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Newsletter of the Round Table on Continuing Professional Education (CPERT)
The CPERT Executive CommitteeChairman:
Linda Ashcroft, M.A.
Liverpool Business School, John Foster
Building, 98 Mount Pleasant
Liverpool L3 5UZ, UK
Tel: +44-151-231 3425,
Fax: +44-151-707 0423
Square, San Jose, CA 95192-0029, USA
Information Coordinator and Editor, Newsletter:
Member-at-Large IFLA Relations:
Simmons College , 300 The Fenway,
Boston MA02115, USA
Professor, cb#3360, UNC, Chapel Hill,
NC 27599-3360, USA
6 Birketinget, DK-2300, Copenhagen S, Denmark
Faculty of Management, The Robert Gordon University
Garthdee Road, Aberdeen AB10 7QU, UK
Max-Planck Institute for Human Development
Lenzeallee 94, D-14195, Berlin, Germany
Information Science/UNISA, PO Box 392 UNISA,
Pretoria 0003, South Africa
Penrhyndeudraeth, Gwynedd LL 48 6EL, Wales, UK
Private Bag 31550, Braamfontein 2017
Library & Information Science Program
Department of Information & Computer Sciences
2550 Kuhio Avenue, No. 2402, Honolulu, HI 96815, USA
The Newsletter is published twice a year in October and April. Please share your ideas and experiences by sending your contributions or suggestions to John F. Harvey, PO Box 21363, 1507 Nicosia, Cyprus, Tel: (357-2) 664286, Fax: (357-2) 676061, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or Suite 1105, PMB-079, 82 Wall Street, New York, NY 10005-3682, USA, Fax: 212-968-7962. Secretariat: Janet Assadourian.
NewsReaders who did not attend the IFLA conference in Jerusalem may wish to obtain booklet 7 from the Division of Education and Research which was distributed there. It contains papers from the Library Theory and Research Section, Continuing Professional Education Round Table, and the Education and Training Section. It can be obtained from the IFLA Headquarters in the Hague, www.ifla.org
CALL FOR PAPERS - BOSTON 2001For those persons interested in Continuing Professional Education who would like to present at the CPERT Session for the Boston Conference, please send your abstract to Blanche Woolls or e-mail SJSU-SLIS email@example.com One Washington Square, San Jose, CA 95192-0029
We will be choosing three papers for the Conference Session. The presenters for the Pre-Conference have been chosen.
SEARCH FOR SEMINARS: www.scheduleearth.com is a portal for conferences, seminars and continuing education. You can search by event title, topic or provider name to find information on thousands of upcoming trade shows, expos and workshops in a variety of professions.
CALL FOR LIBRARY EDUCATION STANDARDS……..The Training Center "Rudomino School" starts a new project. The Bulletin (Russian) is devoted to continuing library education in Russia and abroad. We plan to focus on the problem of new standards of Continuing Higher and College library Education in Russia and other countries. It is necessary to provide access to the information about international standards and approaches. We would like to include in this Bulletin the standards of Continuing, Higher and College library education for USA, Great Britain, Denmark, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, etc. countries. Would you be so kind as to help us and give us any contact information, etc. of the people who are competent in the given area. - Arsenieva Olga, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Perspective Development of Continuing Education for Librarians and Information Specialists Conference, Open Society Institute, All-Russian State Library for Foreign Literature, Training Center "Rudomino School", Center for Applied Humanities Technology Information Letter We inform you that the "Perspective Development of Continuing Education for Librarians and Information Specialists" will take place in Moscow 5-7 December, 2000. The Conference will bring together teachers, libraries leadership, publishers of educational literature, representatives of library training centers and other information institutions. The conference is being organised by the Training Center "Rudomino School" of the Library for Foreign/VGBIL/ and Center for Applied Humanities Technology.
The Conference is dedicated to various issues of organizing educational process, integration of educational standards, formation of new educational disciplines, development of regional training centers activties. Also to be covered is reorganisation of library education and introduction of new electronic technologies.
Participation: send a completed application form and a summary of presentation to the Organizing Committee before 30 September, 2000. Accomodation and lunch expenses during the conference will be covered. Working languages of the conference: Russian and English.
Darlene Weingand advises that the paper she delivered in Bangkok ("Desbribing the Elephant…") has been published in the latest IFLA Journal (Vol 26, no.3, p.p. 198-202).
CPERT LOOKING FOR YOU! The IFLA Round Table on Continuing Professional Education (CPERT) is looking for persons involved in continuing education of librarians and information specialists who have an overview of activities in this field in their individual countries or regions. We would like to involve these persons in CPERT activities as "country connections" who could serve as resource and liaison persons for the Round Table. The tasks of the "country connection" person will be to write a short overview report on the continuing education activities in their country for the CPERT field. This person will also serve as a resource person for questions on continuing education in this country or region. If you can serve in this way or if you can suggest a person in your country whom we could contact, please e-mail John F. Harvey, Information Co-ordinator of CPERT at email@example.com Thank You.
New Distance Learning Masters Course at the Robert Gordon UniversityFrom September 2000 the Robert Gordon University's School of Information and Media will be introducing a distance-learning mode of study for its postgraduate course in Information and Library Studies.
The Course will be delivered through the Internet from the University's Virtual Campus, which already hosts a number of open- and distance-learning programmes. The Virtual Campus provides a comprehensive infrastructure for distance-learning communities. It facilitates interaction between staff and students in support of course delivery and tutoring, whilst providing a virtual version of the facilities to be found on a residential university campus, such as access to library resources and a bookshop, and a coffee bar and meeting rooms for informal discussions by groups.
The Postgraduate Diploma element of the course follows the same syllabus as the existing course. Successful completion of eight modules leads to the award of the Diploma. The eight modules provide the fundamental knowledge and skills for new recruits entering the profession and can be undertaken through the distance- learning mode over a minimum period of two years. The existing full- time and part-time modes of study are approved by the Library Association and the Institute of Information Scientists and will continue to be offered. Approval of the distance-learning mode is being sought.
A further year undertaking a small piece of research leading to the submission of a dissertation is required for the Masters' degree. The School would also consider any applications for study of specific module(s) for Continuing Professional development. Applications are invited from graduates in any discipline, and will be considered on their merits. Other factors being equal, preference will be given to applicants who have some relevant working experience. In exceptional circumstances, applicants without these qualifications, but with extensive and appropriate work experience may be considered in accordance with the University's policy for Assessment of Prior Learning. There is no formal closing date, but places may be limited and early application is advised. Students or their employers will be expected to pay tuition fees for this distance-learning course.
Students enrolled on the Virtual Campus will be required to have access to a computer (PC or MAC) which is capable of running either Microsoft Internet Explorer version 5 or greater (version 4.04 or greater if using a MAC) or Netscape Navigator version 4 or greater. The student's computer must also be connected to the Internet and have at least 28.8 kbps modem connection speed (standard for most modems). The following software are also required to fully access all Virtual Campus facilities:
For further information contact: School of Information and Media, The Robert Gordon University, Garthdee Road, Aberdeen AB10 7QE. Telephone: (01224) 263900; Fax: (01224) 263939; E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Call for Papers "Education and Research for Marketing and Quality Management In Libraries"IFLA Satellite Pre-Conference, Québec, Canada, 14-16 August 2001
The IFLA Sections on Management and Marketing and on Education and Training (SET), in collaboration with the School of Library and Information Science of the Université de Montréal, are organising a pre-conference and satellite colloquium in Québec City (Canada) from August 14 to 16, 2001. This is held in conjunction with the IFLA (http://www.ifla.org) annual conference, which takes place in Boston, USA.
The theme of this colloquium will be the development of expertise in marketing and quality management in libraries. The objectives of this colloquium are to:
Interested persons are therefore invited to submit a proposal for a paper, and presentation of about 30 minutes bearing on topics such as :
French and English are the two official languages of the colloquium and proposals can be submitted in either language. The proposal should be not more that 1000 words long (2 pages), be submitted in electronic format, and be accompanied by the curriculum vitae of the author(s).
A special invitation is made to Ph.D. candidates and young researchers for whom travel awards may be available.
The following schedule will be applied :
In order to assure the quality of the program as well as the impartiality of the selection, an international committee has been formed to evaluate proposals. The members are:
Send proposals to :
CPERT Executive Committee Business Meeting, Jerusalem, Israel August 2000
Speaking of Numbers - In Appreciation of Darlene WeingandNo-one beats Darlene Weingand in the number of continuing education columns contributed to the "Journal of Education for Library and Information Science," number of continuing professional education chapters written for the ALISE annual statistics, the number of years of service as an officer of ALA's CLENERT, and - above all - the number of years of running a continuing education program that has set the national standard for both quantity and quality in our field. Her crowning achievement, however, may be her success in getting ALA to incorporate in its code of ethics librarians' responsibility for their continuing education. Thank you, Darlene, for your consistent, dedicated leadership and advocacy on behalf of continuing education for library/ information professionals! - Journal of Education for Library and Information Science, Vol 40, number 4.
The Convergence Of Methodology For The Traditional School Of Library And Information And The Continuing Education Of The Professional By Kenneth E. DowlinBy Kenneth E. Dowlin Distance Digital Education, and Associate Director for the CSU Fullerton Program
School of Library & Information Science, San Jose State University, San Jose, California, USA
IntroductionThe convergence of information and communication technologies as embodied in the Internet is creating extreme pressure on librarians, researchers, and Library and Information Science educators to keep up with the development of the tools and to manage their application to libraries and information centers. The Schools of Library and Information Science must develop new approaches to ensure that the profession stays abreast of these new developments and that the entry-level professionals are prepared to enter the field.
Libraries and Librarianship are undergoing a transition that equals or is greater than the one that occurred during the Andrew Carnegie era of funding buildings for libraries, and the explosive growth of libraries starting in the 1960s when the federal government adopted a de facto policy of access to libraries for every U. S. citizen. The goal now is to provide two-way access to libraries, from libraries, and among libraries via information technology (IT) for every citizen. While the president and congress have focused their efforts on this nation, the consequences of the development of access via the Internet is to create a global network that can reach all corners of the world. At the same time the tools provided by the technology needed for the extension of the School of Library and Information Science into the Digital Era are the same tools needed for Continuing Education. Thus it is important to look at trends in Distance Education to set the stage.
Distance Education TrendsFirst lets look at the attributes of a good distance education delivery system. They are:
According to a recent proprietary research study by 2002 there will be almost 8 billion web pages on the World Wide Web.For e-learning to emerge as a thriving market for educational goods, it must be an open market-one that requires a standards-based platform on which to deliver educational materials. A market of multimedia objects built on IMS standards will soon emerge and that transactions will occur via web browsers. The goal obviously is to allow a searcher to select data, information or learning objects that most exactly satisfy his or her search objectives. The IMS standard has the potential to radically change the economic model in education. With IMS, the available content and information on the Web will increase and there will be much more information available on the Web. It will likely transform the way that content is licensed and authored by opening up the market to a wider audience of authors as well as learners who are willing to pay for the information.
IMS metadata standards will facilitate that thriving market.
Virtual School of Library and Information ScienceA challenge to our society today is to move from the Communication Age to the Knowledge Age. The need is manifested in the perception, if not the reality that our communities, from families to nation states, are breaking down due to an overload of information converging on the citizen from thousands of channels. It is definitely true that geography is now less of a community boundary than ever before. The Internet is the clipper ship of today. It allows the creation of new communities without the traditional constraints of geography and time. The only determinant on the Internet is common interest and access. While creating communities based on common interest is not new, the fact that it can be done without relocating the people is new. History shows that a common strategy to mitigate the negative impact of technology is the development of new technologies. Another strategy is to create organizations to mitigate the negatives as well as maximize the benefits. In brief, those two strategies are what this project is all about. The Virtual School of Library and Information Science is a strategy to assist communities through their libraries to cope with the communication age.
The concept of the Virtual School of Library and Information Science is very simple. The VSLIS will use information technology (IT) to move an institutional asset (knowledge) out of a constraining physical space (the classroom).
This will create a setting that is "out of the box", mentally as well as physically. As a space the classroom is now a barrier as well as an enabler for communication. It creates physical boundaries and mental mindsets that inhibit its value in an age where barriers to communication of time and distance are being drastically reduced in everyday life.
IT is creating an interesting convergence of need for a paradigm shift among libraries and higher education institutions. Both institutions need to think "out of the box". While the physical spaces can still have value for warehousing information and knowledge containers such as books or computers, for people converging, and even for being a symbolic presence in a community, the library and the university must learn to go out of the box. Universities are constrained by physical classrooms and campuses. Libraries are constrained by buildings and artifacts that contain information and knowledge. These physical constraints are now limitations to the greatest capacity of human beings -- learning. Distance and time should no longer separate the people who need the knowledge from the people with the knowledge or their communication instruments. It is now time to use the IT, available today and predictable for tomorrow, to forge the system that will transfer knowledge from those who have it to those who need it, regardless of where they are located in California. Library and Information Science is an excellent alpha test for the university as a whole in a discipline that impacts every community in this country. The opportunity exists to stimulate and support the ability for libraries to become learning institutions.
While state of the art information technology can be harnessed to advance teaching and learning quite effectively, there is still a need for the human factor to provide the socialization and Professionalization for effective librarians. There exist today a number of networks that provide communication, technical service components, and collaboration. The marketing of the program is a very important element for success.
Research is showing that the most successful eCommerce companies spend from 35 per cent to 50 per cent of their total budgets for marketing. The VSLIS will develop The Library Learning Channel using the existing network that is in place for statewide distance education (4Cnet) and existing teleconferencing sites in libraries to provide access to librarians and students in every part of the state of California.
Digital Laboratory/ClassroomTo effectively navigate this transition librarians need to have state of the art IT education to enter the profession and to have lifelong support to continue to learn. We have the largest accredited program for training graduate level Library and Information Science practitioners in the world. The resources available through the CSU network provide the opportunity to reach students and practitioners in every corner of California, and beyond. What is needed is a stable, accessible, archived, and managed Digital Library Laboratory/Classroom (DLL/C) to serve as the technology center, the focal learning point, and the high profile communication vehicle. The goal of this project would be to create a distributed facility with multiple focal points, to acquire state-of-the-art equipment, and to build the Internet based Virtual School of Library and Information Science (VSLIS).
DLL/C GoalsThis laboratory will provide state of the art equipment, technical support, and instruction for:
Digital Library Laboratory TechnologyThe DLL hub is a high-speed local area network supporting a multi-purpose server cluster, archival storage, and high capacity near-line storage. The hub will have high-speed connection to the Internet. It will provide applications development and testing, serve as a server farm to support the Digital Library and VSLIS.
The DLL/C will provide learning stations; video and digital capture technology, and other tools to support the creation and distribution of the courseware. Transformational technology such as encoders will be provided as well.
Ramifications for CEThe development of such a tool will provide a creation and distribution center for content created for the VSLIS. It would be minor to make some, or all of this content available to the practitioner at their workplace, home, and even desktop. If the curriculum is built in modular, building block units and incorporates content from seminars, conferences, and workshops into the content it can come out of the system as an organized, archived, and globally accessible program. -- July 28, 2000
SLIS Distance Learning Programshttp://librarians.about.com/jobs/librarians/bldistlearn2.htm gives an index of distance learning offerings by schools of library and information science. The programs include offerings taught off-campus, delivered electronically to sites off-campus, or delivered via the Internet. Note that it is usual for a school to require some time spent at the main campus. For many schools this may amount to only brief periods, weekends, or one or more classes. Pure, 100% online or Internet MLS degrees are still rare.
University of Arizona
University of Buffalo
Emporia State University
University of Hawaii
University of Illinois
University of Indiana
University of Iowa
Kent State University
University of Kentucky
Long Island University's Palmer School of Library and Information Science
Louisiana State University
University of Oklahoma
University of Rhode Island
University of South Carolina
Southern Connecticut State University
University of South Florida
University of Southern Mississippi
University of Tennessee
University of Texas
Texas Women's University
Valdosta State University
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
Library Literature & Information Science, April 2000
Distance EducationBradford, D. Distance education: issues, challenges, and leadership implications for educational technology professionals. Bibl J Educ Media Libr Sci v36 no4 pp393-408 Je 1999 Gasaway, L. N. Guidelines for distance learning and interlibrary loan: doomed and more doomed. Bibl J Am Soc Inf Sci v50 no14 pp1337-41 D 1999 Jenkins, C. Far out learning (distance education at the University of Illinois Graduate School of Library and Information Science) SLJ v46 no2 pp46-9 F 2000 Kniffel. L. Southern Connecticut State to offer online MLS. Am Libr v31 no1 p24+ Ja 2000 Van Brakel, PA. Teaching information management via a Web-based course (at Rand Afrikaans University Dept. of Information Studies) bibl Electron Libr v17 no6 p389-94 D 1999.
Aims and ObjectivesHaycock, K. The Congress on Graduate Professional Education: issues, prices and recommendations. (In Library and Information Science Annual, v7, 1999. Libraries Unlimited 1999 p12-22). China
Tang, J. The changing face of library and information science education in China in the 1990s. bibl Asian Libr v8 pp29-34 1999
Library Literature & Information Science 1999
Continuing Education Statement from the University of Hawaii At Manoa'sThe complexity of modern life leads to increasing dependence on processed information on the part of both individuals and organizations. As knowledge expands, so does the need to know, as does the idea of equal opportunity of access to information. The "information society" imposes new demands on librarians, and rapid technological advances provide new tools for meeting these demands. Librarians in Hawaii and the Pacific Rim countries are vitally interested in keeping up with new developments and gaining new skills.
The program seeks to meet this demand by providing new courses, special lectures, workshops, seminars, and institutes. These continuing education opportunities are announced as they become available. Some past course offerings include:
Library Automation InstituteLibraries and automation are inseparable in an information age. Librarians and information managers are routinely called upon to develop and institute automation programs with library functions. The program sponsors a Library Automation Institute in selected summers. The focus changes each time.
School Librarianship InstituteThis institute is held each summer for school librarians on topics of current interest. In recent years, courses have been offered in multimedia production and evaluation, uses of technology in the school library media center, whole language and collaborative instruction, and collection building and information access.
Institute for Library Support StaffLibrary support personnel provide front-line services to library users. The four-day institute, held in selective years during the spring break, provides opportunities for support staff to update their job skills in the areas of public and reference service, library and information technology, and supervisory skills.
The Skills You Can't Download by Linda Ashcroftby Linda Ashcroft, Liverpool Business School, Liverpool John Moores University, Liverpool, United Kingdom
The role of information is vital to the daily lives of most people, and within this the embrace of new technology has recently been emphasised. For example, the announcement of new websites in the media and in sections of newspapers promoting electronic resources are now commonplace. Both national information developments, such as the People's Network, and global information developments, such as the World Wide Web and the speed of information transfer available, place more emphasis on the embrace of new technology. This is a key issue for both those in the information field and those wanting to be educated for the field. This has implications for educators - those providing short courses targeted at librarians who want to update their skills, for example, the plans for the new public library network include re-skilling library staff and training them in IT (Information Technology). This also has implications for those involved in education in universities, where both undergraduate and postgraduate 'information' courses are designed to provide a sound range of skills to equip students with the competencies necessary for information work in a variety of organisations and sectors, in which IT skills are an intrinsic part.
There are now many university library services in various countries that offer distance learning services to their students. Two major reasons for the need for these services to off-campus students are location difficulties for remote learners and higher education financial changes, which result in the desire of students to continue in work whilst studying from a distance. This distance learning approach applies not only to library services but also to the way in which university courses are delivered. The distance learning approach is not new, but approaches to the ways in which courses are delivered have changed along with technological developments. There is a move away from the paper-based study packs to multi-media learning material and computer conferencing to link students with each other and with the department. And this is not always a supplementary approach. In September 1998, the information/library school at the University of Buffalo offered two graduate level courses by Internet distance learning. In this context the geographic location of the students is not a factor because the Internet is available worldwide. These courses are scheduled for two days a week for the purpose of sharing and exchanging information on the class Web Bulletin Board. This approach is not limited to distance learning courses. It is being adopted for students on site. For example, at the 1999 IFLA conference, Dowlin spoke about web-based instruction for the continuing information student, pointing out that the constant development of the Internet necessitates new methods of teaching. This is used at the San Jose State University library school, where the need for paper is being drastically reduced, and students are participating in group work electronically.
