Chemical Literature, Volume 11, Number 1, Spring 1959 Page: 1
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Vol. 11, No. 1
A little over a year ago, at the special Division
meeting in Pittsburgh, we talked about the future of the
Division. We set ourselves high goals: better Division
programs to appeal to both laboratory and literature
chemists; improvement of data-handling and. communication
techniques among chemists; instruction in
chemical literature in all A.C.S. accredited schools;
and more knowledge among ourselves and others about
the value of literature information work.
I wish I could report to you, in all honesty,
that we are well on our way to achieving all these aims
and "New Horizons". We are not. But we have made a
few beginnings which I want to tell you about.
Since programs are our main concern (as they
are for all Divisions of the American Chemical Society)
two new interim committees have been charged with
different aspects of program improvement: The Advisory
Committee on Program Policy (Chairman: J. W. Perry)
is charged with the task of studying our past and
present programs and recommending future program
policy. This is the sort of thing which the Program
Committee cannot easily do, because it is too busy
planning current programs. We do not expect quick
results from this new committee- but we do expect a
long-range policy to emerge which will assure some
continuity in our program planning in spite of the annual
change of program chairman which is mandatory under
the new by-laws.
The Papers Review Committee (Chairman:
Gerald Jahoda) is intended to help improve the quality
of papers presented before the Division. This committee
reviewed papers presented at the general sessions in
Chicago last September and will also do so for the
1959 meetings. After that, we shall review the results
of this experiment and decide whether it is worth
continuing. Review of papers before presentation does
create a problem for authors, since they must submit
their papers at an earlier deadline.
Closely related to the problem of planning
programs and other Division activities is the question
of knowing just what each Division member expects to
get out of Division membership and what talents he or
she, in turn, has to contribute. John Kyle is chairman
of a committee to establish a file of the activities and
interests of individual Division members. He will
doubtless be calling on all of you shortly for information.
To help our fellow A.C.S. members in the
problem of communication at A.C.S. meetings, we now
have a Committee on Paper Presentation (Chairman:
David N. Collins). The first task of this interim committee
is to find out what is already being done within
the A.C.S. to improve the quality of oral presentation
of papers and what, if anything, this Division can
Thinking further ahead, Division members feel
strongly that all chemists should receive instruction
in the effective use of the chemical literature as part
of their college education. We agreed last year that the
present state of instruction in this area should be
surveyed, possibly in cooperation with the Division of
Chemical Education, and that possibly the A.C.S. might
be urged to make some form of instruction in chemical
literature (and the availability of an adequate collection
of reference material) a requirement for accreditation.
So far, we have received no definite expression of
opinion from the Division of Chemical Education on
this matter. I hope that we shall be able to make some
progress on this in 1959.
A small step toward promoting better understanding
of the value of chemical literature work is
the establishment of a Speakers Bureau, headed by
Dr. M. G. Mellon. So far, only a few people have offered
to speak, however, and, as far as I am aware, there
have been no speeches yet. I know that Dr. Mellon
would like to hear from any of you who would like to
speak to local A.C.S. sections or other groups about
information work-or recommend someone else as a
There also remains the more immediate problem
of disseminating information on advances in chemical
documentation or, to be more specific, the perennial
problem of getting the papers presented before this
Division into print. The Committee on Division
Publications, an outgrowth of the former "Journal Study
Committee" (Chairman: Herman Skolnik) is working
along new lines in an attempt to find a solution. I hope
that there will be some progress to report to you at
the Spring meeting.
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American Chemical Society. Division of Chemical Literature. Chemical Literature, Volume 11, Number 1, Spring 1959, periodical, Spring 1959; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc5742/m1/1/: accessed September 19, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .