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Sci-Tech Academic Librarians in the 21st Century: Are Non-Science Backgrounds Enough?

This paper provides a survey of literature on the competency of sci-tech (science and technology) librarians without science/technical undergraduate degrees. Some studies argue for the recruitment and hiring of sci-tech librarians with science and technical backgrounds as opposed to those without these backgrounds. However, much of this literature is not current and therefore the purpose of the proposed study is to update this research. Specifically, in what ways are sci-tech librarians, who do not hold science or technical degrees, serving and/or underserving the needs of science and engineering students/faculty in university settings? The question will be answered from the following perspectives: the library schools who train novice sci-tech librarians, students/faculty, novice sci-tech librarians themselves, and supervisors of novice sci-tech librarians. What are these agents doing to mitigate the issues that arise from novice sci-tech librarians? Through future research, researchers may be able to identify any missing themes or patterns from previous research that can be used to argue for stricter requirements for sci-tech librarian jobs and funding for sci-tech librarian recruitment.

Author: 
Melanie Nernberg
School: 
Sonoma State University
Department: 
Sociology and Global Studies
Research Advisor: 
Dr. Nicole Cooke
Department of Research Advisor: 
Information Sciences
Year of Publication: 
2017