Charles Sturt University
Charles Sturt University

News Archive

Past News

2016 Graduation and Prize Winners - School of Information Studies

In August and December CSU School of Information holds its graduation ceremonies. These ceremonies mark the beginning of the next stage in the lives of our graduands. As staff we find graduation one of the most joyous times of the year. We join our students as they don their gowns to celebrate with their friends and families an important rite of passage as they receive their testamurs confirming their learning and attainment of formal qualifications and accreditation to work in our industry. Congratulations to all our 2016 graduates!

We also look forward to celebrating those students who throughout their study demonstrate an exceptional standard of work and commitment in our information studies courses.  Below we list and recognise those exceptional students, the CSU prize winners for 2016.

ALIA Student Award – Erin Davey - Bachelor of Information Studies (Information and Knowledge Management)

ALIA Student AwardRuth Butcher– Graduate Diploma in Information Studies

ALIA Student Award – Amanda Lucas – Master of Education (Teacher Librarianship)

ALIA Student Award – Janette Pelosi – Master of Information Studies (Leadership)

Australian Society of Archivists - Margaret Jennings Award – Colleen Sippo - Master of Information Studies (Records and Archives Management)

Institute for Information Management Prize – Jutta May – Master of Information Studies of Information Studies (Information and Knowledge Management)

SAGE Research Prize – Elizabeth McLoughlin - Master of Information Studies

The following students received a Dean's Award of Excellence which is awarded to students who are enrolled in a minimum of 32 subject points in any faculty course and have achieved the level of distinction or above in all subjects studied in any one session for full-time students or in two successive sessions for part-time students.

2016 Recipients - Graduating Students:

Georgena Bowmer - Bachelor of Information Studies (Librarianship)

Jennifer Pendlebury – Master of Information Studies (Librarianship)

Hyacinth Steele – Master of Education (Knowledge Networks and Digital Innovation)

Lea Morton – Master of Education (Teacher Librarianship)

Natalie Spain – Master of Education (Teacher Librarianship)

2016 Graduation and Prize Winners - described below

From left to right: Professor Philip Hider, Head of School; Colleen Sippo; Natalie Spain;  Hyacinth Steele; Georgena Bowmer; Jutta May; Janette Pelosi; Erin Davey; and Dr Asim Qayyum, Associate Course Director and IIM representative. Photo credit: Tehani Croft, Lecturer.

SIS Welcomes new lecturer in Teacher Librarianship - Tehani Croft

Tehani Croft has joined the staff of CSU as a lecturer in teacher librarianship. Tehani attained a Tehani CroftMaster of Education (Teacher Librarianship) from CSU and comes to the university after more than a decade working  in school libraries across Australia and with related associations including ASLA and CBCA. Tehani has lectured and tutored for ECU, Curtin and CSU, and has published in Access, ic3 and Connections. She is passionate about school libraries, teacher education, and literature for young people, and has judged for the CBCA Book of the Year, the WA Premier's Book Awards and the Aurealis Awards. Prior to commencing at CSU, Tehani was the Head of Information Services at Marist College Canberra.

Dr Sigrid McCausland

With great sadness, the School acknowledges the passing of Dr Sigrid McCausland on 30 Dr Sigrid McCauslandNovember 2016. Dr McCausland was a Senior Lecturer in the School, joining CSU in 2009 to establish a new records and archives management specialisation as part of an expanded Information Studies curriculum. The development and growth of this specialisation has been remarkable success story, demonstrating Sigrid's deep expertise in archival science, her skills as an educator, and her enormous passion and commitment to the cause of archives education.

Sigrid contributed to the life of the School in many positive ways. More broadly, she was highly influential in the development of higher education for the records and archives sector and in the wider information world. Sigrid was recently conferred as a Fellow of the Australian Society of Archivists in recognition of her wonderful contribution to the archival profession over many years. In fact, Sigrid's contributions to the intellectual life of Australia were many and her research reflected her keen intellect and deep commitment to social justice. Her research focused on how archives and other cultural institutions interact with their publics. Her publications reflected this interest and included works on the history of archives and the archival profession, the use of Indigenous records, and records and archives education. Sigrid served as University Archivist at both the University of Technology, Sydney and the Australian National University, where she successfully spearheaded the fight to save the Noel Butlin Archives Centre, and later served as Education Officer for the Australian Society of Archivists.

We, her friends and colleagues at CSU, will always be thankful to Sigrid for her humour, her clear and insightful perspective on our work, her no-holds-barred approach to injustice, and for the example she set as a dedicated, consummate professional. Messages of condolence can be left at the School's Facebook page. Our thoughts are with Sigrid's partner, Phil Griffiths, and her family and many friends.

SIS programs receive Gold Reaccreditation from ALIA

The Australian Library and Information Association (ALIA) has granted Gold Reaccreditation to the School's three main programs, namely the Bachelor of Information Studies (BIS), the Master of Information Studies (MIS), and the Master of Education (Teacher Librarianship). The Reaccreditation is until December 2021 and covers both the generic BIS and MIS degrees as well as their specialisation awards; it also covers the Teacher Librarianship qualification, which has recently undergone a rigorous process of curriculum renewal. ALIA's Gold level of accreditation involves the scrutiny of a visiting Reaccreditation Panel.

Best Paper Award for Philip Hider

Congratulations to A/Prof Philip Hider for winning the Best Paper in Knowledge Organization A/Prof Philip Hider Award for volume 42, 2015. His article was entitled, "Survey of the Coverage and Methodologies of Schemas and Vocabularies Used to Describe Information Resources," and reported on the domain areas of the various metadata schemas and vocabularies published on the Web, and the methodological approaches employed in their development. Knowledge Organization is published by the International Society for Knowledge Organization (ISKO).

2016 Faculty Awards

2016 faculty awardsThe School was well represented in the 2016 Faculty Awards. Lecturer Asim Qayyum won an award for Professional Excellence, while our Teacher Librarianship academics, Judy O'Connell, Barbara Combes, Lee Fitzgerald and Kasey Garrison, won a team award for Academic Excellence in recognition of the work they put into their curriculum redesign. Furthermore, two of the School's former professional staff, Judy O'Connor and Tahnee Wise, both won awards for Performance Excellence. Judy and Tahnee still work closely with the School in the new Faculty of Arts and Education.

