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Book part
Publication date: 8 October 2018

Amy Hatfield Hart

This chapter explores specializations within academic librarian practices, focusing on librarian research and collaboration. Academic librarian roles are transitioning…

Abstract

This chapter explores specializations within academic librarian practices, focusing on librarian research and collaboration. Academic librarian roles are transitioning from service providers to specialists, researchers, and collaborators. Roles have shifted to incorporate interdisciplinary research and collaboration; embedded librarianship; research data management expertise; information literacy instruction; and core curriculum development. In order to understand this shift in roles, a mixed methods research project undertaken with a Purdue University researcher and Purdue Libraries faculty that prompted the development of a research diagrammatic metaphor modeling the components of librarian-faculty collaboration. The model demonstrates the dynamics and roles in academic collaboration and interdisciplinary research. A generalization of the model applied to two librarian-faculty collaboration scenarios exemplifies how these components facilitate engagement and project management. Potentially the model could be operationalized to understand disciplinary differences and provide a framework of accountability for both faculty and librarians engaged in research projects.

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Challenging the “Jacks of All Trades but Masters of None” Librarian Syndrome
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78756-903-4

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Book part
Publication date: 24 November 2015

Marianne Sorensen and Kathleen DeLong

This chapter provides a current and changing demographic profile of academic librarians working in a research library that is a member of the Canadian Association of…

Abstract

This chapter provides a current and changing demographic profile of academic librarians working in a research library that is a member of the Canadian Association of Research Libraries (CARL). Also examined is the changing mix of librarian and other professional staff. The profile is derived from the wealth of data generated from the 8Rs Studies, conducted in 2003–2004 and 2013–2014, respectively. The results show that the retirement and recruitment of librarians, alongside the restructuring of some roles and the attrition of others, have resulted in a noteworthy turnover of CARL library staff and a slightly larger, younger, more diverse, and more highly educated librarian workforce.

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Library Staffing for the Future
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78560-499-7

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Article
Publication date: 1 August 2000

Wanda V. Dole, Jitka M. Hurych and Wallace C. Koehler

The library profession has been concerned with ethical issues since its beginning. Ethical issues raised in the early years dealt primarily with librarians’ responsibility…

Abstract

The library profession has been concerned with ethical issues since its beginning. Ethical issues raised in the early years dealt primarily with librarians’ responsibility to the employer or patron. The focus later shifted to questions of professional identity, organisational environment, and social responsibilities. Rapid technological change and the advent of the information age are forcing the library profession to rethink its mission and responsibilities. This paper expands research on a survey of librarians’ ethical values reported by Dole and Hurych (forthcoming) at the 1998 EEI21 Symposium. In the 1998 study, they conducted a survey of North American librarians and librarians at a conference in the Crimea (Ukraine) to examine the values considered most important by each group and to identify differences in the priorities of values assigned by the groups studied. They found that all three groups held similar values. The current study replicates the 1998 survey among librarians throughout the world. Additional professional and demographic data were collected during the second iteration to support consideration of professional training, library experience and type, and professional responsibilities as possible factors contributing to value formation.

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Library Management, vol. 21 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-5124

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 2001

Rajinder Garcha and John C. Phillips

This study was conducted to learn about the involvement of US academic librarians in local as well as national faculty union activities; their reasons for joining unions;…

Abstract

This study was conducted to learn about the involvement of US academic librarians in local as well as national faculty union activities; their reasons for joining unions; and the benefits they have gained because of their memberships in their unions. It was concluded that librarians who were members of unions generally earned higher salaries than those who were not. Since librarians had on several occasions worked closely with the teaching faculty on various union activities, several close bonds and relationships among them had occurred. Moreover, librarians viewed union membership as a vehicle to become more involved in decision‐making processes at their institutions.

