Library Research Round Table Current Initiatives and Projects

LRRT Mentorship Program

Call for protégés

Appliction to become a protégé (by June 5, 2013)

Call for mentors

Appliction to become a mentor (by June 5, 2013)

Purpose: The primary purpose of the Library Research Round Table (LRRT) Mentorship Program is to promote and support the development of substantive and rigorous research in information and library science through professional relationships with experienced mentors who will help protégés develop research skills to collect and analyze data, as well as disseminate the results to both the research and professional communities. Individuals will have the opportunity to work in groups with researchers who have experience using specific research methodologies. Mentors and protégés will meet face-to-face annually at the LRRT Mentorship Program Discussion Forum at the American Library Association (ALA) to determine if their research interests are compatible and if and how they want to develop their professional relationship.

Governance: The LRRT Steering Committee will appoint a standing subcommittee of at least 3 people to oversee the program and to plan the Mentorship Program Discussion Forum at the ALA Conferences.

Process: New mentors and protégés will be recruited on a semi-annual basis through the use of the LRRT web site, social media sites, ALA committee listservs, and ALISE. A call will be posted inviting people to sign up if they would like a mentor for conducting research and to indicate which research areas (e.g. library history) or methodologies (e.g. user experience or mixed methods) are of interest to them.. This will identify the number of people interested in participating in the program. Another call will be posted inviting mentors to sign up and indicate their interest or expertise in different research areas and/or research methodologies.

A LRRT Mentorship Program Discussion Forum will be scheduled at the American Library Association (ALA) Annual Conference every year. In alternate years, the Discussion Forum will focus on 1) establishing new mentorship/protégé relationships; and 2) reconnecting with established mentors/protégés, discussing challenges and best practices for fostering the mentorship relationship, and sharing updates on research in progress.

  1. In years when new mentors/ protégés are recruited, the LRRT Mentorship Program Discussion Forum will include:
    1. A discussion of the mentor/protégé relationship, i.e., responsibilities, commitment, etc.
    2. A discussion of the research process.
    3. Discussion time for the mentors and protégés to meet and possibly connect
      1. Discussion tables will be identified by research methodologies  and/or areas with mentors seated at each table so that protégés may select their area of interest.
    4. Wrap-up session with suggestions on how the mentors and protégés will be able to continue to work together on bringing research projections to completion, resulting in  papers for publication in conference proceedings, journals, and  presentations at the LRRT Research Forums.  In some cases this will involve mentors serving in an advisory role, while other pairs may develop into full-fledged collaborations.
  2. In alternate years, the Mentorship Program Discussion Forum will include:
    1. Discussion time for the mentors and protégé to reconnect
      1. Discussion tables will be identified by research methodologies and/or areas with mentors seated at each table so that protégés may select their area of interest.
    2. Brief presentations or reports on research in progress
    3. Discussion of ideas for furthering developing the mentor/protégé relationships and improving the mentorship program
    4. Wrap-up session with suggestions on how the mentors and protégés can continue to work together on bringing research projections to completion, resulting in  papers for publication in conference proceedings, journals, and  presentations at the LRRT Research Forums. 
  1. Participant Outcomes
    1. Attendees will develop personal connections through which their own ideas can be brought to realization.
    2. The work facilitated as part of the program will have the potential to be communicated widely in the profession.
    3. The profession’s knowledge base can be enhanced by means of the productive partnerships between mentors and protégés.

Mentors and protégés who have worked together in the LRRT Mentorship Program will be encouraged to submit their research to one of the LRRT Research Forums for presentation.

Evaluation: The mentors and protégés will be asked to complete an evaluation form after attending the LRRT Mentorship Program Discussion Forum to gain feedback on the process and Discussion Forum and to solicit ideas for supportive materials that might be mounted on the LRRT web site. This feedback, as well as the ideas that come up during the Forum, will be used to modify and improve the Mentorship Program and Discussion Forum.

Additional Outcomes: Those mentors and protégés who have research outputs initiated by the LRRT Mentorship Program will be invited to participate in the LRRT Mentorship Program Discussion Forum at the ALA Annual Conference to discuss the mentor/ protégé relationship and outputs produced because of this relationship. A list of publications and presentations that were supported by the Mentorship Program will be included on the LRRT web site and publicized on listservs and social media sites.