Pictured are some of the School's award winners and their supporters.

PhD student wins best poster prize at CoLIS

CoLISIn 2016 School of Information Studies doctoral student Alison Hicks was awarded a Faculty of Education resource grant to attend the CoLIS 9 conference (Conceptions of Library and Information Science) and the associated doctoral forum in Uppsala, Sweden. As a big fan of Scandinavian socio-cultural research, Alison was very keen to develop a better understanding of current research in the area, while also getting to know some of the scholars whose work she has been reading. It was also a great opportunity for Alison to catch up with her principal supervisor, Anne-maree Lloyd, who moved to Sweden in 2015 and with whom during the visit she was able to have some face to face supervision sessions.

Alison was also keen to use this opportunity to think about her own research on which she received useful feedback on her work at both the Doctoral Forum, as well as at the poster session where she presented an overview of her progress so far. At the conference dinner Alison was awarded the prize for the Best Poster- congratulations Alison! Finally, Alison would like to recommend attendance at CoLIS 10, which will be held in Ljubljana, Slovenia in 2019.

New Senior Lecturer joins SIS

Hamid JamaliDr Hamid R. Jamali has commenced with CSU as a senior lecturer in Information Studies. Hamid will initially be teaching in the area of information resources description and metadata. Hamid has a PhD from the University College London (UCL, UK), a Master of Arts (Information Science) from University of Tehran (Iran) and a BSc in Medical LIS from Kerman University of Medical Sciences (Iran). Hamid's doctoral research focused on information and communication behaviour of scientists. He has published in several journals such as JASIST, JDoc, IPM, JIS, Scientometrics and some other LIS journals. Before joining CSU, Hamid was a faculty member at the LIS department of Kharazmi University (Iran). He has the experience of working in both public libraries (Iran) and academic libraries (UK). Hamid has also worked as indexer of archival material, back-of-the-book indexer and abstract writer for scientific databases. His research is mainly focused on the areas of human-information interaction, information behaviour and scholarly communication.

Jessie Lymn awarded Council of Australian University Librarians/Australian Society of Authors Fellowship

J LymnCongratulations to Dr Jessie Lymn, Lecturer in the School of information Studies who has been awarded a 2016 CAUL/ASA Fellowship. She will use the funds to travel to Murdoch University Library in Perth to study their unique collection of science-fiction fanzines and correspondence. Dr Lymn will undertake a materials survey of the extensive collection and map the networks of correspondence, supporting the notion that zines are defined not just by their content, but by their materiality and their networks – that is, their practices. The project will result in a number of publications on the collection and a seminar and online publication for Murdoch University Library. The project aims to showcase the collection and highlight its importance to scholars of Australian literature, cultural studies and special collections.

Julie Lindsay's new book

the global educatorCongratulations to Adjunct Lecturer, Julie Lindsay, who has had a new book published: 'The Global Educator: Leveraging technology for collaborative learning and teaching'. The book (available as in both printed and electronic format) sets out essential pedagogical approaches and frameworks for global collaborative learning. It is also a collection of anecdotes, inspiring examples and 36 case studies featuring educators across K-12 and higher education. Senior Lecturer Judy O'Connell contributed a chapter on 'Leadership for global learning: A reflection on higher education experiences in Australia'.

SIS Professor elected as President of ASIS&T

Lisa GivenThe School of Information studies congratulates Professor Lisa Given who has been elected as incoming President of the Association for Information Science and Technology (ASIS&T). ASIS&T seeks to advance the information sciences and related applications of information technology by providing focus, opportunity, and support to information professionals, researchers, students and organisations. As President, Professor Given will focus on deepening ASIS&T's engagement with members across borders and further encouraging the development of international Chapters. She will also seek to broaden the membership base across disciplines to extend ASIS&T's profile and reach, and to foster research capacity building and research leadership.

Kasey Garrison joins fans at the annual Children's Book Council of Australia conference

Last week our Children's Librarianship Coordinator and Lecturer Kasey Garrison joined book fans from across the country at the Children's Book Council of Australia (CBCA) conference in Sydney.

"We had heaps of SIS students visit our table from across our courses and hopefully encouraged some new ones to come join the fun in the children's librarianship specialisation," Kasey said.

A highlight of the conference was the announcement of the CBCA's short lists for the Books of the Year. The winners will be announced during Book Week in August.

Prof Hider to lead consultations on new national learning & teaching repository

As part of his part-time secondment to the Office for Learning & Teaching (OLT), Philip Hider will lead a series of consultations on the possible options for a national learning and teaching repository that will support the work of OLT's successor, the National Learning and Teaching Institute. Co-leading the focus groups will be Pru Mitchell from the Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER), who is also an Adjunct Lecturer in the School. Focus groups will be held in four capital cities and online, as detailed below. If you are interested in participating in any of these sessions, please contact Helen Galatis, the Project Manager (who is also from ACER) at Alternatively (or in addition), you are invited to complete a questionnaire survey on the topic at The survey is open until the end of April.

Face-to-face focus groups

Wednesday 6 April 2016 Brisbane

Time: 10.00-12.00
Venue: ACER Conference room, 75 Melbourne St South Brisbane, QLD

Thursday 7 April 2016 Canberra

Time: 2.00-4.00pm

Venue: Cliftons, Level 2, 10 Moore Street, Canberra, ACT

Wednesday 13 April 2016 Melbourne

Time: 10.00-12.00pm

Venue: ACER Keeves room, 19 Prospect Hill Road Camberwell, VIC

Thursday 14 April 2016 Sydney

Time: 2.00-4.00pm

Venue: Cliftons, Level 13, 60 Margaret Street, Sydney, NSW

Online focus group

Tuesday 12 April 2016 Webinar

Time: 12.30-1.30pm

Adobe Connect webinar

Wade Kelly awarded QPR Conference Scholarship

Wade KellyCongratulations to Wade Kelly, a PhD Candidate (supervised by Prof Lisa Given and Dr Mary Anne Kennan) in the School of Information Studies and the Research Institute for Professional Practice, Learning & Education (RIPPLE) on winning the Research Master Quality in Postgraduate Research (QPR) Conference Sponsorship. The award includes full conference registration, accommodation, and flight costs, to attend the QPR conference in Adelaide in April 2016. QPR is the world's largest & longest-standing conference on doctoral education. Wade received the award from a field of 130 postgraduate students from across Australia; his application detailed his research focus, which examines university-community engagement activities and research impact.

2015 Prize winners - School of Information Studies at Charles Sturt University

Graduation signifies success in a particular part of a person's learning journey, and provides formal qualifications and accreditation to work in our industry. So each year we celebrate our students' graduation with joy. We also look forward to celebrating those students who throughout their study demonstrate an exceptional standard of work in our information studies courses.  Below we list and recognise the CSU prize winners for 2015.

  • ALIA Student Award - Michelle Allen - Bachelor of Information Studies (Information and Knowledge Management)
  • ALIA Student Award - Gabrielle Prior – Graduate Diploma in Information Studies
  • ALIA Student Award - Lara Ebbs – MEd (Teacher Librarianship)
  • Australian Society of Archivists - Margaret Jennings Award - Narelle Leonard - Bachelor of Information Studies (Records and Archives)
  • Institute for Information Management Prize - Michelle Allen - Bachelor of Information Studies (Information and Knowledge Management)
  • SAGE Research Prize - Katherine O'Neill - Master of Information Studies (Librarianship)
  • Zenith Postgraduate Information Studies Prize - Rickie-Lee Morey - Master of Information Studies, (Applied Research)
  • Zenith Postgraduate Teacher Librarianship Prize - Lara Ebbs - MEd (Teacher Librarianship)
  • Zenith Undergraduate Information Studies Prize - Susan Sturgess -Bachelor of Information Studies (Librarianship)

The following students received a Dean's Award of Excellence which is awarded to students who are enrolled in a minimum of 32 subject points in any faculty course and have achieved the level of distinction or above in all subjects studied in any one session for full-time students or in two successive sessions for part-time students.

  • 2015 Recipients (Graduating Students):
  • Ms Narelle Leonard - Bachelor of Information Studies (Records and Archives Management)
  • Ms Sally Chik - Master of Information Studies (Community Informatics)
  • Ms Anna-Bella Silva - Master of Information Studies (Records and Archives Management)
  • 2015 Recipients (Continuing Students):
  • Ms Sarah Garlick - Bachelor of Information Studies (Librarianship)
  • Ms Mardi Curcuruto - Bachelor of Information Studies (Librarianship)
  • Ms Lea Morton - Master of Education (Teacher Librarianship)
  • Ms Renee Grant - Master of Information Studies (Records and Archives Management)
  • Ms Sophie Gigas - Master of Information Studies.

Prize winners 2015

Mary Anne Kennan, CSU; Judy Brooker, ALIA; Michelle Allen

Prize winners 2015

Mary Anne Kennan, CSU; Judy Brooker, ALIA; Gabrielle Prior

Prize winners 2015

Mary Anne Kennan, CSU; Rickie-Lee Morey

Prize winners 2015

Mary Anne Kennan, CSU; Susan Sturgess

Panel discussion to launch ARC project

Lisa GivenProfessor Lisa Given invites you to attend the online launch of the Australian Research Council-funded Library and Information Science Research Australia (LISRA) project on 10 March. A panel discussion comprised of leading library and information professionals and researchers will discuss the library and information professional as practitioner-researcher. They will critically consider the many opportunities and challenges in embracing practitioner-researcher as an approach to professional practice. Further details about the panel discussion can be found here.

Dr Jessie Lymn joins the School of Information Studies

Dr Jessie Lymn has commenced with CSU as a lecturer in Information Studies. Jessie will initially be teaching in the area of Collections and continuing in her existing research practices. Jessie has a PhD from the University of Technology Sydney (UTS), a Master of Arts (Information & Knowledge Management) from UTS and a Bachelor of Arts (First Class Honours) from the University of Adelaide. Jessie's doctoral research focused on the archival practices of subcultural communities and how these practices further temporal and spatial understandings of archives. She has published in Archives and Manuscripts, the Journal of Library Innovation, The Conversation and Artlink. Jessie has lectured and tutored in the Information Studies programs at both CSU and UTS. Jessie also extensive professional experience, including positions held as a Web Manager at the Australian Tax Office, Archivist at a small community archive, Data Archivist at the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Data Archive, Information Management Consultant on an AusAID Pacific Governance project overseas, and prior to starting at CSU was a Research Officer at the UTS Centre for Local Government, with a research focus on public libraries.

OLT secondment for Philip Hider

Prof Philip Hider has been awarded a part-time secondment worth $150,000 by the Australian Government's Office for Learning & Teaching (OLT) to develop 'an effective, accessible and sustainable digital repository of OLT learning and teaching resources.' The secondment will build on a project that Prof Hider and his team completed in 2015 for the OLT, which reorganised and reindexed the OLT's online Resource Library. Other members of that project team will also be involved in this new project, including Pru Mitchell, Manager of Information Services at the Australian Council for Educational Research. The project aims to develop a costed proposal for a sustainable repository that meets the sector's needs and protects existing resources, as well as to engage stakeholders in the future of the repository and its assets. It will address sustainable solutions for a repository that is accessible, discoverable and usable, and that meets current standards for content, researcher identifiers, technical infrastructure, indexing, metadata, information architecture and archiving.

SIS @ CSU visits partners at HKU SPACE

The School of Information Studies has had a partnership with HKU Space ( to deliver the Bachelor and Master of Information Studies to students in Hong Kong for over 20 years. Each year staff in the School of Information Studies are privileged to join our graduating students in Hong Kong and to deliver an orientation and residential school for newly commencing students. On the 31st October, Drs Mary Carroll and Kim Thompson were very pleased to attend the 2015 graduation ceremony.

During the following week Drs Carroll and Thompson joined by Dr Mary Anne Kennan, conducted a busy teaching schedule in the evening , met with HKU SPACE staff, practitioners, students and HKU Space tutors and were lucky enough to visit a number of interesting and innovative library services . On Thursday the 5th of November Drs Kennan and Thompson delivered a well received and attended lectures at the Hong Kong Public Library. This event was organised by the Hong Kong Public Library Association (HKLA). It was a wonderful experience meeting the dedicated staff, tutors and enthusiastic students, who we wish interesting and enjoyable studies, followed by a wonderful career.

The visit concluded with a lunch celebrating the 40th Anniversary of the School of Information Studies, Charles Sturt University.

Hong Kong GraduationHong Kong 2015

Hong Kong DinnerHong Kong library visit

  • Top left: Graduation ceremony
  • Top right: Students doing small group work
  • Bottom left: Celebration with HKU Space tutors and staff of the SIS 40th anniversary
  • Bottom right: Dr Kim Thompson, Dr Mary Carroll, Dr Kan, Ms Annabelle Pang, Dr Mary Anne Kennan, Ms Ying Ying Lu

Public lectures for the Hong Kong Library Association

On Thursday the 5th of November Drs Kim Thompson and Mary Anne Kennan were invited to deliver lectures to a public meeting of the Hong Kong Library Association. Kim's talk was title "Evidence-based Design of Library Services for Immigrants" and Mary Anne's "Open Access: Whipping boy for problems in scholarly communication?" based on a paper she co-authored with Dr Danny Kingsley, Head of Scholarly Communication at Cambridge University Library.  The lectures were well attended and well received and generated lively discussion. The School would like to thank the Hong Kong Library Association and HKUSpace for organising the lectures.

Hong Kong Library Association lectureHong Kong Library Association lecture

CSU Regional Archives/School of Information Studies Scholarship

CSURASince 2013 the School of Information Studies (SIS) has funded the cost of a scholarship at the CSU Regional Archives, for a student enrolled in either the Bachelor or Masters of Information Studies course.

The summer scholarship program has been running successfully at the CSU Regional Archives since 1997, and originally targeted undergraduate students who were keen to use an archival collection to produce a research report. However, in recent years the Archives has opened the scholarship up to Information Studies students giving them an opportunity to gain some practical experience in working on archival collections in an archival setting.

CSURA itemsStudents are encouraged (with the help and supervision of professional archival staff) to locate a collection which is of interest and has yet to be processed. They are then expected to produce an archival finding aid, an administrative history of the collection, a written report of their scholarship experience and deliver a presentation. Importantly, the students are able to learn and apply the archival principles of arrangement and description, sentencing and disposal on the chosen collection.

Applications for the CSURA/SIS scholarship will be open in November & December 2015. The scholarship is offered on a competitive basis and is open to all students enrolled in an Information Studies course. Applicants are required to provide the names of two academics who support their application, a copy of their most recent transcript and a brief statement outlining how they will benefit from undertaking the scholarship.

SIS @ CSU 40th anniversary celebrations

In 2015 School of Information Studies (SIS) celebrates its 40th anniversary. SIS, under a slightly different name, was set up to teach librarianship in 1974 and began teaching in 1975 as a part of the Riverina College of Advanced Education (RCAE).  In 1984, the institution changed its name to Riverina Murray Institute of Higher Education (RMIHE) and with that change, and mergers with new colleges, came the introduction of teacher librarianship. From the RMHIE, Charles Sturt University (CSU) was established in 1989.

Through all those years SIS under one name or another has remained, teaching initially librarianship then teacher librarianship, then adding other information specialisations such as records and archives, information architecture, knowledge management and so forth.

To celebrate, SIS has been hosting 40th anniversary celebrations in Melbourne and Sydney, to coincide with our study visits. The celebrations have involved a panel of our professional and passionate alumni sharing their thoughts on the information professions, looking forward and looking back, with guests consisting of other alumni, special guests from the information professions, staff and students.

We were fortunate to be able to hold our celebrations in two iconic buildings for the library profession in Australia, the Queen's Hall, State Library of Victoria, and The Dixson Room, State Library of New South Wales.

We'd like to thank all who attended to help us celebrate our 40th, especially our curious and passionate panellists:

From Melbourne: SIS 40 - SLV

  • Nicky Hayward-Wright, Manager, Knowledge and Capability & Culture,  GS1 Australia
  • Troy Watson, Manager, Library and Learning, Moonee Valley Libraries
  • Pru Mitchell, Manager of Information Services, Australian Council for Educational Research
  • Paula Kelly, Manager, Learning Communities at Hobsons Bay City Council

From Sydney: SIS 40 - SLNSW

  • Beatriz Aroche, Library Manager, TAFE NSW – Sydney Institute
  • Kathy Tritsaris, Team leader, Surry Hill Library, City of Sydney
  • Mylee Joseph, Consultant, Public Libraries and Engagement Division, State Library of NSW
  • Claire McKenzie, Outreach Librarian, Humanities, Creative Arts and Social Sciences, UNSW Library


Lisa Given honoured with Vice-Chancellor award for Research Supervision Excellence

Lisa Given receives athe Vice-Chancellor awardOn Wednesday, 5 August Prof Lisa Given was honoured with the Charles Sturt University Vice-Chancellor Award for Research Supervision Excellence. This award recognises an exceptional record supervising higher degree by research students, measured in terms of feedback from students and/or graduates, time for completion, research publications of current and previous students, and levels of assessment by examiners.

Prof Given expresses many thanks to the current and former doctoral students who nominated her for this award!

SIS success at the 2015 Faculty and Division awards

Tanya TyeThe School of Information Studies made an excellent showing at the CSU Faculty and Division Awards in 2015. At the ceremony Ms Tanya Tye, School Office Manager, received an award for performance excellence. Tanya's performance has been exceptionally high for many years, but has been particularly outstanding in the past three, since appointed Office Manager. In this time, Tanya developed a very cohesive and extremely effective team of administrative support staff, leading very much by example, with a commitment to the functioning of the School's operations that far exceeds the call of duty. As School Office Manager, Tanya has contributed numerous innovations that have both increased efficiencies and improved the effectiveness of the School's activities. Tanya's meticulous approach and careful planning has been important for the School and contributes enormously to the School's teaching and courses.

Also awarded although unable to be present was Dr Barbara Combes who received an award for Academic Excellence. Since joining the School in 2012  Barbara has demonstrated academic excellence in many ways, including delivering a range of teacher librarianship subjects to a high standard, and in a very collegial fashion, drawing on her considerable academic and professional experience and expertise. Barbara has also achieved significant and tangible results as a teaching-professional academic, most notably as President of the Western Australian School Library Association, which has been running strong professional development and advocacy programs under her leadership, and as Secretary of the Literacy and Reading Section of the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA) with Barbara organising the Section's program at the annual World Library and Information Congress.

SIS staff also received a number of awards for teaching excellence: Dr Jennie Bales; Marion Bannister; Carole Gerts; Giuseppe Giovenco; and, Penny Whitten all received well deserved awards. Each of these people bring passion, commitment, enthusiasm and professionalism to their teaching and their colleagues and students value their contributions enormously.

SIS @ CSU jointly hosts the 12th annual meeting of the Document Academy

Geoffrey BowkerFrom 20 to 22 July 2015, the School of Information Studies at CSU, jointly with the Faculty of the Arts and Social Sciences at UTS, hosted the 12th annual meeting of the Document Academy (DOCAM 2015).  Conference co-chairs were Paul Scifleet from Swinburne University, Maureen Henninger from UTS, and Mary Anne Kennan from CSU. DOCAM conferences provide a unique multidisciplinary space for reporting experimental and critical research on the concept of the document and documentation, with participants from fields as diverse as information, media, museum, archives, culture, and science studies.  Delegates came from 16 countries and papers were innovative and exciting. The keynote speaker, Professor Geoffrey Bowker (pictured top right), opened the conference with a challenge to participants to think beyond boundaries, to question and explore. Professor Bowker is the Director of the Laboratory for Values in Design in Information Systems and Technology at the School of Information and Computer Science, University of California.

DOCAM Registraion desk DOCAM attendees

  • Left: CSU staff member Dr Sigrid McCausland at the DOCAM registration desk.
  • Right: DOCAM attendees

Waseem Afzal awarded research grant

Waseem AfzalThe School of Information Studies congratulates Dr. Waseem Afzal who has won a research grant funded by the Australian Army. This research project will examine 'how properties of information in a connected informational terrain influence public perception'.  We look forward to reading about the results!

New ARC Linkage funding for Lisa Given

Information Seeking and Research Adoption: Assessing Communication Strategies

Lisa Given and Alain Deloire

Congratulations to Professor Lisa Given, who will lead a study funded by the Australian Research Council ($191,394 over two years) aiming to change the way the Australian wine industry puts research into practice. The project's co-investigator is Professor Alain Deloire, Director of the National Wine and Grape Industry Centre (an alliance between CSU, the NSW Department of Primary Industries and the NSW Wine Industry Association).

Industry Partners include the Victorian Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning; Australian Wine Research Institute; Wine Grape Marketing Board; Australian Grape and Wine Authority; Cumulus Estate Wines; Philip Shaw Wines; McWilliam's Wines; Lallemand Australia; Treasury Wine Estates Vintners Ltd; De Bortoli Wines; and Jarrett Agricultural Trust.

For more information: CSU media release

Lisa Given- WIN News

Studying 'Research' in Australia's Library and Information Profession

Lisa is also co-investigator on another ARC Linkage project led by Professor Helen Partridge from the University of Southern Queensland, along with industry partners, the Australian Library and Information Association and State Library of New South Wales. This three-year ($219,959) project will help Australian libraries contribute in a more powerful way to national productivity by developing a national database of research evidence and creating a framework to help professionals to make tough decisions.

2015 News

SIS student wins archives scholarship

Nathan Sentance, a Bachelor of Information Studies student, has won one of two Loris Williams Scholarships offered by the Australian Society of Archivists (ASA) in 2015 for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who wish to train for careers in archives and records management. Scholarship winners receive financial assistance and mentoring support from the ASA. The Scholarship is named after Loris Williams who was an Aboriginal woman of Mulinjali (Beaudesert, South East Queensland) descent through her father, and Birri Gubba (Ayr, North Queensland) descent through her mother. She was the first Aboriginal person from Queensland to gain professional archival qualifications and only the second Aboriginal person to do so.

Nathan is a Wiradjuri descendant from the Wellington area in NSW and he works in the Indigenous Services Branch of the State Library of New South Wales. He hopes to make a difference to knowledge of Indigenous intellectual property issues and to improve access to archives for Indigenous people.

Congratulations Nathan!

Further information is available from the Australian Society of Archivists at:

Judy O'Connell elected as Standing Committee member of IFLA School Libraries Section

SIS extends its congratulations to Courses Director Judy O'Connell who has been elected as a Standing Committee member of the School Libraries Section for the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA). Her term of office will commence at the IFLA World Library and Information Congress August 2015 in Cape Town, South Africa, and runs to August 2019.

The School Libraries Section concerns itself with the improvement and development of school libraries and resource centres worldwide, especially advocacy for qualified and adequate staffing. It provides an international forum for exchanging ideas, experiences, research results and advocacy. As the School of Information Studies delivers the largest school library program in the Southern Hemisphere, the Master of Education (Teacher Librarianship), this involvement in advocacy and international developments will be valuable for the School and also the discipline in Australia.

Kasey Garrison wins the Virginia Hamilton Essay Honor Award

Lecturer Kasey Garrison's article, 'Curation in Translation: Promoting Global Citizenship through Literature', has won the 2015 Virginia Hamilton Essay Honor Award. The article was co-authored by Danielle E. Forest and Sue C. Kimmel, and was published in School Libraries Worldwide (vol. 20, no. 1, pp. 70-96). Established in 1991, the Virginia Hamilton Essay Award recognizes journal articles which make a significant contribution to professional literature concerning multicultural literary experiences for youth. The award is given annually at the Virginia Hamilton Conference on Multicultural Literature, the longest running conference dedicated to multicultural literature for youth in the US.

New book by Kim Thompson and colleagues

Dr Kim M. Thompson had recently published a book with Rowman & Littlefield entitled Digital Literacy and Digital Inclusion: Information Policy and the Public Library. Her co-authors are Paul T. Jaeger, Natalie Greene Taylor, Mega Subramaniam and John Carlo Bertot, all from the University of Maryland Information Policy and Access Center.

