Road-testing ahead: new copyright course scrutinised by librarians from eleven countries

Associates at the Mortensen Center for International Library Programs at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign will road-test the first modules of a new copyright course for librarians during September and October 2008. The Associates come from Ghana, Nigeria, Kenya, Colombia, Palestine, Iraq, Bahrain, Uzbekistan, Vietnam, South Korea and Japan.

As part of an intensive two month training program, their role is to evaluate the ergonomics and the practical implementation of the course. This will provide valuable feedback to the project team at the Berkman Center for Internet and Society who are jointly developing the course with Electronic Information for Libraries (eIFL). The aim is that librarians from eIFL and other communities may start a self-learning distance program from January 2009.

“I am particularly looking forward to learning about how the Associates will absorb the intellectual content, and how comfortable they will feel with the information”, said Janice Pilch, Associate Professor of Library Administration at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

“The Mortenson Associates want to gain more knowledge in this area, and we will suggest that the group complete the course online when they return home”, added Susan Schnuer, Associate Director of the Mortenson Center.

“After working on the development of the content for almost a year, I am looking forward to getting feedback and a practical evaluation of the interactive part of the course so that we can refine it according to needs”, said Melanie Dulong de Rosnay, Fellow at the Berkman Center and Project Director.

Teresa Hackett, Programme Manager at eIFL said, “We are very grateful to the Mortenson Center for road-testing the course which will help us to deliver a better product. We hope that the course, the first of its kind, will benefit librarians all over the world, but especially those in developing and transition countries”.

As new technologies impact on the work of libraries and copyright law increasingly challenges library practices and access to knowledge, the aim of the course is to provide a sound understanding of the fundamentals of copyright and to raise awareness amongst librarians for balanced copyright laws and practices.

About the Mortenson Center
The Mortenson Center for International Library Programs is located at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. The Center provides professional development opportunities for librarians around the world and seeks to strengthen international ties among libraries and librarians, regardless of geographic location or access to technology. Over 800 librarians from 89 countries have already taken advantage of programming through the Mortenson Center – the only one of its kind in the world.

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