Head, Library Research & Instruction Services Department
Worcester Polytechnic Institute’s Gordon Library is seeking candidates for a new leadership position as Department Head for Library Research & Instruction. The Library’s integration into undergraduate learning through the work of this team is as unique and dynamic as WPI’s project-centered, global, and interdisciplinary curriculum. The department’s team of four experienced librarians provides dozens of sought-after and valued course-integrated instruction sessions and over 630 customized individual and team project and research consultations, delivered throughout WPI’s fast-paced 7-week terms. The Department Head will facilitate, mentor, and participate in delivering as well as planning and assessing research and instruction services, collaborating with the team and with faculty across all disciplines to develop responsive, sustainable programs in which our exceptional students can practice and master critical information literacies.
As a member of the Library’s leadership team and reporting to the University Librarian, the Department Head will regularly collaborate with our other library administrative and management leaders on budget, personnel, policy, and operational issues as well as support for university and library strategic priorities.
and the Gordon Library
have both recently completed new strategic plans, both of which express our commitments to advancing inclusion, access, research with purpose, and well-being in our community. Our campus is also thrilled to be welcoming Grace Wang as our 17th University President
Review of candidates for this position will begin in early March. We welcome your applications, expressions of interest, and recommendations of any candidates you think could be a great match for this important role!
To view the full posting and to apply, please visit WPI’s Careers website: Head of Library Research & Instruction Services.
The Head of the Research & Instruction Services Department provides leadership, mentoring, collaborative vision and strategic direction for the library’s core student and faculty instruction and research and project support services. In collaboration with other library departments and university faculty, the department develops, delivers, and assesses learner-centered, sustainable and effective instruction and research consultation services that support WPI’s unique curriculum and interdisciplinary projects and research. Instruction and course- and project-related research services are integral to our students’ ability to accomplish their goals and develop foundational life skills, including critical information literacies. The department head leads a team of four librarians with distinctive and shared responsibilities for supporting instruction and research consultation services. The position reports to the University Librarian and serves as a member of the library’s administrative leadership team, contributing to implementing the library’s strategic plans, designing library policies, managing library operations, designing and reporting on measures of impact and outcomes, and advising on the library’s budget.
· Undergraduate project-based learning services:
The department head leads, coordinates, and participates in the shared responsibility of the R&I librarians for providing creative, sustainable, relevant, and effective information, data, research, and critical information literacy learning opportunities and experiences, with an emphasis on supporting students engaged in WPI’s four primary project-based curricular programs: the first year Great Problems Seminar; the Humanities and Arts project; the Integrative Qualifying Project; and the Major Qualifying Project. While most support is curricular, it also extends to teaching co-curricular skills, often in collaboration with other staff and faculty.
· Graduate student learning services:
The department head leads, coordinates, and participates in support for graduate student success through course-integrated instruction and learning resources, and research consultations. Graduate students include BS/MS students and graduate certificate students as well as students in masters and doctoral graduate programs.
· Reference services:
In collaboration with the Library’s Head of Access Services & Outreach, the department head helps coordinate, assess, participate in, and provide training for library and student staff who deliver first- and second-level reference services and referral services, both in person and online.
· Online information literacy services:
Collaborates with Academic Technology Center staff and other library departments to lead the R&I team in designing and delivering virtual learning materials that support learning outcomes of library instruction, particularly those relevant to project-based learning; and to information, data, research, and critical information literacy skills that are broadly relevant to the curriculum.
· Library staff development and mentoring
: Fosters a collaborative environment with positive and open communication; establishes standards and best practices for the work of the R&I team; encourages professional development, and supports equitable distribution and sharing of team responsibilities and professional opportunities.
· Library administration and leadership:
Develops departmental annual and strategic plans, and evaluates, develops, implements and updates innovative and proactive service policies and procedures in response to users’ needs. Participates in and contributes to the library’s and the university’s goals regarding equity, inclusion, and sustainability. Provides required data and analytics for annual or other assessments. Provides input to library-wide practices and policies, capital projects, operating budgets, and other administrative areas. Communicates WPI and library policies and community developments transparently, appropriately, and positively.
· Other professional responsibilities:
Engages in and contributes to the profession through continuing learning, service, research, presentations, or professional communications. Performs other duties as assigned to meet department, library, and university goals and objectives. Some evening and weekend work may be possible; some remote work may be possible.