INFO 287-12
Seminar in Information Science
Topic: Library Services and Tools for the Digital Age
Summer 2016 Syllabus

Ellyssa Kroski
Office location: Online
Office Hours: M-F 9am - 7pm

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Canvas Information: Courses will be available beginning June 6th, 6 am PT unless you are taking an intensive or a one unit or two unit class that starts on a different day. In that case the class will open on the first day that the class meets.

You will be enrolled into the Canvas site automatically.

Course Description

While not all LIS professionals need to be digital natives, it is absolutely essential that today’s librarians are digitally literate as well as possess an understanding and awareness of recent advancements and trends in information technology as they pertain to the library field. This course discusses emerging technology concepts and issues that librarians need to know about in order to offer value to today’s tech-savvy patron though improved services, and looks ahead to what’s on the horizon for libraries in the future.  Students will learn how forward-thinking libraries are tackling traditional library practices such as reference, collection development, technical services, and administration in this new “digital age”.

Course Requirements

Each week, a topic and various technologies will be discussed and demonstrated.  Students will be assigned an exercise which will utilize that technology.  Students will be expected to complete that exercise by the next week and be prepared to share their work with the class.  They will also be expected to share weekly (either in a message board or or through social media, tbd), about the technology they are learning about and/or about its implementation in libraries. 

Each student is required to:

  • Participate in weekly exercises – 40%
    • Helps to fulfill course learning outcomes #2, and #4
    • Helps to satisfy Core Competencies #1 and #3
  • Weekly blogging, tweeting, and/or sharing via message boards – 35%
    • Helps to fulfill course learning outcomes #1-4
    • Helps to satisfy Core Competencies #1-3
  • Group Projects – 25%
    • Helps to fulfill course learning outcomes #2, and #4
    • Helps to satisfy Core Competencies #1-3

Group Projects
Students will divide into groups of 3 or 4 to create a prototype for an actual library service or product using Web/emerging technology which will enhance a library program, solve a specific problem, or offer a new service.  Along with the finished prototype, students will craft a brief overview (1 page) describing their new service, what it is, what type of library it is designed for, what need it fills, etc.  Some suggestions for projects include, but are not limited to:

  • Conduct a usability test in the form of a Card Sort and present a synthesized analysis of findings with a data set.
  • Install and implement and ERM (electronic resources management) system.
  • Create a staff intranet using a wiki.
  • Create an instructional screencast and host it on a (library) branded video sharing website.
  • Create an online exhibit of digitized materials using Omeka, the leading open source software for creating online digital archives
  • Create and edit a video tour of a library and host it on a (library) branded video sharing website.
  • Create an instructional podcast program and host it on a (library) branded audio sharing website.

Helps to fulfill course learning outcomes #1-4
Helps to satisfy Core Competencies #1-3

Course Calendar
Note: Summer courses are shorter, however all content will be covered.  Exact dates/weeks to follow.

Week One

Libraries in the Digital Age

  • Major emerging tech concepts and underlying principles will be discussed in this introduction to the course. 


  • Students will be asked to set up blogs, Twitter accounts, and RSS newsreader accounts.
  • Students will begin blogging and will be expected to blog and tweet weekly throughout the course, posting about the technology discussed that week and implementations of the technology by libraries.
  • Students will be expected to read & comment on classmates blogs in their newsreader.

Week 2

Reference 2.0

  • IM & SMS reference services. 
  • Information gathering applications such as RefTracker, Zoho, etc. 


  • Students will be expected to create a reference statistics database.

Week 3

Reference 2.0

  • Data Visualization, Geographic Analysis (GIS), and Infographics Tools
  • Subject guides in the Digital Age: LibGuides


  • Students will be expected to set up an interactive subject guide or create an infographic or GIS map from a data set.

Week 4

Tech Services in the Digital Age

  • Next-Gen Library Catalogs
  • Web Scale Discovery & Federated Search
  • Tagging & Folksonomies, Social Cataloging


  • Students will create a social library catalog and tag and catalog 5 books.

Week 5

Electronic Resources Management

  • ERM systems
  • User Authentication Programs such as EZProxy, One Log


  • Students will add resources to an ERM system.

Week 6

The Library Website 2.0

  • Content Management Systems (CMS’s)
  • Discussion of new development trends, e.g. HTML 5, etc.
  • Discussion of seamless information design: social media integration, embedding widgets, creating custom RSS feeds, etc.


  • Students will edit pages in a content management system.
  • Students will embed widgets within the CMS website.

Week 7

UX, HCI, and Usability Testing

  • User driven information design
  • Taxonomy Development
  • Usability Testing, e.g. card sorting, focus groups, etc.


  • Take part in an online card sort.

Week 8

Mobile Technologies and Libraries

  • Location-aware services
  • Augmented Reality
  • iPads and Mobile-Device Management
  • Mobile Library Websites and Native Apps


  • Students will use an AR app.

Week 9

Library Marketing in the Digital Age

  • Social Software in Libraries: Discussion of Facebook, Twitter, YouTube
  • QR Codes
  • Pinterest
  • Branding and Social Networking best practices


  • Students will create QR codes.

Week 10

Library Instruction & Gamification

  • Gamification Theory
  • Screencasts
  • Podcasts
  • Videos
  • Staff Training


  • Students will create instructional media.

Week 11

Next Gen Collection Development

  • eBooks in Libraries - evaluation, pricing models, licensing issues.


  • Students will evaluate ebooks programs.

Week 12

Knowledge Management

  • Content Collaboration Tools in Libraries, e.g. wikis, GDocs, shared calendars, start pages, hosted storage.
  • Intranets


  • Students will create accounts with collaboration tools.

Week 13

Digitization and Archiving

  • Digitization Initiatives in Libraries
  • Digitization Software, e.g. Omkea
  • Personal Digital Archiving


  • Students will create personal digital archives and learn how to teach patrons to do the same.

Week 14

Cloud Computing in Libraries/Strategic Planning & Trends

  • SaaS
  • PaaS
  • IaaS
  • Privacy and Security Concerns
  • Technology Solutions Planning
  • The Future of Libraries in the Digital Age

Week 15

  • Emerging Technologies Wrap-up


  • Grading: There are a possible 100 points for the six assignments:
    • Weekly exercises – 40 points
      • Grading: There are 13 weekly exercises worth 3 points each.  Students will be graded on how complete their exercise was on an individual assignment basis.  If they complete all the assignments they will receive 1 additional bonus point to equal a total of 40 points.
    • Weekly blogging and tweeting and/or message boards– 35 points
      • Grading: Students will be expected to blog and tweet each week for 14 weeks.  Each post and tweet is worth 1 point for a total of 28 points.  They are also expected to read and comment on their classmates blogs or reply to tweets.  Comments and tweet replies are worth .5 points with a total of 7 additional points possible.  The goal is an interactive class discussion resulting in each student commenting or replying each week for a total of 14 times.
    • Group Projects – 25 points
      • Grading: The final group project is a deep dive into one of the areas of study from the previous weeks. Students must demonstrate a solid advanced understanding of not only the technology they are using but how it can be used by libraries and what need it fills which will be communicated through the overview document.  I will have detailed criteria for each of the listed projects that students must fulfill such as for the staff intranet built on wiki software there will be a navigational menu expected with at least 3 levels of parent/child pages, populated content including text and Web 2.0 embedded widgets, stored pdf and word documents, etc.  Students will receive at least 20 points for turning in a completed project and overview essay that meet that criteria.  

Course Workload Expectations

Success in this course is based on the expectation that students will spend, for each unit of credit, a minimum of forty-five hours over the length of the course (normally 3 hours per unit per week with 1 of the hours used for lecture) for instruction or preparation/studying or course related activities including but not limited to internships, labs, clinical practica. Other course structures will have equivalent workload expectations as described in the syllabus.

Instructional time may include but is not limited to:
Working on posted modules or lessons prepared by the instructor; discussion forum interactions with the instructor and/or other students; making presentations and getting feedback from the instructor; attending office hours or other synchronous sessions with the instructor.

Student time outside of class:
In any seven-day period, a student is expected to be academically engaged through submitting an academic assignment; taking an exam or an interactive tutorial, or computer-assisted instruction; building websites, blogs, databases, social media presentations; attending a study group;contributing to an academic online discussion; writing papers; reading articles; conducting research; engaging in small group work.

Course Prerequisites

INFO 287 has no prequisite requirements.

Course Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the course, students will be able to:

  1. Students will comprehend major emerging technology concepts and theories, and understand how they are relevant to library services.
  2. Students will learn how to utilize major Web and open-source technologies and will participate in their use throughout the course.
  3. Students will gain an understanding about the current and potential uses of these new and emerging Web technologies in libraries.
  4. Students will learn about emerging technology best practices and develop skills which will help them evaluate these technologies in order to make solution decisions appropriate for their library.

Core Competencies (Program Learning Outcomes)

INFO 287 supports the following core competencies:

  1. H Demonstrate proficiency in identifying, using, and evaluating current and emerging information and communication technologies.


No Textbooks For This Course.

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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