Data-intelligence training for library staff

Ellen Verbakel, Madeleine De Smaele, Marina Noordegraaf, Nicole Potters

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


    The course Data Intelligence 4 Librarians was developed by 3TU.Datacentrum at the end of 2011 to provide online resources and training for digital preservation practitioners, specifically for library staff. The course is intended to overcome the insecurity and perceived lack of knowledge about data management which prevents library staff from proactively providing support to research staff with the management, storage and sharing of their research data. The course objectives are: 1) to transfer and exchange knowledge about data management, and 2) to provide participants with the skills required to advise researchers or research groups on efficient and effective ways of adding value to their data. The course is an additional service provided by 3TU.Datacentrum44 a digital repository for research data set up by the research libraries of the three Dutch Universities of Technology (3TU): Delft University of Technology, Eindhoven University of Technology, and the University of Twente. The paper describes the process of creating the course, the methodology, and the results of the two courses in 2012. There were three phases to creating the course: 1) an investigation of the training needs, 2) the design of the course and 3) the development of the training materials. The training needs could be divided into hard skills (such as data management basics, data citation and knowledge of the data browser interface) and soft skills (such as acquisition skills, advisory skills and a reflective attitude towards their profession). This has led to a course with a competency-based modular design, consisting of four modules. The project team consisted of 3TU.Datacentrum staff. The team designed a blended learning course, composed of a didactical mix of group meetings, online study and homework assignments, including the website Data Intelligence45 that provides online reference material. By using a modern collaboration environment and social media, the course meets the needs of the modern scientific community. The training methodology proved effective in creating a solid base for digital preservation and a network of starting data librarians. In the first half of 2012, 14 librarians participated in the pilot course and provided feedback. The feedback has been used to improve the next cycle of the course, which started in September 2012. In February 2013 the third cycle starts. This paper demonstrates the choices made during the design process. Finally, future plans are discussed. They include expanding the course to make the materials also suitable to researchers and other data repositories in cooperation with organisations from The Netherlands.

    Original languageEnglish
    JournalInternational Journal of Digital Curation
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 2015


    • 3TU.Datacentrum
    • DataIntelligence
    • Verbeeldingskr8


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