Value Line User Guides and Videos

DigitalReport_Desktop_196_113On How to Use the Library’s Databases page a Value Line tab has been added with how-to PDF guides and videos on it.
The Value Line User Guides provide a quick introduction to the Navigation of the digital platform, Screener Tool, Charting, and Value Line Digital Report, including additional tips on using Value Line products and services.
The Value Line video tutorials help you to maximize the value of the Library’s online subscription. The tutorials present the topics: Basic Navigation, How to Use the Digital Research Report, Maximizing the Screener Application, and Creating Advanced Charts.


ReferenceUSA Personal Accounts

refusa new-picture-32If patrons wish to use the new feature Personal Accounts in ReferenceUSA, please have them use the second link on Databases A-Z tab R. ReferenceUSA will authenticate them on their end which will allow them to create a Personal Account to create a personal profile, save searches or search criteria to use on later searches. To learn more about how to use ReferenceUSA visit the Hot Topic – How to Use the Library Databases – ReferenceUSA

New Interface for Gale Literature Databases

artemis wheelWe have a new interface which combines Gale Literature resources together. It’s called Artemis Literary Sources.  Now users can search Literature Criticism Online, Literature Resource Center and all the GVRL Literature titles.

It can be found on the Literature and Poetry database page as well as the Literature Hot Topic.

Both pages have links to short videos on how to use this new interface.

Be sure to checkout the Term Clusters and the Term Frequency tools.

Business Information Update

refusa competive advantageWith the Small Business Expo just around the corner, I have updated our Hot Topic – Small Business, Starting and Building as well as the Business and Investing page on Databases A-Z.

Prior to the fair you may want to brush up on our business databases such as BusinessDecisions and ReferenceUSA and get familiar with what is available on the above mentioned pages.  This will help you service your users when they come asking questions after May 18th!


Finding Author Read Alikes

To find the newest Read-alikes using Novelist:

  1. Click the Author Read-alike link from the “Looking for” menu on the right-hand side of the NoveList interface.
  2. From here, select Date Descending from the “Sort by” drop-down menu above the list.

You can also search for Read-alikes for a specific author:

  1. From the “More” drop-down in the orange bar at the top of the page, click the Author Read-alikes link.
  1. Enter the name of an author in the “Browse for” box.
    NOTE: Because authors are listed alphabetically by last name, you must enter the author as (last name, first name), or use only the last name.
  2. Click Browse.
  3. If there is an Author Read-alike article for the author you entered, it will be listed at the top of the page.

In Celebration of National Library Week 2012

From Proquest – SIRS Knowledge Source, CultureGrams™   Historical Newspapers, The New York Times 1851-2008 and Los Angeles Times 1881-1988

ProQuest is happy to join you in celebrating National Library Week. Here’s what we’re bringing to the party April 8-14, 2012.

Sweepstakes: Start here…for a chance to win.
During the week, visit the ProQuest Facebook page to enter our drawing for a chance to win a $1,000, $500, or $250 donation to your library. Your institution can use it to promote the library, purchase resources, support programs, or whatever. Ask your colleagues and friends to enter to improve your library’s chance of winning. Official rules are available here.

Each day during National Library Week, we’ll also post fun questions on our Facebook page about creative ways to promote libraries. We hope you’ll share your ideas with us.
Open access: Start here…to explore.
National Library Week is the perfect time to test-drive some of ProQuest’s most popular online resources. Starting April 8, go to to access:

ebrary® Public Library Complete™
ebrary® School Collection
ProQuest® Historical Newspapers-American Jewish Newspapers
ProQuest® Historical Newspapers-Black Newspapers
SIRS Discoverer®
SIRS® Issues Researcher

During the week, you’ll also have access to the 2010-2011 U.S. Book Consumer Demographics & Buying Behaviors Annual prepared by Bowker Market Research and Publishers Weekly, and a special 30% discount offer on the 2012 issue of the Annual.

Promotional items: Start here…to market your library.
When you go to during National Library Week, you’ll find a new digital commercial that you can use on your website to promote the value of your library. You’ll also find links to complimentary marketing toolkits that contain posters, bookmarks, and more to help you get the word out about your reliable online resources.

