Skip to main content

Collaborating with the academic faculty for the improvement of the library services?

I am a wide reader, I can finish a 400-page novel in one to two sitting, about 2-3 hours only.

An Introduction to collaboration process

If you something to achieve with in the library, well, collaboration is the key. Collaboration is not an easy task to do. It takes a well-defined talent because not all faculty are willing to collaborate with your library projects.

Collaboration between a librarian and a faculty to get a better service to the students in a private institution is a big factor that every library professional is seeking. This is a big challenge needs to address to. I just took a simple research regarding this matter because I, myself was a former librarian by profession. Although, as of now, I am not a librarian but I am looking forward that someday, I will return to service in the field of librarianship. I experienced a lot when I was still a librarian that there was luck of collaboration between me and the faculty of the institution that I worked for. In view of this, whatever my project to have a better service to the students, most of them, were not that lucky enough to succeed. Almost, half of my library projects then were such a failure.

taking a shot before entering in a hotel for a library development plan seminar

taking a shot before entering in a hotel for a library development plan seminar

What is collaboration?

Collaboration defined from “co-operation” to integrate many diverse interactions between two or more persons or groups that will involve energetic organization with resources and talents for a common good between academic librarian and faculty members. To my own perspective, "co" is a dual or more than two participants to do the "operation" in a particular field. Like, in a field of the Library in which, a Librarian and its faculty (school library or academic library setting) should cooperating each other.

In relation, it also defines a working exercise whereby persons worked together to a common goal to achieve business benefit. Thus, the collaboration of academic librarian and faculty in an institution has a big factor in the success of a library service. My own understanding is just like when we work together, we will meet a perfect project soon. It is also like working together stays together.

Though, their specific daily tasks differ, college faculty and librarians share the common mission of educating, engaging and supporting students towards academic goals that if they collaborate, it will produce positive and effective results. A perfect group when someone assigned to lead like a librarian will asked to be a secretary in creating the library development plan while the other members of the faculty do some supporting documents in the future plans for the success of the learning resource center.

Collaboration could be synchronous, where the interaction and collaboration occurred in real-time, or asynchronous, where the interaction and collaboration occurred through meetings online. The creation of a learning environment full of collaborative work across student services and instruction such as collaboration between academic librarian and the faculty is often more challenging than it may first seem. Although effective collaboration is specific in context that needs to gather more evidences, keeping student learning at the center of each collaborations is a powerful element of successful work.

Creating new structure of conduct among academic librarian and faculty in order to promote different kinds of collaboration that will lead to deeper student learning, greater engagement and more success for the library researchers.

my own picture while in the library

my own picture while in the library

Collaboration has 4 factors

In assessing the collaboration, we have to check four factors. First is "awareness", followed by "communication", then, "coordination" and finally, "acceptance".

My mentor once said that those factors can increase the possibility to have near perfect collaboration if manage effectively. If "awareness" can open your mindset about why you are doing something in your environment (e.g. the Librarian needs the help of the faculty and vice versa). Then, "communication" will follow next. The Librarian will exert his/her effort to contact the faculty in any means (e.g. memorandum or email) in something what needs to be done. The "coordination" of explaining what should be done for a particular library project. And finally, the "acceptance" of additional task by a faculty in order to be successful of that library project.

According to Webster's Middle School Dictionary (1994), awareness is having or showing understanding or knowledge.

While, according to Webster's New World Dictionary (1983), communication is the act of communicating by means of letters, memorandum, etc. Members have an energetic network of colleagues with whom they have common and practical (not merely social) research communication, both impromptu and formal, in and outside of the institution. Rich and numerous forms of communication is such that all members feel knowledgeable.

Then, still the Webster's New World Dictionary (1983), emphasized that coordination is the act of working together to get something done in order to finish sooner.

Scroll to Continue

And finally, Merriam-Webster's Middle School Dictionary (1994), indicated that acceptance is simply the act of accepting.

my own shot after attending a dinner party by the President of the institution

my own shot after attending a dinner party by the President of the institution

The need of collaboration in the library

Collaborative digital reference will be a manual or a guide to the librarian in gathering information, as well as information skills and tools, then by organizing information resources such as search strategies and basic reference works, the academic librarian will be collaborating with the faculty regarding their field of expertise. The collaboration of the faculty and academic librarian in integrating technology with their teaching experiential research methodology, the expertise of the faculty will be benefited to the students from the collaborative approach of the librarian. More higher education institutions recognizes the value of information literacy in which the collaboration role of academic librarians is increasing.

In relevance, there are clear opportunities, powerful logic, the execution of collaboration to support in medium term and longer term to surrogate links between librarians and faculty. An aging collection needs a collaboration between librarian and faculty is a reliable way in order to ensure new purchases are in line with the curriculum.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2019 Luis G Asuncion


Luis G Asuncion (author) from City of San Jose Del Monte, Bulacan, Philippines on November 21, 2019:

I agree with you. Thanks for commenting.

Crisilda Payda on November 20, 2019:

Collaboration is some sort of a teamwork. I am not really familiar about your job, however, I love to see my kids are going to the library. Thanks for sharing.

Heather on November 18, 2019:

Collaboration is just like teamwork.

Luis G Asuncion (author) from City of San Jose Del Monte, Bulacan, Philippines on November 16, 2019:

Yes, I agree with you.

DreamerMeg from Northern Ireland on November 15, 2019:

University librarians have always been very helpful to me in finding literature I needed for my research. They have run courses on finding and saving literature references, using specialised programmes and also on the services they can provide. Even though academmics may agree on the need for collaboration in library projects, I suppose like other people, their own work takes priority. I have found in business that there is a need for project management in all collaborative projects, with agreed timescales and individuals named to do certain tasks if projects are to be completed and not left to die slowly.

Related Articles