Feedback from students included comments about the enjoyment of a 'chatroom' approach, which some felt less inhibiting. This web-based approach has a knock on effect from professional education for students, to 'retooling' or refreshing for longer standing members of the field, with capacity for transfer to users. Electronic developments within information work mean that electronic communication must be effective, both for those within the workplace and externally. Hence it is vital that information professionals be equipped with appropriate communication skills in an era of exponential growth in web sites, video conferencing and remote access to a variety of library services.
Whilst these developments are being embraced, there are complex issues involved. During a discusson at the IFLA conference, one librarian from the Caribbean spoke of the problems of delivering distance services that spanned multiple islands, multiple national borders and two languages. Also a library school educator told of how it took one year to design and produce a course, fully employing two full time members of staff at an undisclosed cost. And another spoke of technological problems such as disruption of communication when a server is down.
Aside from such practical issues, the area of communication itself can become problematic. If students communicate electronically during their studies, do they learn how to communicate effectively without electronic means? Can problems of isolation and reduced pastoral care arise? And, if so, what are the implications for the information field? Electronic communication is not the same as every day informal talk and work in the same close environment with colleagues. Minor problems and isolated concerns can often be eliminated in an informal chat over a cup of coffee without having to raise anything formally or publicly. Although constantly developing IT skills and competencies are vital, so too are social skills and competencies. In the UK, many library/information courses include a professional placement. As well as facilitating students with 'real' use of taught skills and putting academic work into context, these placements aid the development of the social skills necessary to meet the needs of users and to work well with colleagues. Here students can develop a knowledge of how to work and communicate within the objectives and strategies of the host organisation. Frequently experience is gained on being an effective team player, which can be a vital basis for future staff management work.
Masters programmes can include professional placements, but frequently involve supervised research. In practice, the Masters student who is studying part-time whilst working or who has previous work experience can use a work-related problem as the basis for the research. In these cases social/communication skills are vital in order to elicit the responses required for the research.
For longer standing members of the field, as well as IT 'retooling', there also seems to be evidence of the demand to enhance more 'traditional' communication skills. There are a variety of short courses on offer on topics such as 'Managing the enquiry desk', 'Team leadership', Dealing with difficult people', 'Dealing with difficult situations', etc, which are well subscribed. In the workplace there are constant situations which require the employment of effective interpersonal skills in interaction with users and colleagues. Here responses cannot be transmitted via a VDU.
So, what are the communication skills required by the information worker today and in the future? The answer seems to be well-rounded communication skills -- employing those demanded by technological developments, but not to the exclusion of interpersonal/social skills.
ReferenceDowlin H K and David Loertscher (1999) Web-based Instruction for Continuing Education Students. IFLA Conference
NoteThis article was first published in Library and Information Appointments [Library Association Record Supplement], 3(4), (11 February 2000), p.p. 57-58
Bibliographic Instruction and Distance Education by Robert Phillips
Assistant Library Director, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Fort Worth, TXWelcome to the first semi-annual column on issues in bibliographic instruction as related to the dissemination of religious and theological information. The controlling presupposition of each column will be that teaching others to find and use religious and theological information is as important as the information itself. Some of the columns will be researched essays about the state of the art in bibliographic instruction (or, if you prefer, "information literacy"); others will be thought pieces designed to provoke comment. I hope you will find each column fresh and engaging.
Distance education programs offer courses to students who live away from the sponsoring institution. Such programs have one common feature: they do not provide their students with ready access to the institution's library collection or services. "Work arounds" exist, certainly. Instructors adjust course requirements; students make use of local libraries; libraries at the host institution send books or photocopies to the distant location or to the distant learner. Some institutions will invest in small, core collections at the distant location.
Such attempts to replicate library resources for those enrolled in distance education programs fall short without a complimentary effort to replicate library services. Indeed, failure to offer services reinforces the attitude that the library is primarily a collection of books. One could well ask if library services are not important for distance learners, why are they important for local learners? Offering library services to distant learners not only helps the student - it also helps the library profession. How does one do bibliographic instruction with distant learners? Some programs bring the students to campus for a few days at the beginning of the course, at which time they can receive instruction and orientation. Others arrange with distant libraries to offer bibliographic instruction to distant students, either in classes or as individuals. Such approaches repeat the models of instruction received by local students.
However, bibliographic instruction for distant learners may require new attitudes and tactics. Distant learners should master keyword searching on a variety of systems. Interactive web pages will supplement handouts or static lists. Instead of teaching the use of the latest print tools, focus instruction on Internet based tools, even those in the public domain. Growing collections of CD-ROM libraries call for careful attention to the difference between printed editions and their digital counterparts. Electronic publishers often provide their own tutorials or help screens but bibliographic instruction can help students quickly master those features they are most likely to use. Librarians should also encourage students to communicate with them by e-mail or even web-cams or Internet phone. By networking with public and general academic librarians, theological librarians can help their colleagues develop skills to serve the distant learner. Underlying all instruction remains the students' need to learn to ask the right questions and to evaluate their resources, wherever they might find them.
Advances in technology bring with them reviews of the old ways to determine what should be preserved, adapted, or discarded. So it is with bibliographic instruction. So it is with librarians. - Journal of Religious & Theological Information, vol 3, no. 1, 2000, pp. 3-4.
Distance Learning: Current Trends, Future Impact PublicationAnnouncement: Special Issue of the FID Review on: "Distance Education: Current Impact, Future Trends" now available!
Dear information colleagues, I am delighted to inform you that a special double issue of the membership journal of the International Federation for Information and Documentation (FID) - the FID Review - on the theme "Distance Education: Current Impact, Future Trends" is now available.
The Guest Editor of the issue is Professor Olugbemiro Jegede of the Open University of Hong Kong and the issue contains 158 pages of 28 peer-reviewed papers, including (among others):
Details of the "First Conference on Research in Distance and Adult Learning in Asia", 21-24 June, 2000, The Open University of Hong Kong, (www:ouhk.edu.hk/cridal/cridala) are included.
One copy of this double issue costs NLG 120 (approximately US$65). Should you wish to obtain more information about the issue, or order a copy directly, please send an e-mail to Theresa Stanton, Editor, FID Review at: E-mail: email@example.com (Special discount rates are available for bulk orders).
http://www.fid.nl/ FID, P.O. Box 90402, 2509 LK The Hague, Netherlands.
Guidelines For Professional Library/Information Educational Programs - 2000
New Draft, Aug. 1, 2000Revised from May 1 2000 draft prepared by Working Group on the Revision of the "Standards for Library Schools" published by IFLA in 1976 for the Section on Education and Training. It has been drafted by a working group of the Section whose members include: Evelyn Daniel, Susan Lazinger and Ole Harbo. Members of the Section on Eduation and Training have suggested changes based on a working drafts most recently presented and debated at the IFLA conference in Bangkok (1999). These changes have been incorporated in the following draft.
The Larger FrameworkPREAMBLE. Library/information educational programs have a long and distinguished history. In the past, they have focused on developing physical collections of books and other materials in library buildings staffed by people who have learned to select, acquire, organize, retrieve and circulate these materials. Today library information programs extend beyond the physical collections and buildings to the virtual world of the Internet. Today the emphasis is on the individual practioner and the concentration is on informationprovision in a variety of contexts. Educational programs are offered at the technical level, at the graduate and professional level, and at the research and doctoral level. The guidelines offered here primarily address the graduate and professional level.
