ALCTS Endorses Acquisitions Core Competencies

The ALCTS Board of Directors has endorsed the “Core Competencies for Acquisitions Professionals.” The Education Committee of the ALCTS Acquisitions Section (AS) was asked to define core competencies for professionals in the acquisitions field. The Committee was chaired by Dr. Susan Rathbun-Grubb, assistant professor, School of Library and Information Science, College of Information and Communications, University of South Carolina.

The “Core Competencies for Acquisitions Professionals” outlines competencies that are needed across the span of an individual’s professional career to perform acquisitions functions. The intended audience for these competencies include students and new practitioners as well as managers and administrators who specialize or manage acquisitions functions in any library setting.

The competencies were identified through a systematic review of job ads posted for acquisitions-related positions over an 18-month period of contemporary recruitment. Job responsibilities from these position descriptions were analyzed to identify an initial list of skills and competencies and revised according to feedback from acquisitions professionals in the field.

The document is not procedural in nature, but these competencies can be used for training and creating position descriptions. This document complements other related competencies in other documents including ALA’s Core Competencies of Librarianship and NASIG’s Core Competencies for Electronic Resources Librarians. Professionals who demonstrate these competencies should be better able to adjust to changing practices over time.

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