Stepping Up, Up, Up and Away!

At the end of last year I was given the amazing opportunity to back fill one of my QUT colleagues and become a Liaison Librarian for the Faculty of Law. This was awesome (if temporary) and I have learnt a lot about myself and added a few new skills to my portfolio of things I can do.

So what skills have I learnt acting as an Liaison Librarian for the past 7 months? Here is a quick list in no particular order-

  • Liasioning – I have always felt I have strong interpersonal skills, particularly with those I know relatively well. This role was challenging as I had to reach out to academics I had never met before and almost sell my services to them. As a naturally awkward person this was difficult for me. But I used the great form of email to break the ice as I could spend time crafting the perfect email and send it to the academic I wanted to contact without having to come up with content on the spot and sound stilted or unqualified (one of my biggest worries!) Using email and then following it up with a face to face meeting really helped me to connect with my academics and improved my liaisoning skills #likeaboss
  • Teaching – Again my teaching skills coming into this role were not too bad but one new thing I had to learn was speaking in front of hundreds of students by myself in a lecture. This was very daunting but like any other teaching event very manageable when I did my prep work. I crafted lesson plans and powerpoint presentations, made sure I knew what I was talking about and (handy tip coming!) made sure I new what technology I would be dealing with ahead of time. By liaison (there’s that skills again :D) with my academic I felt confident that the content I was delivering was on point and most importantly new what recording software was being used. Luckily, it all ran smoothly and a couple of students even approached me after to say how useful it was #thosefeels
  • Autonomy – Working in this role meant I did not have desk or chat shifts so I had a whole bunch of extra time. I also was in the role that I usually went to to get assigned tasks to do. This meant I had to actually step up, think strategically, and at times create my own work. I joined working groups and started to really think about what things I wanted to do in this role. In the end I have several positive outputs including creating faculty wide newsletter to connect with our clients and promote library services and creating an Articulate Storyline learning object for the School of Justice that shows how to find different types of quality information and where the best resources to look at. Working more autonomously was really good as it gave me a sense of ownership and culpability and pushed me to really think about how I can best spend my time to benefit my clients and myself professionally #professionaldevelopment  

I have really enjoyed my time working as an Liaison Librarian at QUT. You are able to do some great work and have a real impact on students through liaising with academics and creating workshops and resources. I have learnt a lot from my work colleagues and managers and will hopefully take what I have learnt and continue to apply it as a Library and Information Professional. It has made me more confident as a librarian in general which has led me to accept a full time position at another library (how did this even happen)!

As sad as it is, after 6 years of working at QUT Library I will be moving on to work full time at Crown Law Library. I hope this new opportunity will allow me to continually develop more skills, give me some grounding and allow me to really sink my teeth into worthwhile projects as I get to spend 5 days a week at the same place #success!


What happens now?

superman-1529274_1280SO I have officially graduated, yay! Now that I am a certificate toting librarian what should I do now?

Luckily, I already work in a library so I think the first big step can be ticked off. Phew! I really enjoy the work I am doing and the flexibility I have to explore and stretch myself as an information professional. I am learning about new technologies such as Moovly, Videoscribe and Powtoon. I am teaching workshops on basic legal research and I feel like I am contributing to a great team.

I have some great colleagues that have helped me complete some interesting projects and who I am working with to complete even MORE interesting projects such as wellness.

If you don’t hear from me for a while, don’t worry. I am just immersing myself as a librarian and soaking up as much as I can! #librarianforlife

Lately I’ve been thinking about…Library Advisers

Since July last year I have been back working at QUT as a Library Adviser. For the first six months I was fortunate to receive a fixed term contract to work back at my old QUT library at Gardens Point. It was great to go back and see everyone again! I loved coming back to the library and working with librarians and students to help solve queries and help support study, it was like coming home. Though the faces didn’t change all that much I had to remember and learn a lot of new things. Coming back this time around I had a more substantive role and was able to sink my teeth into projects more. Not only this but after 6 months I was lucky enough to secure an ongoing contract at QUT Law Library, which is where I have been working part-time since the start of the year.

Some of the key things I have learnt and/or worked on as a Library Adviser include –

  • Research support – helping and liaising with academics with regards to setting up their ORCID profiles. This really helped me network and understand research biometrics and grants better.
  • Videos – I created and collaborated with librarians with regards to several short videos on how to use complex Business databases including Marketline, Passport GMID and PRS Country Data. I used various software including Articulate Reply, Screencastomatic, Adobe Premier Pro & Audition and Audacity. This was a great opportunity to develop my video making skills and made me confident to offer my video making knowledge in my new role. While at the Law Library I have made several videos for Justice students to show them how to use CINCH and AGIS databases.
  • Captions – Working with a small team I helped to create captions and transcripts for the majority of QUT Library’s videos that appear on YouTube. To do this I developed my YouTube skills and also my understandings of accessibility of the videos and the difference between captions and transcripts. I also learnt about accessibility with regards to QUT obligations legally and what the library needs to have in order to comply with legislation.
  • Teaching – I have taught and assisted in several classes over the last few months. I taught, by myself, generic library workshops to students. I also co-taught an introductory legal research workshop several times at the start of this semester. I have found that these teaching experiences are very similar to my training experiences at Madame Tussauds London. My time there made me confident in my abilities and slightly less scared to run a class by myself. I really enjoy teaching these workshops and have received positive feedback from my colleagues, so hopefully I can keep doing more as my experience grows.
  • Law – working at the Law Library (and completing a Law Librarianship unit) has really deepened my interest and knowledge of the legal profession. I can now find Caselaw and legislation confidently and am wrapping my head around AGLC3. It is an interesting field and I hope to learn more about it while working at the Law Library.

Being a Library Adviser is great. I love the face to face client contact I have working on the help desk and the continual learning that I am doing. I am utilising many information skills including information retrieval when I assist in locating cases and legislation, information management when assisting the Liaison Librarians with the management of the collection. This was also seen when I assisted in reorganising the Law database page from QUT Library homepage. The databases had to arranged in a way that was easily accessible to both students and academics and promoted and aided in the preferred legal researching techniques. Information literacy and organisation skills are also used when creating captions and videos for clients to ensure that information is easily accessible for all.

I am sure this is a role that will continue to push my professional development and I cannot wait to see what else I can do and accomplish as a Library Adviser!


Go back to Part D – Professional at Work