COMPREHENSIVE EXAMINATION QUESTIONS
- Early this month the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments in the CIPA (Child Internet Protection Act) case. The act, if upheld, would force "libraries to install filters designed to block access to Internet pornography or risk losing federal funding". Members of the profession are not in agreement about whether filters work, or are appropriate. What do you think? Why? How would you justify your position to your Library Board? Or District Administrator? To parents?
- Compare Dublin Core elements and elements of library catalogs in terms of their similarities and differences. In addition, discuss the advantages and disadvantages of using Dublin Core to organize information. You should include specific implementations of Dublin Core to illustrate your points.
- Research suggests that a patron's chance of getting a correct answer to a library reference question is typically about 50-50. Your governing authority (library board, faculty senate library committee, etc.) has become aware of this, and asked you to explain what specific measures you are taking to ensure that your own reference services do better (preferably much better). How will you respond?
- In a discussion on materials selection and use, describe how policies have a significant impact on collection development and maintenance as well as the users' access to information. Use examples from a specific type of library to Support your discussion
- Mary E. Jackson states in the September 15, 2002 issue of Library Journal that "Portals will be viewed as virtual libraries, with a range of services equal to those currently provided in the library". Discuss the concept of a portal and its potential for providing a range of services similar to those of the traditional library.
- Outreach to community members who do not or cannot use the library is an important aspect of good public library service. Why has outreach become so important? Discuss how librarians can extend services and increase library use through outreach efforts.
- A panel at ALA in 2000 discussed whether the MARC record is still an effective record structure for library catalogs. Discuss the strengths and weaknesses of MARC and the implications for libraries if this standard is radically changed.
- More and more libraries have provided digital reference services. Describe how these types of services are provided and discuss four major issues that must be considered before a library offers such services.
- Suppose that your library is threatened with a 15% budget cut, with no promise that unds will be restored in subsequent years. You may make cuts by (a) Cutting the materials budget substantially; (b) cutting the number of days you are open; (c) cutting staff; or (d) cutting some services. For a library of a given type (your choice), what are the pros and cons of each?
- Describe how technological, political, and cultural developments have contributed to the growth of digital libraries, and identify some key challenges that face digital libraries today.