Trends in Library Automation
Instructor: Mandy Henk
Dates: March 6-31, 2017
Credits: 1.5 CEUs
The integrated library system (ILS) has undergone dramatic changes in recent years. Transitioning one of our primary tools from a mature, client-based system into a newly architected Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) cloud based system, vendors are transforming how we do our daily work. This class will give students an opportunity to step back and reflect on what that means and where this change is leading us. We will begin with a general historical overview of both the ILS software itself and the market that sprang up to provide it. From there we will explore the evolution of the software into its mature form and the consolidation of the market over time into a few large players. We will look briefly at what the ILS did well and what it never managed to do, before we turn our attention to the move to the cloud and the more recent “library services platform” style automation tools. We will carefully examine the SaaS model of software delivery and how this model impacts our ability to provide high levels of service to our users while maintaining privacy and security. The class will conclude with a look at current market offerings, including open source options.
At the end of this class students will understand:
- The role that the ILS played in library automation in the previous century and its early evolution
- The final form of the ILS as a client based system
- How the SaaS model of software delivery works and be able to discuss the impact this model has on library software
- What the new “library services platform” automation tools are and how they are different from the traditional ILS
- The market as it stands now for cloud based SaaS automation tools
- What open source options are available and the pros and cons of participating in them
Librarian Mandy Henk has been at DePauw since 2006 and was a law librarian at Vanderbilt before that. She specializes in access to physical materials, resource sharing, and personnel management. Her interests include social class and librarian/staff relationships, the development of international resource sharing systems, and copyright in the academy and the library. She recently published her first book, Ecology, Economy, Equity: Building the Carbon Neutral Library, with ALA Editions. Interview with Mandy Henk
This is an online class that is taught asynchronously, meaning that participants do the work on their own time as their schedules allow. The class does not meet together at any particular times, although the instructor may set up optional sychronous chat sessions. Instruction includes readings and assignments in one-week segments. Class participation is in an online forum environment.
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