Course: Management of Libraries and Information Centre-II (5642)
Level: MLIS Semester: Autumn, 2021
ASSIGNMENT No. 2
Q.1 What is meant by Special Library? Discuss its characteristics as well as its importance in the support and promotion of research.
A special library is a library that provides specialized information resources on a particular subject, serves a specialized and limited clientele, and delivers specialized services to that clientele. Special libraries include corporate libraries, government libraries, law libraries, medical libraries, museum libraries, news libraries.
A special library is a library that provides specialized information resources on a particular subject, serves a specialized and limited clientele, and delivers specialized services to that clientele. Special libraries include corporate libraries, government libraries, law libraries, medical libraries, museum libraries, news libraries. Special libraries also exist within academic institutions. These libraries are included as special libraries because they are often funded separately from the rest of the university and they serve a targeted group of users.
Special libraries often have a more specific clientele than libraries in traditional educational or public settings, and deal with more specialized kinds of information. They are developed to support the mission of their sponsoring organization and their collections and services are more targeted and specific to the needs of their clientele. Special libraries may or may not be open to the general public. Those that are open to the public may offer services similar to research, reference, public, academic, or children’s libraries, often with restrictions such as only lending books to patients at a hospital or restricting the public from parts of a military collection. Many special libraries are not open to the general public, though access may be requested for specialized research by request. Special libraries are also sometimes known as information centers. Some authors differentiate special libraries from information centers by defining the latter as having “a very narrow scope”. They are generally staffed by librarians, although many librarians employed in special libraries are specialists in the library’s field rather than generally trained librarians, and often are not required to have advanced degrees in specifically library-related field due to the specialized content and clientele of the library. However, it is not uncommon for librarians at special libraries to have both a library science degree as well as a degree or experience of some type in the field their library specializes in as opposed to either only library science or field specific experience.
Special libraries are “special” in their collections, users, and services.
For example, a research institute’s library may supply information to scientists who lack the time to visit the library. Current Awareness Service (CAS) and Selective Dissemination of Information (SDI) are very common. The listing of special libraries in this article is not comprehensive. Special libraries as a field are defined by not being public, school, academic, or national libraries. Special libraries may be called libraries, information centers, information resource collections, or other names, typically decided by the institution that the library is attached to, and may or may not have a generally trained and qualified librarian on staff.
These libraries select and procure documents and other sources of relevant documents in the particular field and disseminate the updated information in the concerned field. it gives pinpointed technical information promptly. Provides desired information to users on demand and mostly in anticipation.
Law libraries are designed to assist law students, attorneys, judges and their law clerks, and other individuals conducting legal research including members of the general public. Most law libraries are attached to law schools, private law firms, or government courts for the use of the respective institution’s clientele, though some university libraries also maintain a dedicated legal section. The collections of law libraries are tailored to the specific legal interests of the institution they are affiliated with and may not have extensive collection beyond that scope. Education requirement for law librarians varied on types of law libraries. Academic law librarians who provide reference would mostly likely have both master’s degree in library science and Juris Doctor degree. Law firm librarians, in contrast, often have library science degree only. The dual-degree requirement in law librarianship has been widely debated in recent years, given librarians in medical or business libraries, for example, are not required to have advanced degree in subject disciplines. Legal reference services available to the general public are typically extremely limited due to legal restrictions on non-attorneys providing legal advice. Researching legal issues is acceptable but directly asking for legal advice is beyond the legally allowed assistance of a law library. The most a librarian at a law library can do is assist with locating reference materials but is not allowed to provide legal advice based on library materials.
Currently, the largest law library in the world is the Law Library of Congress in the United States of America. It opened in 1832 and became a department of the main Library of Congress with the first Law Librarian of Congress Charles Henry Wharton Meehan. Initially, the library only served the members of the United States Congress and the United States Supreme Court but has since expanded to serve the general public and various government agencies as well. The library’s collection currently has approximately 2.65 million items in it including materials on both United States law as well as legal resources for jurisdictions all over the world. The collection also includes materials about the history of law going back to the beginning of the most primitive legal systems in the areas of common, religious, civil, customary, and socialist laws.