Digital Literacy and Digital Inclusion: Information Policy and the Public Library examines the interrelationships between digital literacy, digital inclusion, and public policy, emphasizing the impacts of these policy decisions on the ability of individuals and communities to successfully participate in the information society. This book is the first detailed consideration of digital literacy and digital inclusion as policy problems and as core issues in information policy and libraries.

New book by Lisa Given

Professor Lisa Given has recently had a new book on qualitative research published by Sage, 100 Questions (and Answers) About Qualitative Research

Exploring 100 key questions (and answers) on the nature and practice of qualitative inquiry, this unique book addresses the practical decisions that researchers must make in their work, from the design of the study, through ethics approval, implementation, and writing. The book's quick-scan, question-and-answer format make it ideal as a supplementary text or as a ready reference for graduate students preparing for comprehensive exams and writing research proposals, undergraduates in affiliated programs who will not be taking a primary course in qualitative research methods, and researchers working across disciplines in academic or practice environments.

PhD students graduate

The School is proud to celebrate the graduation of three of our newest Doctors of Philosophy.

The research topics of the new graduates demonstrate the variety of research and work in our field as do their range of information backgrounds: Julia is a teacher librarian, Lily works in a special library, and Jake is an information studies academic. Our hearty congratulations to:

Dr Julia Bale. Supervisors: Drs Kirsty Williamson and Joy McGregor

Thesis: An investigation of the information-seeking preferences of secondary school teachers

Dr Lily Gao. Supervisors: A/Prof Philip Hider, Dr Lisa Soon and Dr Mary Anne Kennan

Thesis: Information Seeking and Use of Chinese Offshore Students Studying in Australian University Programs 

Dr Jake Wallis. Supervisors: Prof Lisa Given and Dr Mary Anne Kennan

Thesis: Digital activism: Networks, new media and political action

Congratulations to Dr Lily Gao, Dr Jake Wallis and Dr Julia Bale.

Announcing DOCAM 2015: "Documents Unbounded"

Senior Lecturer in the School, Mary Anne Kennan, is co-chair of the this conference to be held in Sydney next year. Check out the website for further information.

The 12th annual international Conference of the Document Academy

The Document Academy's 12th annual meeting, DOCAM '15 will be taking place from July 20-222015 at the University of Technology's Broadway campus in Sydney, Australia. It will be the first DOCAM to be held in the antipodes! The international Document Academy conference provides a unique multidisciplinary space for reporting experimental and critical research on the concept of the document and documentation in the widest sense.  Participants draw on scholarly traditions and experiences from the arts, humanities, social sciences, education, and natural science, and come from fields as diverse as information, media, museum, archives, culture, and science studies.

In 2015 we will come together under the theme of "Documents Unbounded" to examine the challenges ahead, as our understanding of data, documents, records, artefacts, evidence and memory, form in the continuously changing landscape of new media and communications. DOCAM 2015 will be jointly hosted by the IKM and Digital Studies Program University of Technology, Sydney (UTS) and School of information Studies at Charles Sturt University (CSU).

For more information about the conference and the call for proposals, visit the DOCAM'15 website at or join us on Facebook at: and follow us on Twitter at:

2014 News

CSU team wins 2014 ALIA Research Grant Award

Research project: Natural Search User Interfaces for Complex Biomedical Search

Congratulations to Dr Ying-Hsang Liu who led a CSU Team (with Marijana Bacic, Paul Thomas and Tom Gedeon) which is the recipient of the 2014 ALIA Research Grant Award that will focus on the design of search interfaces.

The practice of using controlled vocabularies, such as MeSH (Medical Subject Headings), costs millions of dollars, however, the usefulness of these terms for information search has not been rigorously evaluated in interactive search environments.

The research team will conduct a series of user experiments to inform the design of search interfaces which could guide the development of better information retrieval for experts in the biomedical domain.

Anyone interested in further information about the project is invited to contact Dr Liu:

Course Director keynotes at EDUTECH

Course Director Judy O'Connell presented a keynote at the EDUTECH national conference in Brisbane on June 3, addressing an audience of K-12 educators, leaders and library managers, as well as leaders and technology managers in higher education, VET and workplace learning. Chaired by Adam Spencer, Judy's  session set the scene for Sir Ken Robinson's plenary session on Day One. The focus for the conference was on the changing demands in learning needs, delivery, and pedagogical shifts that underpin the world of 21st century learning. Judy's presentation responded to the changing contexts of the information environment and influences on learning designs, providing a summary of key features, ranging from access to influences on areas as diverse as creativity, knowledge networks, and information architecture which underpins digital innovation. The slides for the presentation are available online.

Lecturer wins CALA Jing Liao Award

Congratulations to SIS Lecturer, Dr George Yi, who has won the Chinese American Librarians Association's Jing Liao Award for the Best Research in All Media for 2014, with his paper, 'Setting goals for change in the information age: Approaches of academic library directors in the USA,' published last year in Library Management 34 (1/2): 5-19. The citation comments that 'the article provides a useful overview on how the directors set goals for change, the approaches they used, and the factors that influenced their decisions. It should be beneficial to current and future library directors, managers, and librarians alike to gain an understanding of the administrative/operational skills that required for academic library directors.' The CALA Jing Liao Award was established in 2011 to honour the memory of the late CALA member, Jing Liao, a devoted and accomplished librarian at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Mid-year Intakes

Applications remain open for mid-year admission into the School's main programs, including the Bachelor and Master of Information Studies, and the Master of Education (Teacher Librarianship), with Commonwealth Supported Places available in all three programs. New subjects this coming session include 'Community Informatics', which will provide the foundation for the reconfigured Community Informatics specialisation in the Master of Information Studies. The final closing date for applications is 9 June 2014.

Outstanding Paper Award

Congratulations to the SIS faculty, Annemaree Lloyd, Mary Anne Kennan, Kim Thompson and Asim Qayyum, whose paper, "Connecting with new information landscapes: information literacy practices of refugees", has been selected by the Journal of Documentation's editorial team as the Outstanding Paper for 2013. The paper focused on how refugees learn to engage with a complex, multimodal information landscapes, and how their information literacy practices are constructed to enable them to connect and be included in their new information landscape.

Lloyd, A.,Kennan, M.A,. Thompson, K. and Qayyum (2013) "Connecting with new information landscapes: information literacy practices of refugees", Journal of Documentation, 69(1): 121-144.

