The Certificate of Advanced Study (CAS) in Rural Librarianship is designed for librarians who want a career in the field of rural librarianship. This certificate program enhances the range of management skills and competencies of these professionals working in rural settings. Also, the program addresses the need of rural areas in exploring the management of rural libraries. It provides an opportunity to discover new approaches to library management that have been made possible by current developments in community outreach, information technology, social networking and telecommunications. The certificate program builds on the nationally recognized Master's program the Department of Information Science at the University of North Texas.
Specifics of the Certificate Program
Graduates will have a solid grounding in library and information sciences, in the nature of library management and in the supportive technology. The conceptual components of the program will include the design, integration, implementation, management, and evaluation of rural and small libraries, community-based information services, library automation, human information behavior, evaluating methods in librarianship, Internet-based information resource management, and among others. The program is inter-structured with the Library Management Graduate Academic Certificate program which provides a robust management enhancement to the Rural Libraries CAS Program.
Course of Study
One of the strength of the CAS Program is the flexibility it offers for students to design a course structure according to individual career goals. The Rural Libraries CAS Program requires a minimum of 24 graduate credit hours. There are 12 Department of Library and Information Sciences courses that are recommended for consideration by students pursuing the certificate. In addition to Department of Information Science courses, up to 6 graduate hours may be substituted with courses taken from other departments or institutions with the approval of the Program Advisor.
Career and Employment Opportunities
Increasing role of library and information services to underserved populations in rural settings has created a growing need for leadership and management in rural and small librarians. The new trends provide opportunities to take new responsibilities and operate libraries in a more dynamic work environment as rural community centers. Closely related to this is the growing need for rural librarians who form the hub of community networks and systems, working closely with elected public officers and funding agencies. Career path opportunities exist in rural public, school, and academic libraries, consultants, grant managers, government agencies, corporations, and other rural community organizations.