Book Notes – Trexler Library Recommends:

longbourn    Check it out in Trexler    

“Jane Austen meets Downton Abbey”

“In this irresistibly imagined belowstairs answer to Pride and Prejudice, the servants take center stage. Sarah, the orphaned housemaid, spends her days scrubbing the laundry, polishing the floors, and emptying the chamber pots for the Bennet household. But there is just as much romance, heartbreak, and intrigue downstairs at Longbourn as there is upstairs. When a mysterious new footman arrives, the orderly realm of the servants’ hall threatens to be completely, perhaps irrevocably, upended.

Jo Baker dares to take us beyond the drawing rooms of Jane Austen’s classic—into the often overlooked domain of the stern housekeeper and the starry-eyed kitchen maid, into the gritty daily particulars faced by the lower classes in Regency England during the Napoleonic Wars—and, in doing so, creates a vivid, fascinating, fully realized world that is wholly her own.”



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From The Writer’s Almanac..

“On this day in 1731, a group of young men in Philadelphia pooled their money to set up the first library in America. The idea for a library came about when Benjamin Franklin started a club with about 50 friends so they could debate about politics, morality, and the natural sciences. The group was called the Club of Mutual Improvement. When they disagreed about a topic, they liked to consult books. But books were expensive in those days, so they combined their resources to found a subscription library. They called it the Philadelphia Library Company. The rule was that any “civil gentleman” could browse through the volumes, but only subscribers were allowed to borrow them. The library expanded over the years. Later it moved to Carpenter’s Hall, the building where the First Continental Congress met in 1774. Franklin said that after the library opened, “reading became fashionable, and our people, having no public amusements to divert their attention from study, became better acquainted with books.”

Go to the Writer’s Almanac

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Book Notes – Trexler Library Recommends:


The Book of My lives by Aleksandar Hemon


Michele writes:

“The Book of My Lives by Alexksandar Hemon –   Read about   Hemon’s memoirs as  he reminisces about  his embarkment from Sarajevo, Yugoslavia to  the United States for an  educational program.  This  journey becomes  permanent  due to the outbreak of Yugoslavian Civil War forcing him to begin  a new life in Chicago.  Follow his memories  as he assimilates to life in America while at the same time mourning the life  he left behind.”


Check it out!

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Book Notes – Trexler Library Recommends

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Kathleen Arthur, Evening Circulation Supervisor recommends:


Ocean at the End of the Lane (by Neil Gaiman) is one of those books that is really, really difficult to explain… but in a good way.  It’s one part coming-of-age story, one part mystery, and one part horror tale with warmth and humor interspersed throughout.  You know… sort of like life, which is probably why the novel remains so impressively real despite the fantasy elements central to the story.

As the buried memories of our unnamed narrator’s boyhood slowly return to him, we meet the slightly older girl who lives at the end of the lane with her mother and grandmother.  At least she appears to be a few years older. As the threat of a powerful and mysterious danger grows, the boy discovers that the girl and her family are far, far older than they seem. They also possess knowledge of things he never imagined and compassion that will save him in more ways than he immediately realizes.


Check it out 

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APA Citation Workshops

apaAPA Citation Workshops

Having trouble compiling a reference list in APA style? Not sure how to cite your sources within the body of your paper? This workshop will cover the essentials of APA style and provide you with guidelines and tools to help you tackle citation with confidence. Students, faculty, and staff are all welcome!


Monday, November 4, 7 pm – 7:45 pm    

Online via Blackboard Collaborate

Go to to register for this workshop


Tuesday, November 5, 5:30 pm – 6:15 pm

Campbell Conference Room, Trexler Library

Go to to register for this workshop


Wednesday, November 6, 4:30 pm – 5:15 pm   

Campbell Conference Room, Trexler Library

Go to to register for this workshop

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Trexler Friday Book Notes – Drama High by Michael Sokolove


dramahighDebbie Malone, Library Director, brings us this weeks book note.  Debbie writes:


Sokolove, Michael. (2013) Drama High:  The Incredible True story of a Brilliant Teacher, a Struggling Town, and the Magic of Theater. Riverhead Hardcover.


  LA2317.V65 S65 2013  


This is a beautifully written, touching and fascinating story of the incredible theater program at Truman High School in Levittown, a blue-collar town outside of Philadelphia. It is a paean to Lou Volpe who ran the program for 40 years and whose productions drew critical acclaim and the attention of famous theater producers. His productions touched on topics not often attempted in high school productions – teen sexuality, angst and reckless behavior.




