by R.C. Miessler, Head Editor, INALJ Indiana
7 Great Sites for Academic Librarians
Whether you are currently employed by an academic library or are looking for a career in one, keeping up to date on the fun, exciting, and soul-crushing world of higher education is of vital import. It’s pretty easy to get cynical about academia (and if you aren’t, then you probably haven’t been paying attention), but there are a lot of great resources out there for academic librarians to help us keep our sanity. Here are just a few sites that I check regularly to stay informed and connect with others in the academy.
Chronicle Vitae – While I didn’t include the Chronicle of Higher Education on this list because a lot of the content is paywalled (but if you do have a subscription, it’s a great resource), their career hub site, Vitae, is open and free. There are lots of good articles on life in academia as well as tips for finding a job. It has several LinkedIn-esque features as well, such as job alerts and social networking.
The Lives and Deaths of Academic Library Staplers – Anyone who has worked at the public services desk at an academic library knows that the poor staplers are on death row. Students love to find the breaking points, and student workers usually can’t figure out how to reload them unless it’s a generic Swingline. This site documents the lives, deaths, and occasional resurrections of academic library staplers.
Open Access Overview – Pete Suber is one of the finest minds discussing OA today, and his website provides a ton of information that is beneficial for any academic librarian. His book is invaluable for any reference collection as well.
LibGuides – Best Practices for Librarians by Librarians – Academic librarians love our LibGuides. This collection of tips and tricks for getting the most out of LibGuides, put together by other librarians, is a great way to get started or revamp our guides. By the way, if you’re currently using LibGuides, be sure to sign up for your 2.0 beta site and check out the new features.
The Professor is In – Karen Kelsky is a former tenured professor who has since moved on to consulting academics looking for jobs in higher education, and her site is full of useful information about academia in general, as well as tips for finding a job. While geared towards tenure-track instructional and research faculty, the information is just as valuable for non-faculty librarians as well. Her perspective and honesty regarding academia is refreshing and needed in a time of economic uncertainty.
Inside Higher Ed – Founded by former Chronicle of Higher Education staff, it’s a great companion to that site and for keeping up on the latest news in academia. It’s not paywalled, and it also has a job section with an excellent email alert system.
Academia.edu – An up and coming social media site geared towards academics, the primary purpose is to share research independent of paid journals. It’s an interesting concept and should be on our radar as researchers look outside traditional publishing avenues to disseminate their work.
Any great sites we should know about? Let us know!