Three questions with… Alyssa!

Our lab is growing! In our Three Questions series, we’re profiling each of our members and the amazing work they’re doing.

Today, we’re highlighting Alyssa Jeffrey, a first year master’s student in the School of Information Studies at the University of Ottawa and a research assistant at the ScholCommLab. In this interview, she shares her experiences creating open educational resources (OERs), navigating teamwork in the midst of the pandemic, and more. 

Alyssa Jeffrey in a green meadow at Windy Ridge Conservation Area, Omemee, Ontario
Alyssa at Windy Ridge Conservation Area, Omemee, Ontario

Q#1 What are you working on at the lab? 

At the lab I am a research assistant for Stefanie Haustein and am working with her and others on her Metrics Literacies project. In this project we are looking at the benefits of multimedia educational resources in education. We will be creating multimedia OERs on the topic of the h-index to experimentally test and then disseminate across the academic community, with the hope of allowing researchers and research managers to build ‘metrics literacies.’ We have presented the work in progress research at conferences and talks over the past year and are crossing our fingers for receiving funding this spring to continue on with the project!

Q#2 Tell us about a recent paper, presentation, or project you’re proud of. 

A project that I’m proud of—and that was also fun to do—is a group project from last year that we had to complete during the beginning weeks of the first lockdown in March 2020. The project was to present an idea to the Canadian Museum of History that would better their online artifact catalogue. Our team came up with what I think is a very creative solution by presenting Canada’s history geographically using maps as a platform to guide the user’s research. I’m proud of our solution to the project, but also proud of our team for having truly enjoyed the project and working together well, even at the beginning of the pandemic! 

More recently, I’m proud to have presented work from the Metrics Literacies project at the Ontario Library Association (OLA) Super Conference. I’m definitely interested in pursuing a career in librarianship and so attending the conference was wonderful. Being able to present our project there was an amazing opportunity and I’m grateful that I was able to do it.

Q#3 What’s the best (or worst) piece of advice you’ve ever received? 

I’m sure I’ve received many amazing—and not so amazing—pieces of advice over the years. But one piece has become important to things I’ve been doing recently, and I think it can apply to many areas of professional and personal life. The advice is that word of mouth is the best form of advertising. Now, I know that may sound boring, but it has always stuck with me. I honestly think it can apply to so many more situations than simply advertising. To me, more broadly, this advice seems to underline the power that lies in verbal communication between people. Power lies in people telling their stories, in people discussing things in their lives with their friends, family, and peers. And it lies in those people, in turn, passing the stories along to the people they know.

Power lies in people telling their stories, in people discussing things in their lives with their friends, family, and peers.

I think now in this very separated, online world that we’re living and working in, this advice can be beneficial for remembering how important it is to continue to make connections with others as best as possible, and to continue to tell people your stories and to listen to theirs.