Hacking the Elevator Pitch

One of the things I most love about librarianship is the diversity of the field. People choosing library science come from any background you can think of, and once they have the degree their choices are manifold. As an amplifying degree, virtually anyone can find their options and skills expanded […]

Mapping Hack Library School

Dear Hack Library School Readers, We would like to visualize where HLS readers are in the world. To that end, we’ve created an open Google Map for collaborative pinning. Please add yourself to the map so that we can see where people live! You will need to be logged in […]

HLS and LibraryLab Meetup at ALA!

Are you going to ALA later this month? We’re teaming up with LibraryLab to host a meetup on Sunday, June 30th from 8:00-10:00 at the Green Door.  The meetup is a fun and informal way to hang out with us, network, and make some new friends while having a cocktail! […]

June Meetups in DC!

It’s that time again! Summer is here, and we know lots of Hack Library School fans are in the nation’s capitol for work, or internships, or school, or just for the heck of it. So we’ve got a series of meetups planned for everyone to get to know each other. […]

Praxis and the Perennial Conflict between Theory and Practice in Library Education

prax·is \ˈprak-səs\ n. 1. the actual work of a profession (as opposed to the practice of it in training situations) 2. in social work, the concept of reflexive, integrated theory and practice 3. in education, the processes of reflective experiential learning or, following Paulo Freire’s work, the combination of reflection and action in the world that […]

Keeping Track of Inspiration

The end of my first year of library school has been a welcome reminder to reflect: to remember that, not so long ago, MARC and FRBR were meaningless acronyms, I had never answered a reference question, and I didn’t even know what half of my course titles meant. I’ve been […]

Project Incubation in Library School

Editor’s Note: This is a guest post by Laura Damon-Moore. The Library as Incubator Project was founded in spring 2011 and launched officially online in fall 2011. The LaIP began as an independent study by two students, myself (Laura Damon-Moore) and Christina Endres, at UW-Madison’s School of Library & Information […]

Start reading job ads now

One piece of advice that multiple people gave me around the time I started library school is: it is never too early to start reading library job ads (especially if you’ve already started library school). Of course the library hiring process is not so lengthy that you need to start actually […]

Summer Learnin’: Attending Conferences

Here at Hack Library School, we are pretty firm believers in the value of attending conferences.  We’ve talked about why you should attend conferences, how to hack academic conferences, and presenting at conferences.  Now that the academic year has ended for many of us, conferences are a great way to […]

Of Practicality and Practicums

Ever since the first day I entered library school, in a distant era I refer to as “2011,” I knew I would top off my MLS with a practicum. Even when I found a student job in a library; even after I’d completed a couple of volunteer gigs and an […]

Learn to write (well)

Alternate Title: all I needed to know about acing grad school I learned in 6th grade. As we close out another semester of our varied Information Science degree pursuits, final projects, papers and presentations are probably top of mind – or wanting to be forgotten. As I was scrambling to […]

Collaboration and the Library World

I recently went to my first conference for librarians, the Minnesota Library Association’s annual ARLD Day, and I greatly enjoyed hearing from librarians and interacting with some of my library school peers in that environment. In the keynote presentation, Jenica Rogers provided a wonderful reminder that librarians should stop accepting […]

Copyright 101

The class I want to see in every MLS/MLIS program is Copyright 101. Want to be a Reference Librarian? Copyright will impact your job. Want to be an archivist and build digital collections? Copyright will impact your job. Want to be a School Library Media Specialist? Copyright will impact your job. […]

3 Unexpected Library School Lessons

Some of my favorite questions to ask librarians during informational interviews revolve around surprise: What has most surprised you about your current role or about your career path? Is there anything you wish you had known sooner? I’ve found their answers to be particularly useful as I try to figure […]

Hack Library School @ ALA ’13!

Hello, Everybody! Guess what? HLS is super-excited to announce that we’ve been chosen to lead another Conversation Starter at ALA annual! Last year, our #HLSConvo in Anaheim drew a roomful of passionate, engaged librarians and library students together to share information across the pre- and post-graduation lines. This year, we’re […]

Questionable Promotion/Advocacy

I recently received an ALA Store catalog in the mail and was happily flipping through the pages, considering whether or not I should order my own supply of Love My Library buttons, when I stumbled across this t-shirt: It has pictures of endangered animals (a giant panda, a mountain gorilla, a […]

Getting Through the End-of-Semester Slump

The end of another academic year is upon us.  Here at Syracuse, we have a little more than two weeks left in the semester, and, as usual, that means that things are coming together in a perfect storm of final projects, presentations, and other end-of-semester tasks.  I’ve been running around […]

Congratulations! Now Get A Job.

Last week, I submitted my final portfolio and had it approved by my advisor. So that’s it – I’m officially graduating in May. Naturally, this is super exciting, but I’m also kind of surprised. Sitting right next to my much-anticipated relief is a big helping of worry and, dare I […]

What Should We Be Reading?