1.Context. The library/information educational program's description and status (organizational level) should be comparable to that of other programs in the country that are engaged in vocational and professional education. For professional level preparation, the library/information educational program should be part of a degree-granting institution and instruction should be at the tertiary (university) level. Library/information programs should be eligible to offer doctoral level study on the same basis as other programs.
2. Mission. The library/information educational program's mission should be clearly stated in a publicly available formal document. The program's mission should address the purpose of the educational program in the larger political, social, economic and technical context. It should identify the constituencies being served and should be consistent with the needs of the country and, unless it is an independent, free-standing organization, the values of its parent institution.
3. Goals and Objectives. The library/information educational program should state its goals and identify specific objectives, derived from its goals, addressing philosophy, principles and methods of the program; areas of specialization; level of preparation provided; teaching, service and research values; and the perceived role of library and information services in society. The goals and objectives should be consistent with published educational policy
statements from recognized official bodies (See number 7 below).
CURRICULUM4. General. The curriculum shall consist of a unified series of courses and other educational experiences based on the program's goals and objectives. It should provide students with a theoretical framework for research and practice in the library/information field. Opportunities to gain and demonstrate professional competencies should be a part of the educational program. An awareness of professional concerns should permeate the program.
5. Public Document. The curriculum should be stated clearly in a publicly available formal document, describing the aims, content, learning outcomes, and assessment methods for each course within the program.
6. General Education. General education (outside of library and information specific courses) should be a significant component of the total education for the library/information specialist. For education at the professional level, the amount and quality of general education should be equivalent to that required for an undergraduate degree.
7. Core library/information coursework. Programs should refer to educational policy statements issued by professional, government or other associations that identify important knowledge and skill components. (Examples of such statements include those issued by the Institute of Information Science (UK), the Library Association (UK), the Special Libraries Association (US), the Medical Library Association (US), the Association of Library Service to Children (US), the Australian Library and Information Association.)
8. Core Elements. Core elements include:
10. Transferable Skills. Methods of teaching and assessment should be designed to develop or enhance students' interpersonal communication skills, ability to work in teams, and time and task management skills. At the professional level, emphasis should be placed on developing students' analytical and problem-solving skills.
11. Continuing Education. In order to assist practicing librarians and information specialists to maintain competence in a changing society, the program should either conduct suitable workshops and short courses for the benefit of practicing librarians and information specialists or partner with other agencies in doing so. If distance learning methods of course delivery are used, the quality of the educational experience should be comparable to similar experiences offered on site.
12. Consultancy. The program's staff and students should have the opportunity of offering consulting to libraries and information agencies to develop the interplay between the educational institution and practice.
FACULTY AND STAFF13. Academic Staff. The academic (teaching) staff should be sufficient to accomplish program objectives. The qualification of each full-time faculty member should include research-based competence in the designated teaching areas, technological awareness, effectiveness in teaching, a sustained record of scholarship, and active participation in appropriate professional associations. For teachers of programs at the professional level, a sustained record of scholarship is expected comparable to that expected of university teachers in other disciplines.
14. Faculty Appointment, Review and Promotion Policies. The educational program should have stated policies and standards for appointment, review and promotion of full-time faculty equivalent to those in comparable units. All full-time faculty should hold degrees in relevant subjects from recognized academic institutions. There should be a clearly stated policy for the continuing education and professional development of the academic teaching staff, and for reviewing the currency and relevance of courses and teaching methods.
15. Part-time faculty. Part-time faculty should be appropriately qualified and should balance and complement the teaching competencies of full-time faculty. Inputs from part-time faculty should be coordinated with the program as a whole.
16. Non-Academic Staff. Non-academic (clerical, secretarial, technical) staff should have qualifications equivalent to those of persons in comparable units. The number and kind of staff should be adequate to support the faculty in the performance of their responsibilities.
STUDENTS17. Academic Policies. Recruitment, admission, financial aid, placement, and other academic and administrative policies for students should be consistent with the mission, goals and objectives of the educational program. The policies should reflect the needs and values of the constituencies served by the program. Policies should be publicly available.
18. Admission. Selection of students should be based on clearly stated publicly available criteria. Interest, aptitude, intellectual and educational backgrounds should be addressed in the criteria. Standards for admission should be applied consistently.
19. Program of Study. Students should have advisory assistance in constructing a coherent program of study to meet career aspirations consistent with the educational program's mission, goals and objectives. Evaluation of student achievement should be provided on a consistent and equitable basis. Student evaluation of the program should be undertaken on an annual basis.
20. Completion Requirements. A clear statement of the requirements of the educational program should appear in a formal document that is available to students and prospective students. On completion of requirements, students should be awarded a degree, diploma, or certificate suitable to their level of study.
ADMINISTRATION AND FINANCIAL SUPPORT21. Organization. The library/information educational program should occupy a distinct position in the administrative organization plan of the institution. It should have autonomy sufficient to ensure the intellectual integrity of the program is consistent with its goals and objectives.
22. Head of Program. The head of the program should have status and authority comparable to heads of similar units in the parent institution. The head of the program should possess both academic and professional qualifications comparable to those required of faculty and administrative ability and leadership skills.
23. Governance. Decisions should be based on clearly defined and publicly stated policies. Faculty, staff, student, alumni and employer participation in governance should be encouraged. Major decisions and activities should be documented.
24. Financial Support. The educational program should have adequate financial support to develop and maintain a library and information course of study consistent with the expectations of practice and comparable to similar programs elsewhere. An annual budget should be administered by the head of the program. The level of support should relate to the number of faculty, administrative and support staff, instructional resources and facilities.
25. Planning. The program should have a clearly developed planning and evaluation process. The process should include an ongoing review of policies and procedures in light of anticipated changes in the library/information field and in the larger society. Faculty, staff, and students should be involved in the planning activity. The program should meet such educational and/or professional accreditation requirements as are the norm in the country.
INSTRUCTIONAL RESOURCES AND FACILITIES26. Library Resources. Library resources should be of sufficient depth, quantity and accessibility to support the courses offered by the educational program and the research efforts of the faculty. These should include monographs and serial publications, in print and in electronic formats; a range of bibliographical tools to support teaching and research; and other appropriate media. A procedure for access to additional resources from other locations should be in place.
27. Information Technology Resources. Computer hardware and software and multimedia resources should be available for students and staff and be sufficient for the level of use required for coursework and faculty research.
28. Internet Resources. Adequate connections to the Internet should allow ready access to Internet resources for faculty and students. A policy regarding acceptable uses of the Internet for teaching and research emphasizing the librarian's concerns for freedom of information should be formulated and publicized.
29. Physical Facilities. The educational program's physical facilities should provide adequate space for faculty, staff and students to accomplish its objectives.
