I hope it’s not cheating to do Thing 23 before I’ve tidied up the wasteland of missing Things left scattered around, but as I’m being computer frustrated (see previous post), it seemed wiser to get round to some reflection, and achieve one of the Things I’d set myself this weekend.
Well, its been great! I gave a presentation on my experience of cpd23 this week at the CLIC Social Media in Libraries event (my first Prezi), so had a good think and reflect about the course while I was putting my presentation together. I identified some pitfalls – Time problems, Lack of interest/relevance, Information overload; and I identified some gains – some more tangible than others (like a blog and a twitter account), but including encouragement, networks, practice in reflection. Overall I’d say its been a really positive experience, and will continue to affect my professional life for quite a while to come. There will come occasions when I need to use Tools that were introduced to me on this course that I may have initially regarded as of not much relevance (to me as a cataloguer), and I will be even more grateful to have learnt about them here.
As to what I want to do next, I think I shall want to play around with some of the tools some more, and try to learn how to use them better, or see new ways of applying them to my job. Having done one Prezi, I want to use it again, and make each new presentation better than the last.
“Thing 24” – I think I would like to come back to this in a year’s time and see what has changed in my working practices, and how many of the cpd23 Things have been integrated or adapted.
2. Identify some gaps in your experience
We have a rather hideous appraisal form to fill in each year at work, in fact nearly every year they seem to change it, and it gets bigger and more complicated, and truly awful to fill in. So I generally have a good idea about my experience gaps.
One of the gaps I would like to plug is my knowledge of the Library of Congress classification scheme (I feel very ashamed as a cataloguer to be mentioning this!). I’m a Dewey girl! I’m responsible for the cataloguing of books for the medical and healthcare libraries at Cardiff University, plus the Human Genetics Historical Library (housed in SCOLAR) – and they are all done in Dewey. LCC makes me scream, but I am assuming that is because I haven’t been introduced to it properly, I haven’t even worked anywhere where I have had to shelve books in it. But I am having to use it gradually more and more, as I help out with books for some of the other libraries, and when helping out with cataloguing the Rare Books collection. Often I feel like I am wading through treacle trying to understand it, and just when I think I am getting there, I discover we have used a slightly different variant in-house and I’m lost again. I’ve been hoping to go on a course for years, but they always seem to be in London, and quite expensive (especially adding travel costs), so as yet I haven’t.
I have however, started filling in one knowledge gap recently by signing up to a distance learning short course postgraduate module on Rare books, being held by Aberystwyth. It seemed quite timely considering I am now spending about one day a week cataloguing rare books.
3. & 4. Personal Development Plan
As mentioned above we have a fairly detailed development plan in our appraisal forms, gaps have been identified, time scales set, etc etc. So I am not going to reconsruct a new PDP. What Iam going to do though is aim to regularly check my progress against my appraisal form, and identify where I am falling down before it gets round to next year’s appraisal (which is what usually happens)! Make the plan an ‘action plan’ rather than a ‘Did I do any of the things I made up last year?’ plan.
5. Keep Blogging
I intend to.
I hope you keep reading!