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Diamond's Hidden Gems

Diamond’s Hidden Gems – Downtown

Depending on your major, it is possible that you may have to take classes away from the UCF main campus. As a Hospitality Management student, for example, once you are accepted into the program, most of your degree classes will be located at the Rosen campus. As students of these alternative campuses, you have access to their respective resources.

I intend to introduce you to each campus library. In this part, we will be discussing UCF’s Downtown campus and the Addition Financial Downtown Campus Library. Similar to the UCF main library, the Addition Financial Downtown Campus Library provides important services to students, faculty, and staff.

Services include:
– Checkout of books, DVDs, and course reserves
– Access to electronic resources, including databases, journals, and more
– Printing, copying, and scanning // IT support and Tech lending
– Research assistance via consultations, online chat, phone, text or email
– Borrowing from other libraries via Interlibrary Loan
– Library Instruction and access to subject librarians

As always, students must have their ID to make use of these resources!

The Addition Financial Downtown Campus Library is located on the 2nd floor of the Dr. Phillips Academic Commons. The library is closed on the weekends. During the Fall and Spring, the Downtown Library is open Mondays – Thursdays from 8 am to 9 pm and Fridays from 8 am to 5 pm. During the Summer semester, the library is open Mondays – Thursdays from 8 am to 7 pm and Fridays 8 am to 4 pm.

If you have any questions, you can reach library staff by email at or by calling 407-235-3720.

If you’d like to learn more about the Downtown Campus and Library, please visit “Diamond’s Hidden Gems – Downtown” in STARS!

Hitt Maker Podcast Studio Banner

Debut of the Hitt Maker Podcast Studio: Meeting the Evolving Needs of Students and Faculty

As part of its ongoing commitment to providing cutting-edge spaces tailored to the evolving needs of its community, the John C. Hitt Library has unveiled its latest addition: the Hitt Maker Podcast Studio. This innovative space, located on the 2nd floor, is designed to cater to the growing demand for a space for podcast production among UCF students, faculty, and staff, further solidifying the Libraries’ role as a hub for creative exploration and collaboration. 

Equipped with state-of-the-art audio and video recording technology, the Hitt Maker Podcast Studio offers users the opportunity to easily capture both audio and video recordings of their podcasts. With features like the Rodecaster Pro II audio production mixer and the ATEM Mini Pro ISO video mixer, users can effortlessly adjust microphone levels, apply effects, and switch between multiple cameras or HDMI sources for a seamless recording experience. 

Hitt Maker engineering station showing audio board, camera controls and Mac recording station

The studio can accommodate anywhere from one to four individuals in recordings, and up to seven in the room, making it ideal for group discussions or interviews. Additionally, users can utilize the space for recording voice-overs for video projects, enhancing its versatility. To facilitate smooth operation, the equipment is designed to be controlled by a producer or individual not participating in the podcast, allowing users to focus on their content creation. 

Celebrate UCF Libraries 2024 Research Incentive Award Sara Duff

Sara Duff Granted 2024 UCF Research Incentive Award

The UCF Libraries is proud to share that Sara Duff was selected as a recipient for the 2024 UCF Research Incentive Award (RIA). This annual award recognizes the outstanding impact of UCF faculty’s research, creative and scholarly output. As part of UCF faculty, many UCF librarians engage in research, creative, or scholarly activities while striving for excellence in supporting the library mission. Two other librarians won the RIA in previous years.

Sara joined UCF Libraries in 2017 as the Acquisitions & Collection Assessment Librarian. She has consistently provided outstanding collection services in investigating and acquiring library resources, such as textbooks and streaming video for classes, to directly support UCF’s academic mission. In 2022, Sara was awarded the Excellence in Librarianship. Sara is an avid reader and passionate about sharing knowledge to the library profession. She conducts research informed by her library work. The research results have been turned into books, articles, and presentations. 

In 2020, Sara co-authored a Routledge book with another librarian Tina Buck, Guidance for Librarians Transitioning to a New Environment. They surveyed librarians from a few countries working at different types of libraries. Their research findings demystify the perceived barriers between various types and environments of librarianship and provide a roadmap for successful transitions across the library types. The book has received international accolades and already been added to over 127 libraries in 19 countries.

