New Study: Training Gaps Analysis for Professional Librarians and Library Technicians

From the Press Release:

The Cultural Human Resources Council (CHRC), a not-for-profit national Sector Council, has hired the 8Rs Research Team (University of Alberta) to undertake a Training Gaps Analysis for professional librarians and library technicians. The project is overseen by CHRC’s Library Steering Committee which includes representatives of the Association pour l’avancement des sciences et des techniques de la documentation (ASTED), the Canadian Association of Research Libraries, the Canadian Library Association, the Canadian Urban Library Council, Library technicians education programs, and Masters level library schools.

The 8Rs Research Team has conducted in-depth research on libraries as workplaces for the past three years, resulting in the publication of their major report, The Future of Human Resources in Canadian Libraries ( ) / L’avenir des ressources humaines dans les bibliothèques canadiennes ( ). Examining questions around recruitment, retention, retirement, mid-career rejuvenation, remuneration, repatriation, reaccreditation, and restructuring, the previous study presented a view of library human resources at a time of profound change within the field. The Research Team members include individuals from the University of Alberta: Ernie Ingles, Kathleen De Long, Alvin Schrader, Allison Sivak; and from Tandem Social Research Consulting: Marianne Sorensen and Jennifer De Peuter.

The Training Gaps Analysis will include a student/graduate profile, a training offerings survey and a training needs assessment. Over the coming 6 months, members of the 8Rs Research Team will be gathering information for the profile, survey and assessment from librarians, library technicians, employers and educators across the country through surveys, interviews and focus groups. The final report and recommendations of the Training Gaps Analysis will be released May 2006 at a Roundtable of librarians, library technicians and educators, where next steps in response to the recommendations will be discussed.

For additional information, please contact:

Susan Annis
Executive Director
Cultural Human Resources Council
#201-17 York Street
Ottawa, ON K1N 9J6

Tel: (613) 562-1535 ext. 22
Fax: (613) 562-2982

I have no issues with this survey being conducted, but it strikes me that the context in which it is being done is very old school. Note the lack of SLA or CALL involvement. And despite the inclusion of ’employers’, one has to wonder if this study will encompass anyone outside the public library community?

I may be ranting over nothing here (and please call me on it if I am…), but I wish this type of study would be labelled as it is, research within the Canadian Public Library sector, and not representative of all Librarians and Library Technicians. At a time when our professional futures must be tied to roles and skills, and go beyond the Public Library building, this study seems to perpetuate a model of Library training & education for a single type of employer. Not to mention those of us applying our trade in non-traditional roles.

Or, are we just the Rodney Dangerfields of the greater Library community? :-)

Comments are closed.