Last fall, it was South Africa, an experience which changed me at many levels, from widening my world view, to meeting important library contacts, to changing the focus of my dissertation research!
This May, the changes continue! As of May 12, I will be on my way to Kyiv, Ukraine. The College of Information that I'm in conducts library automation projects at International School Libraries for summer credit. We will be working with Kyiv Interational School to evaluate their current library policies, cataloging practices, physical layout, and more.
In addition, I applied for a Student/Faculty grant to conduct some preliminary research which will hopefully be the basis for my disseration. As of yet, there has been no word on the Grant funds, but the research study is progressing. The focus of the study is assessing whether international exposure to librarianship positively affects attitudes of library school students. Some constructs to be examined are cultural competency and western bias in the field of librarianship. The research measurements to be employed are a pre-experience survey, participant-observer interviews, and a post-experience survey with follow-up interviews.
I'm new at all of this so I hope it ends up being an educational research experience that will make the "REAL" research of the impending dissertation easier. Check back, and I'll let you know how it went!