Introducing Our Newest Writers!

We are super excited to share the newest Hack Library School writers. It was challenging to choose from a very talented pool of applicants, but ultimately these eleven stood out. Please join us in welcoming them! Aidy Silva-Ortiz Aidy began a love affair with libraries as a volunteer in her […]

When Do We Need a Translator?

When evaluating which courses to take, students often start with the list of undeniably library-specific courses: reference, cataloging, archives, etc. But as the profession continues to evolve it has become more and more interdisciplinary. Library students today take end up taking everything from web programming to marketing, from database design […]

Library Studies in the UK

Editor’s note:  This is a guest post by Natasha S. Chowdory. Hi! I’m Natasha. At the moment I’m working as an assistant librarian in a small technical library in the UK. I’ve been in the role for a little over a year and loved it so much that I decided […]

Dual Degree Programs

Have you ever considered pursuing another Master’s degree while going for your MLS? In my experience, having the option of completing a dual Master’s degree was one of the main draws to Indiana University. I was interested in pursuing an MLS and an MIS, or Master’s in Information Science, both […]

Hack Library School Ebook

We’ve been keeping a little secret. Over the summer, we began the process of compiling content for our very own Hack Library School ebook. We’ve recently finished and decided it’s time to share The HLS Guide to Library School with the world. The ebook is a whopping 328 pages of content: […]

Mentor-Making

In an effort to tap into my happy childhood memories of summer reading and perhaps to evade some adulthood stress, I’ve been re-reading Harry Potter. It’s been lovely comfort reading and a very welcome frame for some of my library-related thoughts. You see, I’ve been thinking a lot about mentorship. […]

EveryLibrary/HLS Intern Update #1

This post is part 1 of 2 from our EveryLibrary/Hack Library School intern Mallory Arents. Stay tuned for her second post in September! Okay, so here’s the thing: working with EveryLibrary is a little scary.  Scary not in the way of shark infested hurricanes or flesh-eating viruses, but rather because […]

Obstacles & How to Deal with Them

As I finish up my MLIS (August graduation!) and start my certificate program, I find myself wanting to share a little library school wisdom. So things might get a little feelings-heavy, but bear with me; also, this advice goes to both new and returning library students: Library school is a […]

When You Need a Little Inspiration

I have a confession: I don’t always love library school.  I know I want to be a librarian, and library school is helping me to achieve that, but the fact is, it isn’t always rainbows and smiles.  Sometimes you have to take classes you don’t enjoy, do assignments that don’t […]

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 […]

Surviving the All-Day Interview

A sizable number of library students graduated in May or over the summer, and many of us were then faced with the prospect of finding that perfect job. Hack Library School has tackled other sides of this topic before, with Madeline’s post on the quick-turn after graduation, and Joanna’s post […]

MOOCing up Librarianship

During my final month of library school I decided to add one more item to my to do list: take the New Librarianship MOOC. The massive open online course (MOOC) was offered by Syracuse University’s School of Information Studies for graduate or continuing education credit, or just for fun. MOOCs […]

Summer Doing List

We all love our summer reading lists, full of fun beach reading and those other books we didn’t have time to read during the school year. But in addition to the extra reading, I thought it might be fun to think up a summer doing list with some library-related activities […]

Social Media and #LIS

In library and information science schools we are coming to terms with, well, terms. Lexicons, vocabularies, common jargon sets and search terms are the tools of our trade. So I ask: Have you noticed though how many verbs have been web-born? Or, in the spirit of web 2.0, social web-re-born? […]

Web Development 101 – The Basics

Editor’s note: This is part 1 of a guest post by Bryan J. Brown. Part 2 will be posted on July 30. If you’ve been paying attention to the librarian blog scene at all, you’re probably familiar with the infamous “Should librarians learn to code?” debate. Maybe “debate” isn’t the […]

Building Your eResume

Do you have an eResume yet? I think it goes without saying that every day we become more and more digitally driven. Personally, even though I know it is still done, I cannot imagine sending a hard copy of my resume or examples of my work anywhere. I have my […]

Staying Current on Library World News

In part, what it means to be a library professional is staying current with developments in the field of librarianship at large and not just focusing on your specific job duties at your institution. While you are in library school, this task is often easier because your classes encourage you […]

The Foreboding Finale: Master’s Capstone

In my program (UNC SILS), all master’s students are required to complete a capstone paper or project prior to graduation. Both options require students to approach a “problem” in information or library science in a “substantial and scholarly way.” No small feat, right? I bet a bunch of you out […]

[Hack ALA] Hack Library School Events!

ALA Annual is just a few days away, and as we’re all packing and prepping for Chicago, it’s time to start thinking about Hack Library School events! We’re pleased to be hosting two of them: Conversation Starter: Hacking Transferable Skills! This conversation starter will be held in room S102-d at […]

ALA Student to Staff Program

This weekend I’ll be travelling to Chicago and attending ALA Annual as part of the Student to Staff (S2S) program. S2S is an opportunity provided by ALA wherein individual student representatives from 40 of the ALA-accredited library schools are selected by their institutions and then sent to ALA Annual. S2S provides […]

Evaluating the MLIS Degree

Editor’s Note: This is a guest post by Matthew Gunby. Recently an editorial was published in Library Journal titled “Can We Talk About the MLS?” As a recent graduate from Syracuse University, I wanted to reflect upon my education in an honest manner. On one hand, I have had some […]

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 […]