The Australian library journal

Published by Taylor & Francis (Routledge)
Print ISSN: 0004-9670
Women entered the professional streams of the Australian workforce from about 1850, in spite of a range of formal and informal means of exclusion. The dominant discourse of femininity attempted to position women as the inferior other. Entering the professions, and later seeking wage equality and equal career prospects challenged this discourse. This paper draws on international (mainly USA) and Australian sources to explore some of the ways that women contested their positioning. It concludes with a briefcase study ofJeanArnot, an Australian woman librarian whose activism on behalf of all women librarians is an inspiration to all who seek equality for women.
This three-part series traces efforts to establish a system of free public libraries in New South Wales from the time of publication of the Munn-Pitt Report in 1935 to the passing of the New South Wales Library Act in 1939. The series delves beyond the published accounts of events and describes the actions and interactions of the interested parties – the senior librarians at the Public Library of New South Wales, the Free Library Movement, the Library Group, the Libraries Advisory Committee, New South Wales politicians, the media, local government bodies, the Carnegie Corporation of New York, and the Australian Council for Educational Research. There are also insights into the public and private views of key individuals, including Ralph Munn, W. H. Ifould, D. H. Drummond, and G.C. Remington. The first part describes efforts in 1935 to capitalise upon the impact of the Munn-Pitt Report, to devise a regional library system for New South Wales and to stimulate Carnegie Corporation of New York support. It also introduces the characters upon whom the fate of free library services in New South Wales would ultimately depend.
Like other types of libraries, Australia's university libraries have developed within only a few years a sophisticated approach to strategic planning and client-focussed performance and its measurement, often ahead of their institutions. Advantage of this must now be taken through image development to ensure there is recognition by their communities that they are worthy of greater institutional investment. This is an update of a chapter which appeared in Providing customer-oriented services in academic libraries edited by C Pinder and published by The Library Association in 1996.
The role of libraries within the virtual university is unclear, and the danger exists that students will be expected to rely solely on the Internet. This article argues that librarians must reinvent the library and their role as information providers. Examines virtual universities in Australia and North America and the roles of librarians and libraries. (PEN)
The Arts Libraries Society of Australia and New Zealand (Arlis/ANZ) recently implemented a new web presence. More than just a web site, it was envisaged as a web 'identity', a virtual clubhouse where the Society could conduct its 'virtual business' and where members could 'meet' and contribute to the activities of their Society, free from physical and technical barriers. This paper concentrates on the process of the project: the real-world learning collaboration with three student design teams; the Web 2.0 technologies and approach which enabled us to manage the project effectively; and how the project modeled the vision for the Web 2.0 look, feel and attitude of the final site. The site is newly implemented, and is still in its infancy. Evaluation of the success of the Web 2.0 approach will be the focus of the next stages of the project. So while this paper does not provide an evaluation of the project, we reflect upon the next phase of actively engaging members, and measuring the success of the site against our vision of an "Arlis/ANZ 2.0".
The meanings of professional and academic as qualifiers of librarians are discussed and it is concluded that there is little difference in the expectations they engender. It is then argued that if librarians in academic institutions are to be accorded a status comparable with that of faculty, they must be prepared to be assessed by the comparable and traditional means, namely qualifications, research and publications. To make the attainment of true faculty status possible, it is then necessary for the 'professional' librarian at all levels to have opportunities to perform to these standards. 'This will require positive support from chief and other senior librarians and a significant change in attitudes to those prevailing in most Australian academic libraries.
This paper describes the first phase of an Internet overview training program, presented to academic staff at the University of Sydney. Following a brief introduction, trainers presented a comprehensive overview of the Internet using NCSA Mosaic and Netscape as presentation tools. The program used locally created, Hypertext Markup Language (HTML) documents with live and ?canned? links to Internet tools and resources. Participants were then presented with a ?things to see? home page on individual work stations and were free to explore areas of interest using this home page as a starting point. They were also provided with their own Mac and DOS disks as handouts, each with a World Wide Web browser and local HTML documents, some of which contained links to Internet tools and resources. A list of subject librarians and departmental technical people willing to provide follow-up assistance was provided, as well as a hard copy outline of the entire session. The outline included Universal Resource Locaters (URLs) and instructions for obtaining software and other information resources on the Internet. An evaluation of the program indicated the success of using World Wide Web browsers as an aid in Internet training programs and supported the approach taken by presenters. Suggestions are provided for future development of the Internet training program.
