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RDA Training Needs Assessment Working Group

Marcia Salmon, of the Technical Services Interest Group of the Canadian Library Association, announced that the results of the RDA Training Needs Assessment Working Group survey are now available for review.

The survey had two purposes:

  • to assess the level of awareness about RDA and to provide an opportunity for Canadian library and information services staff to suggest content and priorities for RDA training
  • to gather information from staff in Canadian libraries and information organizations about their experiences and preferences with different training methods, especially the level of familiarity with different types of web training.

In the concluding section on potential impacts on RDA training in Canadian libraries the report found that the level of understanding of RDA was very wide ranging and therefore, “a Canadian training plan needs to promote knowledge of RDA and ensure that information about RDA reaches all parts of the library community.”

The preferred method of training was identified as having trainers present in person in either one-on-one sessions or delivered to small groups. However, given the geographic challenges of providing a focused training effort over a relatively short amount of time will mean that “online training material, both documentation and training modules, will be a key component of a Canadian training plan.” This will also be necessary because not everyone who needs training will have the resources required to travel to major city centres to attend workshops or training sessions available in a conference setting.

Fortunately the report found that the survey “supports the use of webinars as a principal method for the delivery of training.” But respondents cautioned that these webinars should be “live” with opportunities for interaction with the presenters and some form of training exercises.

This survey has gathered a lot of useful data and is well worth reading for that purpose alone. It should also help inform the development of training materials and ensure that, when the time comes, the RDA word will be spread equitably across all areas of the Canadian library community.

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