26 April 2006

How do you define the different types of information literacy course content? Integrated, implanted, complementary.....

Quote of the week – “A man who reviews the old so as to find out the new is qualified to teach others.”
Confucius 551-479 bc: Analects

How do you define the different types of information literacy course content? Some suggestions below drawn largely from my own experience and my observations of the 'infiltration' within my workplace:

1. FULLY Integrated (synonyms: blended, combined):
a Content: Information literacy (IL) competencies are discipline specific and scaffolded throughout a program or degree
b Learning outcomes: IL outcomes are explicitly stated within course learning outcomes of every course in scaffold
c Assessment: Information literacy competencies are explicitly assessed
d Marking criteria: IL marking criteria are linked to assessment and covered in course content. Marking is completed by academic.
e Teaching: can be delivered by either the academic or librarians. Team teaching is the ideal whereby academic discusses any discipline specific and assessment issues and librarian covers ‘library specific’ issues such as ‘search tools’, etc. Ideally, an academic would always be present for all tutorials.
f Example: Bachelor of Education taught with Blackboard. Each core course across the program has week by week IL course content. The content is not duplicated between courses, but is scaffolded, so that students progressively learn the information literacy competencies (standards).
2. PARTIALLY Integrated (synonyms: blended, combined):
a Content: Information literacy competencies are discipline specific and covered sporadically in a program or degree. i.e. only particular courses are targeted.
b Learning outcomes: IL outcomes are explicitly stated within course learning outcomes of particular courses.
c Assessment: IL competencies are explicitly assessed
d Marking criteria: IL marking criteria are linked to assessment and covered in course content. Marking is completed by academic.
e Teaching: can be delivered by either the academic or librarians. Team teaching is the ideal whereby academic discusses any discipline specific and assessment issues and librarian covers ‘library specific’ issues such as ‘search tools’, etc.
f Examples: Specific courses within a program have IL content in either a Study Guide or Blackboard course, or other week by week course content. Some courses within a program have no IL course content. Infolit content, activities and assessment in an Honours research methods study guide which are allocated marks or explicitly assessed is an example of partial integration with assessment.

3. PARTIALLY Integrated (synonyms: blended, combined) NOT assessed:
a Content: Information literacy competencies are discipline specific and covered sporadically in a program or degree. i.e. only particular courses are targeted.
b Learning outcomes: IL outcomes are not necessarily explicitly stated within course learning outcomes of particular courses.
c Assessment: IL competencies are not explicitly assessed.
d Marking criteria: IL marking criteria are linked to assessment and covered in course content. Marking is completed by academic.
e Teaching: can be delivered by either the academic or librarians. The academic is not necessarily available in library specific tutorial sessions.
f Examples: Specific courses within a program have IL content in either a Study Guide or Blackboard course, or other week by week course content. Some courses within a program have no IL course content. Infolit content, activities and assessment in an Honours research methods study guide which are allocated marks or explicitly assessed.

4. Implanted (synonym: attached) AND assessed:
a Content: Information literacy competencies are linked only to some components of course content or covered sporadically in course content,
b Learning outcomes: IL outcomes are not necessarily state within the course learning outcomes of the course.
c Assessment: The IL outcomes are assessed, but not necessarily explicitly.
d Marking criteria: IL marking criteria may or may not be linked to the assessment or covered in course content. Marking is completed by academic.
e Teaching: can be delivered by either the academic or librarians. The academic is not necessarily available in library specific tutorial sessions.
f Examples: IL content is covered at ‘specific’ times, or ‘specific spots’ in course content; Week 6 or Week 8, or some other specific ‘week’ of a course. A course within a program may have an assignment(s) with marking criteria which includes ‘specific’ components of IL content, but only assesses ‘targeted’ or specific IL competencies. A course on ‘Communication and writing’ which has a specific ‘module’ in Week 3 of term covering some IL competencies, with some, not all of these, assessed in marking criteria. The marking criteria may or may not include all of the IL competencies covered in course content.
5. Implanted (synonym: attached) NOT assessed:
a Content: Information literacy competencies are linked only to some components of course content or covered sporadically in course content,
b Learning outcomes: IL outcomes are not necessarily stated within the course learning outcomes of the course.
c Assessment: The IL outcomes are not assessed.
d Marking criteria: There is not necessarily any IL marking criteria, but may be implicit as part of course assessment.
e Teaching: The IL content can be delivered by either academic or librarian and is usually librarian. The academic is not necessarily available in library specific tutorial sessions.
f Examples: IL content is covered at ‘specific’ times, or ‘specific spots’ in course content; Week 6 or Week 8, or some other specific ‘week’ of a course. A course within a program may have an assignment(s) with marking criteria which includes ‘specific’ components of IL content, but the IL component are not assessed. A course on ‘Communication and writing’ which has a specific ‘module’ in Week 3 of term covering some IL competencies, but none are assessed in marking criteria. The marking criteria does not include any IL competencies covered in course content.
6. Complementary:
There is no IL content or IL assessment in course. Some IL topics may be covered in library session, but usually focuses on ‘tools’ such as databases. These are usually one-off library tutorial sessions (eg. residential school workshops, lecturer request for specific databases for specific course)
7. General (also known as generic or non-specific):
There is no discipline specific content or discipline specific assessment. The Information Literacy content may or may not be based on Standards; for example an online information literacy tutorial, voluntary face-to-face tutorials which mostly cover ‘search tools’. [Whatever you do, don’t underestimate the value of online information literacy tutorials, especially if they are built on the IL standards/rubric, as these are great for Faculties with large Flex or Off-Campus offerings. It can also be used to conjunct with Introduction to University programs, such as ‘Study Abroad’ students, TESOL, or Tertiary Preparation programs.]

