NACO training at Potchefstroom

Eight Cataloguers of the LIS Information Resources attended the NACO (Name Authority Cooperation) training program from 24 to 28 June 2019 at the Potchefstroom campus.  The training was facilitated by South Africa’s NACO trainer, Dr Hester Marais, from the University of South Africa.


NACO training enables cataloguers to contribute to standardisation of controlled access points for the authorised and variant forms of names.   The training involves a set of standards by which authority records are created and shared on OCLC.  Through this program, participants contribute authority records for agents, places, works, and expressions to the NACO Authority File. Membership of NACO is open to individual institutions who have done the training. Trainees go through the following process:  training, reviewing and direct contributions of records to the LC/NACO Name Authority File.

The five day training workshop prepares new NACO contributing libraries to create authority records and have the records reviewed by reviewers. The reviewers will check cataloguers’ work until they are ready to produce or update records independently.

During the training the following modules were covered:

  • NACO foundation
  • Describing person
  • Describing families
  • Describing corporate bodies
  • Describing places
  • Describing works and expressions
  • Changes to NARs
  • NACO administrations

The NWU cataloguers describe the training as very informative and hands-on.  It gave enough practical exercises to use in all the relevant situations.  As experienced trainer, Dr Marais created an atmosphere conducive to learning and collaboration.  Credit must be given to Alta van den Berg, Senior Librarian Information Resources who did the liaison and initiated this training event.

Benford Rabatseta
Senior Librarian: Information Resources

Scopus Academy – University of Cape Town 8 October 2018


Three LIS staff members: Ishe Muzvondiwa, Glenda Makate and Danny Moloto who attended the LIASA Conference, also had the opportunity to be part of the first Scopus Academy, presented at the University of Cape Town on 8 October.  The Academy aims to elevate the skills of librarians and research support professionals who support research grant and rating applications, research information management and journal evaluation.

The SA Scopus Academy was the first of its kind in South Africa and Africa as a whole.  Mrs Joyce Olivier (Director of Research NRF) remarked that it was a historic and ground-breaking event on African soil. She stressed the need to involve and incorporate the Research Offices of different academic institutions in the next Scopus Academy. The majority of the attendees were librarians.  She described the peer review process, the concept of benchmarking, NRF rating as well as the NRF’s publication practices.

logo-scopus.pngAttention was given to Scopus author profiles – document counts, citation analysis, h-index and author profile corrections.  As the NRF requires an ORCID iD when submitting funded research outputs, librarians were encouraged to assist researchers to register for ORCID and integrate the researcher’s ORCID with their Scopus Author ID.  With just a few steps, all their publications will be added to their ORCID profile.


Vanderbijlpark First Year Introduction

The Library and Information Service Vanderbijlpark took part in the R&O Programme for first year students on the 23, 24, 26 and 29 January 2018. The library staff members worked as a team and everybody were involved. The 467 first year students were welcomed, the Undergraduate pamphlets were handed out and afterwards they watched the library video. An introduction was given of all the library services, resources, facilities and Code of Conduct. Students who asked questions received lollipops – just to provide some fun. The groups were then divided into smaller groups. Staff took them to the different sections and informed them how to use the library effectively. The Library calendar was handed out to every first year student who attended the library orientation.



First-Year Students Library Orientation

The Mahikeng library had the pleasure to participate in the orientation of first-year students from the 23 – 24 January.  The aim of the orientation was to give brief and important information to the new students about the NWU LIS and its code of conduct. It was inspiring to see the library filled to capacity by enthusiastic future leaders.  Over 200 students were received.  The library staff members did an outstanding job of welcoming the students and introducing them to all the different sections, and how the students will be using the library services throughout their studies at NWU.  The tour sessions for students were divided into separate groups.  On the first part of orientation, Library Management welcomed and congratulated students for choosing the NWU.  They emphasised the importance of the library in the academic and learning process of any student’s journey.


2018 First Years Library Introduction.

On 17 January, the Library & Information Service Potchefstroom took part in the R&O Programme for first year students.  During each session, students were given a short introduction by Dina Mashiyane, Librarian for Undergraduate Support about the library’s resources, services, facilites and code of conduct. This information will assist the students to make use of the library more effectively.  A video about the library services was shown and Undergraduate Survival Guides were handed out to the students. There was also an opportunity to show the students how to access the Undergraduate Support Libguide, as this is a tool they need to use for their information needs:  About 3346 students attended the sessions and positive feedback was received.



Investing in Digital Humanities Research


Kirchner van Deventer, a Faculty Librarian at Education Sciences recently attended the Digital Humanities at Oxford Summer School. Part of NWU Library Services strategic agenda is to develop our capacity for Digital Humanities projects and the research potential that can stem from it. With support from the NWU Research Unit for Languages and Literature in the South African Context, Kirchner attended the Summer School’s Introduction to Digital Humanities lecture series. The lectures included:

Digitization for Research: Creating Tools for Active Scholarship
An Introduction to the Text Encoding Initiative
Reborn Digital: text, transmission, technology
Reproducible Research in the Humanities
An Introduction to Databases
Introduction to Visualization for Digital Humanities

The most important things he learned from the Summer School included that Digital Humanities has enormous research potential for a vast range of disciplines and is not just limited to linguistics or literary studies, but can benefit other social and humanities disciplines as well. It is the role of academic librarians to encourage their respective faculties to develop their understanding of what Digital Humanities scholarship entails and to further provide technical support and training in the use of tools that have been developed for Digital Humanities research.

Library Research Week 15-19 August 2016


The Library Services (Potch Campus) will host a Library Research Week from 15 – 19 August 2016.

The program includes, training opportunities and research workshops. These sessions are aimed at building researcher’s capacity throughout his research.

Venue: Ferdinand Postma Library, Research Commons: Conference room

Please view SCHEDULE and REGISTER to attend: