The Ethnomusicology Archive Librarians play an active role in educating UCLA students. From one-time information literacy sessions to quarter long departmental classes, the Archive plays an inimitable role in the education of UCLA students.
Information literacy is the ability to identify an information need, locate information efficiently, evaluate information, and use information effectively and ethically. In 1999, the UCLA Library conducted a study and discovered critical gaps in students’ abilities to locate, evaluate and use information effectively and ethically. The report, Information Competence at UCLA: Report of a Survey Project, documented deficiencies in UCLA students’ understanding of resources and methods, and assessed the general level of information literacy as low. The Library’s Information Literacy Initiative was launched in late 2001 to organize a response to this issue. The goals of the Initiative are:
· To assess information literacy skills at UCLA
· To improve information literacy skills at UCLA
· To increase awareness of information literacy concepts among members of the UCLA community, within the context of changing information needs and environments
In response to this Initiative, the Ethnomusicology Archive Librarians will be offering a 1-unit information literacy (IL) course in Ethnomusicology, as either an add-on to an existing class or as an independent IL course. However, since day one, the Archive Librarians have routinely offered to attend both under-graduate and graduate classes in Ethnomusicology and offer instruction on how to best make use of not only the Archive resources, but also other information resources.
Since 2001 the Archive Librarians have also been active in the co-teaching of a departmental class with Professor Anthony Seeger: Louise Spear co-taught the class in 2001, John Vallier co-taught it in 2003 and 2005, and Aaron Bittel co-taught it in 2008. Entitled Audiovisual Archives in the 21st Century, this 5-unit class walks graduate and undergraduate students from a variety of departments through the ins ands outs of developing and running an audiovisual archive. It also addresses the history, present state, and future of audiovisual archives. In ten weekly meetings it deals with issues of ethics, copyright, contracts, fieldwork, preservation, and access, as well as with nuts and bolts issues of technology, space, budgets, and staffing. Guest speakers and field trips to local institutions enrich the class readings and discussions. For their final projects students write a paper that outlines the design and operation of an archive of their own imagination, thus integrating the readings, class discussions, field trips, and student interests into a single vision. The material and approach of the course are especially useful to ethnomusicologists, musicologists, librarians, media archivists, and those who are considering careers in the field of cultural heritage.