LIBR 282-01
LIBR 282-11
Seminar in Library Management
Topic: Information Entrepreneurship
Spring 2010 Course Information

Amelia Kassel

Greensheet Links
Textbooks and Readings
Course Requirements
ANGEL Tutorials
iSchool eBookstore

The Greensheet is a course syllabus which may be revised before or during the

The first day of class is Tuesday, January 26th. The class is completely online via Angel. Enroll at the Angel site between January 26th and January 28th. You will need an access code, which will be sent to all registered students on January 25th. Late enrollments are not accepted.

Course Description

This course provides an opportunity to explore the exciting field of information
entrepreneurship with a focus on independent research businesses, also called information brokerages. We’ll cover and investigate other independent information professional (IIP) careers of particular interest to students. Topics include education, skills, and traits for becoming an IIP; how to establish a business infrastructure; the critical aspects of marketing and sales; product development and deliverables; legal and ethical issues; tools of the trade. In addition, we’ll cover the types of services that can be offered such as:

  • Online, telephone and manual library research
  • Legal and public records research
  • Market research (secondary and primary)
  • Competitive intelligence research
  • Industry and company research
  • Library and information consulting and training
  • Other areas that may include patents, medical information retrieval, prospect research, or due diligence depending on interests.

Prerequisites: LIBR 200, 204

Course Objectives

Student Learning Outcomes

  • Identify several information entrepreneurial business career paths.
  • Learn which skills are needed
  • Become aware of how librarians and IIPs work together in outsourcing relationships.
  • Learn about the wide-ranging products and services offered by independent information professionals

LIBR 282 supports the following MLIS Core Competencies:

  • recognize the social, cultural and economic dimensions of information use
  • apply the fundamental principles of planning, management and marketing/advocacy;
  • demonstrate oral and written communication skills necessary for group work, collaborations and professional level presentations.

Course Requirements

Students are expected to check Angel daily to stay up-to-date with all discussion threads and are required to complete the following assignments:

  • Readings: Read required books and articles, some of which will be assigned throughout the semester.
  • Online Discussion: Students are required to participate in online discussions via Angel by adding thoughtful, substantive comments or questions that relate to the reading material and other assignments. Detailed class discussion requirements will be posted to Angel. Class discussion participation is 20% of the grade. Lack of satisfactory participation will automatically result in a grade below a B.
  • AIIP Website:  Study the Association of Independent Information Professionals website and use the AIIP Member Directory to get a feel for the many types of IIP businesses  Select three to five businesses of interest to present on the discussion forum.
    SWOT Analysis:  Conduct a SWOT (strengths weaknesses, opportunities, threats) analysis to identify strengths and additional skills needed for a career in information entrepreneurship.  Include self-analysis of how to compensate for weaknesses and threats; post for class discussion.
  • Products and Services List: Develop a list of ideas for products and services; post for class discussion. This is a form of R&D for information entrepreneurs.
  • Marketing Strategies Assessment:  Think about marketing strategies that will be presented by the instructor and select two or more you consider yourself best suited for to discuss during class discussion.
  • Business Plan:  Prepare a business plan and present it via the Angel class discussion forum.  Note: A substitute for a business plan is a research paper on a topic of interest to information entrepreneurs or an alternative information career of interest.
  • Note:  Email a copy of each assignment to me at in addition to posting to class discussion.

Course Calendar and Scores

Assignment Due Date
1.  AIIP Website Study February 8
2.  SWOT March 1
3.  Products & Services List March 22
4.  Marketing Strategies Assessment April 5
5.  Business Plan Draft Presentation on Angel (in PPT or Word) or Research Paper (for student discussion) April 26

6. Business Plan Submitted in Final Form after revising based on discussion and comments from students or the professor (PPT or Word) or Research Paper

May 17

Course Grading

1. Completing all assignments accurately and on time will earn a grade of B. To raise this grade, you will need to demonstrate above average creativity, imagination, analysis, and scholarship including:

  • Originality in the approach to the assignment;
  • Greater depth of analysis than assignments call for;
  • Superior organizational and/or written skills in the presentation of the material.

2. Extra credit assignments are not accepted.

3. Late assignments are not accepted with some exceptions. If you have an illness (a medical certificate must be supplied) or a family tragedy, please contact the instructor.  No incompletes will be awarded - no exceptions.

