Library and Information Science Miscellaneous

This weblog in the field of Library and Information Science contains news, comments and everything that its bloggers think could be useful for LIS professionals and students. It is maintianed by a number of students mainly Research students and Iranian. Our email is lismisblog at Yahoo dot com.

Tuesday, November 30, 2004

Basic units in Library and Information science

13 days ago, ASIS & T annual meeting 2004 was finished. During conference period, November 12- 17, about 90 papers were presented in different issues: Disciplinary issues, Digital libraries, Information organization, User behavior, System design and Knowledge management and use. One of the interesting presented papers in this annual meeting was Professor Birger Hjorland’s presentation with the title of: “ Basic units in library and information science”. This paper, to some extent, answers questions that have raised, for years, controversies in Library and information science (LIS).
In this presentation, Birger discusses about the lack of a clear terminology in LIS:

“Often “knowledge organization” (KO), “information retrieval” (IR)
and “information seeking” are considered core areas within Library and
Information Science (LIS)”. This terminology suggests that the “units”
in LIS are knowledge and information. But are they? (And in that case:
Are both or which of them?). What are the theoretical implications of
choosing one or another term as a core term?”

In another place (slide 11 )( he argues for changes that have been made in LIS terminology:

“Some changes in terminology are related to theoretical influences.
Other changes are just related to trends or fashions. …Webber (2003), for
example, suggests that many courses in information science change their
name to information management (but not their content) because “management”
is a more popular term among students selecting courses.”

For this reason, in my opinion, some persons make some mistakes. For examples, I read a message from Maryam in this weblog about LIS courses that are given by other institutes out of LIS departments. It seems that while they have common names such as knowledge management and some things like this, the content is completely different from LIS, as I have experienced it. There fore, it demands rethinking about terminologies that we have in LIS and as mentioned by Birger there is a need for terminology in LIS.


  • At 1:04 AM, Blogger Maryam said…

    Dear Azam
    At first welcome to this weblog and I wish you can make great contribution with it. Then, about my previous post, the contents of the courses are exactly the same with what we consider on LIS education and the professors and lectureres are from LIS field. Have a look at and read the description of programs.

  • At 1:11 PM, Blogger rr said…

    Regardless of the discussion about the terminology, i just wanted to point out that a recent study on LIS job market showed that those who work under titles like informationmanager or so on get paid more that those who works under librarian-related titles.

  • At 2:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

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