If you have a regularly scheduled online meeting, librarians are happy to bring their face-to-face instruction to the Zoom nearest you!
Announcements and Content Creation
One idea is for the instructor to give the librarian freedom to create library content within D2L - widgets, boards, embedded guides, chat boxes, announcements, emails - to meet the students at their point of need. The instructor may assign an argumentative paper. The librarian sees this on the calendar and emails tips and ideas for research to the students. Or steers them to the embedded library guide. Or interacts with them in the course's library chat box or library discussion board. The librarian may see a discussion board question that asks "How do I get to Opposing Viewpoints?" She will swoop in and answer the question, in true librarian superhero style.
The student doesn't have to seek out the librarian (which is usually only done as a last resort), but the librarian is there and can assist early enough to actually get the students on the right track in time for the assignment to be completed. Win!
Have an assignment that's heavy on research? Want to see if your students are up for the challenge? A librarian can work with you to create a quiz that tests specific things they'll need to know how to do in order to complete their research project. Afterwards, the librarian can look for common problem areas, and places where your students seem to be struggling. Then those issues can be addressed via the discussion boards, a quick tutorial video, a library guide, or even a visit to the class (virtually through Zoom or Collaborate or face-to-face in an on-campus class!)
If you want a librarian to monitor a specific library-related discussion board, there are a few things to consider:
What is the point?
How much work?
Graded or not?
1) Do you want it to be a basic "Ask the librarian questions here" format, or do you want it to be a place where students post specific things (or an assignment!) for the librarian to review or comment on?
2) How much work do you want the board to be for the librarian (and how much work can the librarian deal with reasonably)? A basic "Ask questions" board doesn't need a lot of time, but needs to be monitored pretty often. A graded board about structuring citations or search phrases may not need to be monitored daily, but will require a lot more work for each post (and there will likely be a lot more posts).
3) Do you want this to be graded? If so, do you want the librarian to do the grading? Make sure all this is agreed on ahead of time so there are no surprises.
Both formats serve an important purpose, and both involve the librarian in the class in a deeper way than having a "one-shot" in-class presentation about library resources.