to University of Sussex research,” The Argus, March 30, 2009, http://www.theargus.co.uk/news/4245076.print/.

2Image credit: http://news.jeebboo.com/2013/01/23/a-jeebboo-survey-in-search-of-the-ultimate-relaxation-methods/.

Online access to Chronicle of Higher Education and Chronicle of Philanthropy

by Leanne Strum, Ph.D., Associate Dean of the University Library

Is your Department or School currently subscribing to the Chronicle of Higher Education? Regent University Library provides the Regent community with online access to the Chronicle of Higher Education and the Chronicle of Philanthropy.

Both of these publications can be accessed from the Library database page (Regent ID & password required). For even faster access, bookmark the login pages for the Chronicle of Higher Education and the Chronicle of Philanthropy.

Information in the Chronicle of Higher Education includes:

  • Updated reports throughout the day with the latest news from academe.
  • All the text from the current issue.
  • A searchable archive of back issues going back to September 1989.
  • All the commentary and essays from the weekly magazine, The Chronicle Review.
  • All data from the annual Almanac and other Chronicle reports.
  • Special single-topic reports on admissions, diversity, information technology, and more.

 Information in the Chronicle of Philanthropy includes:

  • News, trend analyses, and fundraising strategies from the current issue.
  • A searchable archive of back issues published since October 1997.
  • All the data from annual surveys on giving, foundations, and executive salaries, including a ranking of charities in the Philanthropy 400.
  • The Nonprofit Handbook, listing more than 1,700 of the most useful resources for charity leaders and fund raisers.

In addition, Regent’s subscription to the Chronicle of Philanthropy includes the Guide to Grants, which allows users to:

  • Search their valuable database of grant announcements from foundations and corporations.
  • Set up an unlimited number of search agents and receive e-mail notifications whenever a grant is posted that meets selected criteria.

For more information about these or any of the Library’s databases, contact the librarians by phone or email.

What are Slow Books?

“Read books. As often as you can. Mostly classics.”(1)

“Read books. As often as you can. Mostly classics.”(1)

One of the most successful global movements in the past quarter-century has been Slow Food. The organization is dedicated to promoting local food traditions, encompassing the growing, production, cooking, and convivial enjoyment of the foods we eat. Conversely, Slow Foods argues that fast food and mass-produced agriculture represent a threat to our health and quality of life. Slow Foods has over 100,000 members in more than 150 countries.

The success of Slow Food is prompting a number of readers to ask, “why so much emphasis on what goes into our mouths and so little on what goes into our minds?”1 In a 2012 article for The Atlantic, journalist Maura Kelly pays homage to the Slow Foods Manifesto of 1989 by proposing a “Slow Books Manifesto” that calls on readers to set aside just 30 minutes of the reading day from newspapers, websites, magazines, and even non-fiction books, in order to read literature. Why literature, and not, say, a peer-reviewed quantitative study in one of the behavioral sciences? Because, Kelly argues, “by playing with language, plot structure, and images, it challenges us cognitively even as it entertains. It invites us to see the world in a different way, demands that we interpret unusual descriptions, and pushes our memories to recall characters and plot details.”

Kelly’s contention is supported by a 2013 study published in Science, in which experiment

C.S. Lewis, early advocate of Slow Books: “It is a good rule after reading a new book, never to allow yourself another new one till you have read an old one in between.”

C.S. Lewis, early advocate of Slow Books: “It is a good rule after reading a new book, never to allow yourself another new one till you have read an old one in between.”

participants who read literary fiction (as opposed to popular fiction, non-fiction, or nothing at all) scored significantly higher in tests to identify the emotional state of people in photographs, a skill known as Theory of Mind (ToM). The study’s authors contend that “Readers of literary fiction must draw on more flexible resources to infer the thoughts and feelings of characters. That is, they must engage in ToM processes. Contrary to literary fiction, popular fiction …tends to portray the world as internally consistent and predictable. Therefore, it may reaffirm readers’ expectations and so not promote ToM.”3

Since 2008, the Library Book Club has been promoting slow books by encouraging the reading of literary classics as well as contemporary works that may become classics. This month, we are reading one of the best-selling slow books of all time—Charles Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities.4 Dr. Peter Fraser, professor of literature and cinema in the College of Arts & Sciences will lead our discussion on March 27. If you have been feeling that too much of your daily reading can be characterized as empty calories, we invite you to join the Book Club on March 27 and at future discussions for more nutritional fare.

