Lucky LILAC: an LIS new professional’s perspective of the 2017 conference

Lucky LILAC: an LIS new professional’s perspective of the 2017 conference

This is a guest post written by Catriona Robertson (@RabCShell), a new professional working in HE/health libraries.

Lucky might not be the term that springs to mind when you hear that it was LILAC’s thirteenth year in April, but that is how I, a LILAC newbie, felt to be attending this year’s conference. LILAC, the Librarian’s Information Literacy Annual Conference, is organised each year by CILIP’s Information Literacy Group and attracts attendees and delegates from the UK and further afield. This year’s conference was held over three days at the beautiful Swansea University Bay Campus. As an added bonus, there was plenty of sun rays, as well as ideas, to soak up.

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On things not going to plan: reflections on studying for the LIS qualification while disabled

On things not going to plan: reflections on studying for the LIS qualification while disabled

This is a guest post from Kirsten Elliott (@BookishKirsten)

When I started studying for my librarianship qualification in September 2013, I had a plan. I was enrolled on the Aberystwyth distance learning course and I had decided I was going to complete the diploma part within a year, making it to the earliest possible study schools, and then complete the dissertation within the next year. It was ambitious, but the first six months or so it seemed to be working out. I managed to fit in time to do my assignments around two part-time jobs, a social life and martial arts training. I even completed my first few modules fast enough to make it to the April study school at Aberystwyth. Things did not, however, keep going to plan.

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Professional LIS posts and making the best use of your LIS course post-qualification

Professional LIS posts and making the best use of your LIS course post-qualification

In writing a post on this particular topic I have to admit I might be searching for inspiration as much as providing it!  But given the fact that I am coming to the end of a PG Diploma in Library and Information Services Management, this is a topic which is never far from my mind.  Whilst I have picked up a wide range of theoretical knowledge and explored the LIS sector in a variety of different contexts, the ultimate goal and reason for undertaking the course was career development.  Some of my peers have voiced their concerns over that small but niggling doubt which questions whether skills gained on their respective LIS course will transfer successfully to a professional post.  After all, “you’re already doing the job, why do you need a qualification?”

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Marketing and other unexpected skills: what today’s LIS professional needs to know

Marketing and other unexpected skills: what today’s LIS professional needs to know

Recently I have found myself involved in my library’s “comms team”, in addition to my usual role. The work of the team involves marketing the library service. Marketing is not something I envisioned myself doing when I used to think about what my career in libraries would look like, but it is increasingly important for today’s LIS professionals to be clued up on marketing, as we increasingly need to promote and demonstrate the value of our services. As an increasingly important part of library work, marketing is something new professionals should consider brushing up on, if we are to develop our careers in this field. Continue reading “Marketing and other unexpected skills: what today’s LIS professional needs to know”

The Perpetual Student: transitioning back from employment to education


Student hidden by book pile

It was not so very long ago that I considered myself well and truly done with higher education. As a student, at least. I’d been down the traditional route of studying for a Bachelor’s degree, then a Master’s, and felt that wider civic responsibilities beckoned – and that I really ought to start paying my way in life.

Well, would you credit it? Here I am a student. Again.

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“You’re doing another degree?!” How to answer those awkward questions: a LIS Student’s View

“You’re doing another degree?!” How to answer those awkward questions: a LIS Student’s View

This blog post may not have all the answers to assuage those incredulous shocked faces and concerned pleas from partners, family members, friends, in-law/out-laws etc., all urging you to quit your “eternal student” status, but it will hopefully be a timely consideration of the many solid justifications for pursuing a professional library qualification which can sometimes get lost in the ether. Although quite irritating to admit, it would be a lie to say that these nagging doubts haven’t occurred to me at one point or another, but particularly at the very beginning of my LIS studies.  In fact, the decision to begin any further qualifications after completing masters and doctoral level studies was strangely daunting.  The substantial financial cost is a major consideration for most applicants, accompanied by the fact that (as in most professions) funding is incredibly limited.  Also, time constraints, work pressures, family commitments and general life obstacles can all feed into the mix and make a persuasive case for avoiding further study altogether.  You’ve got the permanent post now, so why bother?

Well, as anyone who has been bitten by the library bug will know, there is a certain security and an empowerment in information literacy which encourages individuals to constantly reassess and reconsider the best routes to information discovery. No matter how “expert” we might feel, various different experiences in public, academic and special libraries have taught me that there is always something new to learn.  Perhaps therein lies the intrigue with Library and Information Services courses.

 So is it worth it?

Continue reading ““You’re doing another degree?!” How to answer those awkward questions: a LIS Student’s View”