Data science isn’t a common term. So let’s start with an increasingly popular term: big data. Big data earned buzz word status with employers several years ago, and numerous vendors are now talking about big data in libraries. Big data generally refers to the storage and management of large data sets. In this field, it would not be uncommon to work with a sizable datasets of five terabytes or larger. By comparison, five terabytes would hold approximately one million music tracks (85,000 hours of music).
Posts Tagged ‘MLIS Students’
The last several years have been marked by a number of societal changes that include, but are not limited to, the shifting nature of our economy, the workforce skills needed to succeed in a reinvigorated job market, advances in technology, the evolving nature of information, transformations in education and learning approaches, and the rapid demographic shift occurring in our communities.1 Any one of these challenges can have a significant impact on individuals, communities, and institutions. Collectively, the shifts are seismic and impact how we learn, engage, work, and succeed moving forward (see “Re-Envisioning the MLS: Issues, Considerations, and Framing” for additional details). Public libraries in particular have been deeply affected by the changing social, economic, technological, demographic, community, and information landscapes—so much so that various initiatives are exploring the future of public libraries.2 Exploring the future of public libraries, however, also requires us to consider the future of public librarians—and how we prepare them for a dynamic and evolving service context.
In light of recent changes to the merits of LIS degrees, two new ALA task forces will address and reform accreditation.
I wrote a few months ago about the data skills that future academic librarians can develop—but what would a data librarian look like in a public library? In this post, I’d like to review a few data concepts, outline potential differences between academic and public librarians, and suggest ways that public librarians could bring data to their patrons.
Public libraries need to provide the same level of service with less. To do that we really need to capitalize on our resources.