Objectives: As science becomes increasingly data-intensive, many information professionals have found new roles as data specialists. This study considers the professional and educational backgrounds of data specialists and the range of competencies and expertise that help them achieve success. These findings have potential implications for continuing education, as well as training for the next generation of information professionals and data specialists.
Methods: This study employs a mixed methods approach to examine the types of positions in which data specialists work, as well as the educational and professional backgrounds of the individuals in these positions. First, job announcements from relevant sites were identified and analyzed to identify common requirements for education, experience, and competencies. Second, a survey was distributed to librarians and information professionals who self-identify as data specialists. This survey asked respondents about their actual educational and professional backgrounds. Respondents were also asked to identify the competencies they considered most important to their success in their position.
Results: Results will be made available during the presentation at MLA '17.
Conclusion: Conclusions will be made available during the presentation at MLA '17.
Keywords: data management, competencies, professional education, data science, research support
Research Data Informationist
Lisa Federer, AHIP, is a Research Data Informationist, at the National Institutes of Health Library, where she provides training and support in the management, organization, and re-use of biomedical research data. She is the author of several peer-reviewed articles on roles for librarians in providing data services, and the editor of the Medical Library Association Guide to Data Management for Librarians. She holds an MLIS from the University of California-Los Angeles and an MA in English from the University of North Texas, as well as certificates in data science from Georgetown University and data visualization from New York University. She is currently a PhD student at the University of Maryland iSchool.
Tuesday, May 30
3:05 PM – 3:20 PM
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