Academic Librarian Competency as Defined in the Library and Information Science Journal Literature of 2001‒2005 and 2011

Jennifer Lyn Soutter

Abstract


Competency definitions continue to become more popular in Library and Information Science (LIS) and are being used not only to describe library positions but also as a means of assessment. This study investigates competency in the LIS academic context using English language peer-reviewed articles from the LIS journal literature for 2001‒2005, with findings tested by the later inclusion of 2011 data. A quadripartite definition consisting of cognitive, functional, behavioral, and meta-competence elements is used as a template against which to explore definition creation and use. Results offer a template for critical analysis of competency as found within the LIS journal literature. The methodology used, one of coding, reveals a commonality to discussions of competency within these articles — reflecting a more holistic understanding than expected. But authors’ highlighted competency definitions tend not to parallel the discussion in their respective articles, as shown by the lack of inclusion of multiple elements from the same quadripartite definition.

Keywords


competency theory; competency definition; competency typology; librarianship; academic librarians; higher education librarians

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.21083/partnership.v8i1.1991

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Partnership: the Canadian Journal of Library and Information Practice and Research (ISSN: 1911-9593)