As it’s National Library Week, I’ve been thinking a great deal about the things that unite us. Library education is meant to launch all of us into successful careers in the information world, and to provide a foundation upon which we can build. Certainly, we are not rubber-stamped automata with […]

Goodbye. Farewell. So Long. C-ya!

With my final semester in the School of Information Sciences at the University of Tennessee wrapping up and the graduation ceremony quickly approaching, I wanted to take the opportunity of today’s post to say a farewell to all the fine readers of Hack Library School. It’s been a fun adventure […]

Music Librarianship

Editor’s note: This is a guest post by Sarah Alexander. I recently went to the Music Library Association Conference in San Jose, California where I spent five days talking about music and books. And books about music. And organizing the music that is printed in books. While I was there, […]

How to Survive and Prevent a Bad Internship

There’s a good chance that you’ve had a bad internship or job experience. Maybe it was mundane tasks, unfriendly co-workers, or damaged expectations that did you in. Many MLS/MLIS programs require, or at least strongly recommend, an internship or practicum before graduation. Internships are great ways to taste-test a type […]

How I Learned to Love Printer Jams

Do you ever daydream about your future professional life? Do you imagine yourself as a high-powered librarian, answering thoughtful reference questions or maybe cataloging rare and beautiful documents? Initiating programs that bridge the digital divide or solve access and licensing issues? I know I do. But here’s the thing: although […]

Hack the Open Thread: Friday Edition

As those of us at Maryland’s iSchool wrap up our Spring Break, I’ve been reminiscing a bit about the school year so far, and trying to figure out my favorite moments. You know, those things about studying this profession you cling to when you need to remember that this journey […]

Presenting Your Best Self

Library school is full of presentations. Whether it’s a short, informal talk or a long, detailed speech, I’ve had to give some kind of presentation for almost every library school class I’ve taken. Partly just a given in academia, frequent presentations will also be a reality for many of us in our […]

Building Project Management Skills as a Student

As librarians’ roles evolve, project management skills are becoming increasingly significant to potential employers. Library students interested in technical and leadership positions may want to acquire project management experience while still in school. This can be challenging, since the nature of a project manager’s role involves levels of responsibility that […]

A FASTR Open Access

Last week Nicole discussed getting political, and the very next day an opportunity came. On February 14, the Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR) was introduced in both the House and Senate. As a library school student who is passionate about open access and interested in scholarly communications, this bill is […]

Library Student Day in the Life

We would like to invite all library students to participate in a new project organized by Hack Library School called Library Student Day in the Life. We hope this project, which will revolve around a community of students sharing each day’s experiences for a week, will help prospective students learn […]

Apply Yourself

When I tell people what I am doing in Florence, Italy for a year, I am invariably asked one question: “How did you land such a position?!” To which I smile broadly, often chuckle a little and answer simply and honestly: “I applied.” This, my LIS, MLIS and MSIT friends […]

Overcoming Instruction Stage Fright

When I was applying to library school I asked some of my college librarians if anything had surprised them about their library work. More than one said their jobs involved more teaching than they anticipated, and I realized that if I was going into academic librarianship I should prepare for […]

Online Classes: A Non-Love Story

So here’s the deal, HLS friends: despite the fact that I am a documented introvert, I like to do my learning in an actual classroom.  I know that many library school programs are online, and that this format is convenient for people who don’t want to leave good jobs, or […]

Finding Balance in a Final Push.

Rocketing toward the end of my LibrarySchool career is exhilarating, but the closer I get to graduation, the more I feel like my list of projects to accomplish is too long to finish. I’m excited to be involved in our student activities, my classes are challenging in all the best […]

#anarchistguidetomuseums

Olivia Cothren graduated from the Cooperstown Graduate Program and now works at the Historic House Trust in New York City. The Historic House Trust has begun to discuss ways to make museums and historic houses more accessible to the public. I felt many of the ideas in this discussion also […]

HLS Meet-up at ALA Midwinter 2013

Come join some members of the Hack Library School crew for an informal meet-up! All are welcome! Friday, January 25, 2013 8:30-ish pm The Whisky Bar 2122 2nd Avenue Seattle, Washington 98121 Follow @catladylib, @roselovec, and @deweysnotdead for updates and/or join the Facebook event!

