INFO 204-12
INFO 204-13
Information Professions
Fall 2019 Syllabus

Robert Boyd
Phone: (408) 554-5398
Office Hours:
Virtual office hours. Telephone and in-person advising by appointment

Syllabus Links
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Canvas Information: Courses will be available beginning Wednesday, August 21, 2019, at 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.  New course material will appear every weekend and all assignments are due Friday nights prior to midnight.

You will be enrolled in the Canvas site automatically.

Course Description

As they respond to the information needs of clients and communities, information organizations face complex and exciting challenges. This course will help prepare students to take on these challenges by providing them with an understanding of the organizations and environments in which information professionals work, traditional and emerging professional roles, and core management and leadership theories. This knowledge will help students understand the similarities and differences amongst information organizations, explore different specializations and career paths, apply professional values to ethical decision-making, and to develop core management and leadership skills. This course prepares students to be active participants in their professional communities and networks and to become collaborative professionals ready to take on management and leadership roles.

Note: iSchool requires that students earn a B in this 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.

Course Requirements

Complete INFO 203 Online Learning: Tools and Strategies for Success. This is a mandatory 1 unit course that introduces students to the various e-learning tools used in the iSchool program, including Collaborate.  For more information, see INFO 203 Online Learning.

Writing Requirement
If the instructor finds that a student's writing is unacceptable, the instructor will require the student to sign up for online writing tutoring. The student will ask the tutor to confirm with the instructor that he or she is attending sessions.

Weekly Schedule and Activities



Required Readings



History of the Profession


Introduction to Organizations



Chapter 1: The Transformative Information Landscape: What It Means to be an Information Professional Today


Chapter 2: Libraries, Communities, and Information: Two Centuries of Experience 


Chapter 3: Librarianship: A Continuously Evolving Profession

Discussion: Introductions


Information Organizations 


Leadership skills and characteristics


Core Professional Values




Chapter 5:  Diversity, Equity of Access and Social Justice


Chapter 6: Literacy and Media Centers: School Libraries


Chapter 7: Learning and Research Institutions: Academic Libraries


Chapter 37: Leadership Skills for Today’s Global Information Landscape


Web Resource:


Community Tool Box. (2018). Building teams: Broadening the base for leadership. Retrieved from

Discussion: Scholarly article and key takeaways


Information Sectors


Marketing and Outreach



Chapter 8: Community Anchors for Lifelong Learning: Public Libraries


Chapter 9: Working in Different Information Environments: Special Libraries and Information Centers


Chapter 27, Communication, Marketing, and Outreach Strategies  

Discussion: Marketing and outreach of the contemporary information organization



Traditional and Emerging Professional Roles





Chapter 10: Digital Resources:  Digital Libraries


Chapter 11: Finding Information: Information Intermediation and Reference Services


Chapter 12: Metadata, Cataloging, Linked Data, and the Evolving ILS

Assignment: Leadership Philosophy due





Strategic Planning


Change Management


Working in Teams 



Chapter 13: Analog and Digital Curation and Preservation


Chapter 19:  Strategic Planning


Chapter 20: Change Management



Buchanan, S., & Cousins, F. (2012). Evaluating the strategic plans of public libraries: An inspection-based approach. Library and Information Science Research, 34, 125-130. doi: 10.1016/j.lisr.2011.1 

Katopol, P. (2012). Managing change with environmental scanning. Library Leadership & Management, 29(1). Retrieved from

Discussion: Successful Virtual Teams


Assignment: Progress Report due 



Organizational Planning


Community Needs




Chapter 15:  Accessing Information Anytime and Anywhere: Access Services


Chapter 16: Teaching Users:  Information and Technology Literacy Instruction 

Activity: Working in teams




Contemporary Organizations





Chapter 17: Hyperlinked Libraries


Chapter 18:  Creation Culture and Makerspaces


Chapter 30 Information Ethics

Discussion: Ethics case study




Human Resources Management


Career Development



Chapter 22:  Managing Personnel


Chapter 36:  Career Management Strategies for Lifelong Success

Discussion: Online Career Resources








Chapter 28:  Advocacy

Assignment: Part 1 of Organizational Analysis due


Financial Management



Chapter 21: Managing Budgets


Chapter 24:  Managing Collections


Chapter 32:  Information Licensing


Book Chapter and Web Resource:


American Library Association. (n.d.). Making budget presentations. Retrieved from


Velasquez, D. L. (2013). Financial management. In D. L. Velasquez (Ed.), Library management 101: A practical guide (pp. 161-176). Chicago, IL: ALA Editions. Retrieved from

Activity: Budget Cuts



Technology Management



Chapter 25:  Managing Technology


Chapter 26:  Managing Data and Data Analysis in Information Organizations

Communication, Marketing, and Outreach Strategies

Discussion:  Online technology resources



Facilities Management 



Chapter 23:  Innovative Library and Information Services:  The Design Thinking Process