Your ultimate goal is to achieve number 1, but it’s not always possible. Whichever way you choose to define these, be sure that it ‘gels’ with all of the IL initiatives currently occurring in your institution.
1. Regularly ‘re-visit’ your definitions to ensure that they are still applicable to the current environment, particularly if your reference services or instructional librarian team gains new team members. All of the librarians on your team need to understand the ‘terminology’ and be able to work with this. If people don’t feel comfortable with a particular definition or feel it means something else, consensus needs to be reached.
If you use the above ‘definitions’, please acknowledge your source, similar to the “Creative Commons” licence – © Suzanne Yule: The Lateral Literal Librarian http://lllibrarian.blogspot.com/

20 April 2006

Anecdote of my information literacy infiltraton within a ‘flexible’ program faculty

“I do not like to repeat successes. I like to go on to other things.”
~ Walt Disney
Anecdote of my infolit infiltraton within a ‘flexible’ program faculty
What is a Flexible program? A program is the same as a Degree, Diploma, etc. A course is = to a subject/unit of study. A flexible program is defined as one which is largely determined by the student, where from first year they choose elective courses, within the particular course requirements, but it is essentially student-centred. It is problematic for information literacy initiatives because you never know what the majority of students will choose to study and it is difficult to employ a stepped/graduated approach from 1st year through to the final year in any particular program. It also can have a large proportion of Off-campus students due to external offerings. These are also majority online courses. This is the beauty of working with a Faculty that either has a core course which every student must complete or structured programs where all students of a program complete the same courses except for final year when elective courses are undertaken.
* Look out for seminars & workshops, Faculty Education Committee meetings – there may be opportunities for infolit planning with Faculty staff. If you are ‘active’ with the Faculty, with your visits and keeping them up-to-date on email, when they have a need, they will contact you, of that you can be sure. The challenge is being prepared, getting help with other tasks when the opportunity arises is a big ‘make’ or ‘break’ thing, so let your supervisor know EVERY TIME you are contacted by someone for infolit course development.
* Be ready for the question – “What can you do for us/me?”
* Liaise with HR staff in Faculty to ensure that all new staff members have a ‘library orientation’ as part of the staff induction process. This way you get the ‘jump’ on possible new infolit advocates – at least you meet all the new staff, both general and academic and can make a time with academic staff for more in-depth discussions about the library and what you the librarian can do for them.
* Research Methods courses - I had the opportunity to work with an academic and incorporate infolit 'activities' into a Research Methods Study Guide. A previous librarian had done the ‘groundwork’, there was a lot of infolit theory and concepts, but no practise or activities, and unfortunately neither of us could convince the need for allocating marks, and again I didn't have the opportunity to spend anywhere near the time I would have liked to on this. But at least where there's a start made, others can improve on this as time goes on. [providing a new lecturer doesn't come along and totally revamp the course & remove the infolit components, although you’d have to wonder about the teaching philosophy of someone who does this].
To improve this component I would have shown the academic literature which supports the argument for allocating ‘marks’ for infolit tasks – literature repeatedly argues that infolit is more successful when ‘marks’ are allocated as this sends a message to the students, this is important we are getting marks for this part. Also the time and effort spent on learning these competencies is rewarded. I would have started ‘small’ and asked for 5 marks out of total marks. Better some than none.
* Writing or communication courses along these titles – Communication and critical thinking, Critical thinking lends itself to developing the ‘evaluative’ and ‘higher order’ of information finding, using and evaluating; Professional & technical communication
* I have worked closely with an academic at her request to help with incorporating infolit into a ‘rewrite’ of a course titled ‘Cultural Industries’. This lecturer was brilliant in her grasp of infolit concepts and a module in the Study Guide was titled, Doing Research, Writing and Referencing. This module covered topics such as intellectual property, copyright, plagiarism, background reading, defining topic, Search statements, keywords/synonyms, boolean operators, Information sources, Evaluating sources, Referencing – Style required for course, What are the elements of a reference in a Reference List? and putting the reference list together.
The module also supported my personal philosophy of teaching [or is that learning] from ‘end to beginning’ with regards references. This was all covered in Week 4 of term.
To improve this component I would have given the academic literature which supports the argument for allocating ‘marks’ for infolit tasks – literature repeatedly argues that infolit is more successful when ‘marks’ are allocated as this sends a message to the students, this is important we are getting marks for this part. Also the time and effort spent on learning these competencies is rewarded. I would have started ‘small’ and asked for 5 marks out of total marks. Better some than none. Also, this ‘module’ perhaps could work better broken down over a number of weeks and interspersed in course content of earlier and later weeks. I would also discuss eliminating ‘screen captures’ of the catalogue which demonstrate ‘boolean’ concepts because with every upgrade of any catalogue or database it is immediately high maintenance to keep updating, so that students don’t get confused. Wherever possible, use ‘graphical representation’ with text and diagrams to illustrate concepts. I would then move on to 'spread out' the concepts within the course content to move from 'implanted' to 'integrated' information literacy.
* Information systems management with e-commerce applications – with this course, the lecturer was developing an assignment that required the students to include different types of journal articles in the References of an assignment. This would have been a great opportunity to look at course content and opportunities for including infolit content, such as the ‘differences between, scholarly, trade, popular magazine articles’ and ‘evaluation criteria’. My family relocated to another part of the State and my husband transferred, so I didn’t have the opportunity to bring this to fruition.
* Human computer-interaction – was also looking at ways to incorporate infolit into this course. The lecturer involved was brilliant and the students did a lot of 'teamwork' assessment, so perhaps a Blog would be a good 'tool' to use to introduce infolit and build on the 'team' aspects.
*Online teaching opportunities - with Faculties that offer External courses, most teaching is online, so look for ways to 'improve' or 'faciliate' these online courses and by doing this you can open the door to information literacy.
*Use your 'online information literacy tutorial' as much as possible because the ground work is already done - some 'areas' are not necessarily critical if not given a subject-specific example, e.g. "how do I read a citation?" but some are such as "Which information sources will I use?" This section could be expanded or 'disciplinised' [not really a word I know but sounds good] because it's the 'sources' and 'level' of information that changes significantly between disciplines.

All the best to LL’s involved with Flexible Faculties! It can happen, it all comes down to that commodity we are always short of, TIME! As well as academic interest and open opportunities! The 'online tutorial evaluaton form' post has been re-schedule for a few weeks time.

13 April 2006

Anecdote of an online library tutorial overhaul; when, why, how and who says?

Quote of the week - “All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them.”
~ Walt Disney

Anecdote of an online library tutorial overhaul; when, why, how and who says?

When – In October 2003, the initial planning began. (I must add that I began this ‘project’ knowing that I was most likely leaving the organisation. I had concerns about whether any of what I was doing would come to fruition. Did it happen? read on).

Who says – Simple simon
I was instrumental in commencing an overhaul of an online library skills tutorial in an academic library. It came about due to a request for me to present something at an in-house library teaching team meeting. So, we (my supervisor & I) agreed to a presentation regarding the online tutorial as I knew there were major issues which needed addressing. The idea was to elicit feedback and responses from the Liaison Librarians and other members of the teaching team and compile these and commence work on the overhaul.

