ILS560-College & University Libraries – An Overview

Course Description:

Organization and administration of academic libraries. The role of librarians in research and the relationship of academic libraries to curricula, students, faculty and administration.

Course Work:

There are four major assignments for the class – an annotation exercise, a benchmark exercise, a facilities paper and a term paper (no final this time, YEAH!!!). For the annotations assignment, we are supposed to volunteer to lead the discussions one week. The topics relating to academic libraries to choose from are their history and context, standards, faculty status and personnel issues, technology and technical services, access services and security, reference and instruction, collection management, serials and the serials crisis, management and budgeting and the future of academic libraries. I just sent an email to the professor asking to lead the discussions for the history and context lecture (my second choice is faculty status and third is technology and technical services). We shall see what transpires. Once we have the topic, we are supposed to pick six articles or book chapters to read and annotate – and we probably will be working with another student in the class. The assignment is actually due the Friday before the discussion starts so that we can share our annotations with the class.

The facilities paper requires that we research a physical aspect of the modern academic library. We are supposed to reasearch the topic and then visit several libraries to compare their spaces. This assignment is due on February 18th which means that I need to do some serious thinking about it.

For the benchmarking exercise, we are supposed to prepare a statistical comparison for an academic library according to ACRL Standards for Libraries in Higher Education. The point is to compare a target library with its peer institutions. This exercise is due on March 25th.

The term paper which is due on April 23rd is a research paper. For this one, we get to choose one topic that is of importance to academic libraries, research that topic and write a 10-12 page paper.

My Take:

All in all the workload seems to be fairly reasonable. I’m trying to plan out my timetables and due dates so that I have a better handle on my workload this semester than I did last fall. Several times during the fall, I actually mixed up my due dates. Fortunately, I did not actually miss any due dates. However, I do not want this to happen again. I’m making a concerted effort to keep myself organized and on top of my assignments. So far, so good!!

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