Library launches new residency program

Kaitlin Springmier joins UChicago as Resident Librarian for Online Learning

The University of Chicago Library launched a new residency program this fall that will expand staff expertise in new and rapidly developing areas of librarianship. The program is designed to bring top recent graduates of library and information science programs and relevant graduate programs to Chicago for two-year residencies focused on particular areas of expertise.

“This new residency program provides up-and-coming librarians and information specialists with an exciting opportunity to share new skill sets while collaborating with experienced colleagues to advance the development of twenty-first century library services,” said Brenda Johnson, Library Director and University Librarian.

Kaitlin Springmier

Kaitlin Springmier, Resident Librarian for Online Learning

The first resident in this new program, Kaitlin Springmier, joined the Library in September as Resident Librarian for Online Learning. She came to Chicago from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she completed a Master of Library Science and worked as an Instruction Assistant at the UW -Madison Memorial Library. She has experience creating interactive e-learning tutorials and using new instructional designs, including embedded librarianship in online courses.

“We’re delighted that Kaitlin has joined the Library,” said E-Learning Librarian Julie Piacentine. “She is familiar with key research on developing online learning and has experience designing modules that achieve specific learning outcomes.”

Springmier will work with reference librarians and subject specialists to develop, implement, and assess multi-media e-learning tools, resources, and services that support research, teaching, and learning at the University. High priority projects include development of a mini-course on tracking citations and creating bibliographies, as well as more specialized tutorials designed to meet the needs of students working in specific disciplines.

“This residency will help us increase the amount of self-service help that’s available whenever students need it,” Piacentine explained.

This first residency was made possible by generous gifts from Library Visiting Committee members Preston Torbert and Diana Hunt King, who saw the value of educating students in how to navigate complex and rapidly evolving online research environments.

Visit youtube.com/user/uchicagolibrary to see the latest online tutorials offered by the Library.

Growing the Residency Program

The Library has developed a set of possible residencies that could allow it to offer additional services in a wide variety of areas, as funding becomes available. Among the proposed positions are a Bioinformatics Resident Librarian who would support students and faculty who collect and analyze complex biological data such as genetic codes. A Data Services Resident Librarian would help students and faculty to use statistical databases, geographic information systems, data visualization, and other tools for field research, such as software for processing interviews and ethnographic field notes. A Digital Archivist Resident Librarian in the Special Collections Research Center would work with the University Archivist and the Archives staff to plan and implement a strategy for systematic transfers of electronic records to the Library Digital Repository. A Clinical Law Programs Resident Librarian would help to provide law students with legal research skills training that supports their work in experiential clinical programs in areas such as environmental law, international human rights, corporate law, civil rights, employment discrimination, and juvenile justice.

The residency program is expected to change over time as funding for new positions is obtained and the needs of the Library evolve.

 

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