MLIS Competencies

The Mission of the School of Information Management is to lead in advancing Information Management knowledge, research, and expertise. Information Management contributes to the economic and societal success of organizations and plays a vital role in creating and translating knowledge, and in making evidence-based decisions.

To provide students, researchers, and professional communities with opportunities and tools to investigate and apply Information Management, we are committed to:

  • Engaging and relevant research
  • People-centric services and community engagement
  • Entrepreneurship and innovation
  • The role of multiple literacies in ensuring a well-informed citizenry
  • Experiential learning
  • Ethical representation and use of information
  • Preservation and curation of information resources
  • The enduring importance of cultural and heritage institutions
  • Within our MLIS program, the following competencies reflect this mission.

1.  Information Management Leadership: Information Management leaders advocate the strategic importance of information as an organizational or community resource. They facilitate the achievement of organizational information management goals by assessing, planning and executing relevant strategies and processes. Examples of Information Management Leadership include:

  • Engaging in strategic planning initiatives to determine how their organization can ensure that its information assets support its mission, values, strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats, long-term goals and objectives.
  • Articulating and advocating the values and ethics of using information assets in a dynamic environment as they pertain to information management.
  • Considering a range of diverse perspectives as they pertain to data and information management.
  • Discerning where beneficial and progressive change can be made to the information management processes of their organization, and instigating these changes in a manner appropriate for the organization.

2.  User-centred Information Services: Information Managers focus first on understanding and engaging their users and communities, and design information services based on this knowledge. Examples of User-centred Information Services include:

  • Identifying and considering the range of issues  involved in human interaction with information, information systems, and technology
  • Examining and assessing the information needs of, and seeking and use by, individuals, communities, organizations and businesses
  • Designing, delivering, marketing and evaluating user-centred information services, instruction, and products
  • Creating effective and appropriate taxonomy and metadata
  • Facilitating information access and reuse through the systematic application of appropriate strategies and tools
  • Employing a range of data visualization tools and techniques to facilitate and support the understanding, use and impact of data.
  • Facilitating the promotion of reading and multiple types of literacy (e.g., information, data) based on an understanding of communities and their needs

3.  Management of Information Technology: Information managers identify, analyze, and evaluate methods, tools, concepts, and best practices to enable organizations to articulate how technology can be used to manage information as a resource. Examples of Management Information Technologies include:

  • Evaluating current and emerging IT best practices relative to an organization’s strategic plan.
  • Assessing and evaluating users’ IT technical requirements, and identifying a variety of potential IT-based solutions.
  • Identifying and designing shared solutions amongst partner and external organizations to leverage technology innovation.
  • Monitoring the organization’s IT strategy for currency, and ensuring potential IT decisions are consistent with strategic goals.
  • Overseeing metrics and key performance indicators to ensure IT solutions fit the strategic goals of the organization.
  • Assessing, designing, and improving user experiences, producing usable information and information architectures.

4.  Research and Evaluation: Information managers know how to critically assess, synthesize, evaluate and generate new knowledge to aid in decision making. Examples of Research and Evaluation include:

  • Developing effective research and evaluation skills and demonstrating the use of appropriate methods
  • Systematically gathering, analyzing and synthesizing data and communicating findings to facilitate knowledge transfer and decision making
  • Demonstrating a commitment to continuous improvement of professional practice through a culture of research, evidence-based information practice and knowledge retention

5.  Risk management: Information managers help identify and mitigate risks arising from incomplete knowledge of events or circumstances, and the resulting effect on an organization’s decision making. Examples of risks include financial uncertainty, legal liabilities, accidents and natural disasters, and IT security. Examples of Risk Management include:

  • Identifying the nature and dimensions of risk within your organization
  • Evaluating or developing policies to manage information risk and change
  • Assessing the probability of risk: What is the likelihood of occurrence and magnitude of harm?
  • Identifying systematic solutions to mitigate risks associated with information resources
  • Advocating the importance of accountable risk management within the organization
  • Bridging the gap between information requirements and the organization’s legal and regulatory requirements
  • Evaluating or developing processes to ensure rapid recovery from risk exposure
  • Identifying, analyzing, and evaluating processes and methodologies aimed to help ensure the security, confidentiality, integrity, availability and compliance of the organization’s information resources.

6.  Change management: Information managers implement strategies for preparing and supporting effective changes in an organization’s goals, processes, or technologies.  Examples of Change Management include:

  • Identifying who needs to be involved in specific change activities, such as design, testing, and problem solving.
  • Managing project activities
  • Organizing effective communication strategies
  • Assessing the impact of the changes on people and the organization's structure.
  • Planning activities to address the impacts of the change.
  • Ensuring that people involved and affected by the change understand the process of change.
  • Ensuring that those involved or affected have help and support during times of uncertainty and upheaval.

7.  Workplace Skills & Attributes: Information Managers are self-directed and reflective life-long learners. Information Managers’ professional behavior fosters an environment that’s based on collaboration and values-based management to enhance the organization’s mission. Examples of Workplace Skills & Attributes include:

  • Collaborate & Communicate
    o    Developing effective verbal, non-verbal and written communication skills
    o    Developing strategies to manage and promote personal and organizational reputation
    o    Building and developing effective internal team relationships and external partnerships and alliances
    o    Learning strategies to advocate, market and promote organizational values and services
    o    Understanding the importance of engaging with external stakeholders
    o    Working effectively with diverse personalities, work styles, and cross-cultural perspectives.
  • Organize, Plan & Manage:
    o    Developing skills in project, financial and human resource management
    o    Developing strategies to assess client needs and quality of customer service
    o    Recognizing and using appropriate information and communication technologies
    o    Developing appropriate pedagogical information literacy skills
  • Develop Personally & Professionally:
    o    Being committed to life-long learning
    o    Upholding professional ethical standards and practice social responsibility
    o    Engaging in critical, reflective and creative thinking