Four librarians from Irish university libraries completed the U.K. Future Leaders Programme (FLP) in 2010. In this article they recount their experience and assess the effect of the programme on their professional practice and the value for their institutions. The programme is explored in the context of the Irish higher education environment, which is facing significant challenges due to the demise of the Celtic Tiger economy. A brief review of the literature relating to structured programmes to prepare librarians for senior positions, is presented. The structure and content of the FLP and the learning methodologies, theories, tools and techniques used throughout are discussed. The article suggests that the programme has real value for both individuals and institutions and that it can play a significant role in succession planning and the leadership development of librarians Accepted Version Peer reviewed
This literature review describes the experiences of universities in their use of ereaders as textbook replacements and of academic libraries in their lending of ereaders. Information gained from this review will inform Southern Cross University (SCU) Library’s forthcoming Ereader Project, which will trial the lending of ereaders as leisure reading devices. The trial will help to gain insight to borrowers’ ereader experiences in the Australian academic library context.
This study of native and non-native English-speaking university students showed that the non-native students visited the library more frequently and for a greater variety of reasons than their counterparts. Findings also revealed that international students may experience significantly greater problems adapting to and using the library than do their United States counterparts, and likewise a greater anxiety. (AEF)
This paper reports on the implementation of "My Language Portal" in the City of Greater Dandenong Libraries (CGDL), Melbourne, Victoria, through the development of a "My Language Portal Project Plan" in 2006. It discusses how the aims of the designers of My Language Portal (MLP) are fulfilled in the exceptional, changing demographics of Dandenong. It provides a rationale for the adoption of MLP, by evaluating census and library statistics, and through local assessment of usability features. Wide consultation led to the creation of a user guide in the form of a fact sheet for users of CGD Libraries, and collaborations with IT and marketing staff are strongly recommended to facilitate smooth implementation. MLP offers a powerful online multilingual resource that bridges the inevitable gap in collections caused by an inability to immediately provide in-house appropriate resources for recently-arrived and diverse migrant communities. Analysis of service provision in Dandenong highlights the need for extra resources, for improved information literacy training, and marketing, and for increasing the number of public access terminals. (Contains 7 figures and 6 tables.)
Commerce is the largest faculty at the University of Wollongong; it supports postgraduate coursework, Masters and PhD programs. In 2003 work began on preparing a pilot program that was designed to position the Faculty at the top level of commerce-related research within Australia. It was called the Doctorate of Business Administration (DBA) and the plan was that it would be fully implemented into the Faculty's research program at a later stage. The pilot DBA program comprised four research subjects, four postgraduate level commerce subjects and the doctoral thesis itself. This paper is based on a subject called Advanced Business Specialisation Studies. It is the second of the four research subjects and requires the participants to find and organise relevant research literature in the preparation of their research proposal.
JISC i-skills cycle  
This is a journal article. It was published in the Australian Library Journal and the definitive version is available at: A joint project carried out by Leeds University and Loughborough University, funded by JISC studied the information literacy of non academic staff in higher education. The in-depth, qualitative, study deployed an information audit, interviews and focus groups with eleven staff in the Finance and Research Departments at Loughborough University. The information literacy needs of staff were compared with the JISC iskills model. The hierarchical and collaborative nature of the workplace meant that people’s experience of information literacy in the workplace was more fragmented than in the academic context. Common labels could be used to describe information literacy in the different contexts but more emphasis was placed on data, internal information and information from other people in the workplace. Time had an impact on information literacy. Social networking skills were recognised as key information literacy skills. The need for staff to know how to organise information and develop information policies was identified.
This article argues that the classification of adult fiction according to "genre" in public libraries causes more confusion than clarification. Whilst the system purports to model itself on bookstore design, the reality is that the actual arrangement is quite different. In the bookstore model, genre is a marketing category and not a literary category as it is currently used in many Western Australian public libraries. The use of a genre system also alienates many readers, with good reason, as the nature of the system is ambiguous. The adoption of a "reader-centred" method for adult fiction classification would mean that the library collection was more accessible because the underlying principles are easier to understand. (Contains 1 footnote and 1 table.)
Describes the functions of citizens advice bureaus in Victoria and discusses the results of a study that examined types of problems users presented, other information sources users contacted, and types of assistance sought and preferred by users. The effects of socioeconomic status on these factors is also discussed. (CLB)
Given identified synergies between information use and health status greater understanding is needed about how people use information to learn about their health. This article presents the findings of preliminary research into health information literacy which sought to explore how this is phenomenon is experienced among ageing Australians. Analysis of data from semi-structured interviews has revealed six different ways ageing Australians experience using information to learn about their health within one aspect of community life. Health information literacy is a new terrain for information literacy research endeavours and one which warrants further attention by the profession to foster and promote within the community.
This paper examines the partnership established between ALIA and QUT, through the School of Information Systems and the Careers and Employment Office, to provide a mentoring program for students in the Graduate Diploma of Library and Information Studies (GDLIS) course. The program has been offered to students enrolled in the Professional Practice unit of the course. The main focus of this unit is to prepare students for entry into their new careers and as such is conceptually and philosophically related to a mentoring program. A range of activities, both career-related and social, are offered to mentors and mentees, aimed at developing closer relationships between students and information professionals at a personal level, as well as interaction between the university and the information profession as a whole at the institutional level. The paper discusses the collaborative research project which investigates both the teaching and learning outcomes for students and the professional development outcomes for mentors resulting from this unique transitional mentoring program.
Assesses the changing nature of information and user needs in the modern electronic networked environment. Suggests that library services must adapt to these changes and develop appropriate new services, and describes examples of such services that were developed by the State Library of Tasmania. (Author/LRW)
Henry Charles Lennox Anderson was principal librarian of the Public Library of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia, from 1893 to 1905. Anderson's `reluctance' stems from his transfer from the NSW Department of Agriculture to the headship of the Library during the agricultural recession in 1893. Despite his lack of previous experience in the field, Anderson made his mark: as administrator; in the techniques of librarianship, and in collection development (he was instrumental in securing the Mitchell bequest). The Library Association of Australia’s H. C. L. Anderson Award is conferred for `outstanding service to librarianship or to the library profession in Australia.
The symbiotic relationship between booksellers, collectors and librarians is not always so well illustrated, nor so real, as in the case of the Mitchell bequest to the Public Library of New South Wales, and the part played in the formation of the collection by booksellers such as George Robertson, William Dymock and Fred Wymark, and the librarian H. C. L. Anderson. This article, which is based on a paper presented to the Forum on Australian Colonial Library History, Monash University, 1-2 June 1984, explores some aspects of the relationships between these characters and describes some of their consequences.
The Internet has the potential to break down or ameliorate gender-based barriers to communication, mentoring, travel and discourse. The author reviews the potential inherent in a recent sampling of traffic on FEMINIST, an ALA feminist Internet discussion group, and PACS-L, a large general discussion group on professional issues run from MIT, and a survey of librarians and their use of the Internet undertaken in 1995. She found there were marked differences in both the content and tone of messages posted by male and female participants and that the Internet had the capacity to broaden opportunities for mutual support to women who for various reasons (some of them gender-related) lacked the resources to travel in person.
The libraries of the University of Melbourne and Queensland University of Technology have two distinctly different approaches to coordinating information literacy. During 1999, each Library reviewed various aspects of their coordination processes, the result of which was the implementation of innovative approaches to managing their education and training programs. Although the libraries service the needs of parent Universities with distinct educational agendas, they share a common focus concerning Information Literacy objectives and issues. Each library has an extensive teaching and learning tradition and demonstrates a strong commitment to student learning outcomes. Furthermore, as multi-campus institutions, the development, coordination and management of their education and training programs presents similar opportunities and challenges. However, each Library has adopted distinctly different operational models. This paper presents an overview of the coordination models adopted by each Library and analyses their individual rationales, within the context of their organisations, for applying these models. It summarises the redevelopment and implementation processes undertaken, including operational initiatives, managerial strategies, staffing and resourcing issues and evaluation and feedback methodologies. This paper analyses the success or otherwise of each model. It provides a critique of both approaches in terms of achievements, challenges and issues born as a result of each process. It also seeks to identify future trends and improvements to be undertaken in subsequent reviews.
