Showing posts with label online courses. Show all posts
Showing posts with label online courses. Show all posts

Monday, December 28, 2015

Need Help with Research? Ask A Librarian 24/7!

Text: Ask a Librarian Rio Salado College.  Available 24/7
Need a librarian during the winter break? Check out Ask a Librarian

Available 24/7!

Get help with:
  • Starting your research
  • Searching smarter and faster
  • Finding articles, books, and media
  • Citing sources and more!

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Demo for Students New to Rio & Online Learning
New to Rio Salado College and online learning-- or thinking about enrolling?  This new demo was made for you!

Explore the options and convenience of our online learning platform and see why more than 40,000 online students have taken classes at Rio Salado College.

Start your demo now.

#onlinelearning #onlineclasses #tutorial #onlineeducation  

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

State Farm is Hiring! Take Part in Dec. 15 Job Fair

State Farm Career Fair poster.  Text available in blog post

Explore part-time and full-time opportunities in Customer Service, Sales and Auto Claims at State Farm's Career Fair, Dec. 15.

Meet with State Farm recruiters and hiring managers.

Dec. 15, 2015
10 a.m. - 1 pm.
Phoenix airport Marriott
1101 N. 44th St.
Phoenix, AZ 85008

Search State Farm jobs and apply online now at

Learn how Rio Salado's new Insurance Studies program can help you excel in this fast-growing industry! 

Enroll now, start Monday!

#‎insurance‬ ‪#‎jobs‬ ‪#‎employment‬ ‪#‎career‬

Monday, November 9, 2015

New Scholarship Oppty for Insurance Studies!

Poster for scholarship.  Image of three peopel gathered around a table.  Text: Ensure Your Future.  New Scholarship Available!

Ready to jump-start your career in the insurance industry?

Here's a new ‪scholarship‬ opportunity for you to begin Rio Salado's new ‪Insurance‬ Studies program! 

Apply now.

The Certificate of Completion (CCL) in Insurance Studies focuses on general knowledge of the insurance industry, and touches on property and liability insurance, personal insurance and commercial insurance.

Students who complete the certificate can transfer to a variety of business programs offered at Arizona's public universities.

Rio Salado College collaborated with Glendale and Mesa Community Colleges, the Maricopa Community College District  and 35 insurance professionals from 20 different insurance companies to develop the program. Learn more about the development and purpose of this program in this blog post.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

A Review of Addiction Counseling Requirements

Photo of Kirk Bowden

Rio Salado Faculty Chair of Addiction and Substance Use Disorders program Kirk Bowden published an editorial called My Big Concern for the Addiction Counseling Profession (Part II) for the summer edition of Advances in Addiction & Recovery, a professional journal published by NAADAC, the Association for Addiction Professionals.

This is a follow up to a spring 2015 editorial published by Bowden about the same subject.

image of fall Advances in Addicition and Recovery magazine

Bowden calls on state behavioral health regulatory/licensing boards to implement a requirement that behavioral health professionals have addiction-specific education and experience before practicing addiction counseling independently. Most states do not have this requirement.

Rio Salado College is one of Arizona’s top educators of addictions counseling professionals, offering online classes, certificates and an associate degree in Addictions and Substance Use Disorders.

“We have a lot of highly-qualified faculty who are experts in the field,” Bowden said. “For example, one adjunct is the author of a textbook that is used nationally and another works as a policy writer for President Obama.”

Bowden himself is well known in the field.

In addition to serving as NAADAC’s President since October 2014, Bowden, PhD, MAC, NCC, LPC, serves on the Editorial Advisory Committee for NAADAC’s Advances in Addiction & Recovery magazine. While serving in many capacities for NAADAC through the years, Kirk has also served as Chair of the Chemical Dependency Counseling Rio Salado College, Director of the Department of Professional Counseling and Addiction Studies at Grand Canyon University, President of the International Coalition for Addiction Studies Education (IN CASE), and as a steering committee member for SAMHSA’s Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT), Partners for Recovery, and the Higher Education Accreditation and Competencies expert panel for SAMHSA/CSAT.

