LIBR 532 (3) Science and Technology Information Sources and Services


MAS students: Completion of the MAS Core courses, plus permission of the instructor.

MLIS and Dual students: Some electives can be taken in conjunction with the MLIS Core courses; consult with the MLIS Program Chair for recommendations.

GOAL: The goal of this course is for students to acquire the skills and knowledge necessary for a librarian in a scientific setting.


Upon completion of this course students will be able to:

  • Describe the scientific method.
  • Differentiate between scientific communities (e.g. physical sciences, natural sciences, engineering and technology) with respect to information needs, user behaviours and communication practices.
  • Differentiate between types of science libraries, and the services and issues relevant to each.
  • Characterize the scientific literature and utilize tools for collection analysis.
  • Select and search the most appropriate resources to respond to reference questions.
  • Identify and provide a critical analysis of the key issues facing science libraries today.


  • A brief history of science, science libraries and librarianship.
  • A practical overview of the major resources in the physical sciences, natural sciences, engineering and technology, including standards and patents
  • A practical approach for reference questions in these subjects areas.
  • Services and issues specific to different libraries (e.g. government libraries, public libraries, academic libraries, private consultants).
  • Current trends in science and technology librarianship namely open access, scholarly communication, copyright, eScience and data management.
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