Emerging trends: Topics in LIS schools twitter chat

A chat with two recent MLIS graduates on trends and topics covered in their program

  1. Welcome to the Trends in LIS school twitter chat! #mclschat
  2. I will be asking questions, but feel free to jump in and ask for clarification or ask additional questions. #mclschat
  3. Before we get started, please say hello and say where you are tweeting from. #mclschat
  4. Hi. Michelle here tweeting from Mulberry, Indiana #mclschat
  5. Q1: In three words what was the overall focus your LIS classes? #mclschat
  6. Hi everyone! Jen Clifton here from the Indiana State Library in downtown Indianapolis. #mclschat
  7. A1: Information, Technology, Collaboration #mclschat
  8. A1: a blast from the past - cataloging, reference, collections. quite a change to today? #mclschat
  9. @meldotorg your past is my past! cataloging, reference and collections. Early 90's. #mclschat
  10. Q2: What percentage of your classes were theory versus practical application? #mclschat
  11. A2: 1/2 90% theory 10% application. Some classes had a heavier practical application of theory like my Digital Libraries class. #mclschat
  12. A2: 1//2 I would say 90% was theory 10% application. #mclschat
  13. A2 2/2 Some lend themselves to that better than others. #mclschat
  14. A2: About 75% theory, but the practical application was really formative. #mclschat
  15. A2: The practical classes allowed me to use my own research interests and apply it to the coursework. #mclschat
  16. I attended Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis - IUPUI #mclschat
  17. Did you have working librarians as instructors or academics? #mclschat
  18. @metdotorg both, I even had some coworkers as instructors. #mclschat
  19. Q3: Did the classes focus more on the internal library process or serving the community? #mclschat
  20. Sherri from Capital Area District Libraries, Lansing. Could you take classes outside of the LIS program, if you wanted to? #MCLSchat
  21. @BasicLibrarian There were interdisciplinary programs. I was so focused on finishing that I didn't explore that option. #mclschat
  22. @BasicLibrarian YYes, my school offered different specialties so I was able to take public management courses. #mclschat
  23. A4: My academic lib class focused only on the processes of the academic lib and not on its place in the campus community. #mclschat
  24. A4: It was a great class on why we catalog/classify information. #mclschat
  25. A4: I took a class called Organization and Representation of Information. It was an entire class on taxonomy & folksonomies 1/2 #mclschat
  26. Were your classes all online, or a mix of online and live? If so, do you think there is a benefit to either? #mclschat
  27. @CliftonIndy all online. I like the flexibility of online classes, I work full-time and lead a busy life but it makes it hard 1/2 #mclschat
  28. @CliftonIndy Mine were all online. Super convenient, but I missed the camaraderie of in person classes. #mclschat
  29. Hi, everybody. I'm in Hillsdale, MI. Wondering what kind of practicums are required in your programs, if any. #mclschat
  30. @MaurineMcCourry We had an option b/w a practicum and a research project. B/c I had lib experience, I went w/ research project #mclschat
  31. What are folksonomies? Not invented when i was at SLIS! #mclschat
  32. @SharedSysIndyPL A folksonomy is just a fancy name for what we call something that can very based on familiarity. #mclschat
  33. for students to engage with one another. I ended up joining the student group to meet other students. #mclschat
  34. @meldotorg I currently work at Grand Valley State University Library #mclschat
  35. Q5: What were timely topics/themes which repeated across the program? #mclschat
  36. A5: Library as place was a theme, esp. in an academic setting. What do we do w/ space now that more info is online, etc. #mclschat
  37. A5: @smminnis same here, that and creating a comfortable environment so patrons would seek assistance. #mclschat
  38. Did you tap into coworkers where you work for help since you didn't have classmates to talk with? #mclschat
  39. @SharedSysIndyPL Absolutely, they helped me in so many ways and gave me practical examples of what I was learning. #mclschat
  40. One big thing I remember from early '90s info school was lots of group work. Is that still important in your programs? #mclschat
  41. @MaurineMcCourry not a lot of group projects but a lot of online group discussions. #mclschat
  42. @MaurineMcCourry Some in the beginning but not so much at the end. And like @fivefootsmall said, lots of group discussion #mclschat
  43. @meldotorg but seriously, I've always felt drawn to libraries and felt that they were important to communities 1/2 #mclschat
  44. @meldotorg I want to contribute to my community, how better than by using libraries as the medium 2/2 #mclschat
  45. @meldotorg Honestly, libraries were a plan b for me, but once I realized this is where I wanted to be it seemed like the next step #mclschat
  46. @smminnis was there a course you wish was offered but was not? Or, one you'd like to create? #mclschat
  47. @fivefootsmall was there a course you wish was offered but was not? Or, one you'd like to create? #mclschat
  48. @JonesiSays Dealing with Problematic Patrons, also more finance and budgeting courses. #mclschat
  49. @JonesiSays Great question! Definitely customer service/user experience. #mclschat
  50. Q6: How much time was spent talking about the professional community of librarianship? #mclschat
  51. A6: There was not much time at all spent talking about that. #mclschat
  52. A6: A lot, I took a Perspectives on Information Careers class that had us identify professional organizations that interested us. #mclschat
  53. A6: But I've gotten a lot of that from my work and colleagues #mclschat
  54. A6: My school also offered travel grants to attend conferences of all types #mclschat