Q.2 Discuss the essentials of negotiation skills required for a university librarian.
ESSENTIAL LIBRARIAN SKILLS
1. Library Services
Library Services are those resources, products, and events provided and held by a library or a similar entity to an individual. Users of the library may make use of these tools, which often differ from one institution to the next but amongst which may be things like online information and phone services, literary and other classes, book clubs, referencing services, and a number of other things.
Here’s how library services is used on librarian resumes:
- Purchased appropriate print and electronic reference materials, supplies and other required resources to ensure quality library services.
- Conceptualized and delivered outreach opportunities with city and community organizations to promote library services, resources and programs.
- Compile and maintain statistical data for various reports related to reference services, library services and departmental activities
- Assisted with improving customer relations and library services with my commitment to quality customer service.
- Cooperated with Director of Library Services in overall management of Livingston and Ypsilanti campus libraries.
569 Library Services Jobs
2. Customer Service
Customer service is the process of offering assistance to all the current and potential customers — answering questions, fixing problems, and providing excellent service. The main goal of customer service is to build a strong relationship with the customers so that they keep coming back for more business.
Here’s how customer service is used on librarian resumes:
- Required excellent customer service skills and abilities to interact well with very diverse customers of all education and socioeconomic levels.
- Provided excellent customer service in a team-based environment including reference, reader guidance, programming, and technology assistance.
- Supervised professional and paraprofessional library staff, administered library collections, responsible for staff training and customer service.
- Provided information literacy instruction through computer troubleshooting tasks to maintain high level of customer service.
- Provide exceptional customer service by teaching and assisting customers with checkout and other circulation-related tasks.
335 Customer Service Jobs
3. Collection Development
Collection development is the systematic and economical creation and evaluation of a library’s inventory to meet the information needs of library users in a timely and cost-effective manner, using local information resources as well as resources from other organizations. Its purpose is to aid the mission of the library and involves both selecting and deselecting library resources. The library collection also includes general information resources to assist in a learning environment in subjects not covered in the classroom.
Here’s how collection development is used on librarian resumes:
- Participated in assigned collection development responsibilities.
- Performed collection development of digital assets by evaluating, ingesting and logging HD digital footage and photographs using CNN developed software.
- Proposed library budget for collection development, operational management and preservation of library resources at the Library Board Meetings.
- Managed collection development via profiles and one-off orders based on solicited feedback from population served and other professional resources.
- Managed collection development, cataloging, classification, circulation, serials management, and database and periodical indexing.
- Analyze and cultivate your BATNA.In both integrative negotiation and adversarial bargaining, your best source of power is your ability and willingness to walk away and take another deal. Before arriving at the bargaining table, wise negotiators spend significant time identifying their best alternative to a negotiated agreement, or BATNA, and taking steps to improve it.
- Negotiate the process.Don’t assume you’re both on the same page when it comes to determining when to meet, who should be present, what your agenda will be, and so on. Instead, carefully negotiate how you will negotiate in advance. Discussing such procedural issues will clear the way for much more focused talks.
- Build rapport.Although it’s not always feasible to engage in small talk at the start of a negotiation (particularly if you’re on a tight deadline), doing so can bring real benefits, research shows. You and your counterpart may be more collaborative and likely to reach an agreement if you spend even just a few minutes trying to get to know each other. If you’re negotiating over email, even a brief introductory phone call may make a difference. This is one of the most valuable negotiation skills to master.
- Listen actively.Once you start discussing substance, resist the common urge to think about what you’re going to say next while your counterpart is talking. Instead, listen carefully to her arguments, then paraphrase what you believe she said to check your understanding. Acknowledge any difficult feelings, like frustration, behind the message. Not only are you likely to acquire valuable information, but the other party may mimic your exemplary listening skills.