4.  Successful course participants will:

  • Post a bio and statement of purpose during the first week of class.
  • Read the required textbooks and other assignments.
  • Initiate and contribute to class discussion minimally once weekly with substantive and analytical comments and questions.
  • Integrate knowledge from readings and class discussion into all assignments

Scores assigned to each category

1. AIIP Website Study 10 Points
2. SWOT 10 Points
3. Products and Services List 10 Points
4. Marketing Strategies Assessment 10 Points

5. Business Plan Draft Presentation on Angel (PPT)

20 points

6. Business Plan Submitted in Final Form (PPT and/or Word) 20 Points
7. Class Discussion 20  Points

Textbooks and Readings

Additional Readings 

Required Textbook:

  • Bates, M .E. (2003). Building & Running a Research Business: A Guide for the Independent Information Professional Medford, NJ: Cyberage Books, Information Today. Available through Amazon: 0910965625. arrow gif indicating link outside sjsu domain
  • Gordon, R. S. (2008). What's the Alternative? Career Options for Librarians and Info Pros. Medford, NJ: Information Today. Available through Amazon: 1573873330. arrow gif indicating link outside sjsu domain
  • Sabroski, S. (2002). Super Searchers Make It On Their Own. Medford, NJ: CyberAge Books, Information Today. Available through Amazon: 0910965595. arrow gif indicating link outside sjsu domain

Recommended Textbook:

  • Dority, G. K. (2006). Rethinking Information Work: A Career Guide for Librarians and Other Information Professionals. Santa Barbara, CA: Libraries Unlimited. Available through Amazon: 159158180X. arrow gif indicating link outside sjsu domain

Grading Scale

The standard SJSU School of Information Grading Scale is utilized for all iSchool courses:

97 to 100 A
94 to 96 A minus
91 to 93 B plus
88 to 90 B
85 to 87 B minus
82 to 84 C plus
79 to 81 C
76 to 78 C minus
73 to 75 D plus
70 to 72 D
67 to 69 D minus
Below 67 F


In order to provide consistent guidelines for assessment for graduate level work in the School, these terms are applied to letter grades:

  • C represents Adequate work; a grade of "C" counts for credit for the course;
  • B represents Good work; a grade of "B" clearly meets the standards for graduate level work;
    For core courses in the MLIS program (not MARA) — INFO 200, INFO 202, INFO 204 — the iSchool requires that students earn a B in the course. If the grade is less than B (B- or lower) after the first attempt you will be placed on administrative probation.  You must repeat the class the following semester. If -on the second attempt- you do not pass the class with a grade of B or better (not B- but B) you will be disqualified.
  • A represents Exceptional work; a grade of "A" will be assigned for outstanding work only.

Students are advised that it is their responsibility to maintain a 3.0 Grade Point Average (GPA).

University Policies

General Expectations, Rights and Responsibilities of the Student

As members of the academic community, students accept both the rights and responsibilities incumbent upon all members of the institution. Students are encouraged to familiarize themselves with SJSU's policies and practices pertaining to the procedures to follow if and when questions or concerns about a class arises. See University Policy S90-5 at More detailed information on a variety of related topics is available in the SJSU catalog at In general, it is recommended that students begin by seeking clarification or discussing concerns with their instructor. If such conversation is not possible, or if it does not serve to address the issue, it is recommended that the student contact the Department Chair as a next step.

Dropping and Adding

Students are responsible for understanding the policies and procedures about add/drop, grade forgiveness, etc. Refer to the current semester's Catalog Policies section at Add/drop deadlines can be found on the current academic year calendars document on the Academic Calendars webpage at The Late Drop Policy is available at Students should be aware of the current deadlines and penalties for dropping classes.

Information about the latest changes and news is available at the Advising Hub at

Consent for Recording of Class and Public Sharing of Instructor Material

University Policy S12-7,, requires students to obtain instructor's permission to record the course and the following items to be included in the syllabus:

  • "Common courtesy and professional behavior dictate that you notify someone when you are recording him/her. You must obtain the instructor's permission to make audio or video recordings in this class. Such permission allows the recordings to be used for your private, study purposes only. The recordings are the intellectual property of the instructor; you have not been given any rights to reproduce or distribute the material."
    • It is suggested that the syllabus include the instructor's process for granting permission, whether in writing or orally and whether for the whole semester or on a class by class basis.
    • In classes where active participation of students or guests may be on the recording, permission of those students or guests should be obtained as well.
  • "Course material developed by the instructor is the intellectual property of the instructor and cannot be shared publicly without his/her approval. You may not publicly share or upload instructor generated material for this course such as exam questions, lecture notes, or homework solutions without instructor consent."

Academic integrity

Your commitment, as a student, to learning is evidenced by your enrollment at San Jose State University. The University Academic Integrity Policy F15-7 at requires you to be honest in all your academic course work. Faculty members are required to report all infractions to the office of Student Conduct and Ethical Development. The Student Conduct and Ethical Development website is available at

Campus Policy in Compliance with the American Disabilities Act

If you need course adaptations or accommodations because of a disability, or if you need to make special arrangements in case the building must be evacuated, please make an appointment with me as soon as possible, or see me during office hours. Presidential Directive 97-03 at requires that students with disabilities requesting accommodations must register with the Accessible Education Center (AEC) at to establish a record of their disability.

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