Thursday, June 24, 2021

American Library Association Releases Revised Core Competences of Librarianship

The American Library Association (ALA) released a discussion draft of newly revised ALA Core Competencies.

The document describes the basic competencies expected of library professionals within the first several years after graduation. The ALA is the body that accredits university library and information studies programs in North America.

As the document explains:

"The ALA Core Competences (ALACCs) reflect basic knowledge gained through LIS education, job on-boarding, and ongoing professional development early in a library career. It is essential that library professionals working throughout their careers in school, academic, public, special, and governmental libraries be life-long learners to acquire specialized and advanced knowledge beyond those specified in this Core Competences document."

"Throughout the ALACCs, there are words and phrases that we wish to clarify in this front-matter. We chose to use the phrase 'library professionals' to be inclusive of anyone working in a position that requires an LIS degree in a library or information environment. This phrasing reflects the fact that these competences are in many ways specific to libraries, but can also be reflective of the work done by archivists, data scientists, information specialists, library/archival technicians, and others."

"This is the first iteration of the ALACCs which intentionally incorporates the concepts of social justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion both throughout the competences and in a separate competence. Social justice in the library context includes the knowledge and skills necessary for library professionals to create and support library collections, services, personnel, facilities, and programs that foster equitable access to and participation of all people to use the library and its resources. Embedding social justice throughout the competences demonstrates that it is not a siloed activity, while having a separate social justice competence also recognizes that it contains unique attributes over and above the other competences."

There is more information about the consultation process on the ALA website. 

Various Canadian associations have elaborated their own professional competencies guidelines, among them:

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posted by Michel-Adrien at 6:48 pm


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