Embedded Librarians in Higher Education

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I just checked back a couple years and found that not once have I posted anything specifically about embedded librarians in higher education. I’m way overdue!

On June 5, I was on a panel at the OCLC Research Forum “Libraries Rebound” meeting (http://www.oclc.org/research/events/2012-06-05.htm). My theme was that in higher education, embedded librarianship is often equated with embedded information literacy instruction, far overshadowing embedded collaboration in research. This view is based on an analysis of the Models of Embedded Librarianship survey research, which will be published in my contributed paper for the SLA 2012 Annual Conference, and on my assessment of the professional literature. In my talk, I advocated that academic librarians should explore opportunities to strengthen their engagement in research.

You can see a copy of my presentation on the meeting site or on Slideshare at:

http://www.slideshare.net/DShumaker/embedded-librarians-rebound

Earlier today, I was reading a new white paper commissioned by Sage Publishing and written by Claire Creaser and Valérie Spezi of Loughborough University, which pretty much says the same thing. The authors advocate more emphasis on what I would call embedded librarianship, and especially development of librarians’ engagement in research projects with subject faculty.

Quoting from the executive summary, “Embedded information literacy instruction is highly valued by teaching staff. Increasingly, this is developing into integrated teaching and curriculum development activities. Support for research appeared less well embedded, but there is evidence of successful partnerships between librarians and research staff in the areas of literature reviewing and data curation, in particular. ”

The Sage report is available at  http://libraryvalue.wordpress.com/report .

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