Thanks for the work you do to support your community and library users. Enjoy the special recognition that you and your library so deserve this week.

Gadgets in Credo Reference

Today we’re featuring the Credo Reference gadgets, which are right there every time you visit Credo Reference!

We’ve got a pretty neat assortment of gadgets, including Define, Person, Images, Pronunciations, Crossword Solver, Quotations, Holidays and Festivals, and Conversions. To highlight a few:

Crossword Solver: Get help with your crossword puzzles! For example, you can put something like pu??le and Credo Reference will search its dictionaries for six-letter works that begin with “pu” and end with “le.” You can also put in “itger,” and Credo Reference will unscramble the word into all the possibilities it can find.

Holidays and Festivals: This limits searches to entries categorized under “celebration.”

Conversions: You can choose types of measurements from the categories like area, distance, power, and energy, to name a few. You can also select precision with 4, 5, or 6 digits. Give it a try today!

Monday Morning Smile

"And I am a hard woman - impossible to pu...

Image via Wikipedia

What type of books does Jane E-y-r-e (patron spelled out) write? Are you familiar with her?

Madison Ediger
Olathe Public Library
Olathe, KS

In Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre, Jane moves gradually from primitive and occasionally violent reactions to a more rational and civilized response. Eventually, both Jane and the novel evolve to the point that they must transcend what she and her contemporaries knew of history, a history that revolves around the exploitation of the weak by the strong, to something more feminine and egalitarian, according to Feminism in Literature: A Gale Critical Companion.

This reference work is one of the many print titles available as an eBook in the Gale Virtual Reference Library.

Monday Morning Smile

We offer free WI-FI at the library. A patron called and asked if they could access the WI-FI from their home.

Kenneth Kugler
Queens Public Library
Queens, NY

Wireless networks for computing, such as Wi-Fi, are isolated and limited to a radius of around 50 to 100 feet.
This limitation is quickly being overcome, however, with the advent of broadband (high bandwidth) wireless networks, such as WiMAX. Check out Gale’s Student Resources in Context for more information on upcoming technologies.

Monday Morning Smile

Where are the anthropologies?

(She meant “anthologies”)

Judy Terry
Victory University Library
Memphis, TN

The Literature Resource Center has a host of anthologies as well as information about them.

Also Student Resources in Context is a good source for anthologies.

Besides the anthologies in print the eMedia Catalog has 25 anthologies in ebook and eaudio format.

May: Healthy Vision Month

From The Pulse – Health and Wellness Resource Center:

Here is another idea for incorporating health programming into your overall library programming strategy. Keep looking  for us on the first of each month to find programming ideas for three months out. (Still working on March or April programming? See March Nutrtion and St. Patrick’s Day and April Autism Awareness Month.)

May is Healthy Vision Month.  According for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), vision disability is among the top ten disabilities affecting those 18 and older and the single most common disability among children. Furthermore, close to three and a half million people over age 40 are severely visually impaired, including those who are blind, and one in twelve people with diabetes over age 40 has diabetic retinopathy, which can lead to blindness.

Many debilitating visual health problems are preventable, however, and, fortunately, promoting Healthy Vision Month at your library will be easy with these free resources:

  • Quick and Easy: printable coloring pages, puzzles,  activity booklets, bookmarks, and educational materials for children and adults
  • Featured Resources: books, free information, and organizations to contact
  • Book Club: book and movie discussion group ideas and resources
  • Tie Ins: to traditional library programming
  • Community Resources: local eye health resources
  • Publicity Resources: web banners, press releases, non-copyrighted photos, and more
  • Fun Stuff: fun, interactive links

Quick and Easy

Printable Coloring Pages, Puzzles, Activity Booklets, Bookmarks, and Educational Materials for Children and Adults:

From the National Institute of Health’s National Eye Institute:

From “Eye Didn’t Know That,” a public health campaign from Transitions Optical, Inc.

