Incorporating social informatics into the curriculum for library and information science professionals

Merri Beth Lavagnino, Geoffrey C. Bowker, P. Bryan Heidorn, Mindy Miron Basi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Schools of library and information science are currently faced with the dual challenges of meeting the needs of a growing non-traditional student body and training students for a profession that is rapidly changing. A new pilot program for distance education of library and information science master's students has been created to address the first challenge, which is described here briefly. The second challenge is more difficult. A new distance course in systems analysis and design was created in order to incorporate three lessons from social informatics (the study of the social and organisational aspects of the introduction and use of information systems) into the curriculum. These three lessons are: the importance of apprenticeship learning; the interaction between organisational form and information systems; and the role of stories in organisational learning. Each of these social informatics lessons is discussed, and the creation of case study course materials is described in detail. By creating a hyperlinked case study of real-life library processes as the basis for a new course and incorporating these three social informatics lessons, the authors expect to better prepare students for the rapidly changing information science field.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)13-25
Number of pages13
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1998

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Library and Information Sciences


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