Continuous Education Procedure and its Organizational-Methodical Ensuring in Russia by Soboleva E.B., Deputy Director and Artemieva E.B., Head of Researchby Soboleva E.B., Deputy Director and Artemieva E.B., Head of Research Department of the State Public Scientific Technical Library with the Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences (SPSTL with SB of RAS)
The difficulties related with the training and re-training of librarians and library personnel are gaining even more weight due to the constant inward flow of new technology and changes in customer demand of library related matter and information systems.
It is clear that co-ordinated efforts of higher educational institutions and libraries in the organisation of the education and improvement of professional qualifications cannot by themselves achieve the desired results, which seem to be, from our point of view, the achievement of corresponding levels of training of librarians to the state of technology subsisting at the beginning of the third millennium and the satisfaction of current customer demand.
Therefore, in Russia greater attention is being paid to the establishment of various structural frameworks capable of facilitating the co-ordination and co-operation of institutions seeking to accommodate the abovementioned results.
The most fundamental of such institutions are the Section of the profession of librarians, library personnel and the process of continuous education under the Russian Librarians Association (RLA); a body established in 1996 under the initiative of the leading librarian figure E.R.Soukiasian. This body is a public organisation, acting in accordance with a Memorandum & Articles of Association, the primary objective of which is the consolidation of the efforts of specialists on the research and development of theoretical and methodical problems of the training of library personnel. The main task of the Section is the introduction and implementation of new forms of professional qualifications and the establishment of an information centre as a basis for the distribution of novel and progressive ideas. In recent years, and with the active support of the Institute "Open Community" (the Soros Fund), centres of continuous education at various levels have been established and upgraded.
Hence, for instance, in the Asian parts of Russia, the Siberian Regional Library Centre of Continuous Education was established and is currently operating successfully. The main functions of the Centre are:
DB "Lector" contains an enumeration of topics which may be utilized as material for the studies of trainee librarians and information on tutors conducting the training. This enables the libraries of the Region to choose amongst the offered services. The DB "Ychebnik" consists of material of an educational and methodical nature on the actual themes of library science and bibliography. It is intended that in this perspective the data base shall be transformed into a system of distant learning. The data base is available on the SPSTL with SB of RAS's website and may be accessed through the internet (http://info.spsl.nsc.ru), they may also be accessed and used by international users and colleagues.
In recent years great interest has been shown in the difficulties related to the training and re-training of library personnel. These difficulties have mainly arisen from the recent changes in economical conditions as in their relation to libraries, but also from the revolutionary changes in the technology of the libraries' functioning, related to, primarily, the process of automation. It has thus become clear that uncoordinated efforts on behalf of higher educational institutions, in providing training of library personnel, and of libraries, in the upgrading of library personnel qualifications, do not achieve the desired results, which seem to be, from our point of view, the achievement of corresponding levels of training of librarians, who provide informational library services, to the demands of society as subsisting at the beginning of the third millennium. The realisation of the status quo has brought about the establishment of various structural frameworks capable of facilitating the co-ordination and co-operation of institutions seeking to accommodate the abovementioned results.
One of these is the Section of the profession of librarians, library personnel and the process of continuous education under the Russian Librarians Association (RLA); a body established in 1996. This body is a public organisation, acting in accordance with a Memorandum & Articles of Association, the primary objective of which is the consolidation of the efforts of specialists on the research and development of theoretical and methodical problems of the training of library personnel. The main task of the Section is the introduction and implementation of new forms of professional qualifications and the establishment of an information centre as a basis for the distribution of novel and progressive ideas.
In recent years, and with the active support of the Institute "Open Society" (the Soros Fund), centres of continuous education, at various levels, have been established and upgraded. These centres mainly operate in the European part of Russia, eg. "The School of Roudomino" - an educational centre specialising in short term education, a structural sub-division of the All-Russian State Library of Foreign Literature (Moscow), carrying out most of its work with public and university libraries, foreign colleagues, regional training centres of the Russian Federation operating in Nizhnie Novogorode (the Fundamental Library of Nizhiegorod State University), in Tver, in Bryansk (the Regional Universal Scientific Library), in Ekaterinburg, and co-operating extensively with specialists from Ministry of Culture and Ministry of Education libraries. In Kazan (the Republic of Tatarstan) the Tatar republican medical library-information centre provides continuous education for the employees of medical libraries. Succesfully operating in the Asian part of the country is the training centre of the Novosibirsk Library Society, co-operating with the Ministry of Culture of the Western-Siberian Region libraries, and the Siberian Regional Library Centre of Continuous Education, the characteristics and activities of which we shall examine in more detail. The Centre was established by the initiative and on basis of the State Public Scientific-Technical Library of the Siberian division of the Russian Academy of Science (Novosibirsk) with the support of some of the largest scientific libraries of the Siberian Region. It was also established with extensive input from the Institute "Open Society". The activities of the Centre are mostly aimed at library and information institutions of various forms in the Siberian-Far Eastern Region.
The Siberian-Far Eastern Region - this covers two thirds of the total territory of Russia, and accommodates five republics, four minor regions, twelve provinces and eight national regions. The population of the whole Region is 32.8 million people - over 20% of the population of the entire country. This Region plays an important role in the economies of the CZIS countries and of Russia in the production of many essential products. Highly developed sectors of the Region include the primary sector and defense, scientific and educational, and agriculture sectors. At the same time however, the Siberian-Far Eastern Region is clearly behind all the other European regions of the country in the solving of socially related problems. Scientists have noted that there is a noticeable loss of culture consumers and consequently their differentiation. A new approach is needed for the establishment and functioning of institutions in the cultural sphere. A transition from the organizational-functional regime currently in place to a social approach is necessary, towards a re-orientation of the institutions to the contemporary lifestyle of people, their present interests and values. Especially so now that there are visible problems and conflicts in the relations between the public at large and the cultural institutions, between the level of their development and the contemporary demands. Successful progress towards the solving of the current social problems greatly depends upon the functioning of the cultural institutions, including libraries.
In the Region there are over twelve thousand public libraries, approximately two thousand scientific-technical libraries, over eighty academic libraries (belonging to the Siberian division of the Russian Academy of Science and the Far Eastern Science Centre of the Russian Academy of Science), more than one hundred forty medical libraries, approximately one hundred agricultural libraries and almost one thousand libraries of higher and secondary educational institutions.
The main reason for the initial decision to establish the Centre had been the fact that as a result of economic instability libraries had been placed in an extremely difficult situation. The existing system for the re-training of professional personnel, the main venues of which were and still are situated in Moscow and Saint-Petersburg, and thus relatively far from the Siberian-Far Eastern Region, came to be too costly. Local courses for the upgrading of professional qualifications either turn into completely different variants or cannot provide the necessary educational components to the participants, eg. contemporary information-library technology, organizational and legal aspects of library management, etc., due to the lack of professionally qualified teaching staff.