- Ask good questions.You can gain more in integrative negotiation by asking lots of questions—ones that are likely to get helpful answers. Avoid asking “yes or no” questions and leading questions, such as “Don’t you think that’s a great idea?” Instead, craft neutral questions that encourage detailed responses, such as “Can you tell me about the challenges you’re facing this quarter?”
- Search for smart tradeoffs.In a distributive negotiation, parties are often stuck making concessions and demands on a single issue, such as price. In integrative negotiation, you can capitalize on the presence of multiple issues to get both sides more of what they want. Specifically, try to identify issues that your counterpart cares deeply about that you value less. Then propose making a concession on that issue in exchange for a concession from her on an issue you value highly.
- Be aware of the anchoring bias.Ample research shows that the first number mentioned in a negotiation, however arbitrary, exerts a powerful influence on the negotiation that follows. You can avoid being the next victim of the anchoring biasby making the first offer (or offers) and trying to anchor talks in your preferred direction. If the other side does anchor first, keep your aspirations and BATNA at the forefront of your mind, pausing to revisit them as needed.
- Present multiple equivalent offers simultaneously (MESOs).Rather than making one offer at a time, consider presenting several offers at once. If your counterpart rejects all of them, ask him to tell you which one he liked best and why. Then work on your own to improve the offer, or try to brainstorm with the other party an option that pleases you both. This strategy of presenting multiple offers simultaneously decreases the odds of impasse and can promote more creative solutions.
- Try a contingent contract.Negotiators often get stuck because they disagree about how a certain scenario will play out over time. In such cases, try proposing a contingent contract—in essence, a bet about how future events will unfold. For example, if you doubt a contractor’s claims that he can finish your home renovation project in three months, propose a contingent contract that will penalize him for late completion and/or reward him for early completion. If he truly believes his claims, he should have no problem accepting such terms.
- Plan for the implementation stage.Another way to improve the long-term durability of your contract is to place milestones and deadlines in your contract to ensure that commitments are being met. You might also agree, in writing, to meet at regular intervals throughout the life of the contract to check in and, if necessary, renegotiate. In addition, adding a dispute-resolution clause that calls for the use of mediationor arbitration if a conflict arises can be a wise move.
Q.3 Discuss the importance of libraries in light of the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development goals.
The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) or Global Goals are a collection of 17 interlinked global goals designed to be a “blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all”. The SDGs were set up in 2015 by the United Nations General Assembly (UN-GA) and are intended to be achieved by the year 2030. They are included in a UN-GA Resolution called the 2030 Agenda or what is colloquially known as Agenda 2030. The SDGs were developed in the Post-2015 Development Agenda as the future global development framework to succeed the Millennium Development Goals which ended in 2015.
The 17 SDGs are: (1) No Poverty, (2) Zero Hunger, (3) Good Health and Well-being, (4) Quality Education, (5) Gender Equality, (6) Clean Water and Sanitation, (7) Affordable and Clean Energy, (8) Decent Work and Economic Growth, (9) Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure, (10) Reduced Inequality, (11) Sustainable Cities and Communities, (12) Responsible Consumption and Production, (13) Climate Action, (14) Life Below Water, (15) Life On Land, (16) Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions, (17) Partnerships for the Goals.
Though the goals are broad and interdependent, two years later (6 July 2017) the SDGs were made more “actionable” by a UN Resolution adopted by the General Assembly. The resolution identifies specific targets for each goal, along with indicators that are being used to measure progress toward each target. The year by which the target is meant to be achieved is usually between 2020 and 2030. For some of the targets, no end date is given.
To facilitate monitoring, a variety of tools exist to track and visualize progress towards the goals. All intention is to make data more available and easily understood. For example, the online publication SDG Tracker, launched in June 2018, presents available data across all indicators. The SDGs pay attention to multiple cross-cutting issues, like gender equity, education, and culture cut across all of the SDGs. There were serious impacts and implications of the COVID-19 pandemic on all 17 SDGs in the year 2020.
