INF 7970: Practicum: Archives

Credits: 3

Prerequisite(s): INF 7710, 7780 plus 6 credits of AAC electives (final 3 AAC elective credits may be taken concurrently with INF 7685).

Rationale for inclusion in curriculum

The major objective of the practicum is to enable a student to work in a library or information center under the direction and guidance of a librarian/information professional. This experience offers an opportunity to test professional skills and to re-examine concepts and theories within an actual library or information center.

Learning outcomes

By the end of the course students will be able to:

  1. Contrast theory and experience.
  2. Participate in those activities appropriate to the type of placement such as:
    1. Perform reference searches
    2. Select and acquire materials
    3. Create bibliographies and reading lists
    4. Develop training/instructional programs
    5. Catalog library materials
    6. Increase experience with the library technology
  3. Evaluate services, policies, and collections


  1. A minimum of 135 hours on site during one academic semester
  2. Hours may be scheduled throughout the semester to be clustered in a shorter time span. No scheduled work period should be less than three consecutive hours.
  3. The School recommends no particular practicum structure since libraries vary widely in their hours, clientele, resources, and facilities.
  4. Student duties will be professional as enumerated in the ALA’s policy statement “Library Education and personnel utilization.” Tasks that might be routinely assigned to clerical and technical staff may be included only to the extent that they contribute to an understanding of the interdependence of library/information center functions.
  5. All operational units of the library should be included in the practicum experience.

Course methodology

  1. Practicum placement is determined by information included on the practicum application and communication with the Practicum Supervisor and as appropriate with the student’s advisor.
  2. The Practicum Supervisor will contact practicum sites for updates.
  3. The student either via her/his journal or by directly contacting the practicum Supervisor will appraise the practicum Supervisor of any issues or concerns regarding the placement. 

Bases for evaluation of student performance

The supervising librarian/information professional at the placement site will do an evaluation of the student’s performance. This is in addition to participating in three mandatory seminars during the semester, doing a journal, providing examples of their projects and doing a critical analysis of the practicum experience.

Approved: 1/12

Updated: 5/17