Learning in Difficult Times: 10 MOOC for Library Staff Members

As of yesterday, all librarians across New Zealand are staying at home. It’s an unusual and unprecedented situation. I’m sure that a lot of librarians can keep working from home and have some projects for their libraries to develop.

But I also think that there are plenty of librarians whose primary role is customer service and they might not have too many projects that they could work on while spending the following weeks in self-isolation. For them but also for many others including me it’s a great time to work on our self-development.

Developing new skills is something we know that we should be doing. However, in our busy day-to-day library duties there is often not enough time to do so.

I’m bringing you a few tips on MOOC (Massive Online Open Course), with regard to which content could be useful in your library job. You might find that some of the courses below are not suited for your particular library role, but I don’t intend to provide an exhaustive list of the massive online open courses suitable for a librarian. I’d like you to get inspired to use the following weeks in a productive and positive way.

10 Online MOOC for Librarians

1. Learning How to Learn: Powerful mental tools to help you master tough subjects

In this course you’ll learn how to learn. Learning and memory techniques, dealing with procrastination and many more. The course provides a good foundation for your future studies.

2. How To Create a Website in a Weekend! (Project-Centered Course)

Each library would benefit from having its own website or a blog. In this course you’ll learn how to do that in a way that is best suited for your needs. Not many MOOC are project-centered so take this opportunity while you can!

3. Copyright for Educators & Librarians

The course is focused on the problem of copyright in U.S. libraries. Even though it’s about U.S. copyright, it’s highly valuable as many sites like Wikipedia follows U.S. copyright law.

4. Search Education Online

This is an education course provided by Google. You can learn how to improve your Google search skills and how to become a more effective and faster fact finder. What else could be more essential in the Time of Google?

5. Excel Skills for Business Specialization

There is barely a more versatile and valuable skill than mastering Excel. Once you become an expert in Excel, you’ll be a valuable workmate in any office. The course is focused on its business use but what’s useful for business can surely be used in the library environment too.

6. Strategic Planning for Public Libraries

This is quite an essential MOOC for a variety of libraries. Explore methods of effective planning and its delivery. The course is provided by The University of Michigan.

7. Public Library Marketing and Public Relations

Learn how to develop effective marketing and PR strategies to help share your library’s programs, services, and value with the broader community.

8. Identifying Community Needs for Public Library Management

The course provides an overview on how to design research, surveys, and interviews. You can also learn how to analyse data to better assess the local wants and needs of a public library community.

9. Become a Data Analyst

This is a slightly more specialized course for librarians who work with data. You’ll learn how to use Python, SQL, and statistics for your data-drive library solutions.

10. Masterpieces of World Literature

This is a course for more “classic” librarians provided by Harvard University. From The Epic of Gilgamesh to Goethe.

Author: Michal Klajban

Assistant Librarian. Fun of Wikipedia, books, tramping and simple life

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