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University librarians respond to changes in higher education: example of a medical school

Sung‐Shan Chang (Department of Industrial Technology Education, National Kaohsiung Normal University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan, and National Kaohsiung Medical University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan)
Kuan‐nien Chen (Department of Fragrance and Cosmetics, Kaohsiung Medical University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan)

New Library World

ISSN: 0307-4803

Article publication date: 4 October 2011




The purpose of this paper is to discuss three recent changes in higher education – the addition of technology to every aspect of the curriculum, the increase in the availability of electronic resources, and the introduction of constructivist pedagogy. In light of these changes, the authors aim to explore what university libraries and librarians should reinforce in terms of their concepts and competency and adjust the ways that they serve students.


The authors analyze the related literature and identified technology, electronic resources, and constructivist pedagogy that interact with the new curriculum of universities in a broader way than in the past.


The three dimensions, separately and in combination, require considerable adjustments by librarians, teachers, students, and the school/university community in general. Collaboration among all members of staff, particularly between librarians and teachers, is essential. The emerging paradigm, still firmly based in constructivist principles, recognizes that there is a need for staff guidance of students though they are expected to become increasingly independent as they progress through the system. Meanwhile, two new core competencies have emerged for university librarians: information literacy and problem‐based learning (PBL).


The emergence of the two competencies has reminded librarians to learn, change and grow constantly to serve PBL students effectively.



Chang, S. and Chen, K. (2011), "University librarians respond to changes in higher education: example of a medical school", New Library World, Vol. 112 No. 9/10, pp. 425-445.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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