  55. @fivefootsmall sounds like an interesting class. can you give more details? #mclschat
  56. @meldotorg it also focused on the various types of librarian jobs exist, CIA librarian anyone? #mclschat
  57. @meldotorg critical class, it explored what non-library jobs you can get with an MLS, how the skills are adaptable #mclschat
  58. they do exist! and you'll need an assistant! Deb volunteers. #mclschat
  59. Was there any focus on soft skills? Like communication, empathy, flexibility, listening, etc? #mclschat
  60. @Roadlibrarian Yes, in my management and leadership classes. But I definitely think there could be more in general. #mclschat
  61. @Roadlibrarian yes, but a lot of it was within the scope of a reference interview. #mclschat
  62. Q7: Were there consistent expectations of what you were supposed to know? #mclschat
  63. A7: Yes, I think so. The electives built on the core classes nicely. #mclschat
  64. A7: We were not expected to already have knowledge about the library, but were encouraged to talk from experience where possible #mclschat
  65. A7: I think it depended on the level of the class, upper level classes expected you had taken the intro classes already and 1/2 #mclschat
  66. A7: had the base information from the intro classes. 2/2 #mclschat
  67. A7: With the program as a whole there was an expectation that we knew what population we wanted to serve. #mclschat
  68. A7: I think the learning goals for each class were clear, but not the connection between them. #MCLSchat
  69. @fivefootsmall @meldotorg I wish that our program was more explicit about that in our LIS classes. I'm struggling with it now! #MCLSchat
  70. Q8: What is something which completely caught you by surprise? #mclschat
  71. A8: I was surprised by how many of my classmates had no library experience. And also how in-depth our core technology class was #mclschat
  72. @smminnis makes you wonder why they were drawn to the profession. #mclschat
  73. @meldotorg It seemed like a second career for a lot of people who loved their libraries and wanted to be a part of it. #mclschat
  74. @meldotorg And there's nothing wrong with that, it was just so different from my own experience that I was surprised. #mclschat
  75. @smminnis Makes sense. that was Eunice's experience and many others in my cohort in the same situation. #mclschat
  76. @meldotorg @smminnis I didn't have lib background. I have strong feelings about sharing info liberally & justly + problem solving. #MCLSchat
  77. A8: If i was interested in something instructors encouraged exploring it, even if it didn't meet the assignment requirements. #mclschat
  78. @fivefootsmall that's a great point! I felt that expectation as well... #mclschat
  79. Q9: Can you name one thing you learned which you believe you will never actually need to know? #mclschat
  80. A9: No, I think everything I learned is useful now or could easily be useful to me in the future. #mclschat
  81. A9: computer language programming, and the dreaded cataloging! #mclschat
  82. @meldotorg Wow, for real? I think programming is one of the MOST useful things I'll get out of @umsi! #MCLSchat
  83. @meldotorg for some small libraries the librarians are expected to manage the website on their own. #mclschat
  84. @fivefootsmall excellent point. we have many one-person libraries in Michigan. #mclschat
  85. @meldotorg I don't foresee myself coding, but I will (& already do) talk to many programmers. Knowing the language is vital! 1/2 #MCLSchat
  86. @meldotorg For instance what's a reasonable ask and what would be really time consuming/long term 2/2 #MCLSchat
  87. Q10: As a new graduate, but a longtime library employee, what is something they should have covered? #mclschat
  88. A10: My (half) joke answer is unjamming staplers and printers #mclschat
  89. A10: But seriously, soft skills and customer service. #mclschat
  90. A10: @smminnis agreed -and how to identify which book was "the red one" #mclschat
  91. Q11: What is the most important thing you learned in your program? #mclschat
  92. A10: Budgeting and finance, there are a lot of small libraries where the librarian is expected to also be the accountant. #mclschat
  93. A11: Important thing I use everyday, reference interview skills #mclschat
  94. A11: Soft skills: project management, time blocking. Hard skills: Python, key reference resources #MCLSchat
  95. A11: Most important thing overall, the wide variety of jobs/interests for those interested in information and helping people #mclschat
  96. A11: That libraries are universal. I was able to visit international libraries and it's amazing that people everywhere value them. #mclschat
  97. A11: And how to do readers advisory. People always ask me what they should be reading. #mclschat
  98. @smminnis ref interview skills with patrons or co-workers, or both? #mclschat
  99. @mclsorg With patrons. I had been doing reference for a while and some of it I did well by instinct, but I learned a lot. #mclschat
  100. @smminnis Asking open-ended questions is so useful in many situations, not just reference. #mclschat
  101. @meldotorg So true! Ok I guess with people in general! (mind blown) #mclschat
  102. Q12: What should those who have been away from LIS school for a longer period of time know about what they are teaching? #mclschat
  103. A12: Digital literacy among LIS students is critical. With so many programs moving online it's important to incorporate 1/2 #mclschat
  104. A12: technology into coursework to help ourselves and our patrons. #mclschat
  105. A12: My knowledge of libraries and librarianship was broadened by my MLIS but there's still an opportunity for mentorship #mclschat
  106. A12: recent grads will bring a lot to the table but will still require more targeted, pracitcal experience #mclschat
  107. Next month Libraries Read: 1 Book - The Shallows book discussion #mclschat
  108. My pleasure, thanks for all the great questions! #mclschat