SJPL Database Delight Training

Archive for April 2010

Learning Express offers hundreds of online practice tests, PDF eBooks, skill building courses, and job search and workplace skills resources.  This database is the place to go for career tests especially if your library does not have a particular test book or you have an outdated print version.

Go to SJPL Articles and Databases. From outside the library log in with a San Jose Public Library card number and PIN.  First time users need to create an account. It’s very easy- just pick a username and password.  Once users have an account they can take practice tests online, finish the test later and get it scored at the end.  The nice thing is that the test answers are also explained.

There are 11 Learning Centers offered, which are the gateways to tests & other resources in a particular area:

  • Elementary School
  • Middle School
  • High School
  • College Preparation
  • College Students
  • GED Preparation
  • Job Search & Workplace Skills
  • Jobs & Careers
  • Skill Building for Adults
  • U. S. Citizenship
  • Recursos para hispanohablantes (Resources for Spanish speakers)

Some examples of the great content in this resource are:

  • Practice Tests for SAT, ACT, High School Entrance, TOEFL, Commercial Drivers License, and Citizenship
  • All tests provide scores and answer explanations
  • A resume course with the ability to create, save, and print a PDF resume
  • Ability to search for a specific test using search box
  • Tests can be started, saved, and finished later

Discovery Exercise:

  1. Register for a Learning Express account
  2. Add Creating a Great Resume to your My Center then skip to the  Putting It All Together section and add Heading Information to your resume.
    1. Hint: Find this course under Job Search & Workplace Skills–>Job Search, Resumes, and Interviewing–>Creating Great Resumes and Cover Letters–>Creating a Great Resume
  3. Use the search box to find the LSAT and add one practice exam to your My Center
  4. Check out the Help links.

Don’t forget to leave a comment below to register your participation, and then go bid on a prize!


Are you and your customers frustrated by software upgrades? CustomGuide Online Software Training can help restore your confidence!

CustomGuide gives online training modules in computer basics and software. Tutorials are self-paced and let you track your own progress. Modules include:  Microsoft Office Products (97-2007( Access, Word, Powerpoint, Excel, Outlook); Operating Systems (Windows, Vista, XP Mac OS X Tiger); Quickbooks and Sharepoint

All users (inside and outside the library) will first need to create an account using an email address and password

Discovery Exercise:

  1. Go to SJPL Articles and Databases and click on the Custom Guide Training  Link (under Computers and Technology)
  2. Create an account using your email address and password.
  3. Choose a course* from the list on the left hand side.  (suggestion: Computer Basics or Office 2007: What’s New.)
  4. Choose a lesson (middle right hand side) from the first chapter. You have the following options:
    • Answer assessment question. If you pass, you “testout”;  go to the next lesson.
    • Complete a short online tutorial, then answer an assessment question
    • Go Ref (Tutorial Reference), read, then answer an assessment question.

       5.     Go  back to Home and look at “My usage summary”

  *Before starting a course, you may wish to print out a Quick Reference Guide  (separate website), or look at the “Getting Started Quick Reference” at the  Custom Guide Home Page.

 Don’t forget to leave a comment below to register your participation, and then go bid on a prize!

SJPL’s subscription to not only covers live homework help for academic subjects but also features resources for adult learners and job seekers.

The Adult Education and Career Center links to worksheets, tutorials, videos, study guides on: Mathematics, Science, English, Social Studies (elementary to community college level), standardized tests preparation (ASVAB, GED, GRE, etc. ), citizenship, financial literacy, helping children with homework, job openings, job resources, resumes and cover letters. When you point a customer to Learning Express, also suggest SkillsCenter Resource Library.

Navigation and Orientation:

Go to SJPL Articles and Databases.  You’ll find the sites under  Education, Careers, & Testing. The SkillsCenter Resource Library is also accessible on the SJLibrary website through (1) Ask a Librarian: Live Homework Help  (click on Live Homework Help) and (2)  SJPL Research Guides: Employment. (Click on Career Center) Users outside SJPL libraries will need to sign in with barcode and pin number.

  1. On the page Welcome to the  …, scroll down the page and click on the link “watch our demo video.”
  2. Go back to the site
  3. Select Adult Education and Career Center Tab (above the welcome message) if not already in the Adult Education and  Career Center.

Discovery exercises (Live Tutor).

Select a Live Tutor category.    If the Live Tutor option is:

  • Available — explore the various options with the drop down menus for questions.
  • Not available — explore the suggested SkillsCenter Resources.

Discovery exercises (SkillsCenter).

