Thursday, July 12, 2012

Embedded Librarian Challenge Two: Librarians' Role in the Course Syllabus

I do believe to be successful in any project, the goal or objectives have to be defined and made clear the same as you plan to drive long distance. You have to know what your destination is. So does the Embedded Librarian Pilot Project. A written proposal is not enough, librarians' specific roles have to be reflected or described in the course syllabus. After some looking and asking around, I was not able to find what I needed. Most embedded librarians were listed either as co-instructors or research assistants with contact information in the course syllabi without detailing their roles. I turned to Mr. David Shumaker for help. His pointer was very helpful:

"The course-embedded librarian can take many different roles, such as presenting in-class information literacy instruction, meeting with students individually or in teams to counsel them on research projects, collaborating with the instructor to specify assignments, grading assignments, posting help and comments to the course website, etc.  So the first task is to define your role in consultation with the instructor. Then you will know how to describe your role in the syllabus."

After discussing with the course instructor and program coordinator, embedded librarian services were officially included in the course syllabus:

"The embedded librarian works with the course faculty to achieve the goal of improving each student’s scholarly writing, library, and research skills by providing the following services: 
  • Assisting with and providing training on locating, retrieving, and evaluating information for course assignments and/or research projects.
  • Providing help with using information management tools such as EndNote for course assignments and to organize references.
  • Answering questions posted on course discussion board, Embedded Librarian FAQ.
  • Linking library resources to the course by creating a course research guide using LibGuides.
  • Maintaining the course blog related to writing and research such as Tip of the Week related to library research."
As the course progresses, am I doing what were expected in the syllabus? More challenges are on the way...