LIRT Paper Award

Information Studies Professor Lisa Given and SIS Adjunct Professor Heidi Julien's article, "Information literacy proficiency: assessing the gap in high school students' readiness for undergraduate academic work", has been selected by the ALA Library Instruction Round Table's (LIRT's) Top Twenty Committee as a 2013 Top Twenty article. In selecting this article, the committee especially noted that "This article contributes to the research that is being completed in the area of the high school to college transition period [...] [I]t provides an example of how undergraduate students may value information literacy at the college level but do not know where to get help with acquiring these skills." During the review process, the selection committee read over 160 articles this year.

The article appeared in Library and Information Science Research, 35(2): 88-96, in April 2013, and was co-authored by Jorden K. Smith, Dana Ouellette and Kathleen DeLong.

Barbara Combes, PhD

The School congratulates teacher librarianship lecturer, Dr Barbara Combes, on the conferral of her PhD. Barbara's thesis focused on information-seeking behaviour of young people (aged 18-22) – the so-called Net Generation, Generation Y or Millennials. Her research investigated the Net Generation's personal perceptions of how they use a range of technologies and their emotional response (confidence levels) to using these technologies according to the Net Generation attributes as outlined in the practitioner literature and the popular press. It then examined closely how a group of young people were actually using these technologies to find information using the Internet and electronic resources, to determine whether the Net Generation attributes accurately reflect what young people are doing in practice.

RAILS Submission Deadline Approaching

Just a reminder that the submission deadline is Monday, 10 March, for the 2014 Research Applications in Information and Library Studies (RAILS) Conference with Australian Information Educators Symposium (AIES) and Doctoral Forum.  We specifically encourage budding researchers and potential HDR students to submit proposals and attend the conference.

The School of Information Studies at Charles Sturt University is proud to be hosting RAILS in Canberra this July.

New lecturer joins SIS

The School of Information Studies welcomes a new lecturer, Lee FitzGerald, who joins CSU after involvement as an adjunct lecturer for some years. She has had a long career as a teacher librarian in primary and secondary school libraries, both independent and public. She brings with her a passion for school libraries, teacher librarianship, and an appreciation of the value of the Information Search Process of Guided Inquiry. Lee is a long time advocate of the teaching role of the teacher librarian, especially as it is facilitated by inquiry learning. She is also interested in applying evidence-based practice to confirm the growth of deep learning through inquiry.

Lee works in Sydney, where she is maintaining a connection with Loreto Kirribilli, her most recent school, to further investigate the success or otherwise of Guided Inquiry. In recent years, Lee has also worked with the Loreto community in Darjeeling District in India to set up and maintain a small, manual library in the tea gardens district below the Himalayas at Loreto Panighatta near Siliguri. Literacy is crucial to children of the tea garden workers, to break the cycle of poverty, so endemic in the district, and to avoid the threats of child trafficking and early, arranged marriages. Lee will mainly teach in the Teacher Librarianship program.

Dr Williamson retires after 17 years at SIS

Dr Kirsty Williamson, Senior Research Fellow, has retired after 17 years of part-time work for the School. Kirsty has made some very significant contributions to the School's research activities over the years, both individually and as a leader of various teams and groups. Her record of Australian Research Council grants and of highly cited publications has been outstanding. Of particular note is Kirsty's extensive work on every-day information seeking and her formidable methodological expertise. She has been a wonderful supervisor for a series of PhD students and a valued mentor for many faculty. A large number of staff past and present attended Kirsty's retirement dinner in February. Dr Williamson will continue to be affiliated with CSU as an adjunct senior research fellow.

Office for Learning & Teaching grant success

A team led by A/Prof Philip Hider has been successful in winning the commission for a Commonwealth Government Office for Learning & Teaching (OLT) project, entitled 'National Learning and Teaching Resource Audit and Classification'.  The OLT will provide $149,000 for the project, which aims to improve access to the OLT's resources through a systematic review of the metadata currently provided in its database (, and the development and implementation of a new schema, taxonomies and guides to support the use of the database into the future. It will also undertake an audit of the existing resources, so as to identify areas of strength and gaps where more work in the area of learning and teaching in higher education is needed.

2013 News 

Student Awards

Catherine Rigg with Dean of Faculty of EducationSeveral students received awards at a ceremony hosted by the Faculty of Education on the Wagga campus. Kathryn Unsworth (Bachelor of Information Studies) and Catherine Rigg (Master of Education (Teacher Librarianship) each received a Dean's Merit Award, while Naomi Newton (BIS), Sharon Lewis (BIS), Catherine Thomas (BASLIM), Kimberly Hughes (BIS), Sharon Groch (BIS) received Head of School Achievement Awards. The two Dean's Merit Award winners are pictured with the Dean, Professor Toni Downes.

Catherine Rigg (above) and Kathryn Unsworth (below) accepting their Dean's Merit Awards

Kathryn Unsworth with Dean of Faculty of Education

Visiting Scholar Professor Donald Case visits the Information Practices Research Group

The Information Practices Research Group, under the direction of Dr. Anne Lloyd, hosted Professor Donald Case, from the University of Kentucky, for an intensive week of research learning and conversation, from 29 April to 3 May, 2013. During the week with the group, Dr. Case presented three thought provoking public seminars and worked with the group and withDonald Case individual members on strengthening their research and publishing capacity. His first seminar, co-sponsored by the State Library of New South Wales in Sydney, was entitled "I'd Rather Not Know": Ways of Thinking and Talking about Information Avoidance. In Wagga Wagga, he shared his thoughts on Mapping Information Behaviour research onto other disciplines during the School of Information Studies' Research Seminar series and on Finding the right publication for your work: Lessons learned over 30 years as part of the Research Philosopher's CafĂ© series. The IP group members were unanimous in their praise for Dr. Case's style of working with researchers and with his ability to synthesize knowledge and share his vast wealth of knowledge and experience with them and others. They identified a number of benefits they had gained from his visits, including ways of thinking about collaborating across disciplines and how to respectfully and thoughtfully incorporate theory and ideas from other disciplines into their research.

