Give me insight, tips, and strategies for transitioning from American to British librarianship.
My husband (British citizen) and I (American) currently live in the US, but are considering moving to England. We're not yet sure where we'll be located.
I have an MLIS and nearly 4 years of professional experience as a librarian. I've worked in a research library/archive, a small business school library, and am now employed as a reference/electronic resource librarian at a community college.
Right now my job includes instruction, reference, web development, electronic resource management, library media, programming, and publicity. I do not currently perform cataloging or collection development, but have done so in past positions. Areas of expertise include Humanities (Language, Literature, History, Art), Social Sciences (Psychology, Sociology, Anthropology, Business), and Culinary Science.
I'm hoping to find employment in an academic library in England. I will not begin applying for jobs until I have a visa (through my husband) and eligibility to work, so I do not need a university to sponsor my visa.
Things I'm already doing/plan on doing:
1. Searching for jobs on LISJobNet
2. Setting up a couple of informational interviews with academic librarians (probably in London) to ask questions and make contacts.
3. Browsing some university library websites to get a sense of what types of resources are offered to students, and how they're presented.
4. Making sure that my application materials are correctly sized and have the right date & phone number format! :)
But I have so many questions!
1. Do I need to apply for chartership with CILIP
? Would that be a prerequisite for being considered for a position?
2. What are some of the key differences between working in this field in the US and UK? In particular, I wondered about: electronic resources, citation styles, research, and instruction. But any insight regarding cultural differences would also be appreciated!
3. Are there any good information sources regarding this type of transition?
4. Would a librarian trained in the US be particularly qualified/desired for any specific type of position?
5. Can you share any anecdotes about working in, or using, academic libraries in both countries?
Thanks in advance for your guidance!