Negotiations on the Post-2015 Development Agenda began in January 2015 and ended in August 2015. The negotiations ran in parallel to United Nations negotiations on financing for development, which determined the financial means of implementing the Post-2015 Development Agenda; those negotiations resulted in adoption of the Addis Ababa Action Agenda in July 2015. A final document was adopted at the UN Sustainable Development Summit in September 2015 in New York.
On 25 September 2015, the 193 countries of the UN General Assembly adopted the 2030 Development Agenda titled “Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development”. This agenda has 92 paragraphs. Paragraph 59 outlines the 17 Sustainable Development Goals and the associated 169 targets and 232 indicators.
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, adopted by all United Nations Member States in 2015, provides a shared blueprint for peace and prosperity for people and the planet, now and into the future. At its heart are the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which are an urgent call for action by all countries – developed and developing – in a global partnership. They recognize that ending poverty and other deprivations must go hand-in-hand with strategies that improve health and education, reduce inequality, and spur economic growth – all while tackling climate change and working to preserve our oceans and forests.
The SDGs build on decades of work by countries and the UN, including the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs
- In June 1992, at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, more than 178 countries adopted Agenda 21, a comprehensive plan of action to build a global partnership for sustainable development to improve human lives and protect the environment.
- Member States unanimously adopted the Millennium Declaration at the Millennium Summit in September 2000 at UN Headquarters in New York. The Summit led to the elaboration of eight Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) to reduce extreme poverty by 2015.
- The Johannesburg Declaration on Sustainable Development and the Plan of Implementation, adopted at the World Summit on Sustainable Development in South Africa in 2002, reaffirmed the global community’s commitments to poverty eradication and the environment, and built on Agenda 21 and the Millennium Declaration by including more emphasis on multilateral partnerships.
- At the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in June 2012, Member States adopted the outcome document “The Future We Want” in which they decided, inter alia, to launch a process to develop a set of SDGs to build upon the MDGs and to establish the UN High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development. The Rio +20 outcome also contained other measures for implementing sustainable development, including mandates for future programmes of work in development financing, small island developing states and more.
- In 2013, the General Assembly set up a 30-member Open Working Group to develop a proposal on the SDGs.
- In January 2015, the General Assembly began the negotiation process on the post-2015 development agenda. The process culminated in the subsequent adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, with 17 SDGs at its core, at the UN Sustainable Development Summit in September 2015.
- 2015 was a landmark year for multilateralism and international policy shaping, with the adoption of several major agreements:
- Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction(March 2015)
- Addis Ababa Action Agenda on Financing for Development(July 2015)
- Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Developmentwith its 17 SDGs was adopted at the UN Sustainable Development Summit in New York in September 2015.
- Paris Agreement on Climate Change(December 2015)
- Now, the annual High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development serves as the central UN platform for the follow-up and review of the SDGs.
Today, the Division for Sustainable Development Goals (DSDG) in the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA) provides substantive support and capacity-building for the SDGs and their related thematic issues, including water, energy, climate, oceans, urbanization, transport, science and technology, the Global Sustainable Development Report (GSDR), partnerships and Small Island Developing States. DSDG plays a key role in the evaluation of UN systemwide implementation of the 2030 Agenda and on advocacy and outreach activities relating to the SDGs. In order to make the 2030 Agenda a reality, broad ownership of the SDGs must translate into a strong commitment by all stakeholders to implement the global goals. DSDG aims to help facilitate this engagement.
Q.4 How reading habits of school children can be developed? Explain.
Reading is one of the most basic skills students require to learn to be successful. It is not just an essential professional skill, but it is also a way to enjoy creative, informative, and inspiring works of literature that enrich our life experiences. Reading is the backbone of education, but sadly most of today’s students prefer to play a video game or watch TV instead of reading a book. The main reason is modern parents do not concentrate much on how to develop reading habits in students. Like any other skill, a reading habit also needs time and dedication to develop.