Volpe pushed his student actors hard, and they often performed far above their own or anyone else’s expectations. Being in one of his productions was life changing for most of the students whose lives he touched. 

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Friday Book Notes

Today’s book note comes to us from Kathleen Arthur, Evening Circulation Supervisor:

The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith   PR6068.O93 C83 2013

cuckooI suggest finishing any tasks of life-or-death importance before starting The Cuckoo’s Calling because the oft-overused praise “I couldn’t put it down” actually applies to this one. If the title sounds familiar to you it may be because there was a minor media furor a while back when the author Robert Galbraith was outed as J.K. Rowling writing under a pen-name  Though the mature subject matter and tone are refreshingly different from that of her Harry Potter books*, fans will recognize Rowling’s understated humor and ability to craft complex, flawed characters whom we nonetheless come to love. 

The story centers on war veteran Cormoran Strike who is struggling to make ends meet with his private detective business while dealing with a series of challenges in his private life.  When the brother of world-famous model Lula Landry asks Strike to investigate her apparent suicide, Strike and his temp agency secretary Robin (a young, recently-engaged London newbie) find that the circumstances surrounding the model’s death are more complicated anyone imagined. Let’s hope there are sequels!

*The Harry Potter books are awesome.  Read them too if you haven’t done that yet.

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Today in the TTC – Federal Direct Student Loan Workshop



Want to learn how to lower your student loan debt?

Join us in the library for What You Should Know about Your Federal Direct Loan Workshop: Trexler Financial Literacy Series

When: October 9, 2013 at 4:00pm-5pm

Where: Trexler Technology Center, 2nd floor Trexler Library

Freshmen earn a Character U Point!

*Note: Please bring your FAFSA Pin # to access your loan history

***Registration is required for this workshop: Please go to




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Pacer Break Hours

Trexler Library hours during Pacer Break are:

  • Saturday, October 5 – 9:ooam – 4:00pm
  • Sunday, October 6 – CLOSED
  • Monday, October 7 – 9:00am – 10:00pm
  • Tuesday, October 8 – 9:00am – Midnight
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Purdue U. Software Prompts Students to Study—and Graduate

September 26, 2013, 3:46 pm

By Hannah Winston
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Just when students thought they were finished with Mom and Dad’s nagging them to do their homework, a piece of software has taken the parents’ place. But this new nagging reminder, called Signals, has given students at Purdue University a boost in graduation rates.

Across the board, since 2007, students enrolled in at least one class with Signals saw a higher graduation rate than did students who were not in classes with the software, according to data from Purdue. Retention rates for those enrolled in classes with the tracking software were also higher than for those in classes without the technology.

Indeed, students who had two or more Signals classes graduated within six years at a rate 21.48 percent higher than students who did not take Signals courses.

Signals, a data-mining and analysis program, keeps track of how students approach class work. Taking in about 20 data points from Blackboard or other course-management systems, such as whether or not a student has completed online reading or watched online lectures, it measures the data against test and assignment grades, and “signals” students how they are doing with green, yellow, or red lights for each course. The signals are scheduled throughout each course by the instructor.

Matt Pistilli, a research scientist for teaching and learning technologies at Purdue, works specifically on student and faculty success. He says students have responded very well to the program.

“In this era of Big Brother, they aren’t concerned that we know all this information about them,” he says. “They want this to help them instead.”

By contract, he says, faculty members have been a little harder to work with. “Like Blackboard or a video conference or other pieces out there, this is just one more thing” they have to deal with, he says. Some faculty members also believe that students “who come to college should be self-motivated self-learners.”

With the software, a professor is able to “see the extent to which students have accessed materials, spent time engaged with the course, or viewed online lectures,” according to Mr. Pistilli. This is not done automatically but instead happens when an individual instructor logs in to see how students are doing.

But at the end of the day, he says, students still have to be motivated enough to take the suggestions provided by Signals.

The data gathered since 2007, he says, confirm what he has heard from students: The software helps them stay on track with their classes.

He says that while the software is being used in about 100 courses this fall, the extraordinary thing is that students take study and work habits influenced or pushed by Signals and apply them to other classes as well.

“What we’re trying to do,” he says, “is facilitate what they have to do to figure it out on their own.”

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