Two years later in 2022, Sara co-edited Zines in Libraries: Selecting, Purchasing, and Processing, a book published by the American Library Association. This title becomes one of the only two books sharing best practices in building library zines collections. It earned favorable reviews from Choice, Booklist, Library Resources & Technical Services, and Technicalities.

In addition to authorship in books, Sara has maintained a productive and consistent research record by contributing to articles to peer reviewed journals and presentations to conferences on library collection services. Several examples of her past research include evaluating different electronic acquisition models, acquiring textbooks to enable affordability, open access, analyses of new workflow. All topics represent current trends in libraries and have generated extensive interest.

Congratulations to Sara Duff!

AIM High

The Library Celebrates the 2024 AIM High Awardees 

Each year, UCF recognizes faculty across UCF who have made outstanding efforts to make their required course materials affordable. Provost Johnson presents the two AIM High Impact Awards, and the Knights’ Choice Award is presented by SGA. 

The 2024 AIM High Individual Award winner is Christian Beck, Associate Lecturer in the Department of English. Through collaborations with librarians and instructional designers, they created two open educational resources (OER). The first OER is Introduction to Medieval Literature for ENL 2012. The second OER is Introduction to World Literature for LIT 2110. Together, using these OERs instead of traditional textbooks have saved students approximately $90,000 since 2017. Our librarians Sarah Norris, Lily Dubach, and John Venecek supported Christian’s project, in collaboration with instructional designers Aimee deNoyelles and John Raible. 

As Christian Beck and other award winners shared insights during the panel at the AIM High event, he was asked what advice he would give to other professors looking to use more affordable course materials. Christian responded, “Talk to your librarians!” 

The 2024 AIM High Impact Group Award winner is the Biology Department. For their high enrollment BSC2010 and BSC2011 courses, they adopted the Biology 2e OER from OpenStax, making these gateway courses have zero textbook costs for students. Formerly, these courses assigned textbooks that were approximately $300. The group acknowledged instructional designer Jim Paradiso for his support through their project. 

The 2024 Knights Choice Award winner is Dr. Robert Borgon, Associate Professor in the Burnett School of Biomedical Sciences. He has adopted library-sourced materials and First Day discount textbooks for his BCH 4024 and BSC 3403 courses. Luci Blanco, SGA Director of Academic Progress, represented students on the panel and shared, “It goes to show that students recognize the work that goes into this.” 

Contact Us 

For faculty interested in exploring affordable course materials, please reach out to our textbook affordability librarian, Lily Dubach, or your subject librarian to get started. You can also have us check if your textbook is available as a library eBook by using the eTextbook Check/Request Form

UCF Libraries table at the 2024 AIM High event.
Left: Learning Resources Librarian, Joe Bizon.
Right: Lily Dubach, Textbook Affordability Librarian.
Diamond's Hidden Gems

Diamond’s Hidden Gems – Research Consultations

The University of Central Florida places a lot of emphasis on research for faculty and students alike. While the UCF Library has an abundance of resources available for student use, there is an underused research-minded service that many of us can benefit from.

Offered by UCF Librarians, you can sign up for a research consultation. Read on below to figure out what these meetings consist of and how you can sign up for one!

A Research Consultation is a one-on-one appointment with a librarian for extensive, in-depth research assistance.

The most efficient way to set up an appointment is to request a specific subject librarian. Subject librarians are essentially UCF librarians who specialize in a designated discipline, like computer science, nursing, photography, and so much more. These librarians are the most familiar with subject-relevant resources and thus are beneficial in providing instruction support for researchers.

You can schedule a research consultation by navigating to the appointment page and filling out the designated form.

Some things to keep in mind:
– Weekend appointments are not available
– Consultations are generally conducted face-to-face, but distance learners may be accommodated via telephone, online chat, or email.
– Please allow at least 48 hours for requests to be processed
– To accommodate entire classes, request an instruction session here:

If you have any questions, feel free to ask for help in person at the Research & Information Desk, or call/chat using the Ask Us service.

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