Bowden was recognized by the Arizona Association for Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Counselors as Advocate of the Year for 2010, and by the American Counseling Association for the Counselor Educator Advocacy Award in 2013, the Fellow Award in 2014, and most recently for the Outstanding Addiction/Offender Professional Award in 2015.

For additional information about Rio Salado’s Behavioral Health/Addictions and Substance Use Disorders program, visit or call Academic Advisement at 480-517-8580.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Take Latin Classes Online This Fall

Arch of Titus in Rome, Italy
Discover the ancient language of Latin this fall at Rio Salado! 

LAT101 is available online and will cover basic grammar and vocabulary, the influence of Latin on the English language, and Latin/English translation. Students will also learn about the Roman Empire and how it has influenced our contemporary society. 

LAT102 will also be offered for students looking to further advance their Latin language abilities.

Why Choose Latin?

  • It is the root of many English words
  • Assists with learning Romance languages 
  • Help you understand a word’s origin
  • Prepares you for a variety of careers 
  • Fulfills language requirements at many universities 

Take advantage of Rio Salado’s Monday start dates and search for classes now! 

Friday, April 17, 2015

Early Childhood Open House, April 23

group of young children lie in a circle with their heads touching.

Join us for the Early Childhood & Human Development Program open house, on Thursday, April 23, at the Communiversity at Queen Creek!

The open house will provide information about our certificate and degree programs and other professional development opportunities available.

When: April 23, 2015
The Communiversity at QC
21740 S. Ellsworth Road
Queen Creek, AZ 85142

Time: 5:30 -7 p.m.

Attendees will have the opportunity to:

  • Enjoy appetizers and non-alcoholic drinks
  • Meet the Rio Salado Early Childhood and Human Development program team
  • Network with your colleagues
  • Tour our Queen Creek facilities

Please RSVP by April 21 to 
or by phone at 480-517-8818.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Summer & Fall Registration Begins Monday

Image of search engine.  Text: I'm ready to search for classes...

New students can begin registering for summer and fall 2015 classes on Monday, March 23. 

Explore our online catalog now to see which of our 600+ online classes work with your schedule.

Not enrolled yet, get started at

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Full or Cancelled Class? We Can Help.

Did you receive notice that an in-person class was cancelled or full? Need an alternative to stay on track with your program of study? We can help!

With more than 600 online classes, flexible Monday start dates, 8-week and 16-week options and credits that easily transfer-- Rio Salado is a convenient and affordable option.

The seating capacity is unlimited and we never cancel an online class—ever.

Visit or call 480-384-9959.

Friday, October 31, 2014

RSC Named a Top 40 Online Community College

Afflordable Colleges Foundation seal for 40 Top Online Community Colleges

The Affordable Colleges Foundation (AFC) just added Rio Salado to its 40 Top Online Community Colleges list for 2014.

The list is comprised by two-year schools offering the best online learning opportunities at the most affordable price. Rio Salado is listed as number 18

AFC, which is a leading resource for online learning and college affordability information, based its decision on data from thousands of community colleges across the country. You can see our college's ranking and related data on this ACF web page.

This new analysis focuses on affordability and online learning. Each community college on the list has tuition and fees less than $3,000 per year and at least 10 full online degree programs available to students.

Rio Salado is committed to making education affordable and accessible to anyone with a passion for learning.

We can help you get started right now. 


Affordable Colleges Online has an expert-driven resource guidebook for students seeking advice and information about affordable programs from community colleges that offer flexible online learning classes. It's available free of charge online. Check it out now.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Rio Salado Catalog Now Online

The new 2014-15 Rio Salado College Catalog is now online at

The catalog is a comprehensive guide to Rio Salado College’s mission, academic information, areas of study, tuition, policies, and more. It includes information on Rio Salado’s student support services, registration, financial services, educational partnerships and Maricopa Community College District-wide programs.

Check it out today!

