Libraries at University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Informetrics Education in Library and Information Science (LIS) Academic Department in South Africa
The purpose of this paper is to explore literature on informetrics education globally, in order to determine the relevance of informetrics education in South Africa. This paper is based on the literature review on informetrics education in the field of LIS worldwide. The paper addresses the status of informetrics education; extent and levels at which informetrics education is offered; teaching methods for informetrics education; and, challenges associated with informetrics education. The literature reveals that there are 32 countries that offer informetrics education within the field of LIS worldwide. The informetrics education is commonly offered to both under-graduate and post-graduate students. For undergraduates, it is generally offered as an elective course. Commonly, the course content consists of laws and theories, link analysis, resource allocation, methods and applications, innovation and forecasting. The lecture method (face-to-face) of teaching is commonly used. There is a variation of course names from department to department, such as Informetrics, Bibliometrics, Scientometrics, etc. Challenges associated with informetrics education were revealed, including: teaching capacity, student preparedness and ICT support. This paper noted the limitation of informetrics education locally and globally, and recommends more awareness creation, curricula development, short courses and awareness of global trends. Theoretically, the paper will add to the body of literature within the field of LIS. It will offer a vivid characterization of informetrics and demonstrate the importance of its education. Practically, this paper provides a prolific centre of knowledge sharing among LIS departments concerning informetrics education. Through a good attention given to informetrics education, the research evaluation in various fields will attain utmost quality and objectivity.