Unlatching Knowledge: Preparing New Subject Librarians for Collection Development

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date


Publication Title

Charleston Conference


The transition from library graduate student to a professional academic library position is a challenging one, especially when facing the initial journey into collection development. Many librarians experience the stress of this move because in most instances recent graduates do not have the necessary skills, simply due to lack of applied experience and education. For many graduates, this lack of education is due to the fact that a majority of MLS programs offer few, if any, required collection development classes. These classes cannot possibly prepare the student for all of the tasks involved in collection development. There is not enough time to discuss all of the elements related to collection development activities in detail. Additionally, it is quite rare for graduate students to have garnered any practical collection development experience from working in a library. This presentation will provide practical advice to new librarians based upon relevant experiences at the University of South Florida, Tampa (USF), and the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV). Topics include acclimation to a new environment, collection development policies and procedures, liaison work and communication strategies, resource selection, and time management.

Controlled Subject

Postgraduate students; Library employees


Higher Education | Library and Information Science

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