Monday, August 13, 2012

RioLearn Showcases College's Culture of Innovation

Earlier this month, a collaboration of program developers, course designers, faculty members, web specialists, and graphic artists launched an upgraded version of Rio Salado College’s online learning management platform, RioLearn.

Not only is the updated design easier for students to navigate, it lays the groundwork for a series of planned improvements. In fact, the RioLearn team is already working on additional features like social media integration to promote a connected college experience for Rio Salado’s 41,000 online students.

According to Rio Salado College Vice President of Information Services Edward Kelty, the recently released version brings significant changes to the user interface including a more current design, streamlined navigation and integrated help screens.

"This time around we’re making a lot of very visible changes," Kelty said. "We're adding better personalization and incorporating more social elements into the system. We’re updating the user interface so it’s smoother and easier to understand, and of course we’re all very excited about the new look."

RioLearn is an LMS platform like Blackboard or Moodle, but in order to support the unique features offered by Rio Salado College, the program had to be custom built from the ground up.

"Ideally we want to build applications only when we can't find something that meets the majority of our needs," Kelty said. "RioLearn exists because no available product would do the job."

In addition to not being able to support Rio Salado's block calendar system and Monday starts, standard LMS platforms are often incompatible with the one-course-many-sections model of course development in place at the college.

"RioLearn allows for a more efficient automated course maintenance system," Kelty said. "When Rio’s faculty and instructional design team create a course, the system then automatically generates the course website and provisions all student and faculty access.”

“In a traditional LMS, typically each teacher has to create and enter their own content and then manually initiate rolling it forward each semester.  RioLearn has completely automated the process of rolling course materials forward from one semester to another,” Kelty said.

Rio Salado College, recognized as a pioneer in distance learning, began offering online courses in 1996. The RioLearn environment was introduced in 2004, and by 2006 the school had converted a majority of its classes to an online format.

“In 1996, there were no web editors. There were no systems. You just had to put it all together yourself," Kelty said. "It was fun and a very exciting time."

"Faculty member, Angela Ambrosia, and I taught the faculty how to write HTML so that they could create our first online classes," Kelty said. “The first 16 to 20 courses were written by hand by our faculty chairs."

The initial release of the RioLearn program was a significant milestone for Kelty and his team.

"I tell people it's like my wedding or birthday," Kelty joked. "The RioLearn version one release date was August 23 of 2004, and I'll never forget it."

"Obviously the process has been refined over the years," Kelty said. "We have a whole team of instructional designers working with the faculty chairs now.  We also have a course production and media teams that produce the content and multimedia objects to increase student learning and  engagement.”

Because innovation is such an essential part of the Rio Salado College culture, RioLearn was developed with an eye on the future.

Built in partnership with Microsoft and Dell, the program is both scalable and adaptable. It has been tested to support as many as 100,000 students and has the agility needed to quickly adjust to new educational products, changing legislative regulations, and advances in technology.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

EVVEC Helps Veteran Find Employment

Integrating back into civilian life can be challenging. Army Reservist Modesta Muturi was unemployed for eight months after returning from a year and a half deployment in Kuwait. After an unsuccessful job search, her husband recommended she use the career resources at the East Valley Veterans Education Center in Tempe.

“The EVVEC was my starting point for finding a job. They pointed me in the right direction and I was determined,” said Muturi.

The center offers educational, employment and workforce development workshops as well as referrals to community resources. It has served more than 700 veterans since it opened in 2011. 
“The EVVEC provided me a resume building packet with sample resumes and a step-by-step on how to build a strong resume. It was very helpful and I will continue to refer back to the packet for resume tips and coming back to the EVVEC center for assistance,” said Muturi. “It is also really helpful for putting documents together.”

Muturi was soon hired as an oral surgery assistant at Bright Now Dental in Mesa, AZ and travels all over the Valley with the company.

