TOPIC: Role of new technologies in expanding and limiting access to information
The Teacher Librarian refers to a person who is responsible for providing and accessing information to different users with the help of books, social and technical sources. A library is a collection of books. The Teacher Librarian plays an important role in providing vast information through different books and explaining them in attractive manner so that students and different users acquire information which will be beneficial for the future. The Teacher Librarian has a role of conducting research for analysing the new trending books and resources with the help of structured discussion for getting reviews from both teachers and students. It is vital that we discuss trends or issues that are arising in the modern world which impact the role of the Teacher Librarian. A literature review will be framed in which multiple perspectives will be discussed on trends or issues that are influencing the role of the Teacher Librarian.
New technologies in expanding and limiting access to information.
Overview- New technologies like e-books and e- magazines have become the trend and the majority of students are choosing these instead of books. Accessing information on internet has become so much easier for students in schools.
Significance– Time is a very precious thing for every individual. New technologies help students to save time and search for information in seconds. Many students find reading books as time consuming and know there is an easier way to gather information. So, students in schools are preferring e-books and e-magazines on internet rather than borrowing books from the library. This saves both time and money. As being money is also spent on getting books, but e-books are available on the internet at low cost. New technologies help student to get enhanced information and in much less time. E-books, e-magazines, e-newspapers, online access, online video tutorial are grouped under new technologies. Students in the modern world are getting habitual with new technologies which ultimately affects the role of the Teacher Librarian. The Teacher Librarian has a role of supporting teachers and students for obtaining appropriate data for a specific topic. Technology make learning more efficient and meaningful with an added enjoyment process. Technology put knowledge into the pockets of students so that they can get access to information quickly. It engages students in every manner and make them efficient to learn new things in a broader perspective.
According to Lupton (2016), the Teacher Librarian has the responsibility of providing enhanced information from different books that a student wants in schools. Different books, newspapers, magazines, databases, manuscripts in school are handled under the responsibility of the Teacher Librarian. A librarian is always acknowledged by authors and scholars for locating their resources and making individuals aware of their books. By accessing different authors, it sometimes gives the Teacher Librarian an appreciation of books which they are offering. Also, the Teacher Librarian has a role of researching new books and new journals so that library has a current collection of new information. If any student wants to access a book, then the Teacher Librarian can assist them in attaining the book. The Teacher Librarian should make a study place efficient and effective by having a collection of all subject areas in terms of books and magazines.
On the other hand, Richards (2015) argued by saying that the Teacher Librarian should take time to access information regarding a topic. Because the Teacher Librarian depends on authors, this takes both time and money. In an emergency case where student want instant information then, it become impossible for Teacher Librarian to manage information for students. The Teacher Librarian has a limited access of information. For arranging a specific book, it could take several days and there is no surety of getting information for a specific topic. Students need to run from here and there for accessing information and there is only one path left i.e. using new technologies. New technologies help students gain information in less time and also enhances their learning. New technologies are faster and more attractive than books.
As per view of Gross and Witte (2016), e-books and e-magazines help students to receive instant learning. E-books are easier to access and can be purchased or downloaded. Students can start reading immediately and do not require purchasing a book as they are delivered instantly. The Teacher Librarian can assist in accessing e-books to instant information for students so that they do not delay or face difficulties in accessing information. The E-books and e-magazine system makes it easier for the Teacher Librarian to provide and access information. This has expanded the role of the Teacher Librarian to get information on different subjects in a limited time. This helps students to read e-books anywhere and at any time. There is no limit to carrying e-books as they are stored easily. This makes it so much easier for students to learn anywhere and in efficient manner.
However, Martines (2015) said that e-books decrease the level of learning for students. Accessing information through e-books decreases the research skills of students and makes reading online books habitual. Through e-books, students are affecting their health and their eyes. This results in the loss of creative thinking skills when doing research about a particular topic. E-books make the process easier for students which means they lose the process of researching through book. While researching through books gives enhanced learning not about the particular topic but also about other topics because research is needed to find books and to locate a specific book. It is therefore necessary for the Teacher Librarian to devise strategies to encourage students to research.
According to Lang (2016) video tutorials are also influencing the role of the Teacher Librarian. Students in school are accessing video tutorials instead of reading books. This is not a bad strategy but should not be used in isolation. This could result in students not accessing the Teacher Librarian for information. The Teacher Librarian arranges books for students to have enhanced learning but if students refer to video tutorials, then the hard work of the Teacher Librarian will go in vain. Students will not get the knowledge of current trends that been going on in the world. They will search specific topics and learn through video tutorial. This reduces the skill of reading. This may make students lazier and decreases their creative thinking skills. So, it is necessary for students to access other types of information, so they do not decrease their thinking power.