Why – Issues with original tutorial
 It became problematic as it had a lot of ‘search tool’ instructions and screen captures and therefore very quickly became dated when there were upgrades to Virtua catalogue, or to online journal databases.
 Duplication of some concepts.
 Interface clunky and non-adherence to online design principles, students could not return to the ‘Home’ page easily. This is an extremely important online design principle. {The original design was due to the fact that librarians were at the time ‘on their own’ with technological and instructional support so it was rudimentary of necessity, but over time, we gained instructional designer and most importantly senior management support to give this tutorial the professional presentation, as well as ongoing maintenance that it deserved}.
 components were added to this tutorial which were not ‘vetted’ by the teaching team and therefore the tutorial was also growing beyond ‘manageability’ and needed to be weeded. (sounds like collection development doesn’t it).
 It was found over time, that not many students were using this wonderful resource, based on hit rates. Why? because it wasn’t a user friendly interface? or because they don’t want to do an online tutorial, they want a ‘real person’ to explain it to them.
 Support - I think there were some who wanted to see this tutorial ‘deleted’, but as a Liaison librarian responsible for a large proportion of ‘flex’ or distance students, I was an advocate for keeping it, but overhauling it. Librarians spent a lot of time going over and over the same concepts with multiple distance students, how wonderful to get them started with an online tutorial when you established that they really had no idea where to start. {Again this was due to technology constraints at the initial ‘birth’ of the tutorial and probably higher levels of management didn’t 'appreciate' the merits of an online tutorial for distance students, not to mention the other advantages}.
 There were no assessment or evaluation items included. Self tests are important so that students can ‘check’ they have fully grasped the concepts. Evaluation or Feedback from students is also extremely important, so that ‘improvement’ can be made, because let’s face it, nothing is perfect, first time round. As librarians, we learn very early that most things we do are ‘evolutionary’, not ‘revolutionary’.

The teaching team provided excellent feedback and thus began the planning stage with a small (3) member taskgroup.

HOW – Initial planning of the overhaul
1. Use powerpoint to complete a ‘storyboard’ of levels and content. I started ‘mapping’ using Excel the sections we would include, the content we already had, removed duplicate content and the terminology. This became tedious, so began, step two.
2. Content formulation based on the ANZIL and CAUL information literacy standards. The ‘question posing’ formula came about due to many years of student questions, and my recollection of these. I had also developed a 'word' guide which I regularly emailed to Off-campus students, which was titled: Where do I start? The students often commented how useful this was, and the guide content was eventually incorporated into the website. Also another issue was that ‘librarian-ese’ or library science jargon was not helping us ‘bridge’ the gaps for first year University students. It also came from a personal viewpoint that in a library we rarely asked the students what would help them (due to time and money constraints to conduct focus groups or similar). So, without the advantage of this, the next best was to try to think like a '‘newbie’ and use questions that students would ask us, either at the desk or individually, rather than use the traditional ‘heading’ format.
For example:

Using/Searching the catalogue [changed to] How do I find books?

Search tools [changed to] What tools do I use to find information? A sub-menu was:
Why would I use one tool and not another?
Ask the following questions to assist in selecting search tools: What is the Content? What is the purpose? What is the scope? And so on.

Analyse your topic [changed to] How do I start researching for information?

Using/Searching journal databases [changed to] How do I find journal articles?

Searching the Web [changed to] How do I find good web documents?

Evaluation Criteria [changed to] How do I know the information I have is good?

Primary/secondary/tertiary information sources [changed to] What level of information should I use?

And so on. I also consulted with other librarians to elicit feedback.
3. Interface - My vision was to use a structure similar to the ANZIL template that my institution played a key role in designing at the time, or rather the Electronic services Librarian spent many hours in consultation with Instructional designers. This was launched early 2003. We Liaison librarians also provided feedback regarding this template. I consulted with the Electronic Services librarian as to the feasibility of the library using a similar template for the ‘New’ tutorial and this was given the thumbs up and positively accepted. To have a look at the type of interface, visit the Anziil website - http://www.anziil.org/ It was to have 'breadcrumbs' also, so that students could see at what section they were currently, and easily return one step, or 2 steps if they needed.
4. The design was to be modular so that particular ‘sections’ or modules could be ‘slotted’ into online courses which use an online course management software such as Blackboard.
5. Assess student learning or ‘self tests’ attached to each section so that students could practice what they had learned while completing the tutorial, or at any point.
6. Online evaluation form - to elicit student responses, not the ‘yes’ or ‘no’ variety of evaluation, but blank box for student feedback to each question as well as a ‘picture’ of the respondent. The principle here is to develop a reasonably brief form so that students will respond and to also acknowledge each student that responds, by way of a ‘thank you for your submission’ or similar.
This next one comes from further reflecting on this post.
7. Interactivity? Is there any mechanism for giving patrons interactivity? What about a Tutorial Blog. Students can see what others are saying and the 'Comments' posted by librarians.

Did it happen? Yes it did. Congratulations to the librarians who persevered and made it happen!

Next post: online evaluation content - a sample.

12 April 2006

Upcoming Posts - what will she write about next?

Titles of my upcoming 'posts':

* Anecdote of an online library tutorial overhaul – who says, why and how?

* What should we ask in an online tutorial evaluation form?

* How do you integrate information literacy into Faculties that offer ‘flexible’ programs?

* How do you integrate information literacy into Faculties that offer ‘structured’ programs?

* What are the different types and levels of information literacy integration?

* To Blog or not to blog?

* Whither the practicalities of information literacy. Who teaches, who marks, How do you keep track?

* Anecdote of infolit infiltraton within a ‘flexible’ program faculty

* First Year University students and the Google Degree – Are your students Googling their way to a Degree?

* What are Australian University libraries doing with Infolit? - A brief external audit with hyperlinks

* What are Australian University Libraries doing with Blogs? - A brief external audit with hyperlinks

* INFORMATION COMPETENCY SCAFFOLD – What do you teach to create information literate and competent graduates?

*What are my top 10 journal recommendations for information literacy librarians and why?

Is Information Literacy lip-service or a full-time concern in your library?

Quote of the week - “Things which matter most must never be at the mercy of things that matter least.”
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
19th Century German Poet, Dramatist & Scientist
Is Information Literacy lip-service or a full-time concern in your library?
I have come to the conclusion that the implementation of information literacy initiatives for a Faculty is as successful as the time available to the librarian to allocate to this aspect of the multi-faceted role of a Liaison Librarian (LL). [All you need to do is read the position description of the present day LL and you wonder how they do all that they do, makes me wonder how I did all that I did in a 36 1/4 hr week.If you want to know have a look at www.seek.com and look at the librarian position descriptions for jobs currently advertised. The responsibility of some of these positions is astounding, almost like mini managers. Make sure you negotiate for the top level of pay with these top level responsibility positions]. The librarian needs time to 'think', 'plan’, 'reflect', 'assess', 'evaluate' information literacy and in most libraries, due to time constraints this is a very slow, infiltration into Faculty curriculum. It cannot be done properly without investing huge amounts of time and effort not only in the initial planning stages, but each term when the librarian teaches, evaluates and assesses any infolit which is required to backup the 'curriculum'. Most University libraries these days are fully supportive of their librarians’ Infolit initiatives, but what is lacking is an empathetic understanding as well as internal contingencies such as extra staff to appropriately cover LL’s for the TIME involved - INFOLIT is a FULL-TIME task. If an LL is also expected to devote large proportions of time to other in-house projects, infolit won’t happen in a hurry. Do you have an Information Literacy Librarian on your Reference Services team? Perhaps they could be doing the initial planning with you and then some, but only 1 person can be in 1 place at any one time. Oh! Utopia would have an infolit librarian AND a LL attached to every Faculty! {Now there’s a thought I just have to put in writing, a University Teaching Graduate Diploma in Information Literacy, these ‘infolit teachers’ could then be employed by each Faculty!} Of course there are Teaching & learning Advisors or Instructional Designers within most Universities, however their role is multi-faceted also, not specialising in information literacy and your curriculum. Of course the LL would still be needed to keep the infolit teachers and course academics up-to-date with library-specific issues. Library managers, particularly in academic libraries, need to take stock of infolit expectations and the time each librarian allocates to infolit. What I am trying to say is, How can anyone expect a BMW plan when there is only ever enough time for a horse & cart approach. Librarians need to sleep too. I know of 1 or 2 librarians who never had anything to do on weekends so they lived, ate and breathed infolit 24/7 and therefore had hundreds of plans which never came to fruition because there’s never enough hours in a day. However some of us make different choices and choose our partners and families to spend time with outside of work time. Anyway, it seems that time is the biggest factor for everyone, librarians and academics alike, so keep this in mind when starting any planning and get it in writing from your supervisor as to the ‘time’ allocated to each LL to devote to Information literacy Initiatives. Is this in a teaching and learning philosophy, What happens when you are called on to 'teach' or 'plan' infolit for more than the allotted time? i.e more than 10hrs per week during first weeks of term. Is there a contingency in place for the 'overly-infolitted-liaison-librarian?
Titles of upcoming posts:
* How do you implant information literacy into Faculties that offer ‘flexible’ programs?
* How do you implant information literacy into Faculties that offer ‘structured’ programs?
* Whither the practicalities of information literacy. Who teaches, who marks, How do you keep track?
* Anecdote of infolit infiltraton within a ‘flexible’ program faculty
* First Year University students and the Google Degree – Are your students Googling their way to a Degree?
* Anecdote of a library skills tutorial overhaul – why, how and who says?
HAPPY EASTER TO YOU ALL!! Chocolate is good in moderation, like most things, especially work!

