Increasing the visibility and impact of health science librarians & libraries

   June 7, 2016 Tuesday

Health Service Executive
Dr. Steevens Hospital, Dublin, Ireland
Increasing the visibility and impact of health science librarians & libraries.
Target audience
This workshop is suitable for librarians at entry level and middle levels of library management. It is aimed at librarians wishing to demonstrate the impact of the work that they do. It is also suitable for librarians interested in raising their profile as part of career planning.
Beginner/ Medium
Some knowledge of strategic planning and key performance indicators would be useful but not obligatory.
The workshop will describe a visibility improvement plan which is based on research undertaken by the author of the book “The Invisible Librarian: A Librarian’s Guide to Increasing Visibility and Impact”.
The aim of the workshop is to enable participants to reflect upon their current visibility and to empower librarians with a plan to increase their visibility and impact to their key stakeholders, readers and communities.
Learning Outcomes
Learn how to assess their visibility to readers and to key stakeholders

  • Define and list all areas of library services offered by them. Categorize the list into areas that are ‘core’ to the mission of the library, and areas that are ‘auxiliary’.
  • Locate and recognize techniques to increase the visibility and impact of the core library services and the librarian.
  • Choose appropriate methods to demonstrate their impact.
  • Differentiate their library service from others.
  • Assess and evaluate the impact of the library service.
  • Construct and design a visibility improvement plan for maximum library/librarian impact.
Description / agenda
JEAHIL dedicated a recent issue to ‘Marketing and impact of libraries’ (JEAHIL 2015 Vol.11 Issue 4). Demonstrating impact is a hot topic in all libraries, not least in health science librarianship. This workshop will be based on techniques outlined in the book “The Invisible Librarian: A Librarian’s Guide to Increasing Visibility and Impact” published in 2015. The author has researched this topic in the LIS literature and has interviewed 23 librarians in different libraries all over the world. Their experiences combined with evidence from the literature resulted in the Visibility Improvement Plan (VIP) which is a librarian’s guide to increasing their visibility.

  • Introduction & overview.
  • Participants will use a brief self-rating questionnaire to determine a baseline of their current visibility. Next they will be guided in choosing a target for increased visibility.
  • Prioritization exercise.
  • Overview of techniques for increasing visibility & demonstrating impact.
  • Group exercise of mapping appropriate techniques for identified areas.
  • Explanation and sample visibility improvement plan.
  • Guided exercise in creating a VIP.
  • Participants will be contacted in advance of the workshop to supply some context for their work area (e.g. vision, mission statement & expectations)

    Equipment requirements
    This workshop will include a combination of presentation and group work. There is no requirement for individuals to bring any device. This is a technology-free session.

     Course leader
    Aoife Lawton works as a systems librarian for the Health Service Executive based at the corporate headquarters in Dr. Steevens’ Hospital. She is responsible for managing electronic resources for over 15,000 health professionals. Aoife manages Lenus the Irish health repository and is involved in a number of specialist projects in the health service. Aoife is the IPC lead for the ICML/EAHIL 2017 conference. She recently published her first book on librarianship and her professional interests include: CPD, evidence based practice, emerging technologies and open access.

    Twitter: @aalawton

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