Nerissa makes a good point (obviously, I'm reading my email from last in first out). I wish we could offer this course every year, but unfortunately we can't.
One of our constraints is that we are on the quarter system. We are truly at a loss to figure out how to introduce two cataloging standards, LCSH, DDC, & LCC all in 10 weeks - in beginning or advanced cataloging. Already some students complain that the workload is too much for these courses, and we do not know how to lighten that load enough to add enough of another standard to give everyone a reasonable sense of what that standard is like.
It is my strong belief that you need to teach people how to *think* about cataloging, not how to catalog. You can do that using any set of rules. UW students may feel less than prepared without the kind of intro to RDA that they probably need, but I have confidence that if they take both beginning and advanced cataloging (and if they apply themselves when doing so) they will be good catalogers/good administrators because once they learn the new standard, they will know how to apply it.
This quarter's enthusiastic, fabulous (the best I've taught so far, as a group) advanced cataloging students are totally out in RDA land already, reading, thinking, pointing out differences, problems - they are, I confess, way ahead of me. I'm so proud of them, and if we are turning out catalogers half this motivated and thoughtful, we are in good shape in the future.
Other than to teach them how to think about cataloging, what should I do? My answer is to keep them as excited about cataloging as I possibly can, fostering their high level of interest, encouraging them to think and explore.
Ultimately, I care much more about these two things than I do about teaching them a code of rules.
University of Washington
From: Discussion List for issues related to cataloging & metadata education & training [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Kathryn La Barre
Sent: Thursday, February 10, 2011 10:23 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: [eduCAT] Discussion of cataloguing education and RDA
Greetings. Just a heads up about an interesting thread on RDA-L presently about the teaching of RDA in LIS schools. (Reposting one message with
GSLIS@UIUC is planning an educator's summit (for all instructors at our
institution) in March to make plans for teaching RDA at GSLIS, and for a full discussion of the current curriculum. Marjorie Bloss has told us (on the RDA-L) about what Dominican has been doing. I'd love to hear from more of you about your plans to incorporate RDA, and how you envision your beginning and advanced cataloguing courses. I'm hoping Nerissa joins in the discussion here as well.
I felt like I had to give my two-cents about teaching RDA at MLS/MLIS
It is interesting to hear that RDA isn't being taught yet at many of these programs. I personally think that this is unfortunate, because even if RDA is not adopted I think all cataloging students should at least be learning the fundamentals so they know why it is even being considered as a replacement for AACR2. I can understand why people who have worked in the field for many years are 'tired' as Mr. Weinheimer has mentioned. However, graduates from MLS/MLIS programs are going to be shaping the futures of cataloging/metadata departments of all kinds, and I think that educating them in RDA is just as important as teaching AACR2. I just finished my MLIS in June '10 from the University of Washington, and last spring they offered a course called RDA and Metadata taught by Diane Hillman. I gained a lot of insight from auditing this course that I wouldn't have otherwise if I stuck with just the regular cataloging courses. I see a trend across libraries at least in the US where cataloging departments are changing their names to things like cataloging and metadata department or just metadata services. I even applied for a position with the title: Resource Description and Access manager after I had graduated. I have heard stories about libraries who are hiring metadata librarians and not planning on replacing their catalogers when they retire. I do not feel qualified to state whether I think RDA is the best option or not, but I do know that any student hoping to make it in this field after they graduate better have at least a solid educational foundation about RDA.
Texas A&M International University
Kathryn La Barre
Graduate School of Library and Information Science University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign