A loud librarian's take on libraries and all things books.

Information services to staff and students September 14, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — liane23 @ 1:52 am
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The determining factor here is the use of the library: purpose. The library I have been relieving in is immaculate and the teacher librarian is well respected across the school. The library caters for many areas of information service needs. There has been a huge book week, a book fair and three author visits so far in 2012. The displays in the library are creative, relevant and always changing.

What constitutes a good information service also is influenced by how it is interpreted, what is focused upon.

The library is sorely lacking in ICT resources. The non-fiction section is undergoing a complete overhaul. Air conditioning was finally installed after 5 years. It is possible the librarian can only do so much and each area takes time and energy to effect change.

LIS for staff

Providing information services

Key factors:

  • Resources existing in the library – print and digital
  • Curriculum needs – staff ability to use resources/ level of support required
  • Student needs/ abilities  – could be linked to the school focus area re. 3-year management plan

Valenza commentary on wikis and pathfinders. Valenza outlines clear advantages, some of the most compelling are:

  • Uploading documents –  useful for planning and assessment
  • Model students work creating a shared workspace
  • More user friendly for students – Ad-free, easy to link to other resources, ease of use of images to assist visual learners
  • Collaborative allowing the teacher and librarian to build the pathfinder together
  • Organic and user friendly therefore time friendly for busy tls
  • A vehicle for use of Web 2.0 tools

A reference interview: A reference interview is a conversation, in person, digital or by phone, between a librarian and a client to determine the person’s exact information needs.

LIS for Students

Key areas of the information service (in order of importance)

  1. Providing resources directly suited to the needs of the students in the school community
  2. Promotion of the library as a place for students. Promote access to all of the library’s resources through different means, eg:
  • promote reading by allowing students to come to read for pleasure
  • develop citizenship, ownership and leadership with library monitors
  • take time to blog and encourage children to reply/ comment
  1. Make ICT available and allocate time and reasons for its use
  2. Assist students in developing habits for accessing information by providing guidance and resources eg concept maps
  3. The organisation, storage and access to resources to allow the library to be a user-friendly place

Community profile

Physical environment:

  • Incorporate learning aids for students eg larger screens on computers
  • Correctly sized furniture and number of chairs. Catering for student sizes ages 5 to 12 years.
  • Wheelchair friendly


  • Supporting reading development with books catering to the levels of student ability whilst recognising their interests and social considerations
  • Use of and access to ICT at home
  • Use of digital technology


  • Determine specific focus areas for collection development eg Aboriginal resources, texts in other languages
  • Specific student interests


  • Attitudes to learning in the community determining library use
  • Staff needs
  • Teaching allocation of tl


  • Curriculum trends
  • Use of library by staff

ISP in the library

  1. Prominent posters on:
  • the ISP used at the school
  • location of library resources
  • key words for common topics
  • useful search engines
  1. Proformas of:
  • concept maps
  • explosion charts
  • question prompts
  • key words
  • lists of references
  1. Online resources:
  • Library catalogue
  • Library website – links to search tools


Charles Sturt University (CSU) (2012). ). Information services and resource creation: The reference interview [ETL501 Module Topic 7]. Retrieved August 26, 2012, from Charles Sturt University website:

Herring, J. (2011) Information literacy, in Improving students’ web use and information literacy: A guide for teachers and teacher librarians, pp. 61-76. London: Facet Publishing.

Janes, J. (2008). An informal history (and possible future) of digital reference. Retrieved August 26, 2012, from

National Library of New Zealand (n.d.). School community profile. Retrieved August 26, 2012, from

Valenza, J. (n.d.). Ten reasons why your next pathfinder should be a wiki. Retrieved August 26, 2012, from

Wilmington High School (n.d.). School and community profile. Retrieved August 26, 2012, from


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