Nourishing a love of reading in students can be an insuperable task for anyone, but with the perfect use of correct methods, you can easily turn your child into a good reader. The key to motivating reading habits in students is reading with them at home from a young age. Each and every student learns and processes information differently. This means some students may have a natural love of reading, and some may not. Good reading skills not only benefit students academically, but they are also a skill needed for lifelong success. When it comes to changing your habits and developing healthy ones, the willingness to learn and discover new things is one of the major pillars.
Many teachers and parents are worried about their kid’s diminishing interest in reading. The primary task is not only to get them to begin reading but also to enjoy it. Reading increases attention span, promotes stronger analytical thinking, and develops vocabulary. By learning to make reading fun, students are more likely to develop a love of reading, motivating the finest reading habits, and making learning easier. There are a number of ways that parents and teachers can help encourage a student’s love of reading.
Research has shown that incitement to read reduce with age, especially if student’s attitudes towards reading become less positive. If the students do not enjoy reading when they are young, then they are not likely to do when they get older.
To develop a reading habit in students, it is essential to create a reading space. Make an area for your child with their help. Make sure your child will have his or her own organized reading corner. Take fun accessories or a bean bag chair and the variety of books. The organized and well-maintained reading space helps the students to read effectively. To help your child understand the real significance of reading, start reading stories. There are a variety of books on the market that are customized of various age ranges. Opt pop-up books or other creatively published texts to maintain their interest.
- Let Them Read As Per Their Interest
Rather than forcing the students to read what you like, motivate them to read they are interested. Whether it is the newspaper, fiction, poetry, comic book, or another reading material, let them read what they want. But make sure that students are only reading age-appropriate material. This will surely develop the reading habits of students.
- Take Trips To Library
Take Trips To Library
The library is a home of a variety of books and an excellent place to explore new books and authors. The trips to the library offer the students an opportunity to develop good reading habits and to see other kids doing things. Most of the libraries also have story hours or other literacy programs for students. To develop reading habits in students, libraries are the best place. So make sure that at least once in a week take trips to the library. The trip to the library can be extra special when you offer your child to look across and explore.
- Find Reading Moments In Everyday Life
Reading is a part of daily life; it is not only about sitting down with a good book. Teach the students that reading is more than just for books. Show your kids that reading is everywhere- practice reading movie names, menus, game instructions, road signs, and more. Finding reading moments in everyday life is also the best way to develop reading habits in students. As you undergo your day, assist the child in keeping an eye out for reading moments.
- Surround Students With Books
Surround Students With Books
It is one of the best ways to develop reading habits in students. Leave books lying across the house in every room so they will become an essential part of your child’s lives. The students who grow with reading material all across them learn to love reading previous than those students who grow up in the absence of important resources. So it is crucial to filling your home with a variety of books.
- Set An Example
Kids learn what they observe. So act as a role model in front of your child and also read in front of them. Whether you love books, graphics, or magazine, let your child see you reading. If you are excited about reading, your child is likely to catch your eagerness. Motivate your child to join you with their own book when you are reading.
To get students interested in reading, use these tips so that they can become an even better learner. With the help of the best direction and focus, students become a better reader. The main motive of these tips is to offer a chance to develop a reading habit and to set a standard to measure this success.
Q.5 Write short notes on the following:
- a) Financing sources for public libraries
- b) Library advisory committee
- c) Virtual library
- d) Reference interview
Financing sources for public libraries
Public libraries can get funds from the following sources − National funds that are distributed to states or provinces. The municipal corporation gives municipal funds to public library, which were generated from car parking, taxes, and other tools of revenue generation. The librarians need to apply for these funds.
Finance is the backbone of any public library. Library managers need to control the operations as well as monitor and manage the finances of the institution. Public library financial activities involve the job of managing funds, budgeting, and controlling costs. It also involves the growth of assets.
Sources of Funds for Public Library
Public libraries can get funds from the following sources −
- National funds that are distributed to states or provinces.