Try these with and without the search engine. (Search engine is not intuitive – may need to browse categories)

  1. Look for  e-resumes
  2. Look for Nursing Examinations
  3. Look for GRE (Graduate Record Examination) materials.
  4. Explore the websites under  “job openings”

Don’t forget to leave a comment below to register your participation, and then go bid on a prize!

World Book Student, the redesigned and upgraded version of World Book Online Reference Center, includes the articles of the World Book Encyclopedia, a Biography Center, dictionary, atlas, an extensive multimedia collection, thousands of editor-selected Web sites, correlations to curriculum standards, and much more.  Articles, links and activities of use to parents  and school age children, grade 6 & up.  Educators Tools includes correlations from World Book content to state curriculum, links to lesson plans and activities, and professional education links.

World Book Student

  • Includes both Basic & Advance search screens.
  • Search for IMAGES & VIDEOS by title or in the atlas.
  • Search for CONTENT by subject, alphabetically, or in the dictionary.

World Book Kids, also available to SJPL customers has similar content is similar to World Book Student,  is more appropriate for  children, Grade 3 to 6  and uses pictures along with the search function to locate information.

World Book Student and World Book Kids are accessible inside SJPL libraries and outside of the library with a San Jose Library card number and PIN.  (Also accessible from the OPAC computers, though you cannot save or print from these PCs.)

World Book Customer Training is also available.

Discovery Exercises:

  1. Find a map showing the volcanoes which make up the Ring of Fire
  2. Sanaa is the capital of what country?

Don’t forget to leave a comment below to register your participation, and then go bid on a prize!

Welcome to Week 1 of the San Jose Public Library Database Delight staff training program! Congratulations on deciding to participate in this self-paced online learning opportunity! Not only will you come away armed with the title Database Supreme Master, but you can win some nifty stuff in the process! So, without further ado, let me introduce the first week’s database: our EBSCOhost collection.

EBSCOhost Research Databases let users read popular newspapers, journals, and magazines cover to cover on line for free. This is SJPL’s mega-database with the most resources, a one-stop-shop site for article content for any level of expertise. In addition to Visual Search option (a neat visual representation of related search terms), advanced and basic searches are available. Over 300 full text and secondary databases are available via EBSCOhost, allowing cross searching for articles from 1975+ on a wide range of topics including business, computers, current events, economics, education, environmental issues, health care, hobbies, humanities, law, literature and art, politics, science, social science, sports, technology.

MyEBSCOhost lets you customize your favorite resources and interface options. You can also set up alerts for specific search terms or journals and be notified when a new entry is posted.

One-click refining options help you narrow your results in a variety of ways: by Publication Year, Source Types, Subject, Company, and Publication Name. You can also sort results by article publication date (though only in descending order), or rank results by relevance. I find relevance ranking especially useful when combined with limiting by year of publication.

Other Tabs at the top of the interface give quick access to more options: thesauri and subject headings, publications lists, images, online videos, company profiles, movie reviews, dictionaries, and language options.

EBSCOhost is accessible from SJPL public computers and outside of the library with a San Jose Library card number and PIN. (Also accessible from the OPAC computers, though you cannot save or print from these PCs.) Use the Save to Folder option to select, and temporarily save, articles from your search results. Folder items will be lost when you close your session unless you use the MyEBSCOhost feature. You can email copies of your Folder items to yourself in a variety of citation formats.

Online Flash and PowerPoint Tutorials and Online Training Courses are available from EBSCO.

1. Find, using Basic Search, an article or press release which helps you figure out where to purchase a copy of the 2009 Top Legal Process Outsourcing (LPO) Vendors.

2. Find a 2009 article discussing the response by the American Library Association (ALA) to potential rule changes to the federal E-rate program.

3. Locate and browse the most recent issue of Science News for Kids. (One method is to use the Publications Tab and search for the title in the Science Reference Center Publications listing. ) This feature is super useful and under-utilized right now, so please give it a try.

Don’t forget to leave a comment to register your participation (the Comments link is under the title of this post).  Tell us your name and unit/branch, as well as any comments, questions, suggestions, or ideas you have about the database.  Feel free to let us know what you think about the resource, including if there are questions you think the resource should answer but doesn’t, or features you wish it had, or problems you had navigating around–anything!

Then go bid on a prize!  To comment on Flickr to bid you will need to log in to Flickr.  If you do not have your own Flickr account, please use the general “sanjoselibrary” Flickr log-in.  That log-in and password info is on the Web & Digital Services page of the intranet (as is an easy one-click log-in!), or just ask a colleague for the log-in and password.

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What You Can Win