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ERIC Number: EJ880040
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 4
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-0276-3915
Wither the MLS?
Lonergan, David
Community & Junior College Libraries, v16 n1 p74-77 2010
Over the past few years a troubling pattern has emerged, one that might be termed the trivialization of the Master of Library Science (MLS). As a result of several factors, not least the closing of library schools, low rates of pay for librarians, and high costs of living in many parts of the country, some college libraries have found it difficult to recruit and retain librarians. Many libraries have tried to deal with the very real problems facing them by carrying out variations on the techniques used by teaching faculty: change (lower) the requirements for the positions, hire fewer full-time librarians, and withhold the benefits that accompany fulltime academic employment. One problem libraries face is the withering of the profession, and such an approach would be advantageous to everyone involved, while simultaneously increasing the numbers of trained, experienced librarians. If librarians cannot be entreated to relocate to work in a high-cost location, recruiting new associates (and eventually librarians) from those who already live there is a sensible response; only the exploitation of them via assembly-line style jobs constitutes a morally-unacceptable part of this. MLS training at its best provides background and a sense of balance concerning the library world. If economic forces ultimately demand fewer librarians in academe, the author contends that one can still create a template wherein the few remaining librarians are found almost entirely in management, providing leadership and a sense of disciplinary values toward the library, the various media, and consumers during the decades to come. (Contains 7 footnotes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A