The choice of SPSTL with SB of RAS as a basis for the establishment of the Centre had not been by chance. The body's accumulated experience in organisation had been used as basis for the development of the Centre. From 1966 and functioning under the aegis of SPSTL with SB of RAS is the Union of Scientific and Specialist Libraries of Siberia and the Far East, including libraries from various departments - the Siberian division of the Russian Academy of Science, the Ministry of Culture (regional, provincial, republican), large specialist libraries, libraries and methodical centres of libraries of higher educational institutions of Western and Eastern Siberia and the Far East (scientific libraries of the three oldest and most prominent universities - the Tomsk, Irkutsk and Far Eastern Universities). The development processes in scientific libraries of the Region and the direction of their current activities mainly resulted from inter-library co-operation. At the present still under co-ordination is the formation of funds and depository storage, inter-library subscriptions, information and bibliographical services, carrying out of scientific research and development and upgrading of professional qualifications of library personnel. It must however be noted that in recent years and under the influence of recent social changes as a result of the transition to a free market economy the co-operation between libraries in certain ways has weakened. However, more importance has been allocated to the qualification, training and re-training of library personnel. The current system of training and re-training of the personnel, enacted many years ago and still functioning, (refer to table 1) has always been orientated not only on the personnel of SPSTL with SB of RAS but also on the specialists from scientific libraries and higher educational institutions of the Siberian-Far Eastern Region.
The system of training and re-training of personnel of SPSTL with SB of RAS
The staff of SPSTL with SB of RAS is capable of training library personnel following various methods. The list of the members of staff consists of five hundred people, including three holding Doctorate degrees (Ph.D.) and twenty three holding Candidate degrees (the first highest degree in Russia), all possessing experience in scientific work and pedagogic activities.
Furthermore, being the largest library in the Asian part of Russia (with funds consisting of fourteen million editions), SPSTL with SB of RAS possesses all the essential resources and capacities for the training and re-training of personnel.
Developed and extensively used here at the library is technology for the preparation of an electronic catalogue (since 1992; already includs more than three thousand inputs), a factual base for data of regional subjects, visual-analytical information, etc. Automated procedures for inter-library subscriptions and international exchange of books. Also installed are facilities for electric data transmissions. The library not only utilizes resources from the Internet but is also a fully empowered member of the net, forwarding on the server its own data base (DB), as also the utilization of protocol Z 39-50. On the basis of which practically all known methods of user informing develop.
An essential component of a data centre is the development of technical material and educational-methodical data. In our case, not mentioning the structure itself and the installed equipment, - this appears in the form an Internet course, opened in 1997 with the assistance of the Soros Fund, an editorial and publishing centre, an educationally-methodical course of library science with a specialized stock of local and foreign literature, bibliography and bibliology and information technology (a stock of sixteen thousand editions). The stock consists of local and foreign books, periodicals and magazines, sequels, authors' synopsis and essays, authors' dissertations, the staff's candidate dissertations and thesis already defended before the Council of SPSTL with SB of RAS, material from conferences and meetings, government standards of "SIBID" systems, non-published material from SPSTL with SB of RAS and the Scientific Research Institute of Information Culture. The stock also includes foreign journals on publishing. Among them are the well-known "British Library News", "College and Research Libraries", College and Research Libraries News, "Information World", "IFLA Journal", "Internet", "Journal Education for Library and Information Science", "The Library Quarterly", "Library Trends", "Research Bulletin", "Managing Information Newsletter", "Journal of Library Administration", etc. An advanced system of cataloguing and card indices and corresponding data base (this data base is a product of the work of the staff of SPSTL with SB of RAS, data base publications [from a listing of various publishing houses] on library science, bibliography and bibliology and information technology).
We are well aware of the fact that the efforts of one library, even of a very large library with great capacity, cannot covert all the educational services demanded. It is necessary to consolidate the efforts of all the institutions concerned and interested in the development of scientific and personnel potential, by the consolidation of their activities. The aims of the Centre are:
In order to assist in the definition of the main courses of regional policy to be taken in the fields of continuous education and co-ordination of educational, scientific-methodical, information and publishing activities at the Centre a Consulting Committee was formed. The members of the Committee are representatives of scientific libraries of the Siberian Region (Kemerovo Provincial Universal Library, Altay Territorial Scientific Library, National Library of the Republic of Sakha, Central Scientific - Agricultural Library of the Siberian Division the Russian Agricultural Academy, Kemerovo State Academy of Culture and Art). Co-operation between the regional libraries on the organisation of education is regulated by Co-operation Agreements, which at the present time are eleven in number, namely, the Irkutsk, Kemerovo Region, Krasnoyarsk, Altay Region, National Libraries of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia) and the Republic of Khakasia, Aginsk Regional Library, Far Eastern State Scientific Library, Scientific Library of the Irkutsk State University, Kemerovo State Academy and Altay State Institute of Art and Culture.
The Centre has developed a package of planning and organisational documentation. This may be assessed on the SPSTL with SB of RAS website where it is regularly updated (http://www.spsl.nsc.ru).
Having taken into consideration from the outset that the Centre's activities are orientated to benefit institutions at a distance a date base was developed and installed onto the Centre's website on the Internet. This is a data base consisting of an information-methodical package of the Centre's activities. This is a factual data base called DB "Lector" which may be assessed by anyone and which includes minutes from and topics of lectures, information on the lecturers, and which enables regional libraries to form their own educational packages depending on their personnel's needs and capacities. At the present time the website includes topics prepared by lecturers of the SPSTL with SB of RAS, SPSTL of Russia, Library of Natural Science of the Russian Academy of Science, Kemerovo and Altay, East-Siberian and Khabarovsk State Institutes and Universities of Art and Culture, all of which provide training for library personnel and specialists. The data base "Ychebnik" includes manuals consisting of material and texts of an educational and methodical context concerning the actual themes of library science and bibliography. At the present time the data base includes five such manuals but by the year 2000 another three are planned to be launched. In this perspective the data base shall be transformed into a system of distant learning. This shall require the development of programmes ensuring a hyper-text system of distant learning with correcting, marking and evaluation material; the establishment and development of users interface access to educational textbooks and other material; the installation of a system on the web-server of SPSTL with SB of RAS and its launch, first on a trial basis, and eventually industrially. The establishment of a system of distant learning will enable: library personnel to upgrade their qualifications without leaving work; to study at their own individual pace under the supervision of experienced consultants; to have access to the latest achievements in the research fields; individually control the quality of their education. The distant learning of library personnel of the country using the already developed system shall be carried out through the web-server of SPSTL with SB of RAS free of charge.
Information available on the data base at the present time is actively being accessed and studied by users. Evidence of this is the number of users connecting on the data base. In seven working months of 1999 the number of users visiting the data base from regional libraries was estimated to be 885 and the number of users was estimated to be 140 (406/94 - of the "Ychebnik" and 479/46 of "Lector") (from Moscow libraries, Tomsk, Novosibirsk, Krasnoyarsk, etc.). In January and February 2000 the number of visitors of DB "Ychebnik" was 179 and of DB "Lector" 143. We remain hopeful that these data base shall become nationwide property and contribution into their input and upgrading shall be made by members of the Section of the profession of librarians, library personnel and the process of continuous education under the Russian Librarians Association, libraries, institutes, universities and all specialists, including foreign colleagues interested in the development of an arrangement as thus in the libraries and informational institutions of the Siberian-Far Eastern Region. We shall be grateful to accept any suggestions and/or propositions from them.