06 April 2006

Where should I apply for a job as a librarian? Public, Special, TAFE or University library!

Quote of the week - Don't spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; but remember that what you have now was once among the things you only hoped for. (The Vatican Sayings, Epicurus)

Where should I apply for a job as a librarian?

Things to consider when you are applying for a job in a library, whether a special,
public, TAFE or University library:
A SWOT analysis while most often is conducted internal to the organisation, it would seem only sensible to look at the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats of each sector in order to determine which one best suits your preferences. Perhaps you have worked a number of years in other industries and are now a qualified librarian. The following questions have been posed as a starting point. Consider marking each question with a S, W, O, or T when analysing a particular workplace. It would be a good idea to have these on hand when you interview for a job.

Geographical location - What is the cost of living in the town/city?
Do you see yourself enjoying the lifestyle?

What is the size and reputation of the organisation?
Are they quality accredited? Do they follow an industry Standard or Quality system?
What is the external collaboration and support status? i.e. other libraries
What is the internal collaboration and support? organisational culture and senior management support
Is there a Union which represents this sector?

FUNCTIONS
What is the main function of the library?
Who are the primary clients?
Do you agree with the philosophy of this service and Client service charter?
Is this where you see yourself in 5 years time?

BUILDING & SPACE
What is the space and building like?
How old is the building?
Is it acceptable to work in?
What is the flooring and window covering like? Is this important to you?
Are there offices available for professional staff?
Are OHS requirements adhered to with spacing of desks?
Is the office area right beside a noisy machinery plant room?
How often is the air-conditioning maintained and cleaned?
Do you have your own phone and desk?
Is the staff room pleasant?

FUNDING
Are there sufficient to build core collection of both print and electronic resource provision?
Is the funding Federal or State?
Has there been any budget cuts in this sector or organisation?
Are there external funding mechanisms in place? i.e Friends of the Library, Government grants, etc.

TECHNOLOGY
What level of technological expertise is required of a librarian?
Which types of technology are used in the organisation, i.e. IBM or Apple Mac system, Windows XP,
photocopying facilities card operated machines, log file printing,
reader/scanners for vision impaired,
CD-ROMS, DVD's?
Are there sufficient on-site OPACS?
Are there training facilities available?
Is there a self checkout machine?
Does the organisation have systems staff on site?
Does the organisation have a web master?
Do they implement 'accessibility' issues in the web site? {Users with disabilities}
Does the organisation have a web presence?
Are the users able to access the library catalogue from home?
Is there a range of electronic databases available?
What innovations is the library involved in? i.e. Blogs, Podcasts, RSS or Learning Management Systems such as Blackboard.

STAFFING AND STAFF EXPERTISE
What is the 'organisational structure'?
Is it a single person library? Could you work in 'isolation', or would you prefer to have immediate support from colleagues?
Do the staff in management positions have some form of management Degree or formal leadership training?
Are they qualified to do the job? Look for those who have completed a management Degree or other accredited leadership training.
Check out the qualifications listed beside the names of people you are considering working under or with.
Are job descriptions available for all staff members with clear lines of responsibility?
Is the remuneration consistent with awards applicable within the Industry serviced by the library?
Are staffing levels sufficient to provide an efficient service?
Does the organisation have a high staff turnover rate? This may indicate a problem with management styles or excessive workloads.

STAFF DEVELOPMENT OPPORTUNITIES
Is there a formal 'performance review' and 'staff development' process? What is it and how is it used? - Ask this question at interview
Does each professional staff member receive equal opportunity for professional staff development training such as conferences, workshops, etc. i.e. 1 conference per staff member per year, or 1 workshop per staff member per year. Is the immediate supervisor responsible for soliciting requests or is this a 'central, equitable process' whereby a 'committee' approves staff requests for training?
Is higher education study leave supported by this organisation?

PAY RATES & STAFF RECOGNITION
What is the rate of pay for librarians?
Is it consistent with Industry or Award rates? Have a look at the ALIA pay rates. Are staff recognised by the organisation for achievements?
Is higher duties paid to staff who are requested to perform duties for section managers for leave periods?
Do staff look happy? Do they seem tired and harassed?

Lastly, happy job hunting. There are wonderful innovative leaders out there!