Sunday, 15 July 2012
Thing 10 - Graduate traineeships, Masters Degrees, Chartership, Accreditation.
I have only recently successfully Chartered. I did my degree in Librarianship more than 20 years ago at Aberystwyth (then one of only 4 universities in the UK at which you could study the subject). I did a joint degree with History (and a little Education thrown in too!) and I did enjoy the course. I am interested to see that now the majority of folk seem do do a Masters after completing a degree in another subject first.
My degree did stand me in good sted - I worked as a Librarian for a number of years before moving into the world of LIS systems with a computer company. That saw me designing, writing and delivering training courses to customers on how to use the LIS the company developed.
I then took a career break (quite a long one) and returned to work running the library in an FE College. This was quite challenging on a number of fronts - student behaviour; teaching staff unwilling to use books and journals; budget cuts; staffing levels slashed leading to reduced opening hours. During my time there I decided to Charter (it was not seen as a "necessary" by the College, but my line manager of the time was encouraging).
I was surprised to find that my original Librarianship degree was not approved by CILIP. It had been approved shortly after I Graduated (bad timing!) This meant I had to follow the longer two year route - not an issue for me as it turned out.
I did not find the Chartership process easy to understand. I wanted to get a picture in my mind of what the end product would look like - but originally only saw Portfolio examples that had followed the previous specifications, which I just found confusing. However, once I had a picture in my mind, it was quite straight forward - once you got the hand of reflecting on what you were doing / visits made / training attended etc.
Having recently changed jobs, my immediate challenge is to get to grips with the daily routines and processes currently in place. But I have been asked to make changes to increase the promotion of the resources offered and encourage people to use more the skills of the staff. This involves making presentations to those studying at my new employers and these students are more used to making high powered presentation themselves, not receiving them!
The one area I lack formal training in (as I have always "learnt on the job") is in running training courses. I have learnt over the years what tends to work well and be well received, and what tends to switch off an audience, but I would feel far more comfortable planing and making these sort of training sessions with some credible training under my belt. Luckily, my employers are great believers in investing in training for their staff, and this is something they are supporting me with.
I wonder to what extent, if any, any library training at any level includes an element of training in teaching techniques. This is such a key part of our job these days, whether it is done informally or formally in a classroom or workshop setting, that I think it should be considered a key part of any course.
I'd be interested to know what you think?