Glyndwr University’s new librarianship foundation degree
Posted by gazjjohnson on 22 September, 2009
Last week I took the plunge and took the long train ride to Wales and Wrexham. I went over to appear as a guest lecturer at Glyndwr University’s new Library & Information Practice degree. The degree’s had some good coverage in the press, as it’s aimed at those already working within a library service at a para professional (library assistant) level who want to move their skills on quite seriously. I really approve of this. Back in the early 2000s I was instrumental in getting Careers Days for Library Assistants off the ground through the Yorkshire CDG group; so I’m glad someone’s taken the idea further.
Whilst Wrexham might not be the most photogenic city, the University itself is rather nice and their welcome as warm as it comes. And especially their library which Chief Librarian Paul Jeorrett took me round before my session. Full of comfy leather chairs, exceptional lighting (natural and electric) and one of the most helpful and enthusiastic staff I’ve encountered for quite some time. The students on all their degrees are going to really enjoy working there I can tell.
My session (covering effective advocacy, visual communication and simple business cases for marketing your library service) went down really well – since I got two rounds of very enthusiastic applause. Either that or they were glad that they could head off to lunch!
As the course is mostly by distance learning there is a real emphasis on getting to grips with Web 2.0 and social networking during this first week; the hope being that the small but enthusiastic class of 12 will keep in touch when they’re not having a residential week. I have to say from my encounters with the students in the classroom and over the few meals we shared that I was impressed by their eagerness to learn and breadth of library experience. They all deserve to do really well; as indeed do all the other tutors and course leaders at the course.
I should also mention that every communication I had with the Uni (including a sudden need to swap the times of my session at the last minute) was via Web 2.0. Indeed when I got my expenses form through a Web 1 channel, it felt rather a disappointment – but then Facebook doesn’t handle attachments very well (or indeed at all).
And they’re already advertising the 2010 intake, so if you’re a library assistant who’d like to consider developing more skills and a professional qualification, this course is well worth a very serious look! Now if CILIP would only accredit it fully…