Strategic Planning  
Quality management was formally adopted by the University of Wollongong Library in 1994 as a management framework compatible with established values and previous change programs. Despite considerable goal accomplishment in recent years, new strategies were needed to continue to build on strengths, and to assimilate continuous review and improvement as a means of managing future change. Application for the Achievement in Business Excellence Award was selected as an indicator to measure progress towards the goal: Incorporation of Total Quality Management principles into all aspects of Library management. The process is quite rigorous and the commitment of leaders and staff at all levels is essential for success.
John Metcalfe of the Public Library of New South Wales played a leading role in founding the Australian Institute of Librarians (AIL) in 1937 and twelve years later in transforming it into a more sustainable and influential body, the Library Association of Australia (LAA). This paper describes some of the work which lay ahead for the new association, including library promotion, expanding membership, professional publications, national and international recognition and a university school of librarianship, in all of which Metcalfe figured significantly. His career after 1949 and some of his activities, including cataloguing and classification theory, education for librarianship and public library development, are outlined and identified as fertile ground for further research.
Reports on a survey of Western Australian pre-graduates (16- and 17-year olds) conducted in order to determine their attitudes towards libraries and librarians and other careers. Results indicate the continuation of negative images of librarians, and the shift in perceptions that must occur before it is considered a desirable career option. Suggests improvements in the marketing of courses. (Author/AEF)
This paper looks at the challenges presented for the Australian Library and Information Association by its role as the professional association responsible for ensuring the quality of Australian library technician graduates. There is a particular focus on the issue of course recognition, where the Association’s role is complicated by the need to work alongside the national quality assurance processes that have established by the relevant technical education authorities. The paper describes the history of course recognition in Australia; examines the relationship between course recognition and other quality measures; and describes the process the Association has recently undertaken in order to ensure appropriate professional scrutiny without unnecessary duplication of effort and expense.
In 1946 the prominent British librarian Lionel McColvin was invited to Australia in controversial circumstances to examine and report on public library developments. During a three month visit he assessed progress in all States since the landmark 1935 survey of Australian libraries by Ralph Munn and E. R. Pitt (the Munn-Pitt Report) and subsequent library legislation in some States. This paper examines the dynamic relationship between McColvin and Australia’s leading librarian, John Metcalfe, President of the Australian Institute of Librarians and principal librarian of the Public (now State) Library of New South Wales. It concludes that, as McColvin himself surmised, the visit would prove useful not so much for the substance of his report and recommendations, as for the way in which debate on public libraries was stimulated.
Men are over reported in the statistics for premature death in Australia for all major causes of ill health and accident. While general health is poor, male suicide is also a significant public health issue. Notwithstanding these concerns research shows that men are reluctant to engage in information seeking to enhance their health and wellbeing. This paper reports on aspects of research that investigated the information behaviour of a group of Australian men who had faced a significant stressful life event. The paper provides background to some of the theoretical concerns evident within the scholarship of human information behaviour as it relates to the world of the everyday, particularly for hard to reach groups. It also discusses the strengths and weaknesses of current information delivery and support to Australian men across the lifespan. As a result of the findings from the study, the potential opportunities for Australian library and information professionals to have a broader presence in the development and delivery of everyday life information products are discussed. Yes Yes
A complex change management process is currently underway in many Australian universities. It involves the convergence and/or integration of library, computing and IT services. The process has profound implications for reference and information services and their clients, as evidenced by the recent increase in library literature both for and against integration. This paper identifies the issues driving convergence in universities, and the challenges this represents, investigates the impacts of full integration on university libraries and their clients, and recommends strategies for the successful management of convergence and integration involving established reference and information services teams.
The study described here looked at aspects of the automation of technical services in four public libraries in the Sydney area. A major emphasis was on management decision—what were the key decisions, what constraints limited the options available and who made the decisions. A case study method was used with several staff interviewed at each library. The libraries were at different stages in the automation process and had chosen varied approaches. Factors which emerged as important in determining the decisions taken included attitudes within the municipal council and facilities available, the urgency of the need to change, in three cases to do with the circulation function, and the pressures imposed by this. Economic operation and containment of staff numbers were acknowledged to be of great importance in persuading councils to agree to automation.
Discusses the concept of knowledge management and the initiatives and processes to consider for the implementation of a knowledge management program. Highlights include issues for library schools; the roles of information professionals, domain experts, and information technology experts; and the need for an integrated approach to meet organizations' information needs. (LRW)
This service, begun in February 1977 through the Sydney Eye Hospital Library, provides a monthly list of 40-50 references for distribution throughout the hospital and mailing to 190 members of the Royal Australian College of Ophthalmologists. The analysis discusses user characteristics, items requested through the library, and most popular subjects. (JAB)
This paper will outline the results of a survey of the 'post-graduation' experiences of library technicians who have completed the Bachelor of Science (Library Technology) offered by Edith Cowan University in Perth.
Extract from: IL proficiencies map –Education 
Queensland University of Technology (QUT) is one of Australia?s largest universities, enrolling 30 000 students. Our Information Literacy Framework and Syllabus was endorsed as university policy in February 2001. QUT Library uses the Australian Information Literacy Standards as the basis and entry point for our syllabus. The university-wide information literacy program promotes critical thinking and equips individuals for lifelong learning (Peacock, 2002a). Information literacy has developed as a premium agenda within the university community, as documented by Judith Peacock, the university?s information literacy co-ordinator (Peacock, 2002b).
Reports findings of study of information brokers in Victoria, Australia, which identified services offered by individual brokers and information brokerage businesses, resources used to provide those services, their clientele and pricing strategies, the attributes needed for a successful broker, and relationships between brokers and traditional library services. (16 references) (Author/EJS)
Describes contemporary influences on public library planning and design, including the impact of Information Technology (IT), community attitudes and expectations; identifies IT-related activities which generate demand for space, as well as community activities which enable public libraries to become the hub of their communities; and outlines key considerations for successful, adaptable public library buildings, including location, identity, symbolism, the look and ‘feel’ of the building, accessibility, size, flexibility, efficiency, organisation, functionality, environmental conditions, security, and running costs.
shows the frequency of use for Internal Information Service units. A surprising 70% of respondents stated that they would use their internal information service at least once per week to source business information needs.
Response Rates for Business Information Survey November 1996
Comparison of what services are used in Internal Vs external information Services
This paper reports five key findings from a survey comparing the use of internal and external information services by business persons in the City of Brisbane. The Business Information: an investigation of its sources and use survey was undertaken on behalf of Queensland University of Technology (QUT) Library’s Expert Information Service. The Survey aimed to determine where and how business information is currently sourced; how often and why information is sought from any particular source; and problems people have in finding business information. The main findings of this survey are that (1) Medium Small Businesses are highly interested in commercial information services; (2) Internal Information Services are heavily used to source business information needs and they rate higher than external information services for Computer Training, Competitor Analysis and Consultancy Services; (3) External Information Service units rate much higher than internal information services for their ability to provide information searching and Patents & Standards access; (4) the majority of respondents have never used a library based Fee-Based Information Service (FBIS); and (5) the Internet is currently the most relied upon electronic form of information resource. Overall FBIS units should aim to understand the commercial paradigm, providing accurate, timely and up-to-date information for their clients in the most convenient and specific manner possible.
Librarians, through their professional associations, have long been committed to the social justice principle of free access to information. External censorship challenges to library collections threaten this principle overtly. However, censorship can also occur in libraries in various covert and often unconcious ways. This discussion paper raises concerns about current librarian practices and library processes which can effectively censor library collections from within. The paper concludes by highlighting specific areas of practice in which librarians need to be vigilant for such covert censorship.
Content-control proposals have been found to be more intrusive and restrictive than supporters of rating systems and filtering software claim. These systems often exceed claims in types of content restricted, numbers and types of people prevented from reaching content, technical changes required to public electronic networks, and burdens on providers of content or Internet service providers. (Author/AEF)
This paper reviews a selection of literature pertaining to the subject of censorship in modern libraries. It interrogates the literature in terms of the ethical debates informing much of the contemporary academic writing on this subject. A multi-pronged approach to the subject is adopted. The review includes evaluations of the relevant aspects of particular professional codes and statements. It also evaluates opinions that have been proffered with regard to the use of Internet filters in public libraries. In public libraries, librarians must also decide whether to enable an entirely free flow of information from other mediums or to take it upon themselves to protect readers from material that might be considered harmful. These issues are complicated further in school libraries where the question of a particular duty of care to young minds arises. This paper also investigates recent representations of libricide, the most extreme form of censorship which manifests in the destruction of libraries and the burning of books.
Public libraries emerged as educational institutions during the second half of the nineteenth-century. Their aim was the intellectual and moral improvement of individuals and societies. After several decades it became evident that public libraries had failed as ?people's universities?. The reading public opted for entertainment instead of instruction. Public libraries came to acknowledge the provision of entertainment as a legitimate purpose and justification for their existence. ?Give them what they want!? replaced ?Give them what they need!? as the mission of the public library. The consequences of this choice are not always fully understood.
Identifies the main costs in on-site and off-site (remote electronic publications) public library collections and specifies the main challenges in an on-site/off-site collection strategy. Presents a costs identification table, table of direct costs, and costs and user-levels table. Considers cost trends and discusses advantages and disadvantages of on-site and off-site resources. (AEF)
In early 1996 the Professional and Graduate Education Consortium (PAGE) of Central Queensland University (CQU) called for expressions of interest from individual staff members willing to write subjects and professional development units to be delivered in 1997. Several members of the library staff had been involved with the creation and delivery of programs at the university and were interested in producing a series of professional development courses on access to and searching resources on the internet. This also involved staff from the Division of Distance and Continuing Education (DDCE). It was decided to target chemists as the first professional group and to create and deliver a program (known as CHEMPAGE) via the world wide web. However, the model developed for CHEMPAGE can readily be adapted to other disciplines.
This article examines the physical deterioration of library collections as a result of the acidic content of most books published since the mid-nineteenth century. The dimensions of the problem are outlined, and the solutions being developed by libraries—both individually and by means of cooperative action—are explored. Emphasis is placed on the broad professional challenge which preservation poses, involving questions of collection management, organizational structures, technical processes and educational programmes. The contemporary response to the problem in Australia is indicated.
The project reported here investigated, by means of structured interviews, the information needs, information-gathering strategies and information use of ten urban and nine rural community groups with varied concerns. The results revealed a wide variety of information needs, and variability of strategies and sources used. Accuracy and reliability were identified by all groups as primary criteria for source selection. Little difference in regard to need and strategies between urban and rural groups was recorded. Most rural groups believed themselves disadvantaged in regard to information access. The results revealed reliance on local public library resources and the importance of library staff for service provision. The implications of the findings for local library provision are discussed. This is a refereed article
Summarizes the arguments for and against fees in public libraries, and discusses whether the fee controversy is one of alternative technical means of securing funding, or of competing visions of the role of the public library. (Author/CLB)
This paper explains the Cybrary Skills in the Tertiary Environment programme offered at the University of Queensland Library to librarians from tertiary institutions in developing countries. Under the programme, librarians from several countries have worked and studied at UQ Library, in groups or in individual placements, for varying periods of time. The paper describes the generic programme, and looks at critical success factors.
The role of the library technician and the appropriate training requirements for this position are discussed. (RAO)
Clarifies the meaning of knowledge management and gives examples of organizations that overtly practice it. Outlines four steps in knowledge management: (1) making knowledge visible; (2) building knowledge intensity; (3) building knowledge infrastructure; and (4) developing a knowledge culture. Discusses managing people as assets, librarians as knowledge workers, and information politics and management attributes. (AEF)
Top-cited authors
Christine Susan Bruce
  • James Cook University
Helen Partridge
  • University of Southern Queensland 
Kate Davis
  • University of Southern Queensland 
Jennifer Kirton
  • New South Wales Department of Primary Industries
Lyn Barham
  • New South Wales Department of Primary Industries