Nicole Cooke (Assistant Professor, Graduate School of Library and Information Science) and Merinda Hensley (Assistant Professor, University Library) have won the award for best paper at the 8th Annual Conceptions of Library and Information Science Conference (CoLIS).They presented their paper, “The Critical and Continuing Role of LIS Curriculum in the Teacher Training of Future Librarians,” on Wednesday, August 21, 2013 at the conference, which took place at Copenhagen University in Denmark. Touching on the variable training in instruction received by library and information science graduate students, Cooke and Hensley’s case study highlights the evolution of a new advanced instruction course keyed to educational theories important for librarians. The full abstract reads:
There is very little in the way of formal training on how to learn to teach within library and information science (LIS) curriculum. In fact, most new librarians learn how to teach on the job and proactive librarians will seek out professional development opportunities to supplement their experiences. Formal instruction-related courses in LIS schools are not new, but the need for prepared instruction librarians continues and training remains inconsistent. This case study is informed by two theories supporting the notion of praxis, where learning is best achieved by putting theory and pedagogy into action. Kolb’s Experiential Learning theory (ELT) (1984) and Reflective Practice (RP), as discussed by Moon (2004) and Brookfield (1995), provide an appropriate educational lens through which to examine the phenomena of preparing librarians to teach in the field. The authors present an evolving and collaborative model where a practicing librarian and a LIS faculty member, both with instruction experience, team-teach an advanced course that builds up on an existing introductory instruction course covering basic pedagogical strategies. This advanced course provides a structure for students to receive hands-on experience within active library instruction classrooms.