Most importantly, however, for the regional libraries co-operting with the Centre is the holding of quest seminars, the ability to conduct which was made possible by the NOO Grant. Such quest courses have already been held at the Kemerov Regional Scientific Library with the topic of the upgrading of qualifications (one in 1999 and three in 2000). A seminar has also been held for the specialists of the Irkutsk library (twice in 1999 and in 2000), at each of which approximately sixty participants attended - mainly from the Irkutsk Regional Scientific Library, Scientific Library of the Irkutsk State University and other academic libraries. Apart from lectures on the problems of the formation of stocks of local and foreign literature, installation of automated technology, and in particular the components of contemporary programming means, ability of electronic data transmission and use of the Internet, practical consultations were also organised. The programme of the organisation of seminars in Iakutsk for the personnel of the libraries of the Republic of Sakha (1999) was carried out in the same way taking into consideration the needs and requests of the receiving party. Therefore, included in the programme besides the difficulties concerning the use of contemporary technology were also topics concerning the organisation of scientific research and development, economic and legal aspects of libraries and the social and psychological aspects of the management of personnel. Practical work concerning the Internet was also organised on the basis of material provided by the Institute of Aerophysics Research and Aeronomics of SB of RAS. The number of participants exceeded one hundred - and mainly consisted of representatives of the libraries of the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Sakha, institutes, universities and other academic institutions. Similar seminars have also been organised in Krasnoyarsk, Tomsk in 1999. There also, among the topics discussed, was the problem of formation of stocks. Other topics which have interested participants from the libraries and cultural institutions have included courses on the history of bibliography and library science in Russia (Barnaul, Kemerov, 2000), library economics (Barnaul, 2000), management of library funds ( Barnaul, Kemerov, 2000), etc. Over a period of slightly over one year over ten quest seminars had been organised. The principle feature, from our point of view, is that the topics to be covered are chosen by the libraries themselves, the training of whose personnel we undertake. Furthermore, as a visiting staff of approximately three to four people we have the ability to lecture to a larger auditorium of participants (ranging from fifty to one hundred participants). In addition, each lecturer personally tutors groups of approximately fifteen to twenty participants. Such training is held simultaneously for all the participants in different rooms.
With the help of the Institute "Open Society", and with substantial input from the Western-Siberian Training Centre, operating under the aegis of the Novosibirsk Library Society, in November 1999 a training seminar entitled "Internet in the Library" had been organised, which enabled eighteen trainers from library-informational institutions to be instructed (currently lecturing in their regions). A scientific and practical seminar was held by the organisers of continuous education. The theme of the seminar: "Library Management: Continuous Education under the Conditions of Change" (October 1999), which, we hope, helped discover new approaches in the development of management.
The seminar had been attended by almost one hundred specialists from Kazan, Tcheliabinsk, Novosibirsk, Irkutsk, Yakutsk, Tomsk, Krasnoyarsk, Abakan, Kemerovo, Barnaul, Khabarovsk and other cities of Siberia and the Far East, also attending the seminar had been the director of "The Roudomino School" (Moscow), representatives of the Russian State Library (Moscow), Russian National Library (Saint-Petersburg), Academy of Re-training of Personnel in the fields of Art, Culture and Tourism (Moscow), etc. It must be noted that the educational level of the participants had been of a very high professional standard - among the ninety eight participants there had been two holders of a Doctorate degree (Ph.D.) and twenty five holders of a Candidate degree.
The seminar had been held in the form of sessions divided by themes. Among the factors examined had been the formation of the economic and legal aspects and information culture of the management of libraries; experience in the management of personnel in specific libraries and information institutions with different systems and structures. Included in many of the presented thesis were characteristics of departmental resources and systems of continuous education in national and regional library centres, highlighted was the experience achieved through the co-operation of libraries and educational institutions. With great interest on the participants' behalf a discussion was held on the role played by the funds and public organisations' support in libraries and generally the process of continuous education with the aim of upgrading qualifications, etc, on an international level. Presented during the seminar for the first time had been the activities of the Siberian Regional Library Centre for Continuous Education. Based on the results presented certain recommendations were forwarded, providing for, amongst others, a more active participation by libraries of the Centre's activities.
Beside the conducting of various seminars the Centre also carries out training courses (in 1999 eight training courses were held at the SPSTL with SB of RAS).
In discussing the perspective activities of the Centre the subject of its financing cannot be overlooked. A grant, subsidised by the Soros Fund, has helped at the organisational stage, and it is due to this Fund that the abovementioned series of seminars had been organised, demonstrating to the library society the ability of education which may be provided in the Region. At the present time the libraries at which the seminars are held take onto themselves the travelling expenses of the lecturers, organisation of the auditoriums and the technical expenses of the seminars. Conscious realisation of new opportunities allows discussions concerning the future development of the Centre's activities. It can already be noted that the current hierarchical system of education accommodates a much greater and wider range of specialists of libraries of various forms. Seminars held which had been designed upon the specific request of certain institutions ("ordered seminars") have shown the largest turnout of participants.
It would be useful at this point to remind the reader that the Siberian Regional Library Centre of Continuous Education operates within the structure of an academic library - the SPSTL with SB of RAS, but is involved in the upgrading of qualifications of various specialists and personnel of libraries. These libraries include public libraries of the Ministry of Culture, University libraries and special scientific libraries, all situated on the territory of the Siberian Far Eastern Region but at a substantial distance from the Centre. From our point of view, the organisation of the system of continuous education which includes facilities for the re-training of library personnel from more than one type of libraries is sufficiently effective and efficient. This enables an exchange of views and decisions towards the approaches used for the formation and presentation to the consumers of library and information resources of the region. In co-operation with some of the largest libraries of the country, which are also methodical centres of the aforementioned libraries, situated in Moscow and Sait-Petersburg, the activities of the Centre have the capacity to be become even more productive. A few of the advantages may be worth noting at this point: the organisation of joint quest seminars, the joint publishing of textbooks and other study material, the updating of the data base in conjunction with the Centre, etc. We are of the opinion that in the future the currently operating Siberian Regional Library Centre of Continuous Education should be granted the status of an independent organisation specialising in the re-training of specialists and personnel of various types of libraries in the region. The consolidation of the Centre's activities with those of similar centres in other regions of Russia appears favourable in the solution of problems concerning the continuous education of librarians.
The currently functioning organisational structures may, and should, be used for the development of international co-operation in the field of continuous education. The methods by which these ends may be met take various forms: the participation of foreign specialists in scientific conferences and seminars, their participation as lecturers and trainers at the quest seminars, etc.
The willingness and openness to co-operate is the main principle of Section RLA and of all the other abovementioned centres.
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