- The municipal corporation gives municipal funds to public library, which were generated from car parking, taxes, and other tools of revenue generation. The librarians need to apply for these funds.
- Private donations, which are given by the charity services and interested individuals.
Sometimes, funds are raised in-house by conducting auctions for sale of knowledge resources.
Functions of Public Library Finance Department
The following are the functions handled by the finance department of a public library −
- Financial reporting to directors, managers, and staff.
- Budget preparation and allocation
- Managing annual audit
- Managing all receipts
- Preparing taxes and other governmental filings
- Reporting to donors and granting agencies
Library advisory committee
The Division of Library Services (DLS) Advisory Committee (DLSAC) constitutes a subcommittee formed by the Office of Research Services Advisory Committee (ORSAC). The DLSAC provides advice to the ORSAC on matters pertaining to budget, program, and policy. Typically, the committee meets quarterly.
Members of the Advisory Committee
Anna Nápoles, Chair (NIMHD) 2018-2022
Shawn Bediako (NHLBI) 2021-2024
Dexter Collins (FIC) 2020-2023
Charles Dearolf (OIR) 2018-2021
Paul Liu (NHGRI) 2018-2021
Margaret McGhee (NLM) Standing Appointment
Dan Sackett (NICHD) 2020 – 2023
Office of Research Services Advisory Committee
Division of Library Services Advisory Subcommittee
(Established February 2012)
The Division of Library Services (DLS) Advisory Committee (DLSAC) constitutes a subcommittee formed by the Office of Research Services Advisory Committee (ORSAC) and is not an independent committee of the library. The DLSAC provides advice and guidance to the ORSAC on matters pertaining to budget, program, and policy and is solely advisory in nature, providing non-binding but informed guidance. In no case shall the Committee have authority to exercise control over the management of the organization. The DLSAC is charged with reviewing DLS’s program and budget proposals to include the DLS Business Plan as well as other specific issues identified by the Management and Budget Working Group, and/or the Scientific Directors or their Shared Resources Subcommittee. The DLSAC may create subcommittees to work on these issues. At the request of the DLS/ORSAC, the DLSAC reviews overall policy issues; assists with priority setting and formulation of rates for services; reviews budget formulation methodology and business plan proposals; monitors quality assurance processes and operational assessments; and assists in identifying marketing and promotional opportunities. The Committee identifies areas and issues for specific study or discussion and makes recommendations to the DLS Director. Reports and recommendations from these reviews will be made to the DLS Director and results of reviews that might impact budgetary decision-making may be brought to the attention of the ORSAC. The DLSAC will make periodic reports on its activities to the ORSAC.
The DLSAC has a minimum of six members, appointed by the Director of the Office of Research Services upon the recommendations of the DLS Director and/or other members of the intramural program. Membership is to be drawn from the leadership within the scientific and administrative community served by DLS, including Scientific Directors, Executive Officers and/or Laboratory Chiefs. Typically members serve for four years; however shorter appointments may be made as appropriate and to create staggered termination dates. As needed, appointments may be made to fill vacancies that result in unexpired terms. One member may be appointed from outside the NIH. Each year a member is designated to serve as Chair and another to serve Co-Chair. The Co-Chair serves one year as the Co-Chair and then assumes the role of the Chair in the following year. The DLSAC may appoint ad hoc members from inside or outside NIH to assist in the review of particular programs.
Roles and Responsibilities
- Plan, prepare and set the agenda for each DLSAC meeting, with input from the Director, DLS.
- Preside at DLSAC meetings.
- Carry out appropriate DLSAC projects.
- Represent the DLSAC at special meetings or events.
- Serve as the official spokesperson for the DLSAC.
Individuals who participate on the advisory committees are asked to commit to the following:
- Attend in-person and conference call meetings of the advisory committee. Any DLSAC member who is absent from twenty-five percent (25%) or more of the scheduled meetings within a one year period shall be deemed to have resigned.
