Topic analysis of research on library and information science education

Research output: Other contribution to conferencePresentation onlypeer-review


Scholarship of learning and teaching is important in any discipline as education needs to be informed by research and be evidence-based. Modern library and information science education is more than a century old. LIS has tens of scholarly journals that publish original research about all aspects of librarianship and information sciences. While there have been several studies on general research trends in LIS in the past (e.g. Järvelin and Vakkari, 1993, Pandita and Singh, 2015, Tuomaala, Järvelin and Vakkari, 2014), no study has focused on LIS education and we do not have an overall picture of issues that are addressed and studied by LIS researchers. This study aims to analyse the research done in the last twenty years (1999-2018) in the area of library and information science education to find out about the research topics and trends in that period. To do so, a few search strategies were developed to retrieve relevant research articles, review articles and book chapters from a few databases as below: • Scopus: a complex keyword query with all phrases related to education in LIS searched in title, abstract and keywords of articles. The search was restricted to 99 LIS journals indexed in Scopus as well as book chapters. • Scopus: all articles published in the journal ‘Education for Information’ for the period of the study were obtained. • LISTA (Library and Information Science and Technology Abstracts): all articles published in Journal of Education for Library and Information Science for the period of the study were obtained. • ProQuest Library Science Database: a thesaurus search including all descriptors related to education in LIS and its subfields were used to retrieve all relevant items. The restudy was restricted to English items only. All of the data obtained through the above four different methods were combined and duplicates were removed which resulted in 2890 items. Then each record was checked by the author (reading titles and if necessary abstract) to remove any noise, i.e. articles not relevant to education in LIS. The final dataset will be analysed using a combination of ASIS&T thesaurus to cover LIS topics and Australian Thesaurus of Education Descriptors to cover education-related topics. Besides manual topic analysis of articles, VOSViewer software will be used to look at the topical map of the articles by analysing title, abstract and keyword texts of articles. The software looks at the co-occurrences of words to identify research topics. The results of the study will show what topics are covered by the research on LIS education, what aspects of education have been researched and what aspects have been neglected, in which venues education articles have been mostly published, and what is the trend in the quantity of research on education in LIS. The results will also show what countries or geographic regions have received more attention in the research on LIS. The findings will have implications for directions that future research on education in LIS might take.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 28 Oct 2019
EventResearch Applications in Information and Library Studies (RAILS) - Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture and St Mark’s National Theological Centre, Canberra, Australia
Duration: 28 Oct 201929 Oct 2019


ConferenceResearch Applications in Information and Library Studies (RAILS)
Abbreviated titleTowards critical information research, education and practice
OtherRAILS is the Australasian conference on Research Applications in Information and Library Studies, the main gathering in Australasia for academic and practitioner researchers and educators in information studies and related disciplines, including librarianship, archival science, and social and community informatics. RAILS has been held annually since 2004. The 15th RAILS conference will be hosted by the School of Information Studies of Charles Sturt University and held at CSU’s Canberra Campus from 28-29 October 2019. The conference will also incorporate the Australasian Information Educators’ Symposium (AIES) 2019.
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