Discussion: Disaster planning




Information Policy



Chapter 29:  Information Policy

Assignment:   Part 2 of Organizational Analysis due 






Open Access



Chapter 31:  Copyright and Creative Commons


Chapter 33:  Open Access

Activity: Cover letters


Assignment: Career Development resume due 



Wrap Up



Chapter 34:  Information Privacy and Cybersecurity

Assignment: Professional Synthesis due 



Discussions and Activities
Students will perform weekly discussions and activities relating to course topics. (Course Learning Outcomes: #1#2#3#4#6, #7, #9)

Leadership Philosophy
Using LIS databases, other relevant resources, as well as personal reflection, students will define leadership characteristics and articulate their personal leadership philosophy. (Course Learning Outcomes: #2, #6, #9)

Organizational Analysis
Working together in small groups, students will create an organizational analysis for an information organization of their choice. The assignment consists of two parts.  In the first part, each team will draft vision, mission and value statements for the organization.  In addition, teams will produce a literature review on a general topic of strategic planning.  Teams will also conduct environmental scanning including a SWOT analysis (internal strengths, weaknesses and external opportunities, threats).   Based on the findings of the first part of this project, the group will articulate strategic directions for their information organization in the second part of this assignment.   Goals will be assessed and measured by appropriate criteria. The team will present its strategic plan and associated planning documents to their classmates.   An annotated bibliography informed by the literature review from Part 1 will be produced.  A peer review regarding individual contributions and performance on the team will be included and considered in the final grade for this team project. (Course Learning Outcomes: #2#3#4#6#7#8)

Career DevelopmentIStudents will be introduced to the extensive iSchool Career Development online resources and will be asked to submit an updated resume.   In addition, students will also utilize the ePortfolio module in the Canvas learning management system. (Course Learning Outcome:  #7

Professional Synthesis
In a culminating synthesis, students will reflect and respond to the major themes of INFO 204. Students will utilize an alternate format (e.g. website, wiki, podcast, video, Powerpoint, Prezi, etc.) to produce and present their culminating assignment. (Course Learning Outcomes: #1#6#9)



Point Value

Due Dates

Weekly discussions 

3 points each  (30 points total)


Leadership Philosophy

15 points

September 13, 2019

Organizational Analysis, Part 1

15 points

October 18, 2019

Organizational Analysis, Part 2

15 points

November 15, 2019

Career Development

10 points

November 22, 2019

Professional Synthesis

15 points

December 6, 2019

Late Work Policy:

All assignments must be submitted by 11:59 pm Pacific Time on the due date.   Grades will be reduced for any late work by 20 percent for any portion of each 24-hour period past the 11:59 pm PT deadline.  Please contact the instructor prior to a deadline in the case of illness or emergency.

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 204 has no prequisite requirements.

Course Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Describe the similarities and differences between various information organizations and professional roles from historical, current, and future perspectives.
  2. Recognize the roles and activities of managers in information organizations.
  3. Explain strategic planning processes and skills.
  4. Identify and choose appropriate assessment tools for evaluating organizational effectiveness.
  5. Synthesize (including reviewing, using and properly citing) the professional and research management and leadership literature.
  6. Demonstrate leadership abilities through collaborative teamwork.
  7. Analyze and assess their own and others leadership abilities through self-reflection and peer review.
  8. Apply management theories and principles, professional values, and ethical frameworks to organizational issues and decision-making using scenarios and case studies.
  9. Create and deliver high quality reports, presentations and organizational documents that communicate to internal and external stakeholders organizational values, missions, and priorities.

Core Competencies (Program Learning Outcomes)

INFO 204 supports the following core competencies:

  1. A Demonstrate awareness of the ethics, values, and foundational principles of one of the information professions, and discuss the importance of those principles within that profession.
  2. B Describe and compare organizational settings in which information professionals practice.
  3. D Apply the fundamental principles of planning, management, marketing, and advocacy.
  4. M Demonstrate professional leadership and communication skills.
  5. N Evaluate programs and services using measurable criteria.


Required Textbooks:

  • Hirsh, S. (Ed.) (2018). Information services today: An introduction (2nd ed.). Rowman & Littlefield. Available as free eBook through King Libraryarrow gif indicating link outside sjsu domain

Recommended Textbooks:

  • American Psychological Association (2009). Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) American Psychological Association. Available through Amazon: 1433805618. 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 or undergraduate (for BS-ISDA);
    For core courses in the MLIS program (not MARA, Informatics, BS-ISDA) — 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 if you wish to stay in the program. 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.

Graduate Students are advised that it is their responsibility to maintain a 3.0 Grade Point Average (GPA). Undergraduates must maintain a 2.0 Grade Point Average (GPA).

University Policies

Per University Policy S16-9, university-wide policy information relevant to all courses, such as academic integrity, accommodations, etc. will be available on Office of Graduate and Undergraduate Programs' Syllabus Information web page at: Make sure to visit this page, review and be familiar with these university policies and resources.

In order to request an accommodation in a class please contact the Accessible Education Center and register via the MyAEC portal.

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