More Quick and Easy Printables:

Featured Resources

Books, Links to Free Information, and Organizations to Contact:

Books for All Ages

Free Information Promoting Healthy Vision

Is the book checked out? Check these out instead.

  • Brochures and Fact Sheets from the National Institute of Health’s National Eye Institute – available as downloads or to order.
  • Vision Aware:  The Self-Help Resource Center For Vision Loss

Organizations to Contact

Free information and resources:

Book Club

Observe Healthy Vision Month this May by choosing one of these vision related books or movies for your children’s, teen, or adult discussion group:

Tie Ins

May celebrates Mother’s Day!  You can bring together Healthy Vision Awareness and Mother’s Day with these crafty gifts:

Community Resources

Find a professional to speak at your library or find help for your library customers.

Publicity Resources

Use this free material alongside your library’s May programming information – newsletter, blog, posters, or flyers – to promote both your library’s programs and healthy vision month.

Fun Stuff

Goof off at the reference desk and amaze your friends on Twitter . . . OR add some fun to a library program, your library website, Facebook page, or Twitter feed:

Library Programming: ‘Muffins and the Market’

Marketing for Libraries

Patrons of Portage District Library Use ‘Muffins and the Market’ Investment Group

Staff members at the Portage District Library in Michigan go above and beyond for their patrons. One of their most successful programs is an investment and discussion group, Muffins and the Market. Business and reference librarian Nicolette Sosulski explains how the group sessions affect those patrons who look to further their knowledge of the investment world.

Almost four years ago, the group was introduced by Warren Fritz, a veteran investment broker who desired to teach fellow patrons how to use investment resources. The Portage staff shared his interest, forming the Muffins and the Market group. As Sosulski says, “I personally believe that the mission of a library must include educating the public enough to ask tough questions of the professionals with whom they interact–be they investment brokers, medical specialists, lawyers, et cetera.” Meeting twice every month, the group discusses a certain aspect of the market and investment information resources.

Participants have been very receptive to the program. A useful contributor to the meetings is Morningstar Investment Research Center. Stock and fund charts along with the SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) examination in the analyst reports prove to be most valuable. Out of all the databases that the Portage library employs, patrons tend to lean toward Morningstar Investment Research Center for reliable financial resources.

Muffins and the Market is not the only successful program that attracts business and investing patrons to Portage District Library. Sosulski and the rest of the staff host an investment program geared for teens that uses National Endowment for Financial Education resources. Speakers from the Michigan Office of Financial and Insurance Regulators come to the library and offer one-on-one counseling for patrons. Sosulski also teaches a monthly market research class in addition to other services directed toward business patrons.

Why are Sosulski and the Portage District Library so intent on providing all these financial education services to their patrons? Because, she says, “Having this wealth of investment information and instruction made a dollars-and-sense, real-world difference to each of them.”

If you would like further marketing ideas or material to help promote Morningstar Investment Research Center at your library–or for materials you can use on your own staff training site–contact

Money Smart Week

The American Library Association and the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago are recognizing April 2-9 as Money Smart Week at your library. This is a week for libraries to help promote financial literacy and hold programs designed to help consumers manage their personal finances.

Morningstar Library Services will be participating in Money Smart Week with a free webinar, Investing 101: Simple Strategies to Get Started in the World of Investing. The session will cover the basics of how to start investing, including why you should invest, determining your investment goals, and finding the right mix of stocks, bonds, and other investments for you using Morningstar research.

The session will be done via the web, so it should be accessible from any location with a computer. This is an event that you can hold as a large group at the library or promote to patrons to attend on their own. Also during Money Smart Week, we will have our regular database training session, which can be attended by anyone as well.

Morningstar Investment Research Center web training will be held April 7 at 11 a.m. Central time. Investing 101 will be held April 8 at 11 a.m. Central time. Patrons can register by e-mailing and mention Las Vegas-Clark County Library District.

Reference USA Map Based Search

There is a new feature in Reference USA called Map Based Search.

To get to it:

  1. Select U.S. Businesses Database (currently it is only available for this database)
  2. Select Custom Search
  3. Select Geography
  4. Select Map based Search Beta
  5. To start a search click Open Map

To learn how to use view the tutorial:

Since this is in beta if you experience issues with it, close out and wait a little while and try again.  I’m not sure how stable it is at this point.

Credo Reference Updates

The following updated title was recently released in Credo Reference . Expect more soon!

The Hutchinson Unabridged Encyclopedia with Atlas and Weather Guide, Helicon


Also available in Credo Reference for African American Heritage Month:

Black Firsts -2003

An epic record of African American achievement, it testified to a rich but often overlooked part of our history. Jessie Carney Smith, William and Camille Cosby Professor of the Humanities at Fisk University, greatly expand the new edition with more than 1,000 new stories of a people overcoming adversity to emerge triumphant, including the recent successes of modern-day pioneers like Suzan-Lori Parks (winner of the 2002 Pulitzer Prize for drama and Vonetta Flowers, the first African American to be awarded the Winter Olympic gold medal. Dr. Smith has revised and extended entries capturing remarkable episodes of discipline, will, transcendence, and belated recognition.

Readers will revel in the stories of barrier-breaking pioneers in all fields-arts, entertainment, business, civil rights, education, government, inventing, journalism, religion, science, sports, and more.


Don’t forget our series of Contemporary Black Biography (1992-2008) in Gale Virtual Reference Library

as well as:

Monday Morning Smile

“Are you warm-blooded or cold-blooded?”

(I didn’t know if this was a biology question or a comment on my personality.)

Christopher Waldron
Concordia Elementary Library
Fort Wayne, IN

Winter is difficult for all warm-blooded animals (those that maintain a constant internal temperature despite their environment), since they must spend most of their energy just keeping warm. When the temperature falls below freezing, these animals must eat even more than they usually do simply to produce enough internal heat to stay alive, according Science in Context.

Price Check Time-Saver

Mutual fund

Image via Wikipedia

The Training Corner | by Lars Wasvick, Associate Product Manager at Morningstar

Has anyone asked for prices on a number of different stocks? What if a patron wants the loss or gain from the previous day on multiple mutual funds? It’s actually quite easy to find this information on Morningstar Investment Research Center.

Here’s one way to tackle it. Let’s say you have a portfolio with five stocks in it. You see the market is having a nice day and want to check out how your stocks are doing. Simply go to Morningstar Investment Research Center’s search box, type in the first ticker symbol, and hit “get report.” Write down the price and continue on by entering the second ticker in the search box and hit “enter.” Write down that price, and so on. Finally you have a comprehensive list of today’s performance for the stocks in your portfolio.

Here is an even easier way to get the data you’re seeking. Rather than repeat everything five times, just use a few commas. Let’s say the portfolio consists of McDonalds MCD, Home Depot HD, Microsoft MSFT, Colgate-Palmolive CL, and Macy’s M. Go into the search box and type MCD, HD, MSFT, CL, M (you can even do it in lowercase) and hit “get report.”

The new page you see has the price, gain/loss, day high/low, volume, and the 52-week high/low for all of the stocks in your portfolio. You’ll find this is much faster, and it gives you a complete list. This will also work with mutual funds, even if you combine the search with stocks. Of course, fund prices, or net asset values, are calculated at the end of each trading day, so the day high/low will be the same and volume will be zero.

Another suggestion if you have many stocks, funds, or both and want to save on typing tickers: Save the string of tickers separated by commas in a word processing, text, or spreadsheet file. The next time you want to get your quote report, just cut and paste the string into the search box.

For more helpful tips on the new features to Morningstar Investment Research Center, or for an overview on the database, please join us for training on Feb. 3 at 11a.m. Central Time. Visit the Client Site to attend, or e-mail for further details.

Monday Morning Smile

“My teacher basically rewrote my research paper. Do I need to cite her as a source?”
(Asked by a student learning how to create citations)
Diana Pierce
Leander High School
Leander, TX

Opposing Viewpoints in Context helps students research, analyze and organize a broad variety of data for conducting research, completing writing assignments, preparing for debates, creating presentations and more.

Included is a Citation tool that creates instant citations, mapped to the most current MLA and APA standards. It was used to create this citation for an article on plagiarism and copyright infringement:

“Plagiarism Is Different from Copyright Infringement.” Copyright Infringement. Ed. Roman Espejo. Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2009. Opposing Viewpoints. Gale Opposing Viewpoints In Context. Web. 13 Dec. 2010.

For more about Pro and Cons checkout our Featured Topic on the Library’s website.

Providing Investment Knowledge Without Influencing Investing Decisions

Mutual fund

Image via Wikipedia

The Training Corner | by Lars Wasvick, Associate Product Manager

One concern some clients have when training patrons is accidentally giving patrons investing advice. I’ve had this issue come up a few times during training sessions. For example, when looking at a stock report a patron will often ask the librarian, “Do you recommend that stock?”

I know what that feels like; I get asked the same question when I conduct training. It’s those types of loaded questions that make me nervous because if I say yes, or no, I could be influencing an investment decision. So, here are five tips to get patrons more involved in the training and prevent you from giving investment advice.

1. Ask patrons what stocks and funds interest them. There are companies all around us, and nearly everyone has some sort of mutual fund in a retirement plan. Patrons are often embarrassed if they have little investing knowledge or don’t keep up on their investments. Let them participate in the session. It will make it more interesting for them.

2. Let Morningstar do the work. On the homepage of our database we have a link to Morningstar Stock and Fund Recommendations. Show patrons how easy it is to find the lists and analyst reports. If you ever get a question about what to invest in or whether you recommend a particular stock or mutual fund, tell them to ask Morningstar. We’ve already done the work and we have an honest and objective opinion.

3. Plan ahead. One thing I always do before demonstrating our screeners is create a plan. For example, on a stock screen I will jot down the criterion to give me a screen with an adequate amount of results. It takes only a few minutes and it ensures that you won’t be left with scarce list that prompts questions you may not have answers to.

4. Look to current events. When showing a stock report, a good way to make an unbiased choice is by picking out a company in the news. For example, during the spring and summer of 2010, BP was involved in a massive oil spill. This was front page news, which makes for a perfect company to look at during a training session. Using topical examples allows patrons to see the relationship between news and stock price.

5. Rely on the features. Sometimes when you ask for participation, you get an obscure answer. For instance, in one training session I asked patrons for a stock to look up. A gentleman suggested American Tower Corporation. It’s slightly embarrassing to admit that I have never heard of that company. Rather than fumble around for the ticker symbol, I simply typed the name in the lookup box and I was able to locate the snapshot very easily. I highly recommend using our tools to make your job easier. Consider the Benchmarks on our screening tool, Data Analysis tab on a stock or fund page, and the Portfolio X-Ray Interpreter view.

For more helpful tips on the new features to Morningstar Investment Research Center, or for an overview on the database, please join us for training on Dec. 2, 2010, at 11:00 a.m. CST. Visit the Client Site to attend, or email for further details.

Morningstar Can Help You with Investment Program

The Training Corner | by Lars Wasvick, Associate Product Manager

Using Scenarios

At Morningstar we want to provide you with the training resources you need so you can educate your colleagues and patrons on how to use our database. We are happy to work with you in creating training materials, as many clients have done so with us on PowerPoint presentations.

Another interesting idea to help create interest in learning about the database and navigating its practical applications is scenario training. For example, if Joe the patron was to ask you what EBITDA means, where could you find the definition, or rather, where would you tell him to look?

The correct answer is to visit the Glossary on the Help & Education page, which seems logical, but might not be as easy to find without some basic navigation training on the database. Since we provide many training sessions throughout the year, we have come across popular questions and situations in which people are looking for certain information.

If you find yourself looking for an effective way to train library staff and patrons and think scenarios may help, give it a try with some basic situations, or if you need ideas, feel free to contact us for some frequently asked questions and common scenarios.

For more helpful tips on the new features to Morningstar Investment Research Center, or for an overview on the database, please join us for training on Nov. 4, 2010, at 11 a.m. Central Time. Visit the Client Site to attend, or email for further details.