Re: dispersal of serials responsibilities Angie Mills 24 Feb 1998 03:31 UTC

I am the only Serials Librarian for the main branch of a large public
library in Alberta (Edmonton Public Library).  We have roughly 1400 active
subscriptions including newspapers.  My responsibilities are to "oversee"
the serials collection in all subject areas; "liaise" with our Acquisitions
department, Cataloguing department and branch libraries with respect to
serials; promote the collection; and keep abreast of publishing trends both
traditional formats and electronic.  I spend a lot of time dealing with
patron requests for various titles, especially with respect to our
newspaper collection.  We try to have the best international coverage our
budget will allow.  Selection of serials is handled by various librarians
according to subject breakdown i.e., librarians are responsible for book
and serial selection in particular subject areas.  These duties are in
addition to 3 to 4 hours per day on our reference desk.  We have 2 full
time library assistants who also work with serials in addition to their
reference work.  Our cataloguing and acquistions depts also have staff
devoted primarily to serials.

I hope this helps.

Angie Mills
Edmonton Public Library

On Monday, February 23, 1998 7:43 PM, Lisa Schulz
[wooflberry@JUNO.COM] wrote:
> I am a library science student who has been a public service parapro for
> 8 years. One of my motives for a library science degree is to escape the
> $9/hour pay bracket. Another is to specialize in a niche (serials) with
> professional development opportunities. Because of the rising cost of
> serials, the shift to electronic formats, and the tendency for libraries
> to reduce costs by shifting traditionally 'professional' responsibilities
> for serials to parapros and to new hires who are catalogers-reference
> librarians (or some other hybrid), I wonder how realistic my career goal
> remains. I do watch the openings on this list for trends. Any off the
> list advise would be most welcome! Also, I have specific questions: (I am
> especially interested in academic libraries)
> 1. How many serials librarians does your library have, what are their
> duties (ie: acquisitions-cataloging or other) and  what are their job
> titles? Do they share in weekend and evening shifts typically?
> 2. To what extent do parapros absorb serials work at your library?
> Students? What is the ratio of professional to parapro in the serials (or
> tech services) department?
> 3. How big is your library? If academic, about how many students attend?
> Are there serials librarians at any of the 'branches', or only the main
> facility?
> 4. Since I presently work in the reserves area of circulation, I feel I
> may be missing essential experience that would help me get my 1st
> professional position as a serials librarian (hands on use of  OCLC, for
> example). Do you have any advise for how I can refine my preparation?
> Thank you in advance
> Lisa Schulz, Maryville University Library (St Louis)
> (or reply to list as you deem appropriate)