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Library Review, vol. 50 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0024-2535

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Article
Publication date: 1 October 2004

Muhammad Ramzan

The paper presents the extent of information technology (IT) utilization in libraries in Pakistan together with librarians’ level of knowledge in IT and their attitudes…

Abstract

The paper presents the extent of information technology (IT) utilization in libraries in Pakistan together with librarians’ level of knowledge in IT and their attitudes toward IT in libraries. Primary data were collected through a questionnaire survey of 244 librarians working in libraries in Pakistan. The study revealed not only a low level of IT usage, but also a low level of IT knowledge among librarians. Analysis of relationships revealed that IT utilization in libraries, librarians’ awareness of the potential of IT, recency of attaining professional qualifications, and knowledge in IT had a significant relationship with librarians’ attitudes. The findings of the study also revealed that the level of IT utilization and the librarians’ level of knowledge in technology are good predictors of librarians’ attitudes toward application of IT in their libraries.

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The Electronic Library, vol. 22 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0264-0473

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Article
Publication date: 1 August 1944

THERE is, of course, a man (if he isn't a woman) behind the librarian. When the librarian leaves his office or the counter, the man steps forth. What sort of creature is…

Abstract

THERE is, of course, a man (if he isn't a woman) behind the librarian. When the librarian leaves his office or the counter, the man steps forth. What sort of creature is he? A few professions stamp themselves so deeply on their followers that they have even developed something approaching a type of physical feature. The military man, the lawyer, and the parson are the outstanding examples. The teacher is a particularly pronounced type, but not a physical type; it is in manner, way of speaking, etc., that he advertises his calling. The librarian has no outward signs. If someone says “So‐and‐so looks like a librarian,” he is probably thinking in terms of the old‐time librarian, spectacled, round‐shouldered, peering, and surrounded by an astral aura derived from the immemorial dust that time has dropped gently on his books. The modern librarian, at any rate the public librarian, has long shaken off these out‐worn signs of his craft. He might be anybody or somebody, and carries with him no smell of the midnight oil or suggestion of ancient and ponderous lore. Yet no man can live among books, work on books, think on books, and contact all sorts of people in their relation to books, without effects on his mind, his outlook, and maybe his habits. It was a good idea, therefore, of the Editor to try and discover something of the man behind the librarian, by means of that ubiquitous, if often irritating, instrument, the questionnaire. The number sent out was thirty‐one, and twenty‐two replied; far too limited an enquiry on which to found any dogmatic conclusions, but as the librarians questioned were of both sexes, of different types of libraries, town and county, large and small, it may be considered perhaps as affording a useful cross‐section of the profession in its unprofessional aspect. There were ten questions; these are given below, with a brief summary of the nature of the answers.

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Library Review, vol. 9 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0024-2535

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Article
Publication date: 11 January 2008

Gitte Balling, Lise Alsted Henrichsen and Laura Skouvig

The purpose of this article is to discuss the stereotype of the librarian and to point to the fact that changing the public view of the librarian requires more than just…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this article is to discuss the stereotype of the librarian and to point to the fact that changing the public view of the librarian requires more than just talking about it. Librarians themselves need to take action. A way to change the image of the librarian could be a new form for reading groups: digital reading groups initiated by libraries.

Design/methodology/approach

This article presents a Danish project concerning digital reading groups and the experiences made so far by the involved groups e.g. librarians and readers. The article introduces a historical view on the stereotyped librarian and uses a case study to illustrate the situation today.

Findings

The historical conditions that constitute the Danish librarian stereotype show a discrepancy between the role and function of the modern librarian and the way the librarian is seen in a wider public. The applied case study, concerning digital reading groups, shows that digital reading groups work both as a way for the librarian to communicate with the reader in a more dialogical fashion, as a way for the public library to test new promotion tools which point in direction of Web 2.0 and as a more flexible promotion offer to the busy reader. Consequently, the digital reading groups offer a model that can bridge the gap between the librarian stereotype, the librarian and the library user.

Originality/value

This article is based on experiences made in connection with a Danish literature promotion project where digital reading groups are launched for the first time. It shows how public libraries can use literature promotion on the internet, not only to reach new users, but also to change the librarian stereotype and upgrade the librarians in direction of Librarian 2.0.

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New Library World, vol. 109 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

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Article
Publication date: 3 July 2007

Stephen Osahon Uwaifo

The paper seeks to examine age and exposure to computers as determinants of librarians’ attitudes towards library automation in Nigerian universities.

