On Being a Librarian

Trends, Achievements, and Perspectives

PD: The What, When, Why, and How

Planning for and actively developing our professional skills and competencies is foundational to librarianship. Quarterly, I take stock of where I lack a skill and identify what strengths could be enhanced or refreshed.

As I reflect for action, there are many questions I consider, for example:

  • In what activities can I  participate on a daily basis that will help build competencies – technical, interpersonal or relational, leadership, instructional, etc.?
  • What level of commitment can I make to PD activities?  Time allotment? Energy levels?
  • Other than institutional PD allowances, where else might there be funding available?
  • What on-campus events are available throughout the year?
  • Will this be the year to attend conferences?
  • Is a project or research initiative ready for delivering at a conference or presenting online through a webinar?
  • What online courses are available?
  • How do these courses align with professional goals or institutional direction?
  • What certifications or diplomas are appropriate and relevant in the context of my work duties and responsibilities?
  • What vendors offer webinars?
  • What courses and workshops are available through professional associations?

Year over year, I add to the list of possible association and MOOC offerings, conferences, webinars, and workshops in which I have participated or in which I am interested.


Literature Searches

When I have access to licensed databases, I search for literature on such topics as:

  • integrating IL in first-year college or university courses
  • trends and current practices into collection assessment and weeding
  • library leadership
  • instructional strategies and techniques using the ACRL Framework


Most professional associations offer professional development courses and conferences:


There are many mass open online course opportunities.  Of the many I have taken, these two offer a wide variety of courses from broad topic areas:


Having access to the Lynda.com suite of self-paced, online courses is a boon! If you do, get an account and start on an amazing self-directed learning adventure. The following are some of the courses I completed this past year:

  • Instructional Design Essentials: Adult Learners
  • Write Effective Learning Objectives
  • OneNote 2013 Essential Training
  • Screencasting Fundamentals
  • Managing Your Manager
  • Lean Six Sigma Fundamentals
  • Teaching Future-Ready Students
  • Writing Research Papers
  • Having Difficult Conversations
  • Communicating across Cultures
  • Foundations of Online Instruction
  • Leadership tutorial: Working with difficult bosses
  • Conflict Resolution Fundamentals

Several of Lynda.com videos are available on YouTube

Library Juice Academy

This online site offers professional librarians workshops focusing on developing new skills and competencies.  I am working toward completing a Certificate in Library Instruction. I have completed one course and am currently enrolled in the second with the intention of taking one course per month for eight months.

Provincial Post-secondary Instructor Diploma

Most colleges and universities in Canada require faculty who are instructing courses to complete a provincial instructor diploma or certification, for example:

Research possible opportunities, be creative, think beyond the traditional, and explore your potential.

Go ahead.

Get some PD.


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