Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Survey on Organization of Technical Services Units

Here's a recent survey invitation that's been posted to a number of discussion lists.

This request has been cross-posted to AUTOCAT, OCLC-CAT, OLAC, and SERIALST. Please excuse the duplication.

Dear Colleagues,

You are invited to participate in a research study related to how the evolving role of the professional cataloging librarian is reflected in the organizational structure of library technical services units. This survey is intended for librarians currently employed as professional catalogers. For this survey, a professional is defined as a position requiring an MLS or equivalent. A paraprofessional is defined as a position not requiring an MLS or equivalent even if held by an individual with the degree.

Recently, library literature has discussed the differences between professional and paraprofessional catalogers, primarily in terms of which type of staff perform traditional cataloging tasks such as original cataloging, classification, subject analysis, and authority control. We are interested in how the shifting/evolving roles of catalogers have been reflected in the organizational structure of technical services units. Technical services units may be organized in a traditional hierarchical model, in a self-directed team-based model, or in a hybrid model incorporating aspects of both traditional and team-based models.

Responding to this survey constitutes informed consent to participate in the research. The survey is voluntary, and you may withdraw from it at any time. All responses will be kept confidential. Demographic information is being collected for data management purposes.

The survey will remain open until December 31, 2008 at midnight. It should take approximately 15-20 minutes to complete. Any questions may be directed to Greg Matthews, Cataloging Librarian, email:; Debra Spidal, Cataloging Librarian, email:; or Lihong Zhu, Head of Technical Services, email: Please take a few moments to assist us in our research.

Greg Matthews, Cataloging Librarian
Debra Spidal, Cataloging Librarian,
Lihong Zhu, Head, Technical Services,
Washington State University Librarie
P.O. Box 645610,
Pullman, WA 99164-5610


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