Best of Fall Semester 2011

31/01/2012 § 5 Comments

Carrying on the tradition of past end-of-semester wrap-up posts, we’ve pulled together some articles from Fall Semester, 2011 for your viewing enjoyment. Some of you may be in your last semester in library school (congratulations!) or maybe you’re still in the first year (hang in there!). Either way, to keep you busy we’ve compiled some reading lists you can return to over the next few weeks and get caught up. Think of it as HackLibSchool 101.

Our Top 10 Posts (by hits):

Top Post per Writer (by hits):

Best Comment Conversations:

Catch Up on Our Series:

Weirdest Search Terms That Led Someone to Our Blog:

  • cartoon library
  • how to hack firstclass
  • i hate school logo
  • how to dress like a librarian
  • handsome businessman
  • heroes to look up to
  • glasses for reading in bed

Recommended by Your Humble Writers:





And for good measure a few digital books that I’ve seen develop from nothing that came out this fall:

  • Hacking The Academy - a collection of essays on the (re)evolutions occurring in higher ed.
  • #alt-academy - community-building and networked scholarly communication around the theme of unconventional or alternative academic careers.

While we’re at it, two videos:







Playing Nicely With Others: Doing Group Work

07/12/2011 § 13 Comments

Photo Credit to Flickr user MyTudet

No Bob, I don't want to stab you with these scissors. I LOVE group work.

How many of you have had to do group work in graduate school? What’s that? All of you? Okay, I thought so. Like it or not, group work is integral to library science curriculum. When I first started, I wondered why I had to do do so much group work. What’s the purpose of it? Is there a lesson to be learned? There are so many risks when you have to work with a group of people you don’t necessarily know that well. Coming from an undergraduate background in art history, where you sit in a dark room and stare at slides, you don’t even know who is in your class, let alone have to talk to anyone. It’s a solitary endeavor. However, library school is totally different. You’re expected to talk to your classmates, peer review their work and collaborate with them. That can be really off-putting for someone who is used to a) shy b) used to studying alone c) new to the program, thus not knowing anyone and d) a control freak. This semester, I’ve had to do a couple of large group projects and wondered how collaborating could be made easier.
« Read the rest of this entry »

Hack Your Program: University of Illinois-Urbana-Champaign

23/09/2011 § 2 Comments

Eric Phetteplace is the Emerging Technologies Librarian at Chesapeake College in Wye Mills, Maryland. He reads philosophy, writes poetry, and is sort of obsessed with the differences between various web browsers. He graduated from GSLIS in May of 2011.

The University of Illinois Graduate School of Library and Information Science. By Kalev Leetaru, used with permission.


The opinions in this post are solely mine and do not represent my place of employment or the University of Illinois Graduate School of Library and Information Science. I did not take every course or talk to every professor, so I can only vouch for a small part of the school, but hopefully prospective students will find this snapshot useful in making their decision.


GSLIS offers an M.S. in Library and Information Science, as well as a Certificate of Advanced Studies, and a PhD. There are several concentrations and certificates available: Bioinformatics, Digital Libraries, Data Curation, Youth Librarianship, K-12 School Librarianship, Special Collections, and Community Informatics. There are about 570 M.S. students and a little over 50 apiece for the C.A.S. and PhD, though the majority of students are actually enrolled off-campus through theLEEPonlineeducationprogram.

The M.S. is 40 credit hours has only two required courses: LIS501 Information Organization and Access, and LIS502 Libraries, Information, and Society. Each concentration requires a handful of additional courses. There is a 2-hour practicum course which can be taken anywhere as long as you have an M.L.S. to supervise you. The recommended time for completion is two years but it is possible to finish in one. There is no mandatory final project or thesis for the M.S. but those who choose to stay on and receive a C.A.S. write a thesis. « Read the rest of this entry »

LIS Blogs to Read

29/08/2011 § 9 Comments

Everyone’s getting ready to go back to school, including your fellow hackers! Part of the library school experience is keeping up with what’s going on in the library world. That way you can discuss the latest trends or scandals with your classmates and professors.

We’ve compiled a few library related blogs that you should check out if you haven’t already.

Annie: I have always enjoyed these two blogs, they both put out great content. Both are collaborative just like HackLibSchool. Team work makes the dream work.

Lauren: There are so many fantastic LIS blogs out there (there is a partial list on my blogroll of some of my favorites), but I’d like to give a shout-out to two relatively new, incredibly enthusiastic and talented academic librarians who also have awesome blogs! They are:

Rose: Here are two must-read archives blogs that I love.  The first is about archives 2.0, the future of archives on the web, and the profession itself.  The second is a collaborative blog by the Smithsonian’s archives featuring their collections (full disclosure: as a volunteer for the National Anthropological Archives, I sometimes post on this blog).

Turner: My first recommendation offers sage advice from an academic librarian. The second is put out by the Library of Congress and focuses on digital collections (a growing trend in the library/information management profession and a great place to look for a kick ass job).

Micah: I know this is supposed to be an LIS focused post, but lately I’ve been thinking and rethinking the library blog “echo chamber” (everyone writing about the same things, reading one another’s work, and not engaging outside our field). So my Blogs to Read goes a little outside the LIS world, and it’d be my advice to students to step back once in a while and read something new from marketing, from tech news, from pop culture. These two blogs are both in the “hack” stream, but are great resources for ideas/tips/advice on navigating life in the university.

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