The other side of life

In September 2014, bravely or foolishly I enrolled for the Library Management Course, a course I should have undertaken years ago…but life happens… and here I am, a student again! Constantly time managing, or juggling with time: evaluating what I need to do versus what I’d like to do; weighing up what’s important to me and what I can ‘put on the long finger’,  ‘rud a chur ar an mhéar fhada’… an Irish expression equivalent to prevarication.

Throughout my time in libraries, I’ve considered myself quite good at keeping up with innovations in Library Science, but this course has introduced me to unknown  elements within the plethora of academic papers relating to Library Science. That’s the beauty of actually ‘doing’ a course, you are forced to read and evaluate things you might skim through or ignore. It’s easy to be a student of things that just take your fancy.

This week we’re concentrating on ‘Teaching and training skills’. Librarians are teachers, every day we teach our users how to use the catalogue, find a book, interrogate a database, use the computers, etc. Last night the article I read was: ‘Transliteracy: crossing divides’ by Sue Thomas et al*, my initial reaction, to the title and being from the North of Ireland, was that it was sounded as if was about our so-called divided society. It was actually very interesting. Looking forward to seeing if any of the other students have read it and wondering what their take on it is.

What is it? Thomas’ definition is:

“Transliteracy is the ability to read, write and interact across a range of platforms, tools and media from signing and orality through handwriting, print, TV, radio and film, to digital social networks”.

What has that got to do with libraries? Libraries are already meet the challenges of transliteracy by crossing the divide between printed, digital and virtual worlds to address the constantly changing needs of their users. Technological advances demand that to be able to take part in a society where we bank, book holidays and pay bills online,,  we have to be able  to transliterate across different platforms.

Loved Sue Thomas’ comparison of blogging with telling stories around a campfire.



3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. debhuntwasinbrokenhill
    Mar 22, 2015 @ 12:32:30

    Good on you Mary, I’m sure you make an exceptionally fine student. And your decision to embark on the course was probably both brave and foolish (which is what we all have to be if we want to keep our minds open to new possibilities). I’d love to do another university course!

    Liked by 1 person


  2. bernietgardiner
    Mar 12, 2015 @ 10:39:17

    Sounds very interesting Mary, I admire you doing the Library Management Course, best of luck with it.

    Liked by 1 person


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