- Participate in information sharing and other dialogue via an email distribution in the interim between meetings.
- Review meeting materials that are sent out in advance of meetings.
- Actively participate in meeting discussions and decision making.
- Complete interim assignments as identified and agreed upon by the advisory committee, which may include reviewing policy options, participating in voting assignments, and proposing additional policy options and strategies.
Division of Library Services
The DLS will provide reasonable part-time staff assistance to the Committee, including an executive secretary, who will prepare minutes, coordinate the acquisition of data needed by the Committee, and arrange meetings.
Conduct of Meetings
The DLSAC will decide on the schedule of meetings but will typically meet quarterly. Business shall be conducted according to the preferences of the membership in terms of the formality or informality of the meetings. A quorum for transacting business shall be a simple majority of the DLSAC membership. Any action or proposal for action should be made in the form of a motion on which the members can vote.
Our Virtual Library is a curation of free educational resources and tools to assist students, educators, parents and the community.
Library Vision Statement:
to create a vibrant and dynamic learning commons where students can inquire, discover, read, view, listen, collaborate, create and present in a future focused learning environment. Students will be information fluent learners equipped with highly developed critical & creative thinking skills required for lifelong learning.
Our aim is that:
Students are motivated and independent learners:
• Students successfully employ information fluency, technology, and critical thinking skills in subject-area learning experiences.
• Students are engaged in independent reading and inquiry-based learning.
The library is a powerful intellectual and social space where students and teachers gather ideas, exchange points of view, and learn together:
• Students and teachers have access to a qualified Teacher Librarian.
• Students have equitable access to high quality resources in a variety of formats that support curricular and instructional goals and respond to diverse student needs and interests.
• Students have access to a wide range of quality recreational reading material to broaden horizons and boost literacy.
• The library facility is welcoming, with a climate conducive to individual and shared learning.
• Current technology supports multiple learning experiences with remote access to library resources.
The School Library as an Educational Investment
Continued investment in school libraries is integral to delivering the Australian Curriculum as a world-class curriculum. In today’s digital world initiatives for the discovery and delivery of learning resources will require investment to support 21st century eLearning programs and to resource the national curriculum. The Softlink 2019 Australian School Library Survey Report findings continue to demonstrate a correlation between budget, staffing and student achievement. The findings indicate that literacy levels are higher for those schools that support and invest in their school libraries, staffing and resources (Godfrey 2015 ;Softlink Australia 2019).
Despite this, a Commonwealth inquiry into the role, adequacy and resourcing of school libraries found ‘Whilst research demonstrates a clear correlation between a good school library and teacher librarian and student achievement, the link is not always appreciated, acknowledged or made best use of’ (Commonwealth of Australia 2011). The challenge for Teacher Librarians, therefore, is to collect and publicise hard data that unequivocally demonstrates the difference they make in schools and to use this evidence to advocate for increased staffing and budgets.
A reference interview is a conversation between a librarian and a library user, usually at a reference desk, in which the librarian responds to the user’s initial explanation of his or her information need by first attempting to clarify that need and then by directing the user to appropriate information resources.
A reference interview is a conversation between a librarian and a library user, usually at a reference desk, in which the librarian responds to the user’s initial explanation of his or her information need by first attempting to clarify that need and then by directing the user to appropriate information resources.
Bopp & Smith (1995) defines the reference interview as the “conversation between a member of the library reference staff and a library user for the purpose of clarifying the user’s needs and aiding the user in meeting those needs”.
According to ODLIS, the reference interview is “the interpersonal communication that occurs between a reference librarian and a library user to determine the person’s specific information need(s), which may turn out to be different from the reference question as initially posed…A reference interview may occur in person, by telephone, or electronically (usually via e-mail) at the request of the user, but a well-trained reference librarian will sometimes initiate communication if a hesitant user appears to need assistance”.
Stephen Abram finds the library as conversation a vital component to the profession. In regards to the reference question, “Our core skills are the skills and competencies required to improve the quality of the question.