Teaching & Learning in Special Collections

Special Collections is not about just history or just literature or just geography or just languages. It’s not just about set periods of time: Early modern or medieval or last week. It’s about all times and all disciplines. Granted our resources for nuclear physics are small but the possibility that it could be there is present. Given that my purview is quite broad to say the least I can’t be an expert in any one subject. What I can do is offer a way to navigate the sources, collections and services. It is not the only way and I welcome those who work with particular areas showing me different ways. That’s why I’ve started a course Teaching and Learning for Higher Education.’

Over the last few years from September on I have different groups coming into Special Collections to be shown any number of things ranging from:

  • how to use Irish bibliographies and catalogues (catalogues that are oh so different to library catalogues)
  • how to use microform
  • how to arrange an older printed book on foam so as to give it the best possible support
  • how to use a directory for newspapers to source information on a newspaper
  • how to use short stories as both primary and secondary sources
  • what could be the various uses for dictionaries

My world of teaching & learning is hands-on. It is impossible to show what Special Collections is without showing how examples work and time permitting to have students work examples for themselves. Equally my world of teaching & learning is both teaching and learning. For each class I work with I learn something new. I’m looking forward to continuing this learning journey.

Advertisements