Abstract

Purpose

The paper seeks to examine age and exposure to computers as determinants of librarians’ attitudes towards library automation in Nigerian universities.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper uses a survey approach to determine the attitudes of academic librarians in Nigeria.

Findings

The investigation shows that an overwhelming majority of the librarians registered a high and positive attitude towards library automation. However, the two variables of interest to this study were found not to influence the librarians’ attitudes towards library automation. Also, several university libraries in Nigeria are yet to be automated due to some identified impediments like: financial constraints, shortage of IT personnel, irregular electric power supply, poor communication facilities, and absence of a national policy on information technology.

Practical implications

Generally librarians, system administrators, university authorities, IT researchers, and the National Universities Commission of Nigeria will find this paper useful. It enlightens them about the librarians’ positive attitudes towards library automation, poor state of automation in the libraries, as well as the lack of relationship between attitude of librarians and the two variables of interest to this study.

Originality/value

The paper offers new insights in the area of IT use by academic librarians in Nigeria. This study differs from others because it established that, even though the librarians registered a positive attitude towards library automation, their age and exposure to computers do not determine such an attitude.

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Library Review, vol. 56 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0024-2535

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Article
Publication date: 1 June 2005

Holly Hibner

To provide an overview of the reference services provided through the use of Tablet PCs at the Salem‐South Lyon District Library.

Abstract

Purpose

To provide an overview of the reference services provided through the use of Tablet PCs at the Salem‐South Lyon District Library.

Design/methodology/approach

A detailed description of what Tablet PCs are and how they work, including information about the benefits Tablet PCs present to reference transactions and tips for librarians to successfully integrate Tablet PCs into their reference service.

Findings

Tablet PCs allow reference librarians to provide quality customer service to their patrons by saving them time. Librarians who use Tablet PCs during reference transactions have access to online resources from any point in a library’s wireless network.

Research limitations/implications

There are new models of Tablet PCs available on the market that may not have been tested by librarians. New, improved features of Tablet PCs may enhance their usefulness to librarians.

Practical Implications

This paper provides useful information and advice for librarians who are considering using Tablet PCs, or who are searching for a way to enhance their current reference service.

Value

This paper provides insight from librarians who are currently using Tablet PCs in their reference service. This will inspire other librarians to consider using Tablet PCs in their libraries and help them be successful in the integration of Tablets into their reference routines.

Details

Library Hi Tech News, vol. 22 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0741-9058

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Article
Publication date: 10 January 2008

John Rodwell and Linden Fairbairn

Many university libraries are adopting a faculty liaison librarian structure as an integral part of their organization and service delivery model. This paper aims to…

Abstract

Purpose

Many university libraries are adopting a faculty liaison librarian structure as an integral part of their organization and service delivery model. This paper aims to examine, in a pragmatic way, the variations in the definition of the role of the faculty liaison librarian, the expectations of those librarians, their library managers and their clients and the impact of environmental factors. The faculty liaison librarian role is not entirely new, evolving from the traditional subject librarian and university special/branch library role. However the emerging role is characterized by a more outward‐looking perspective and complexity, emphasizing stronger involvement and partnership with the faculty and direct engagement in the University's teaching and research programs.

Design/methodology/approach

Following a review of the literature and other sources on the rationale and role of library liaison, the current developments, drivers and expectations are discussed.

Findings

The study finds that dynamic external and internal environments of universities are driving the evolution of library liaison, so the role description is still fluid. However, the breadth and weight of expectations is now such that the effectiveness and sustainability of the role has to be addressed.

Practical implications

While a dynamic, broader and more intensive role for the faculty liaison librarian is emerging, more thinking is needed about the extent of that role and its sustainability. What, for example, are the priorities for the faculty liaison librarian? What traditional activities can, and may, have to be abandoned? These considerations are necessary not only to guide the librarians, but also to help define the attributes and skills required for the position and to determine the institutional support it requires.

Originality/value

This is a contemporary critique of the well‐established, but diverse library service – the faculty liaison librarian structure.

Details

Library Management, vol. 29 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-5124

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