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1Maura Kelly, “A Slow-Books Manifesto” The Atlantic, March 26, 2012, http://www.theatlantic.com/entertainment/archive/2012/03/a-slow-books-manifesto/254884/.

2Kelly, “A Slow-Books Manifesto.”

3David Comer Kidd and Emanuele Castano, “Reading Literary Fiction Improves Theory of Mind,” Science 342, no. 6156 (2013): 378.

4David Mitchell, “David Mitchell on Historical Fiction,” The Telegraph, May 8, 2010, http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/books/bookreviews/7685510/David-Mitchell-on-Historical-Fiction.html.

How does the Library foster Information Literacy?

by Sara Baron, Ed.D., Dean of the University Library

Diagram of information literacy acquisition, starting with the development of practical skills and expanding through increasingly complex processes.(2)

Diagram of information literacy acquisition, starting with the development of practical skills and expanding through increasingly complex processes.(2)

This week The Chronicle of Higher Education’s Wired Campus blog posted a short article about a 2013 survey of library directors entitled, “What Matters to Academic Library Directors? Information Literacy.”1 The survey found that 97% of the 400 respondents consider undergraduate information literacy training a vital part of the library’s mission. Regent University Library falls into this category. Teaching students, both undergraduate and graduate, research skills is essential to the role of the Library. Partnering with teaching faculty in educating students, instructing them in the best research practices, and encouraging effective information-seeking behavior is what we do. Regent University Library has a long history of working with faculty through our liaison program and the online Information Research and Resources course.

There is a wealth of online training tools on the Library website, as well as our own YouTube channel, which offers training tutorials from the Library faculty and database vendors. We offer course-integrated instruction, during which we create specialized instruction in the classroom or in the Library. We also create research guides for subjects and even specific courses, providing an easy starting point for students in a particular class or program. The Library offers several general training sessions on research-oriented topics each semester, both on-campus and online through Google Hangouts.3 In addition, the reference librarians are available for one-on-one research consultations in person, by telephone, or online via Google Hangouts. We have worked with students all over the world through Skype and Google Hangouts! Our goal is to empower our students, staff, and faculty with the research skills to become self-sufficient, life-long learners. These information literacy skills, in turn, will help Regent graduates become Christian leaders who can change the world.

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1Jennifer Howard, “What Matters to Academic-Library Directors? Information Literacy,” Wired Campus (blog), in The Chronicle of Higher Education, March 11, 2014, http://chronicle.com/blogs/wiredcampus/what-matters-to-academic-library-directors-information-literacy/51005.

2Emma Coonan, “Four seasons pizza,” A New Curriculum for Information Literacy (blog), March 30, 2012, http://newcurriculum.wordpress.com/2012/03/30/four-seasons-pizza/.

3Permanent link for all Library Hangout events: https://plus.google.com/hangouts/_/event/c0lnc83s5ok7tecuqdcnjg0mcno?authuser=0&eid=100028809078157626561&hl=en.

Library honors courageous women of the Bible

by Ellen Cox, Business Manager & Special Projects Assistant

In observance of Women’s History Month, the Library has a new display: Courageous Women of the Bible. Six of the Bible’s most courageous women are displayed in the cabinets near the Gallery. Sarah, Deborah, Esther, Ruth, Mary, and Anna all answered the call of God on their lives. Through the ages they have inspired women and men to be brave and trust in the Lord. By their examples of faithfulness to God’s call, they remain a blessing to us today. The Lord continues to choose women of courage who will fulfill His purpose every day. Join us in celebrating God’s courageous women.