I joined the library faculty in a visiting position in 1977, and, a year later, was appointed Assistant Professor and Bibliographer for the Social Sciences. In 1995, I was promoted to Professor. I earned my MLS from the University at Albany and a Ph.D. in history from Yale University.
Most of my research has been about the use of libraries and information by humanities scholars. I have studied vocabulary used for information retrieval in the humanities, prizewinning books in the humanities, and, with William G. Jones, patterns of of use of libraries and information by humanists. In addition to work on the humanities, I have investigated, with different collaborators, user persistence in scanning postings, publication patterns of U.S. academic librarians, and measures of use of library electronic resources.
I recently finished a study of prizewinning books in the humanities and social sciences. Currently, Deborah Blecic and I working on a study of patron driven acquisitions.
As Bibliographer for the Social Sciences, I select print and electronic resources that support teaching, learning, and research at UIC in the following fields: African American Studies, Anthropology, Criminology, Law and Justice, Gender & Women's Studies, Global Asian Studies, History, Latin American and Latino Studies, and Political Science. I also provide library instruction to classes in these programs. I welcome recommendations from faculty and students about resources the library should acquire, or, if free, make more readily available to our community. I also welcome any questions or concerns about the library that faculty and students may have.
I have served UIC and the library profession in several capacities. Currently, I am chair of the Undergraduate Subcommittee of the Senate Committee on Educational Policy. In previous years, I chaired the campus's Promotion and Tenure Committee and the 2007 Reaccreditation Self-Study Committee that prepared UIC's self-study for the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association.
I was editor of ACRL Publications in Librarianship and have chaired the American Library Association's (ALA) Library Research Round Table and its Committee on Research and Statistics. At present, I am chair of ALA's Fyan Award Jury.