Dear New Student,
Whether you are new to the topic of embedded librarianship or have studied it somewhat in another class, as I had, the semester’s immersion in the topic, afforded by LIBR 220, will absolutely broaden and deepen your understanding of embedded library services. I started with an understanding that embedded librarianship was about proactive delivery of service beyond the walls of the physical library, thoughtfully customizing the where, when and what of our users’ needs. But the readings in this course….all excellent….reveal the seemingly infinite and inventive ways that academic librarians are wielding this very powerful, user-centered approach. Two of the many radical new ideas that I’m taking away are:
- how librarians craftily embed into the work flow of their users. Who knew that a cleverly-designed invisibility cloak around library services at users’ points-of-need could make library services more desirable?
- assessments are absolutely necessary and surprisingly do-able. Academic librarians show how to make it routine and critical to reshaping everything we do so that we stay relevant in the lives of our users.
The embedded model has been seen as mostly an academic library construct and LIBR 220 showcases case studies from academia. But embedded practices are absolutely portable to every other library setting. Those of us who work in other types of libraries have a lot to thank academic librarians for. They show the way and spark innovation in our practice.
There are many things that just plain work in this course. For instance, you are going to like the blog format. The quality of the blog reflections and the comments that they elicit will be nothing like you’ve experienced in a D2L discussion strand. Blogging raises the bar somehow.
You’ll also like how the three assignments can be linked together so that they build on one another. The Environmental Scan can be used to identify a problem that you explore more deeply through the Annotated Bibliography assignment. Then your findings there can shape a well-research proposal for the final project. They fit neatly together.
I would encourage you to lobby for just one change. The blog conversation was so wonderful that I wished for at least one elective real-time Collaborate session where the class participants could “meet” in person.
So….enjoy! Learn! Then join the movement: Embed!