"Paused" Research Interests

Faculty - librarian collaborations: From the big picture to a case study

What is this about? Szurmak worked with Alice Cassidy from UBC to outline the theory behind librarian - faculty collaborations in order to highlight some rules of thumb in successful partnerships. Szurmak's literature review is summarized here: Exploring Faculty -  Librarian Collaboration.

Status: Szurmak and Cassidy collaborated through 2014 to the end of the summer of 2015.

Presentations / Publications:

Szurmak, J., & Cassidy, A. (18 June, 2015). Illuminating scholarship: Helping students through faculty-librarian collaborations. Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education (STLHE) 2015 Conference, Vancouver, BC.


Teaching with Collections Overlap Tools

What is this about? Collection Overlap Tools allow users to visualize the databases and other research resources as Venn diagrams. Visual representations give context for learning.


  • Co-investigator with Klara Maidenberg, then at OCUL / Scholars Portal.
  • Documented and developed pedagogical use cases for a collection development tool.

Publications / Presentations: 

 Szurmak, J., & Maidenberg, K. (17 March, 2015). A picture is worth a thousand words: Visualizing resource overlap. Gerstein Librarians’ Meeting, Alice Moulton Room, Gerstein Library, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON. (50% contribution)

 Szurmak, J., & Maidenberg, K. (29 January, 2015). A picture is worth a thousand words: Visualizing resource overlap. OLA SuperConference 2015, Think It, Do It, Metro Toronto Convention Centre, Toronto, ON. (50% contribution)  


Learning-Based Conversations: A Framework for Embedding Library Presence in Courses.

What is this about? Researching the pedagogical and cognitive potential of learning-based conversations as a model in reference in teaching.

Status: Co-investigator with Saira Mall, at the Centre for Teaching Support and Innovation, University of Toronto.

Presentations / Publications:

Mall, S., & Szurmak, J. (25 April, 2014). Monster & Masterpiece: Learning-Focused Conversations that Align Teaching with Professional Practice. OCULA Spring Conference, Jordan, ON.

Mall, S., & Szurmak, J. (31 January, 2014). Beyond Rock, Paper, Scissors: Choosing frameworks to align outcomes with teaching and professional practice. OLA 2014 SuperConference, Metro Toronto Convention Centre, Toronto, ON.


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