Also, after returning from deployment, she became a full-time student. Her new- found employment in addition to the financial assistance from her military service allowed her to pursue a higher education. Muturi also took advantage of educational resources by completing a class at Mesa Community College to satisfy nursing prerequisites.
“During my sophomore year in high school I was part of the Arizona Health Academy and worked in the Maricopa Integrated Hospital for the summer. When I was there I worked two shifts, one in the ER and one in physical therapy. That’s where my interest grew,” said Muturi.

She hopes to earn her bachelor’s and master’s in nursing. She’s currently been accepted to Grand Canyon University and the Chamberlain College of Nursing and is waiting to hear back from the nursing program at Arizona State University. She has also received a letter of recommendation from an EVVEC staff member for a scholarship. 

Muturi will continue to live a life of service with her pursuit of a medical career. Thinking about her progress in achieving her educational and career goals Muturi said, “It wouldn’t have happened without EVVEC. It would be great to have people know about it. I hope they stay here as long as they can.”

The EVVEC is a collaboration of Rio Salado College (host institution), Chandler-Gilbert, GateWay, Mesa, and Scottsdale community colleges. It is conveniently located in Tempe, at the intersection of Broadway Road and Cottonwood Drive and provides veterans with educational and career resources. For more information visit or call (480) 384-9850.

By Patricia Oliverio-Lauderdale, PR Intern at Rio Salado College
Article published in the Tempe Republic June 30

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Save a Life with CPR

Contributed by Angela Ambrosia, Ph.D.
Rio Salado College Faculty Chair of Allied Health


According to the American Heart Association, in 2011, more than 380,000 incidents of sudden cardiac arrest occurred outside of hospitals and emergency rooms. Less than eight percent of these victims survive.

Fortunately, the hope for survival increases with effective bystander Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation and the use of an Automated External Defibrillator provided at the time of the attack. In addition, four out of five cardiac arrests occur in the home, meaning a friend or family member’s life can be saved.

There is a misconception that only medical professionals need to know CPR, but learning how to properly administer CPR is vital for everyone. Because of the lack of proper training and the tendency to forget skills learned, nearly 70 percent of Americans feel helpless when administering CPR.

Rio Salado College offers three online courses in CPR; HCC109 – Basic Life Support for Healthcare providers, HES 106 – Heartsaver CPR AED and HES154 – Heartsaver First Aid CPR AED. These courses require an in-person skills assessment and provide the participant with an American Heart Association card upon completion of the course. This ensures the student’s knowledge is thorough and long lasting.

The success of the courses is evident through the students’ use of CPR during numerous real-life emergencies. In one situation, a student at Rio, was on his way to take the skills test for a CPR course and encountered an automobile accident. The student said that because of his training from Rio he had the confidence to secure the scene, call 911 and provide basic first aid to five victims involved in the accident.

Sarah Johnson, a mother of two and graduate of Rio’s CPR course, found the course to be very helpful, accessible and convenient with her busy schedule.

“If you set quiet time aside, you will get the most out of the class,” Johnson said. “Just knowing that I have the knowledge of CPR means that I don’t have to wait for someone else to get there to help.”

CPR courses at Rio Salado are not only extremely useful but also convenient. The college has offered these courses online since 2010, allowing students to become well practiced in crucial life support practices. In addition, the in-person skills assessment can be scheduled at a convenient time for the student.

For those who may not have the time to take an online course, and want to be prepared, a hands-on instructional video is available from the AHA in support of National CPR and AED Awareness Week, June 1-7.


Keep in mind that hands-only CPR, which consists of only chest compressions, has proven to be as effective as mouth-to-mouth CPR in treating adult cardiac arrest victims. Taking a few classes online or watching a video is an easy and small price to pay for the ability to save a life.

June 1-7 is National CPR & AED Awareness Week. Rio Salado will celebrate CPR awareness throughout the month and provide a Laderal™ Face Shield CPR Barrier Key Ring to students who complete their coursework. The shield prevents direct contact with the mouth, nose and face to protect the rescuer and victim.

Article published in the Tempe Republic May 30

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Rio Graduate Overcomes Obstacles

Of the 627 students who received degrees at Rio Salado’s recent commencement ceremony, perhaps none define perseverance better than Gregory Kosko.

In January of 2009, Kosko lost his job due to corporate economic cutbacks. Later that year, he was diagnosed with Essential Tremors, which later escalated into Parkinson’s disease.

“At that point, I was unemployed, disabled and discouraged,” Kosko said. “While time was not a factor, finances and the ability to physically write and type were huge obstacles.”

Kosko knew he couldn’t let his situation stand in the way of going back to school for a degree to further his re-careering options.

“I enrolled in college just out of high school but circumstances prevented me from completing,” Kosko said. “As I rolled into a job and then a career, I was constantly reminded how much more I could achieve if I would just go back and complete my college education.”

Kosko began researching his educational options and settled on Rio Salado College.

“I chose Rio Salado for three main reasons,” Kosko said. “Online courses allowed me to keep transportation costs at a minimum. Flexible start dates offered a way to manage my daily schedule, and Rio’s transfer options allowed a seamless transfer to Northern Arizona University (NAU).”
In addition, Kosko also considered Rio Salado’s Disability Services department when choosing his college.

“Disability Services, and specifically manager Terry Ferra, helped me through to the completion of each and every course,” Kosko said. “Without this assistance I simply would not have been able to return to school.”

Kosko also credits technology in helping see his academic goals become reality. He used Dragon voice recognition software to assist with taking online classes.
“My advice to others is to focus on the doors that have opened, along with the opportunities they present, and not on the doors that have closed,” Kosko said. “The past is out of your control, the future has yet to be written.”

Now the holder of an Associate in Arts degree, Kosko can focus his attention on the future, which includes further education and helping others with disabilities.

“The Parkinson's diagnosis inspired me to work with those who have disabilities because I experienced it firsthand,” Kosko said. “Until it happens to you, is almost impossible to understand its overall effect on day-to-day living. If I'm able to help just one person get through this and get on with their life, it will be well worth it.”

Kosko plans to continue his education at NAU by earning a bachelor’s degree next year, and then to pursue a master’s degree in education.

“The completion of my college degree will surely open some new doors, but returning to work was not the sole purpose behind achieving my degree,” Kosko said. “It was simply a lifelong goal and the satisfaction it brings is immeasurable.”

Published in the Tempe Republic Saturday, May 19, 2012.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

2007 Rio Salado GED Student Finishes Bachelor's Degree at ASU

Jana Easley (left) with fellow ASU Graduate
 Erica Collins
Jana Easley walked across the stage at Arizona State University's graduation ceremony earlier this month and has been accepted to the college’s master's fast track program for social work. It is an accomplishment to be proud of regardless of the circumstances, but for a high school dropout who struggled with drug addiction and abusive relationships, it is an impossible dream finally coming true.

Having received her General Education Diploma in 2007 through the Adult Basic Education department at Tempe-based Rio Salado College, Easley credits her continued success to the encouragement she received from ABE instructors. She shares her story with the hope that others will be motivated to take the first step and enroll in GED classes.

"I started my journey at a domestic violence shelter," Easley said. "At age 35, after 8 years in an abusive relationship, I was able to leave with my daughter and my life."

"My addiction to meth left me homeless and living on the streets. I had already lost my son and eventually custody of my daughter was given to her father," Easley said.

Easley was accepted into rehab through New Arizona Family Inc. (NAFI) and completed the program in four months. During this time, she tried to register GED classes at an institution in central Phoenix, but seats were limited and she was not accepted.

After 10 months sober, Easley relapsed.
"I lost everything," Easley said. "My apartment, my job, my vehicle, and I lost my daughter again."

"After a two and a half year relapse and many near death experiences, I was able to get sober again by the grace of god," Easley said. "I went back into the rooms of Alcoholics Anonymous and Crystal Meth Anonymous, got a sponsor and started working the 12 steps."

"For the first year of sobriety I worked at Kashman's Catering in Scottsdale. They gave me my first raise ever and invited me to the company Christmas party," Easley said. "It was reassuring. I was building self-confidence and was ready to tackle the GED again."

"I had heard through the grapevine that if I put a certain amount of hours in on my GED from Rio Salado College, they would pay for my first three classes at any Maricopa County Community College," Easley said. "That's what I needed to hear. I was 'all in'."

At 40 years of age, Easley cut her hours to part time and returned to the classroom.

"I spent many hours with Suzy, my GED teacher and mentor," Easley said. "Suzy had so much patience and believed in me until I believed in myself.

After her third attempt at the GED test, Easley received a late-night phone call from her instructor.

"What a moment that was," Easley said." She was actually crying when she told me. I can still hear it: 'J you passed! You're going to graduate!' I tear-up a little when I think about it."

After graduation, Easley spoke with a mentor from Rio Salado who helped her register for classes at Paradise Valley Community College.

"Rio kept their word and paid for my first three classes. I was really impressed," Easley said. "I started in the summer of 2007, by fall I entered as a full-time student and graduated in May of 2010 with my Associate degree and an acceptance letter from ASU."

Easley followed the example set by Rio Salado alumni who occasionally stopped by her GED class.

"I intended to get my bachelor's right from the start because that's what was modeled by prior students at Rio," Easley said. "They would tell us to get our GED and keep going, so that's what I'm doing!"

Easley will start a fast track program in the summer of 2013 and should earn her master's in social work by 2014.

"I celebrated six years of sobriety on March 11," Easley said. "I'm currently interning for the National Council on Alcohol and Drug Dependence for women. I want to work with women suffering from substance abuse; either one-on-one or in a group setting."

Easley said she hopes her story will encourage others to go back to school and change their own lives.

"Thinking about it could last a lifetime," Easley said. "Just do it! If one can believe, one can achieve."

Article published in the Tempe Republic May 26.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Take Summer Classes at Rio

Summer is usually a time for college students to take a break from their busy course loads and find a job or return home for a few months before the next school year begins. But now with the vast array of summer classes available for students, many of which online, the summer is also a time when students can get ahead and one step closer to earning their degree.
There are an abundance of opportunities for students to earn college credit this summer by enrolling in any one of a number of Rio Salado College classes and programs. Rio Salado offers online and in-person classes in 80 different subject areas in two separate summer sessions. This opportunity isn’t just for Rio Salado College students either. Rio course credits are transferable to any of the three in-state universities and Rio also has partnerships with a number of universities across the nation. So whether students are interested in learning about a new subject or completing that final course requirement in order to graduate, Rio has courses in everything from accounting to Japanese.
Here is a listing of some summer course options:
·         Buried Cities and Lost Tribes (ASB222): 8 and 12 weeks classes available. Learn about discoveries by researchers of lost civilizations and how they made their discoveries.
·         Introduction to Screenwriting (CRW190): 14 week classes available. Students have the opportunity to learn how to put together a movie or play script.
·         First-Year Composition (Eng 101): 8 and 16 week classes available. Students have the opportunity to develop their writing skills to write papers on a college level.
·         College Mathematics (MAT 142): 8 and 14 week classes available. Students learn basic math skills such as probability, finance and geometry.
·         Internet Marketing for SmallBusiness (SBS 220): This unique class is a part of the Small Business Management program at Rio. It teaches future Entrepreneurs how to effectively use internet marketing.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

May Excellence in Education Winner Announced

Congratulations to Valerie Segerson for receiving the May 2012 Excellence in Education award from KEZ 99.9 FM and Rio Salado College.

The Montessori teacher instructs 4th, 5th and 6th graders in her classroom at Johnson Elementary School in Mesa, Arizona. She was nominated by parent Lynn Cormier who said she feels Segerson’s enthusiasm for teaching and learning are evident in her compassion for students and the energy she puts into each day’s lesson.

“Her classroom hums with efficiency as she works to put each child on a path to being self-motivated, self-disciplined, and self-directed. She is always smiling and in an upbeat, positive state-of-mind that encourages students to do their best every day,” Cormier said. “As a parent, I applaud how proactive she is with keeping the parents informed and up-to-date on our children's performance.”

Excellence in Education is a partnership between Rio Salado College and KEZ 99.9 FM, which recognizes Valley teachers. Students and parents of students are encouraged to nominate K-12 teachers who are excellent at their profession and have gone above and beyond the call of duty to make a difference in their community.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

April Excellence in Education Winner Announced

Congratulations to Aaron McDowell, teacher at Wickenburg High School in Wickenburg, Arizona for being awarded the April Excellence in Education Award by KEZ 99.9 FM and Rio Salado College.

McDowell was nominated by student Hanna Willis who said she would not have been able to pass the required standardized math tests if it weren’t for McDowell’s dedication and willingness to go the extra mile. 

“I have been in special education since the third grade and never thought I would be able to pass the AIMS,” Willis said. “Mr. McDowell took the time to tutor me whenever I had extra time. He allowed me to come in before or after class. He also let me tutor during his prep time.”

Excellence in Education is a partnership between Rio Salado College and KEZ 99.9 FM, which recognizes Valley teachers. Students and parents of students are encouraged to nominate K-12 teachers who are excellent at their profession and have gone above and beyond the call of duty to make a difference in their community.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Library Services Save the Day (and Night!)

Starting a research assignment can be intimidating. Formulating search strategies and finding relevant, reliable sources for a paper or other project can seem overwhelming to students who have never done it before.

Rio Salado College and the Maricopa County Community College District libraries offer several services to help students navigate the library systems, find information and properly cite sources. 

Ask a Librarian
The Ask a Librarian services provide students with 24 hour access to a live librarian who can answer questions about online and in-person research tools, provide links to additional information and direct students to the proper resources.
"Rio students don't always have a traditional schedule, so they love that there is a librarian on call 24/7," said Karen Docherty, Rio Salado College librarian. "The chat service is designed to be convenient and easy to use. It doesn't matter if it's six in the morning before they go to work or 11 at night after they get the kids to bed. All that's needed is a computer and Internet access to connect to the service and start chatting with a librarian."

Txt a Librarian
Students can also contact a librarian by SMS text message. The Txt a Librarian service uses a secure third party program to anonymously connect users with a Maricopa district librarian. When a student texts "RioLib" to 66746, their phone number is converted to a Rio Salado user ID that lets the librarian respond without viewing any personal information.

"Respecting the student's privacy is really important to us," said Rio Salado Librarian Janelle Underhill. "We want students to use these services with confidence. We want them to know that we aren't collecting phone numbers or anything like that. Our only goal is to help students find the information they need."

Online Writing Lab (OWL)
In addition to 24-hour research assistance, Rio Salado students can also take advantage of the library's online writing lab

OWL provides students with a wealth of information, tips and tricks to help them write at a college level. The "Writing Rubric" section covers basic elements such as sentence structure, organization and content. Other sections like "General Writing" and "Critical Thinking" cover topics such as evaluating and citing sources, paraphrasing and quoting, as well as more advanced topics like analysis, inference, and reasoning. 

How Do I? Video Series
There are also quite a few video tutorials available in the "How Do I...?" section of the Rio Salado College Library web pages. The tutorials cover everything from basics like logging in or accessing an e-book to using library databases.

"The tutorial videos are a great tool to help students who prefer to do things independently," Underhill said. "They walk the viewer step by step through each process. They're very easy to follow."

In-Class Visits
Many course instructors invite Rio Salado librarians to visit their classes and teach students how to formulate search strategies and to use library databases to find relevant and reliable journal, magazine, and newspaper articles, books, and media (such as images and streaming films).

District Library Services
All MCCCD libraries offer free in-person, phone, Txt a Librarian and Preg├║ntele al Bibliotecario (Chat en Espa├▒ol) services. These services are available to MCCCD students, faculty and staff. To get help from a librarian now, visit