SciData

This is a guest post authored by Inga Haugen and the rest of the SciData cohort from the University of Tennessee, School of Information Sciences. This post introduces the innovative new program and how it brings people from various backgrounds together for a common goal — to educate scientific data […]

Library School Resolutions

Happy New Year, hackers!  I hope that everyone had a nice, relaxing holiday break, and that you’re all refreshed and ready for a new semester.  With classes starting next week for me, I thought I would take some time to come up with a few resolutions to guide me through […]

2012 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog. Here’s an excerpt: About 55,000 tourists visit Liechtenstein every year. This blog was viewed about 200,000 times in 2012. If it were Liechtenstein, it would take about 4 years for that many people to see it. Your […]

We Can Crowdfund This Library

Editor’s note: This is a guest post by Cassandra Elton. I was in kindergarten when I got my first library card. The two requirements for a child’s library card at our public library in Summit, New Jersey were you had to have a parent cosign the card with you and […]

Information and I

“Can I still write for Hack Library School if I am not technically pursuing a degree in LIS anymore?” I recently posed this question to our crack team of HLS editors. I am not quitting pursuing a Masters… just not an MLIS. An addition in degree offerings in the College of Communication and Information Studies at FSU allowed […]

Rethinking Leadership in Librarianship

Last fall, the Occupy Wall Street movement captured the attention of people across the nation, and amongst librarians, one particular image made the rounds, inciting chuckles as well as knowing nods. (See also two HLS posts from last fall: HackLibSchool on Occupy Wall St: How Do Libraries Fit In? and […]

The Library Will Be Crowdfunded

Crowdfunding is when individuals come together as a crowd to fund projects by other individuals and organizations. Often funders get perks or rewards for their contribution, ranging from small benefits like a thank you post card or a tote bag to original artwork or a private concert.  The two most popular crowdfunding […]

The Undercover Library Student

Your task is to develop a persona, and make up a research question that persona might ask.  It can be anything you want.  Once you have a question, take it to a reference desk at a library/archive/historical society of your choosing. Then write a paper about the experience. Sound familiar? […]

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween from Hack Library School! Here’s a quick run down of resources to celebrate Halloween librarian-style. Halloween themed books for children and young adults- All Hallow’s Read: A Parents’ Guide to Scary Books for Young Readers Popular Halloween Books Best Halloween Books for Kids: Scary, Spooky, and Silly Or […]

Waiting for the Fraud Police

I recently started a new job. For the last year I’d been happily working at the circulation desk of a medical/academic library, and I was happy there. It was a comfortable spot: nice supervisors, nice work environment, and a job I knew inside out. But I’m aiming to work in […]

Perceptions of a Very Small Public

I am a librarian who serves a population of 24. Perhaps the count is 32 if one includes faculty and staff of Florida State University International Programs Study Center in Florence, Italy. The library, as the previous Student Supervising Librarian noted last year, is almost as antiquated as the 15th […]

Welcome New Writers!

We are delighted to announce that Hack Library School has welcomed nine new contributing writers. We were all very impressed with the range of interests and experiences that they will bring to the blog.  Without further ado, here they are!

The Importance of Professionalism

Editor’s Note: This is a guest post by Katie Clausen. In one of my courses we are analyzing ALA’s “Core Values of Librarianship.” We take on one core value every week, reading articles and discussing how these values define us as librarians. It is important to understand the policy that […]

TTYL! K.I.T! (goodbye)

During my last semester of library school, I always tried to keep the finish line in mind and my motivation going. I told myself that once I finished, I’d have all the free time in the world to finally watch Doctor Who and finally learn to cross-stitch. Turns out I […]

Crossroads and Trailmarkers

There seem to be a lot of crossroads, lately. I’m in my second year of graduate school, with commencement hurtling towards myself and my classmates here and at other schools. The questions of self-definition that I avoided last year have come back, not so much haunting as classifying. I still […]

Whither Reference?

A few days ago, I stopped by the class of the freshly-minted new cohort of my program to say hello to them on behalf of a professional organization I work with, and to invite them to join and/or attend an upcoming event. It took all of ten minutes, no big […]

Tech Tools for LIS Students {Starter Kit}

My MLIS program has a strong commitment to encouraging students to use various online and computer-based presentation/communication tools in class projects. We use a number of different programs in addition to the course management system on campus (Desire2Learn, which is like Blackboard and Moodle). This immersion in the wide range […]

Perceive thyself!

Ask a librarian to describe the stereotype of librarians, and you’ll undoubtedly hear something like, “Wears thin wireframe glasses, hair-in-a-bun, drab sweater-vest or cardigan, long wool skirt, owns a cat, doesn’t like loud noise…” and the list goes on. I’ve even heard some librarians describe the stereotype as “Full Cat-bag.” […]

My Experience at the HathiTrust Uncamp

On September 10th and 11th, I attended the HathiTrust Research Center UnCamp held in Bloomington, Indiana. The UnCamp was a joint venture organized by Indiana University, my institution, and the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. All in all, the UnCamp spanned a day and a half of demonstrations and hands-on examples […]

Motivation

                                                                                                                                                                         Kelly Rowland Picture thanks to wikipedia Motivation is something I have been thinking a lot about recently, and not just because two of my friends have become unreasonably obsessed with the Kelly Rowland song by the same name, despite the fact that the song was released at least a […]

Call for new writers!

Greetings readers! Here at Hack Library School, we pride ourselves on providing engaging, thoughtful, and useful resources for Library and Information Science students.  The best part of this experience, in my opinion, is the community the writers have with each other and our readers.  Unfortunately, because we’re a blog by […]