Library and Information Science (LIS) education has been offered at Charles Sturt University and its predecessor institutions since 1975. The School of Information Studies is itself over 30 years old, and is now the only school amongst Australian universities devoted to Library and Information Science education and research. Its 'headquarters' is Building 5 on the Charles Sturt University's Wagga Wagga campus, about 400 km south-west of Sydney, NSW.
The School currently has around 2,000 students enrolled in the Bachelors and Masters of Information Studies, the Master of Education (Teacher Librarianship) and other specialist courses. It also has fifteen full-time academic staff, teaching and researching in a wide range of LIS subfields, many adjunct and sessional staff, and a large cohort of PhD students.
Dr Simon Wakeling joins the School in May, as a Lecturer in Information Studies. Simon has recently been working as a Research Associate in the Information School at the University of Sheffield, where he completed his PhD in 2015, his thesis being on ‘Establishing User Requirements for a Recommender System in an Online Union Catalogue: an Investigation of WorldCat.org’. His research interests include interactive information retrieval, scholarly communication, and graph literacy.
Charles Sturt's research in the field of Library and Information Studies was rated a ‘4’, i.e. ‘above world standard’, by the Australian Research Council, in its recent national research assessment exercise. The assessment was based on the School’s research outputs and activities in the reference period, 2011-16. In the exercise, known as Excellent in Research for Australia, or ERA, fields of research are rated 1-5, with 1 being the lowest and 5 the highest. For Library and Information Studies, Charles Sturt was rated joint top, along with Monash University and Queensland University of Technology, which also scored 4s. The School’s success in ERA is the culmination of an enormous amount of work by its researchers over the past eight years or so, and positions the School very favourably in the years to come. Well done to everyone who contributed to this very notable achievement!
The Australasian Conference on Research Applications in Information and Library Studies (RAILS), will be hosted by the School in 2019 on 28-29 October, at CSU’s campus in Canberra. Now in its 15th year, RAILS is the main scholarly conference for the Library and Information Science field in this part of the world. Researchers, students and practitioners are all invited; this year’s theme is ‘Towards critical information research, education and practice’. Those wishing to present their latest research at the conference can respond to the call for papers here. To register for RAILS, please visit https://railsconference.com/rails-2019/registration.
Dr Jane Garner has joined the School as a Lecturer in Information Studies. Jane was awarded her PhD in 2017 from RMIT University. Her thesis was titled, ‘Experiencing the use of Australian prison libraries: a phenomenological’. An article exploring one of the main findings in her doctoral research, that libraries and reading are used by prisoners as a means of escapism, has recently been accepted for publication in Library Quarterly. Jane has taught at RMIT University, Monash University and CSU previously, and before that worked as a librarian at the University of Melbourne.
Congratulations to Bachelor of Information Studies student Murray McBryde, who has been awarded the inaugural ALIA Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Student Scholarship, which provides $5,000 towards learning expenses and a year of ALIA student membership. More details about the Scholarship can be found on the ALIA website. Murray has recently commenced his studies at CSU and attended the BIS residential school in February.
Congratulations to Dr Waseem Afzal, Senior Lecturer in SIS,who has been elected to the role of treasurer of ASIS&T Asia-Pacific Chapter for 2018-19 term. He has also joined ASIS&T SIG-USE Symposium Committee. In this role he will be helping other committee members to organize the 2019 symposium in Melbourne, Australia.
Congratulations to Barry Archibald, pictured with his Principal Supervisor, Dr Mary Carroll, who has been awarded his PhD for his thesis entitled, ‘A History of Inspection in Victorian Colonial/State Government Schools: 1852-2012’. Barry was also supervised by Dr Peter Rushbrook.
(Dr Mary Carroll & Dr Barry Archibald)
The second edition of Professor Philip Hider’s Information Resource Description has been published by Facet and ALA Editions. The book is widely used by students and practitioners around the world as an introduction to the field of Information Organization. Further details on this book can be found here.
Congratulations to SIS Lecturer Jessie Lymn, who has been appointed to theCouncil of the Australian Society of Archivists (ASA) for the next 12 months. Jessie says she is excited to have been given the opportunity to contribute to the ASA at a strategic level, and also honoured to follow in the footsteps of the late Sigrid McCausland, the foundation lecturer in Archival Studies in the School.
The School was well represented at the recent ASA Annual Conference in Perth, WA. SIS Adjunct Dr Janine Douglas represented the School, while a number of current students were also in attendance. Congratulations to SIS BIS alumni and current MIS student Debra Leigo for receiving the Sharman Award from the ASA for support to attend the Conference, and to current BIS student Crispian Winsor for receiving a CSU Conference and Professional Membership Grant to attend. Crispian said that ‘one of the areas of the conference that benefited me greatly was meeting other students from CSU.… I don’t get to talk about archiving with many people among my circle of friends so to talk about archiving for several days and learn from others who are in the field was fantastic.’
Congratulations to current MIS student Naomi Franks who was awarded the 2018 Loris Williams Scholarship offered by the Australian Society of Archivists (ASA) 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 the first Aboriginal person from Queensland to gain professional archival qualifications and only the second Aboriginal person to do so.
Congratulations to Dr Jessie Lymn, Lecturer in SIS, who has been awarded a place in the 2018 Kathleen Fitzpatrick Laureate Fellowship Mentoring Scheme for outstanding early career researchers. The Scheme is fully funded by the Australian Research Council. Jessie will attend the Scheme’s workshops in December. More details at http://news.csu.edu.au/latest-news/arts-and-culture/mentoring-opportunities-for-two-csu-researchers.