Donna Welles Find me on Instagram! By Donna Welles

I'm a member of DC Phi Beta Kappa. I graduated Phi Beta Kappa from UT-Austin with a BA in Russian, Eastern European, and Eurasian Studies. I also studied at Saint Petersburg State Polytechnic Institute in Russia. This website is about my library science degree. I live here in Washington, DC and I graduated from Catholic University of America and the Department of Library and Information Science. I earned my MSLIS. Feel free to contact me! (202) 999-7246,

Here is an updated web version of my library resume:

These are my research interests:

Collection development, Databases, Digital images, Digital libraries, Digitial curation, Dublin Core metadata scheme, Human information behavior, Human-computer interaction, Information retrieval theory and practice, Metadata, MODS metadata scheme, Organization of information, Research methods, Search engine evaluation, TEI metadata scheme, Users and uses of information systems

Library Science in Washington, DC

Here is the SOP I sent to the UWM:

This summer I completed my Masters of Science in Library and Informaion Science at the Catholic University of America here in Washington, DC. I studied digital libraries. Some of the courses that I took were Metadata, Website Architecture, Database Management, Collection Development, and Human Information Behavior. I wrote papers about the TEI metadata scheme and library interface options. I compared different metadata schemes in some of my papers. For Collection Development class I researched OPACs, discovery layers, and digital library systems. An example of the conclusions I drew is that patrons might have to conduct several consecutive searches if they are using an OPAC for their library interface. With a discovery layer interface, a patron might use fewer searches, but the searches would have more parts.
The online PhD program at the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee seems to be a great option for me so I can continue to research these topics. I have a particular interest in learning about metadata and building digital libraries with images. At the Library Juice Academy, I completed two certifications, one in digital curation and the other in cataloging and technical services.
I have had part time jobs and internships at a few academic libraries locally. For the past year I have had a remote internship at Hagerstown Community College which is in Hagerstown, Maryland. There I update the LibGuides, and I do some work with MARC records. Last summer I worked as a part time digitization librarian at the Mullen Library at Catholic University and as a part time reference librarian at the George Washington University Himmelfarb Library. Additionally, I have had internships at the Loyola Notre Dame Library in Baltimore, MD and at the University of the District of Columbia. At LNDL I worked with a team to review chat reference transcripts. At UDC I researched how the library can best review course syllabi in the context of library services and library instruction.
At Catholic University I participated in two research days, and I presented my research on chat reference and course syllabi reviews. I also participated in the 2020 Bridging the Spectrum Symposium at CUA. This spring I received the 2022 Pratt Institute DPOE-N Board Professional Development Support award, which is a continuing education grant from the Pratt Institute in New York City. I am active in the Maryland Library Association and in the MLA Association of College and Research Libraries. I have presented to that group about reviewing course syllabi as a means for libraries to improve instruction services. I am a member of DC Phi Beta Kappa.
September 20, 2022


Today I ordered my textbooks for my summer classes, LSC 672 Management and LSC 752 Design and Production of Multimedia. These are my last two classes and then my final exam. I should complete my MSLIS in August/September which is in a few months. (May 3, 2022)

Today I attended a lecture offered by the NEDCC. "10 Practical Steps for Getting Started with Digital Preservation". I was awarded $2,500 from the Pratt Institute in New York City. That was one of the classes that I am taking with the award funds. (January 27, 2022)

Today I had my internship at HCC. I am creating a Veteran's Assistance library guide. For example, today I added information about a crisis hotline. I am thoughtful about what resources I can add that would assist veterans in the area. (January 27, 2022)


Yesterday I learned I was awarded $2,500 from the Pratt Institute in New York City for library classes.
Today is the first class I am taking as a result of my Pratt Institute award. "Custom Metadata for Digital Collections: Flexing Dublin Core to Describe Distinct Digital Materials" It's an hour long lecture on zoom beginning at 1:30pm. LYRASIS is the organization offering the course and they're based in Atlanta. (January 26, 2022)


These are the classes I am going to take with the Pratt award funds:


DPOE-N Professional Development Support application approved!
144 West 14th Street | 6th Floor | New York, NY 10011-7301

Dear Donna,

I have some great news: the DPOE-N Board approved your application for Professional Development Support! Attached please find a copy of your award letter for your microgrant. Please review it and let me know if you have any questions.

In order to issue your check, we need you to provide us with a signed IRS W-9 form and some other basic information. Please refer to this secure form for how to do this. Please note that since your award amount is over $600, it is considered taxable income.

Once I receive your paperwork, you can expect a check in about 4-6 weeks. If you have the means and would like to register for your training prior to receiving your check, you are more welcome to do that and then use the funds to reimburse yourself.

We plan on Tweeting out congratulations to you as well -- if you're comfortable with that, please send us your Twitter handle if you have one. Finally, please let me know if you have any questions or concerns. Congratulations!

(January 25, 2022)

I submitted this proposal. It's the 'Presentation Proposal - 2022 Maryland Statewide Circulation Conference (Virtual)'. (November 5, 2021)

What are the tradeoffs during reference conversations when asking patrons for status and affiliation? Reference librarians should answer queries thoroughly and efficiently. What information do librarians need about the patrons who ask the questions? Is it faster to simply ask for the question? Do we need some information about the patron in order to answer the question?
Reference queries can come in several forms, including chat, in person, and phone queries. The synchronous ways might be faster, but the asynchronous ways can include more detailed reference advice. I have had internships at the Loyola Notre Dame Library in Baltimore, MD, the University of the District of Columbia, and Hagerstown Community College. This summer I had part time position at the Catholic University Mullen Library and the GWU Himmelfarb Library. At Catholic University I wrote a paper about privacy and chat reference. How much information does a reference librarian need about a patron in order to respond most effectively to reference queries? For example, at the LNDL chat reference librarians asked patrons for status and affiliation information. At the Himmelfarb Library, chat reference conversations had fewer questions about patron status. Would patrons prefer to ask reference questions anonymously?

I have been invited to present at this event next spring. It's the 2022 Maryland Library Association and Delaware Library Association Conference. My topic is how to build a digital library. The steps to get started. For example, use this camera, take these kinds of photos, ideas about discoverability, etc. (November 5, 2021)

Hi Donna,
Thank you so much for your program proposal submission for the 2022 Maryland Library Association and Delaware Library Association Conference. We received far more proposals than available program slots. While we cannot offer you a slot for an hour-long program, we think your proposal could make a fantastic ignite session. Ignite sessions are 10 minute "mini" presentations. We group five of these ignite sessions into an hour-long program, 50 minutes for the five presentations and 10 minutes for Q&A. Would you be interested in adapting "How to build a digital image collection" into an ignite session? If so, EJ Dowling, who is copied on this email, is coordinating the ignite program. Please let us know if this option would interest you.
Thank you,
Megan Sutherland
MLA Conference Committee


I submitted this abstract to the 2022 Bridging the Spectrum Symposium at Catholic University. It's about building a digital library of photographs. Digital libraries are created for educational purposes. During the Summer 2021 term at Catholic University, I created a digital library of photographs I took of the White House and the surrounding areas for LSC 612: Foundations of Digital Libraries with Dr. Youngok Choi. The collection included thirty four photographs of Lafayette Square, Farragut Square, Sherman Plaza, the Ellipse, 15th Street NW, and 17th Street NW. Ninety subject terms were used in the metadata for the purposes of discovery. For example, the Eisenhower Executive Office Building has several names, including the Eisenhower Building and the Old Executive Office Building. The intended audience for the digital library was people who might never have visited Washington, DC, or they might not have enough access to Lafayette Park such that they understand the logistics of the White House and the surrounding buildings. The statues of Alexander Hamilton and General William Sherman are included in the collection. Many of the buildings are photographed from more than one viewpoint. The metadata has details about the buildings featured in the images, but also the direction in which the photographs were taken. That morning I took over one hundred photographs but I selected thirty four. The digital objects included in the collection were photographs of recognizable monuments and locations. The photographs were of high quality and they had educational value. The formats were JPEG images that were taken with an IPhone 12. The day was during the week around lunchtime and it was sunny outside. Pedestrians could be viewed walking along the sidewalks. Tourists were viewed taking photographs of the monuments. To write the metadata records I reviewed Library of Congress metadata records of similar photos. (September 24, 2021)


This week I am interviewing for librarian positions at the DCPS. The city council approved a budget and each public school in Washington, DC will have a full time librarian. Last week I attended a job fair and this week I am interviewing with three different schools. (September 21, 2021)


Today I had my shift at the Himmelfarb Library at GWU. I work part time there. My shifts are Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday from noon to 5pm. I sit at the reference desk. Next week might be my last shift because I was hired as a temporary employee. They said maybe my time could be extended into October. (September 21, 2021)

These are the classes I am taking for my certifications from the Library Juice Academy which are a Certificate in Cataloging and Technical Services and a Certificate in Digital Curation.


Today I have my internship at the Hagerstown Community College from 8:30am to 10am. And then I'll head over to the Himmelfarb Library at George Washington University. I have a part time job as a reference librarian there. I work three days a week from noon to five. (September 17, 2021)

I am getting two certificates from the Library Juice Academy, a Certificate in Cataloging and Technical Services and a Certificate in Digital Curation. I am taking three courses this month. Each course is four weeks. For the first certificate there are eight required courses and the second one is six required courses. Right now I am taking classes about metadata, cataloging, and an intro to digital curation. The classes are pass/fail. (September 17, 2021)


Yesterday I attended a job fair. It was the DC Public Schools Job Fair. I interviewed at two elementary schools, Van Ness and Drew Elementary School. The hours would be Monday to Friday from 8am to 3:30pm. I am not sure if they will hire me. They are hiring 12 librarians though in the city for the public schools. Kevin Washburn is in charge of the librarians at the DC Public Schools. He's my friend and he organized the job fair. (September 17, 2021)

This week I am volunteering again at the District of Columbia Public Schools. My shift is Wednesday April 7 from 1:00 to 3:30p. It's at the Oyster-Adams Bilingual School. I am putting the books back on the library shelves because the floors were redone. I scan the book and then put it back on the shelf. The books right now are in boxes on the floor of the library.

I have been invited to participate in Research Day 2021 at Catholic University. It will be held on April 15.
My paper is: "Cataloging Challenges and Authorship: Single Author and Multiple Author Publications"
Here is the link to the oral presentation:
Challenges in cataloging include name order for multiple author publications and name variations in single author publications. In recent decades there has been an increase in publications with compound names, and this has resulted in an increase in cataloging errors. Scientific publications often have multiple authors because research can be collaborative. There is not a universally accepted guideline concerning authorship within scientific publications and group authorship. A review of name ordering can be used to assess research performance. It is sometimes but not always the case that the sequence of the authors in the byline indicates the contribution level of each author. Some authors might generally play a supporting role in published research. Three main determinants are the description of fractional counts, including the distribution of articles per author, the distribution of authors per article, and the probability of obtaining a particular fraction, can be used to access research performance. For example, an impact indicator can be citations and publications per scientific journal or individual scientist. Additionally, there are lists generated of total publications for a group such as a research institution. Coauthorship and affiliation information as well as publications not associated with a given author are problematic for catalogers. Authors might have published several papers jointly, but they might not have published any on their own. As the number of publications increases along with the number of researchers, there are challenges in cataloging both single author publications and multiple author publications.

Today I volunteered at the Oyster-Adams Bilingual School in Woodley Park. It's at 2801 Calvert St NW, Washington, DC 20008. I responded to an email from the DCLA listserv. Dr. Kevin M. Washburn is the Manager of Library Programs at the District of Columbia Public Schools. I put the library books back on the shelves and I entered them into the computer. They had put new floors in the school library. (March 24, 2021)

My advisor approved my degree plan. These are the classes I will take this summer and fall: LSC 612 Foundations of Digital Libraries, LSC 654 Database Management, LSC 606 Cataloging and Classification, and LSC 675 Research Methods in Library and Information Science. I am planning to take the comprehensive exam this fall. I need to meet with my advisor before I register for the fall term to go over the exam checklist. I am studying Digital Libraries in the Department of Library and Information Science. (March 5, 2021)

Last night I gave my presentation to the Medieval Studies club at Catholic University. I'm on the eBoard. We talked about Dante's Inferno and reading it as literature.
Friday February 19 was my talk to the MLA ACRL about course syllabus review projects. They asked me afterward for a quote because they are writing a news summary. This is what I sent them. "I benefit greatly from both the MLA listserv and the MLA ACRL meetings. I'm currently interning at Hagerstown Community College. It's a great time to meet with the librarians at other academic libraries. I live in Washington, DC and I am a graduate student at Catholic University. I was referred to the MLA listserv by my supervisors at the Loyola Notre Dame Library in Baltimore. I am building a network of friends and colleagues who work at the academic libraries locally." (February 26, 2021)

Today I finished a project I was working on for my HCC internship. My shifts are every Tuesday and Thursday morning. I matched 998 MARC records to a list on a spreadsheet of library materials. The spreadsheet had about 3,500 items. And so we're missing a lot of MARC records. Line 245 is the title of the book in MARC. For the most part in this project I looked at lines 245, 300, 490. [245 - Title Statement (NR), 300 - Physical Description, Field 490 contains series statements] (February 23, 2021)

Last Friday (Feb 19, 2021), I was the featured speaker at the MLA ACRL meeting. It's the Association of College & Research Libraries (ACRL) within the Maryland Library Association. "This month's ACRL MD meeting will be held on Zoom. Full access information can be found below. Our Back to (Library) School presenter this month is Donna E. Welles. Donna is currently a student at Catholic University and interning at the William M. Brish Library at Hagerstown Community College. She will be sharing with us details about her syllabus review project. Agenda: Introductions, Presidents Report, Vice President/ Conference Report, Back to School Presenter and discussion: Donna E. Welles, Catholic University - Syllabus Review Project, If you are a current library school student or graduate interested in presenting during our Back to Library School series, submit your interest here!"

Every Tuesday and Thursday morning I have an internship at Hagerstown Community College. For my internship we've been reformatting the resource guides. Now I'm going through and changing the database URLs from http:// to https:// so they're secure sites. It's a lot of URLs because there are thousands of websites available in the library catalog. (January 27, 2021)

Yesterday classes started for the Spring 2021 term at CUA. I am taking LSC 635 and LSC 650 which are both website development classes. Also, I am on the eBoard of the Medieval Studies club at CUA. I am presenting to the group about Dante's Inferno on Thursday February 25.

Last week I began my internship at HCC. I am rearranging LibGuides at the community college. I have finished with the biology and chemistry LibGuides and the changes that I made are being reviewed by the library staff. (December 9, 2020)

I have exciting news. In December I will begin an internship at Hagerstown Community College. I'll work every Tuesday and Thursday morning from 9am - noon. I'll do different things they need at the library. I sent out a query to the Maryland Library Association listserv and they responded that they could use an intern. (November 17, 2020)

"Congratulations! I am pleased to inform you that your submission #30 'UDC Library Syllabus Review Project' for the '2021 Bridging the Spectrum Symposium' has been accepted as a poster presentation." Today I learned that my research has been accepted by the committee so I can participate in another event. I participated in Research Day 2020 at Catholic University. This is a similar event. Here is my abstract. The 2021 Bridging the Spectrum Symposium will be on February 19, 2021. The University of the District of Columbia Library is conducting a literature review and will undertake a syllabus review project to identify opportunities for expanding information literacy instruction and assess library collections. Meghan Kowalski, the Outreach and Reference Librarian, Cathy Meals, Assessment Librarian, and Donna Welles have investigated models for reviewing course syllabi. A syllabus analysis study might look for (1) the presence of library use, and (2) information literacy learning outcomes. The first step in any syllabus review is to determine if any library use is required. The syllabi can be scaled for more and less library use. The syllabi are coded for the presence of six themes using a three-indicator scale, not present, implied, or explicitly stated. Reviewers have options about either creating codes from the text of the syllabi, or they can create a rubric and assess each syllabus with the rubric. (November 16, 2020)

This morning was the final meeting for my internship at UDC. I completed a 20-week literature review about syllabus review projects. We are wanting to review course syllabi for information literacy objectives. The UDC library staff can better assist the faculty if they have a sense about which courses are heavy on information literacy. Often syllabus review projects create a rubric or there are codes made from the text of the syllabi. These two articles helped a lot to create a model for reviewing course syllabi: Beuoy, M., & Boss, K. (2019). Revealing instruction opportunities: a framework-based rubric for syllabus analysis. Reference Services Review, 47(2), 151-168. and Boss, K., & Drabinski, E. (2014). Evidence-based instruction integration: a syllabus analysis project. Reference Services Review, 42(2), 263-276. (November 16, 2020)

Today our third assignment for LSC 615 Metadata was due. For the first assignment I compared three metadata schemes, Dublin Core, MODS, and TEI. TEI is used for the humanities and the other two are used across disciplines. MODS is the Library of Congress metadata scheme. Today's assignment had us use OpenRefine which is a web application. We submitted twenty complete MODS metadata records. OpenRefine lets you convert a spreadsheet and a template into several metadata records. (November 9, 2020)

I am about to complete a 20-week internship at the University of the District of Columbia. We're conducting a literature review. We're looking for the best ways to review course syllabi and to assess different opportunities for information literacy. I found several studies. The librarians sometimes begin with codes they create from the text of the syllabi. Another way is to create a rubric and the librarians can assess the course syllabi based on the rubric. The Association of American Colleges and Universities as well as the Association of College and Research Libraries maintain frameworks for information literacy. The syllabi can be compared to these standards by the librarians. (November 6, 2020)

Today I am working on my practicum for LSC 615 Metadata. I am editing metadata about watercolors. The 500s are the note fields. I am breaking apart the notes into different kinds of notes. For example, if there is an inscription that will be in a different cell and if the art was a part of an exhibit then that would be in a different cell. The metadata begins in a spreadsheet and the information is moved from left to right until the note fields are filled appropriately. (November 9, 2020)

I volunteer at the DC Public Library. Last fall I began at the Shaw (Watha T. Daniel) Neighborhood Library and I assisted with children's book club on Tuesday mornings. Now I am an on call volunteer and I go where they send me. Stacey Lucas is the Volunteer Coordinator at the DC Public Library. This spring (January - April 2020) I had an internship at the Loyola Notre Dame Library in Baltimore, MD. I worked with a team of librarians to analyze chat transcripts. We reviewed the ask a librarian chat transcripts from January, February, and March 2019.

I am participating in a practicum for my LSC 615 Metadata research component. The practicum allows me to work on the metadata for watercolors included in an art collection. It's at the Oak Spring Garden Foundation and I am working with Melissa Harris who is a CUA alumnus. The practicum is 50 hours and then I'll write a short essay to present the experience to my classmates. My professor in LSC 615 is Dr. Jane Zhang. (November 6, 2020)

My degree program is digital libraries. I am currently enrolled in LSC 551 Organization of Information and LSC 615 Metadata. Dr. Sue Syn is my advisor. I have already taken LSC 553, LSC 555, LSC 557, and LSC 641. I am registered to take LSC 635 and LSC 650 in Spring 2021. The Department of Library and Information Science awarded me the Kortendick Scholarship for the 2020 academic year. I am on the E-Board of the Medieval Studies Club at Catholic University. I participated in Research Day 2020 and I presented my research on virtual reference.

Catholic University has great classical studies texts. I compared Latin dictionaries for a paper in LSC 553. The Mullen Library has print editions of Latin dictionaries and a large electronic database. The databases are used to translate Latin texts into English. They are impressive because the Latin words would need to be very specific. In the modern age it's not always clear how to catalog texts because either the names are complex or the papers are written by groups of people. I submitted my research paper for LSC 551. It is about challenges in cataloging based on authorship.

For LSC 557 I wrote a paper on Melvil Dewey. He was from New York. His parents owned a store and so he developed the DDC because it could facilitate large libraries and libraries in several states. He went to school in New England. He researched industry in New England and New York which helped him author the DDC. Dewey was influential when the state library associations were founded. I am today a member of the DCLA and the MLA. Dewey was for a while the head of the NYLA in Albany.

These are the columns in my LSC 615 Metadata practicum. I am working on metadata related to watercolors. OSGF Call number, 100: Main Entry- $a Personal Name, 100: Main Entry-Personal Name- $d Dates associated with a name., 110: Main Entry-$a Corporate Name, 245: $a: Title Statement-Title, 245:Title Statement- $b Remainder of Title, 245: Title Statement-$f Inclusive dates, 245: Title Statement-$h Medium, 260: Publication, Distribution, etc. (Imprint)- $a Place of publication, distribution, etc;, 300: Physical description- $a Physical Description, Etc. Fields - General Information, 300: Physical description- $b Other pysical details such as illustrative matter, coloration, etc., 300: Physical description- $c Dimensions (cm.), 500: Note Fields - General Note, 500: Note Fields - General Note, 500: Note Fields - General Note, 510:Citation/Reference Note- $a Name of Source, 510:Citation/Reference Note- $c Location within source (page number, etc.), 561: Ownership and Custodial History:, 585: Exhibition Notes, 590: Local Note, 650: Subject Added Entry--$a Topical term or geographic name entry element.

Here are some of my papers!

Library Interface Recommendation for LSC 641:
"The Catholic University Mullen Library Search Box in the Context of OPACs, Discovery Layers, and Digital Libraries"
Metadata Schema Comparison Assignment for LSC 615:
"Dublin Core, MODS, and TEI Metadata Schemes"
Research Paper for LSC 557:
"Privacy as Anonymity in Virtual Reference"
Research Paper for LSC 555
"The Virtual Reference Service and its Impact on Library Information Science"
Information Source Analysis for LSC 553:
"Information Source Analysis: Three Latin Dictionaries"
Research Paper for LSC 551:
"Cataloging Challenges and Authorship"

Donna 11
Donna Self