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Laura Burt-Nicholas

Associate Professor/Science Librarian
Laura Burt-Nicholas's picture
Laura Burt-Nicholas
SRC 3111


  • 2016 Educational Research Methodology Certificate, University of Illinois at Chicago
  • 2005 MLS and M.A. in History, Indiana University - Bloomington
  • 2002 B.A. in History and English, Northern Michigan University, 2002

Work Experience

  • 08/2013--present, Reference Librarian at the College of DuPage Library
  • 05/2010--08/2013, Head of Instruction at North Park University
  • 09/2005--05/2010, Reference and Instruction Librarian at North Park University

Publications & Presentations


  • “Making Research Real: Focusing on Community-based Sustainability,” Focus on Educating for Sustainability: Toolkit for Academic Libraries. Library Juice Press, February 2014.
  • Review of Mentoring In The Library: Building For The Future by Marta K. Lee. Public Services Quarterly 8, no. 1 (2012): 64-65.
  • Review of Library Mashups: Exploring New Ways to Deliver Library Data by Nicole C. Engard, ed. Public Services Quarterly 6, no. 4 (2010): 274-375.
  • Review of Protecting Intellectual Freedom in Your Academic Library by Barbara Jones. Public Services Quarterly 5, no. 4 (October 2009): 275-276.
  • Review of Designing the Digital Experience: How to Use Experience Design Tools and Techniques to Build Web Sites Customers Love by David Lee King. Public Services Quarterly 5, no. 3 (2009) 203-4.
  • “Vivian Harsh, Adult Education, and the Library's Role as Community Center,” Libraries and the Cultural Record 44, no 2 (2009) 234-255. Review of Web 2.0 for Librarians and Information Professionals by Elyssa Kroski. Public Services Quarterly 5, no. 1 (2009) 52-53.
  • Review of Library 2.0 and Beyond: Innovative Technologies and Tomorrow’s User ed. by Nancy Courtney. Public Services Quarterly 4, no. 3 (2008) 247-248.
  • The Changing Faces of Liberty: Interpretations of the Statue of Liberty, co-authored with John Bodnar, Jennifer Stinson, and Barbara Truesdell. (National Park Service manuscript).


  • October 2018, “Fake Science: Training Students to Critically Read Research Articles,” with Beth Kirkpatrick, Forward Focus Conference, Peoria, IL. Sept 2016.
  • “They Said What? Designing and Implementing an Ethnographic Study for Your Library,” with Derrick Willis, Forward Focus Conference, Peoria, IL. March 2016.
  • “Studying Up: Designing an Ethnographic Research Study and Marketing Library Spaces and Services to Students,” with Derrick Willis, IACRL Conference, Rosemont, IL. June 2013
  • Poster Presentation, “Plastics Recycling: A Service Learning Project in the Undergraduate Organic Chemistry Curriculum, with North Park University and the City of Chicago as Community Partners,” with Kaitlin Dailey and Isabel Larraza, 43rd National Organic Chemical Symposium, Seattle. May 2013.
  • “The MOOC and The Library: How Massive Online Only Courses Could Change the Future of Library Instruction,” LOEX Conference, Nashville, TN. October 2011.
  • “Vivian Harsh and Bronzeville: The Library’s Role in Fostering Community,” Professor Barry Chad’s library science class, University of Pittsburgh. Spring 2010.
  • co-presented “Tutorials for Everyday Information Literacy,” with Ken Orenic, Aimee Walker, and Marissa Walstrum at the Illinois Information Literacy Summit at Moraine Valley Community College . July 2009.
  •  “Vivian Harsh: Community Educator and Librarian,” Professor Sheryl Nichin-Keith’s library science class, Dominican University. February 2009.
  • “Beyond a Virtual Center: Infusing Collaboration in a Silo Institution,” co-lead with Carol Martin, Director of the Writing Center at NPU, Chicagoland Writing Tutors in Collaboration, Chicago, IL. November 2008.
  • “Research as Writing Process: A Library/Writing Center Collaboration,” co-lead with Carol Martin, International Writing Centers Association Conference, Las Vegas, NV. July 2007.
  • “Library 2.0, Librarian Research, and Blogs: Professional Changes,” Professor Sheryl Nichin-Keith’s library science class, Dominican University. March 2007.
  • Roundtable Discussion “What Academic Librarians Can Learn from Public Librarians and Vice-Versa,” co-lead with Uri Toch, Schaumburg Township District Library, ACRL Conference, Baltimore, MD January 2007.
  • “Online Communities and Academia: Research in the Age of Web 2.0,” North Park University Faculty Retreat presentation, Covenant Harbor. October 2004.
  • “Celebrating Freedom, Celebrating the Statue: Statue of Liberty Commemorations,” Daughters of the American Revolution Centennial, Bloomington, Indiana chapter.

Special Projects

IMLS Grant

See the results pf the IMLS Grant ethnography that I completed with COD anthropology professor Derrick Willis

Internal COD projects: 

Courses Taught

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  • List courses taught (Link as appropriate)

My Guides

Recommended Titles

Football for a Buck

From a multipleNew York Times bestselling author, the rollicking, outrageous, you-can't-make-this-up story of the USFL. The United States Football League--known fondly to millions of sports fans as the USFL--was the last football league to not merely challenge the NFL, but cause its owners and executives to collectively shudder.

The Library Book

 On the morning of April 29, 1986, a fire alarm sounded in the Los Angeles Public Library. As the moments passed, the patrons and staff who had been cleared out of the building realized this was not the usual fire alarm.  The fire was disastrous: it reached 2000 degrees and burned for more than seven hours. By the time it was extinguished, it had consumed four hundred thousand books and damaged seven hundred thousand more. Investigators descended on the scene, but more than thirty years later, the mystery remains: Did someone purposefully set fire to the library--and if so, who?

Recipes for Science

There is widespread recognition at universities that a proper understanding of science is needed for all undergraduates. Good jobs are increasingly found in fields related to Science, Technology, Engineering, and Medicine (STEM), and science now enters almost all aspects of our daily lives. For these reasons, scientific literacy and an understanding of scientific methodology are now a foundational part of any undergraduate education (and not just the education of science majors). Recipes for Science provides an accessible introduction to the main concepts and methods of scientific reasoning.

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