Sharing new ideas, resources, knowledge and technology to keep abreast of new development in reference service field

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Does the Worcester PL have Rosetta Stone Language Learning Software?

Worcester Public Library has received many inquiries asking if the library has Rosetta Stone Language Learning software. The answer is Yes. But it is for learning ENGLISH (As a Second Language) only. It is accessible through the library's website to anyone with a Worcester Public Library card.

Literacy Volunteers of Great Worcester offers classes in the Worcester Public Library’s computer lab for people who want to learn how to use the software. Please contact LVGW directly at 508-754-8056 for more information.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Where Do I Vote?

Where do I vote?

A good place to look for the answer to this question is on the web site for the Secretary of the Commonwealth .

It does not matter what town or city that you call home. You could live in Worcester, Holden, Spencer, Webster, etc. Just go to this web site then click on Elections Division, and click on Where do I vote. Fill in the information and you will get your election information. The election information tells you your polling place, the name and address of your town clerk, and the names of your elected officials.

The Elections division page is a great source of information. You can find how to apply for an absentee ballot, how to register to vote, how to run for state office and results of past elections, etc. It's a great site. Take a look.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Animal Rights Websites

The National Antivivisection Society has useful information on their site to aid people who want to avoid buying products that are tested on animals as well as many useful links in their "Resource Center"

Go to their website,, and click on the bottom left where it says "who tests on animals." It is written over a picture of a bunny. You can search by company name, product name or product category.

It gives information on types of animal testing as well as alternatives to them.

They have a good "FAQs" section that covers many topics. One of these is to offer alternatives to student dissection.

Founded in 1985, the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM) is a nonprofit organization that promotes preventive medicine, conducts clinical research, and encourages higher standards for ethics and effectiveness in research.

This site offers dissection alternatives, this may come in handy for school librarians who may have teachers or students asking what alternatives are available and how can i find them? is their website address. On the right side click on "Animal Experiments," then scroll down to "non-animal methods in research and education." Click on "Dissection Alternatives."

Another website from PCRM on dissection is It is geared toward schools and has lists of which states offer student choice on dissection or alternatives as well as information on alternatives.

PCRM has joined with other research modernization and animal protection organizations to form the Council on Humane Giving. The Council on Humane Giving has developed the Humane Charity Seal of Approval, which is awarded to health charities that fund only nonanimal research and programs. is the site which lists charities which are approved or unapproved by the organization.

Hopefully these sites will aid librarians to assist their patrons in finding ways to protect animals.

Katherine R.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

New and Beautiful

Have you seen "The Asia Book" and "The Africa Book" published by Lonely Planet? These beautiful books pose an interesting dilemma. The spectacular and fascinating color photographs, lists of unforgettable tourist experiences and random facts, and information on the best time to visit and local festivals seem to make these books items for the circulating travel collection. But the brief paragraphs of information on the landscape, economy, and religious and ethnic breakdown for each country on the continent is almost enough information is almost enough material to put these volumes on the reference shelf.
The photographs are different from the ones that appeared in Lonely Plnet's 2004 "Travel Book" and the price and size are both less overwhelming. I'm hoping that Lonely Planet goes on to do the remaining continents of the world.
Incidentally, Worcester Public library has put both "The Asia Book" and "The Africa Book" in the circulating collection.

Local Info- Hanover Theatre

The Hanover Theatre re-opened its doors this past Friday, March 14th with the music of Bernadette Peters. On Sunday The Hanover welcomed The Saw Doctors (just in time for St. Patrick's Day) and excited fans actually go up and started dancing in the aisles during the show. Hanover Theatre is located on 554 Main Street, only a few blocks from the Main Library. It has a number of exciting performers lined up for the Spring and Summer including, Joy Behar, B.B King and Jim Brickman, just to name a few. Visit their website at to learn all about the original Hanover Theatre and its history. Enjoy the show!

Monday, March 03, 2008

New...and Very Exciting! The other night I was watching television. A rather sleek advertisement appeared about Massachusetts libraries. With a Massachusetts library card, you can assess resources without leaving your computer room, that is if you have a computer. I was curious, and the librarian in me had to take a look. I logged in and got a nice clean screen, with easy links and instructions. If you choose to enter a city or town name, you will discover the libraries in that area. There you will find a web page with hours, directions, and what that library has to offer, both on-line and during a visit. Another feature is access to the virtual resources. To those using the virtual catalog and databases everyday at work, this incredible resource is second nature by now. Yet, to those unaware, this is huge. Take a look, spread the word. Use it in everyday reference interactions. As the younger generation says...This is Way Cool! This site is maintained by the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners and is funded by the Institute and Library Services, a federal agency that fosters innovation, leadership, and lifetime learning. Thank you Library Commissioners and the Institute.

Saturday, March 01, 2008


Getting questions about those $600 or $1200 tax rebate checks due in May?
The IRS has a fact sheet which you can access at this link.
This explains about Special Circumstances such as Social Security, Railroad Retirement, and Veterans Benefits and how to apply for the rebate, as well as the Basic Eligibility.

CMRLS Regional Reference Center, Worcester Public Library, 3 Salem Sq, Worcester MA 01608