McGrath (2015). argued by saying that the video tutorials are the best access for students to have enhanced learning. The Teacher Librarian should use this technology to assist them in their understanding of specific topics. This give students an interesting view to learn a topic. By this video tutorial approach, students do not feel bored whilst learning. The video tutorial explains the topic very clearly by showing pictures about the topic. For example, if the Teacher Librarian teaches an evaporation topic to Yeaer 7 students then students will get to know about this but perhaps not very clearly. If the same concept is explained by the Teacher Librarian through video tutorial, then students may understand the evaporation process more clearly. Most students will take more interest in a video tutorial than referring to a book.
As per the view of Parrott and Keith (2015) new technologies are enhancing the learning network but at same time, it is affecting the role of the Teacher Librarian. The Teacher Librarian is dependent on students. If students do not seek information from the Teacher Librarian to learn and understand a topic then the role of the Teacher Librarian is lessened. Students prefer e-books and e-magazines or even video tutorials to take online sessions. This also lessens the role of the Teacher Librarian. Without students, a library has no meaning. The Teacher Librarian arranges books on the interest of students and contacts different book distributors for accessing books. For example, if a student asks for a novel in the library but that book is not available there, then Teacher Librarian will arrange to access the book. Many students, however, do not have the potential of wait. Student will then refer to an e-book instead. Then on next day, if the Teacher Librarian get to know about the use of e-book then the work of the Teacher Librarian has been in vain. If this process occurs frequently then the Teacher Librarians role will be affected adversely.
According to Todd and Kuhlthau (2016) Alexandria is the best software for librarians to use. Alexandria is an online platform which has access to all new technologies like e-books and search optimisation. Students who want to get books can access the library. But those students who cannot come to the library but want to access e-books, can refer to Alexandria software where all e-books of all subjects are presented. Students who want to access the information online can also use Alexandria software because it has search engine tools where all data bases are stored by the Teacher Librarian. This enhances the role of the Teacher Librarian to a vast area of information and it can be accessed from anywhere. All students will not have to face problems in getting material for learning. Alexandria provides a good access for information to assist in learning. The Teacher Librarian role is not limited to access for students. If student do not come to the library then the Teacher Librarian can go to the students to encourage them to come to the library ot access information.
A Teacher Librarian see all phases of technologies in schools. Before the implementation of technology books were provided books to students Most students took an interest in books and frequently consulted the Teacher Librarian. Students availed books in emergency cases and in less time. The Teacher Librarian contacted many authors and scholars for getting access to books so that the library had collection of all subject areas. students did not face problems in accessing information. Now with the introduction of innovative technology and the internet the number of students borrowing books has decreased dramatically. Students are accessing e-books and other forms of digital information and not accessing book. However, once students are provided with e-books and other technology the number of students accessing the library should increase. Many new technologies are available on the internet due to which students have changed their habit of reading books and they are referring video tutorials, online accessing, online search engine. Students must understand that this information should not be the only source. The Teacher Librarian must have constant contact with students. Online software in school on which all types of online access can take place is vital. The software should have all the features of all e-books, e-magazines, e-newspapers, video tutorials, online search inference. This will help to solve student problems. Motivational and inspirational videos including YouTube may also encourage and motivate students. They also need to increase their thinking skill power so that they are enhanced and widened. But in all these stages, the Teacher Librarian is incomplete without students. These new technologies impact the role of the Teacher Librarian as they adapt to the process and adopt new technologies for getting access of information to students.
It can be concluded from above the information that new technologies are the foundation key of the future, new technologies have both phases; positive and negative. The Teacher Librarian is not limited to providing books to students but rather a librarian should be involved in all stages of the students education to provide enhanced learning about the topics and help them to complete their work, assignments and projects. . By accessing different books in the library. Students gain knowledge across a range of subject areas. However, with the new technologies involved in the career of the Teacher librarian, it impacts greatly on their role. Due to this, the Teacher Librarian in today’s world must adaprt to new technologies and made an online platform where students can access sites to have e-books, e-magazine, video tutorials and search engines. New technologies help the students to expand their learning in less time. It saves both time and money for students to have appropriate learning in an efficient way. Ultimately it is the role of the Teacher Librarian to work in collaboration with other teachers and students to access printed material and digital material to fully maximise the learning and understanding of all stake holders.
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Lang, G., 2016. The relative efficacy of video and text tutorials in online computing education. Information Systems Education Journal. 14(5). p.33.
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McGrath, K.G., 2015. School Libraries and Innovation. Knowledge Quest. 43(3). pp.54-61.
Parrott, D.J. and Keith, K.J., 2015. Three heads are better than one: Librarians, reading specialists, and classroom teachers in the learning commons. Teacher Librarian. 42(5). p.12.
Richards, J.C., 2015. The changing face of language learning: Learning beyond the classroom. RELC Journal. 46(1). pp.5-22.
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