TL Ponderings


Building Academic Library 2.0

Posted in INF506 by sarahcook3 on June 7, 2011
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Meredith Farkes, the keynote speaker in Building Academic Library 2.0 (2007)  speaks of transforming your library into a place where students want to be, whether it is online or in the  physical space. I particularly liked her definition of library 2.0 being an evolution of library 1.0 and the role of the librarian since the user centred paradigm shift of the 70’s – libraries support change, libraries can lead change. Of the many ideas, suggestions and evidence that Meredith and other speakers presented, the following have relevance to my situation as a primary school TL.

The overarching point of this presentation is the needs of the user. How do they ‘navigate the tectonic plates of information’ that we all sail in? In my situation most teachers are, dare I say, reluctant to change what has always worked, (only I hear them complaining about the behaviour of students, maybe they do need to engage the students more – TL to the rescue!).  A balance is needed, start with the willing then expand to the wary. I need to understand where the teachers are coming from then, slow and steady, introduce new/easier/more engaging ways of doing the same thing – spelling lists from spellingcity.com, maths homework through the 2100ctk wiki (assessment 1 project), group work using wiki, google docs , presentation on prezi. I see a major part of my role over the next few years as always being available to the teachers to show them individually and in professional development opportunities new ways of doing things library 2.0 style, understanding want they do and their skills then providing for their needs. This could be done through mini podcasts then RSS feeds, help sheets provided online, video examples of change working.

Allow the user to become a partner in the development of the library’s resources. Build participation and hence a sense of ownership, trust the user and in turn they will trust you. We are all participants in the creation of knowledge and the development of the web. Providing an avenue for students to review books, suggest new reads (2.0 online through a blog/wiki or 1.0 creating posters, blurbs, suggestion books) then taking the terms that they have used and adding them as tags (folksonomy). Providing a terminal for instant communication using wallwisher.com , building trust.

Marketing of libraries reminds me of the role of the TL as a change leader and of promoting the services of the library. Regular columns in the newsletter and promoting and celebrating activities on the school website, getting the students to  write/blog/collaborate on their learning journey in library time, encouraging the schools completion of the Premier’s Reading Challenge and celebrating it, incorporating guided enquiry  into library lessons and then presenting the students evaluations as evidence of library work. Could I twitter activities to the parents?

Be aware of the opportunities around you, continual professional development of the TL. I cannot take on everything that I see but of the 25 new tools, maybe there is one that will suit the needs of my users. I need to collaborate more myself and look at what others are doing, Meredith calls it extrapolating information, broadening my network to include a larger variety of information agencies and businesses, who are successfully targeting my users – teachers, students and parents?