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Dissertation Information for James Will Liesener

- James Will Liesener
- (Alias) James Liesener

- Ph.D.

- Library and Information Science

- University of Michigan, Ann Arbor (USA) (1967)

- Wallace J. Bonk

- Frederick H. Wagman
- George Sutherland Hayden
- Russell E. Bidlack

MPACT Status: Fully Complete


Abstract: The validity of the core concept in education for librarianship (that knowledge which is needed by all librarians regardless of type of library or level of position) has frequently been questioned, particularly by school, special, and university librarians, yet it has been widely accepted by practitioners as well as by library educators. This dissertation is an attempt at providing an exploratory test of the validity of this concept in the preparation of university librarians.

The data used to evaluate the hypothesis that the core of knowledge generally assumed to be necessary for all professional librarians is required in all professional positions in a large university library system were gathered as follows:

1. The university of Michigan Library System was selected as the sample for the study because of its plans for conducting a thorough job analysis of all the professional positions in the system in preparation for the reclassification of these positions.

2. A job analysis was conducted of each of the professional positions (105) except for seventeen positions which were primarily or totally administrative in character. The extensive interviewing of each incumbent and his immediate supervisor was conducted during the period of September, 1963 to February, 1965 and a job description was written for each of the 105 positions.

3. The job analysis data for the 105 positions were analyzed to determine the knowledge needed of the various aspects of the core. A classification scheme defining the kind of knowledge needed was developed and applied to each of these positions in most aspects of the core.

The need or lack of need for knowledge of the various aspects of the core in the seventeen unanalyzed positions was inferred from the job analysis data of the appropriate subordinate positions and, therefore, these positions are included in the study.

4. The final step in the investigation was to compare the knowledge assumed to be necessary in the core concept with the actual knowledge requirements of the positions studied. The comparisons are presented in a series of tables depicting the results. The Chi Square Single Sample test was computed in each case to determine whether or not a statistically significant difference between the observed and expected results was indicated.

Five core areas were analyzed in this study-- Materials, Services, Administration, Communication, and Research. Statistically significant differences between the knowledge assumed to be necessary in the core concept and the knowledge actually required in the positions studied were found in sixteen aspects of the five core areas. No significant differences were found in fifteen aspects. The hypothesis that the core content is necessary for all university librarians was therefore rejected.

It was observed that knowledge of the various aspects of the core was generally greater in positions in departments organized primarily by subject and/or clientele (e.g., divisional or departmental libraries), rather than in departments organized primarily by function (as cataloging, acquisitions, reference, etc.)

The results of this study cannot be generalized to include all university libraries because of the limited sample utilized. However, the library system analyzed, in the view of the investigator, is large enough and representative enough of large research libraries in terms of type and number of positions, variety of patterns of organization, and use of standard procedures and techniques that the conclusions reached, in this exploratory investigation can at least be used as hypotheses to be tested in other library systems.

MPACT Scores for James Will Liesener

A = 0
C = 4
A+C = 4
T = 0
G = 0
W = 0
TD = 0
TA = 0
calculated 2008-01-31 06:18:28

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Students under James Will Liesener

- None

- Evelyn Hope Daniel - University of Maryland (1974)
- Benedict Onyechinyere Igwe - University of Maryland (1981)
- Diane Ledbetter Barlow - University of Maryland (1989)
- Paul Solomon - University of Maryland (1991)