New report for schools released

The New Media Consortium, the Consortium for School Networking (CoSN),Horizon cover and the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE), with the support of HP, produced the NMC Horizon Report > 2013 K-12 Edition, which has been released at the NMC Summer Conference. Course Director, Judy O'Connell represented the Australian university sector as a member of the international Advisory Board. This fifth edition in the annual K-12 series of the NMC Horizon Project examines emerging technologies for their potential impact on and use in teaching, learning, and creative inquiry within the environment of pre-college education. Six emerging technologies are identified across three adoption horizons over the next one to five years, as well as key trends and challenges expected to continue over the same period, giving educators, school administrators, and practitioners a valuable guide for strategic technology planning.

Lecturer wins award from alma mater

Congratulations to new lecturer, Kasey Garrison, who has been selected as the first recipient of Old Dominion University's Department of Teaching & Learning's Outstanding PhD Student Award. Dr Garrison completed her PhD with Old Dominion University last year. She was nominated for the award by senior faculty at the University's Darden College of Education.

Transform student learning

A teacher librarian, within a 21st century learning environment, is an future learninginstructional leader, curriculum designer, consultant, mediator for students and staff to achieve best practice in learning. The Australian School Library Association (ASLA) is calling upon Australian educational decision makers to employ teacher librarians as part of the solution to improve national student learning and literacy. The association's report highlights the positive role of teacher librarians in supporting future learning within the school. Course Director, Judy O'Connell, represented The School of Information Studies on the five-person development panel drawn from key stakeholder groups related to school libraries and teacher librarianship in Australia. The report, which was backed by a review of the research literature and extensive community consultation with principals and education agencies, emphasises the need for enhanced professional education to ensure that all Australian students benefit from the professional knowledge, practice and commitment of a teacher librarian at their school. The Master of Education (Teacher Librarianship) course continues to be a national leader in the provision of postgraduate training in this field.

NSW State Library Innovation Project

Course Director, Judy O'Connell, was the invited speaker at the NSW State Library staff professional development session held on 18 April 2013. This was part of the The NSW State Library's Innovation Project which is facilitating use of specific social media tools to deliver library services. The project takes a 'launch to learn' approach with working parties and professional development sessions to foster staff engagement. The latest initiative is the 23 Mobile Things which is exploring ways that libraries and library staff can use mobile technologies to deliver library services in order to engage with their communities and for their own professional development. Judy's presentation explored Learning in Networks of Knowledge for information practice within library services, and to support the needs of tertiary students.

New research methods book

A SIS staff member, Dr Kirsty Williamson, is the lead editor of a new book, Research Methods book coverResearch Methods: Information, Systems and Contexts. The book is a wide-ranging guide to theory and practice, aimed at researchers who need to pursue their own investigations efficiently and in depth. It is ideal for all kinds of information research: for library and information studies, information systems, archives and recordkeeping, and knowledge management.

In her foreword, Professor Lisa Given says: "The book that you are about to read provides a fresh perspective on research in information science. There is something for everyone here – whether you are new to research in the discipline, or whether you are a seasoned scholar looking for new and inspiring ideas."

The book, which is suitable for PhD students as well as more experienced researchers, is available from Tilde University Press (

New lecturer joins the School

Dr Kasey Garrison has joined the School as a Lecturer in Kasey GarrisonInformation Studies. Kasey recently completed her PhD, entitled, 'This intense desire to know the world: factors influencing the selection of multicultural children's literature', at Old Dominion University in the US. Her research and teaching interests include diversity and depictions of culture in children's literature and the availability of global literature for children and young adults. Kasey also holds a Masters in Education and a BA in Spanish.

New book by A/Prof Philip Hider

Hider Book CoverPhilip Hider has had his new book, Information Resource Description, published by Facet in the UK and ALA Editions in the US. The book introduces the field of information organisation using a broad conceptual framework, covering a wide range of contexts, and examining metadata as both a product and process of the contemporary digital environment. More details can be found at

Grants for environmental sustainability

Dr Kirsty  Williamson and Dr Mary Anne Kennan were recently awarded grants totalling $19,822 from the Wettenhall Foundation and the Australian Plants Society Victoria (APSV) for their project titled, Building community knowledge for environmental sustainability. Their co-researchers are A/Prof Graeme Johanson from Monash University, and Russel Best and Cathy Powers from APSV. The project is scheduled to run for one year and will begin in April 2013. 

Congratulations to Dr Sidney Cheng

At the recent graduation ceremony held in Hong Kong for CSU students, Dr Po Ying Cheng graduated with the Doctor of Information Management. Dr Cheng's thesis was titled "Perceiving usefulness: The perception of users on school libraries and school librarians in Hong Kong". Dr Cheng was supervised by Dr Annemaree Lloyd and Dr Bob Pymm.

Lawrie Willett, Sidney Cheng, Peter Sidorko, Ken Dillon

Pictured:  Chancellor of Charles Sturt University Mr Lawrie Willett AO; Dr Po Ying Cheng; Occasional Speaker, Mr Peter Sidorko, the University Librarian at The University of Hong Kong; and Deputy Vice Chancellor Ken Dillon.

Teacher Librarians respond to digital change

Teacher Librarians represent an important sector in library and information education. Alongside it's degree program for Teacher Librarians, CSU has also been providing the Australian Teacher Librarian Network  (OZTL_NET) listserv as a professional service  to the school library sector since 1992.  Twenty years later the growing importance of utilizing web-based and mobile-enabled tools for communication, interaction and information dissemination through text, images, or sound needed to be brought into the mix. It was time to re-work and expand the potential of OZTL_NET.

OZTL_NET was originally created by the teacher librarianship academic staff at CSU aOZ TL net logos a discussion list for information professionals working in Australian schools. Since then it has grown to a community of more than 3,000 subscribers. Judy O'Connell,  SIS Courses Director with extensive social media experience, undertook a project to evolve the potential of this very stable listserv in a number of ways. The result of this project is a new web portal at, which still provides access to vital information for the OZTL_NET Listserv, while also providing a  new space to connect to a range of social media tools .

The Teacher Librarian academic team have once again positioned themselves as leaders in supporting the school library sector in Australia  with this ongoing service to the education community.

Select a Month below to view News items that appeared during that month: