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Job ID: 205054

Head, Library Research & Instruction Services
Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Date Posted Feb. 6, 2023
Title Head, Library Research & Instruction Services
University Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Worcester, MA, United States
Application Deadline Open until filled
Position Start Date Available immediately
  • Department Head/Head/Chair
  • Library Services

Head, Library Research & Instruction Services


Library Services

Worcester Polytechnic Institute - WPI

The Head of the Research & Instruction Services Department provides leadership, mentoring, collaborative vision and strategic direction for the library's core student and faculty instruction and research and project support services. In collaboration with other library departments and university faculty, the department develops, delivers, and assesses learner-centered, sustainable and effective instruction and research consultation services that support WPI's unique curriculum and interdisciplinary projects and research. Instruction and course- and project-related research services are integral to our students' ability to accomplish their goals and develop foundational life skills, including critical information literacies. The department head leads a team of four librarians with distinctive and shared responsibilities for supporting instruction and research consultation services. The position reports to the University Librarian and serves as a member of the library's administrative leadership team, contributing to implementing the library's strategic plans, designing library policies, managing library operations, designing and reporting on measures of impact and outcomes, and advising on the library's budget.

WPI is a diverse campus of learners passionate about creating an inclusive workplace that promotes and values diversity. We are looking for candidates who can support our commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion.



Undergraduate project-based learning services: The department head leads, coordinates, and participates in the shared responsibility of the R&I librarians for providing creative, sustainable, relevant, and effective information, data, research, and critical information literacy learning opportunities and experiences, with an emphasis on supporting students engaged in WPI's four primary project-based curricular programs: the first year Great Problems Seminar; the Humanities and Arts project; the Integrative Qualifying Project; and the Major Qualifying Project. While most support is curricular, it also extends to teaching co-curricular skills, often in collaboration with other staff and faculty.

Graduate student learning services: The department head leads, coordinates, and participates in support for graduate student success through course-integrated instruction and learning resources, and research consultations. Graduate students include BS/MS students and graduate certificate students as well as students in masters and doctoral graduate programs.

Reference services: In collaboration with the Library's Head of Access Services & Outreach, the department head helps coordinate, assess, participate in, and provide training for library and student staff who deliver first- and second-level reference services and referral services, both in person and online.

Online information literacy services: Collaborates with Academic Technology Center staff and other library departments to lead the R&I team in designing and delivering virtual learning materials that support learning outcomes of library instruction, particularly those relevant to project-based learning; and to information, data, research, and critical information literacy skills that are broadly relevant to the curriculum.

Library staff development and mentoring: Fosters a collaborative environment with positive and open communication; establishes standards and best practices for the work of the R&I team; encourages professional development, and supports equitable distribution and sharing of team responsibilities and professional opportunities.

Library administration and leadership: Develops departmental annual and strategic plans, and evaluates, develops, implements and updates innovative and proactive service policies and procedures in response to users' needs. Participates in and contributes to the library's and the university's goals regarding equity, inclusion, and sustainability. Provides required data and analytics for annual or other assessments. Provides input to library-wide practices and policies, capital projects, operating budgets, and other administrative areas. Communicates WPI and library policies and community developments transparently, appropriately, and positively.

Other professional responsibilities: Engages in and contributes to the profession through continuing learning, service, research, presentations, or professional communications. Performs other duties as assigned to meet department, library, and university goals and objectives. Some evening and weekend work may be possible; some remote work may be possible.

Required qualifications:

Demonstrated knowledge and experience with instruction, information literacy, and assessment of library services and resources, including teaching and instruction experience in an academic library setting. Excellent communication, management, and organizational skills, including the ability to create a workplace environment that is user-focused, based on respect and that prioritizes staff input and development. Creativity, initiative, and interest in innovative approaches to teaching and research support. Demonstrated commitment to cultural competency, diversity, equity and inclusion in higher education. Demonstrated excellent communication skills, both oral and written, with the ability to foster positive working relationships and build partnerships. Demonstrated ability to plan, document, and complete projects. Graduate degree in Library and Information Science or equivalent combination of education and library work experience (e.g. subject expertise combined with appropriate teaching experience and/or library experience).

Preferred qualifications:

Experience supervising professional librarians. Demonstrated experience creating online learning resources and effectively conducting learning sessions virtually. Demonstrated ability to work proactively and effectively with faculty on instruction issues. Experience in science and/or engineering reference and library instruction. Additional graduate degree or significant progress toward a second graduate degree. Demonstrated interest in, or experience with, services for a project-based learning curriculum. Knowledge of, and/or experience with, assessment methods for instruction and the ability to put these methods into practice. A record of professional contributions through writing, presentation, grants, or research collaborations.

WPI requires that all employees to be fully-vaccinated for COVID-19 and boosted. For additional information, please go to

United States of America (Exempt)

WPI is an Equal Opportunity Employer that actively seeks to increase the diversity of its workplace. All qualified candidates will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, age, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, veteran status, or disability. It seeks individuals with diverse backgrounds and experiences who will contribute to a culture of creativity, collaboration, inclusion, problem solving, innovation, high performance, and change making. It is committed to maintaining a campus environment free of harassment and discrimination.

To apply, visit:

About WPI
WPI is a vibrant, active, and diverse community of extraordinary students, world-renowned faculty, and state of the art research facilities. At WPI, we have competitive and comprehensive benefits, including health insurance, long-term care, retirement, tuition assistance, flexible spending accounts, work-life balance and much more.

Diversity & Inclusion at WPI
WPI is committed to creating an inclusive workplace where everyone feels valued and respected; a place where every student, faculty and staff member can be themselves, so that they can study, live, and work comfortably, to reach their full potential, and make meaningful contributions in order to meet departmental and institutional goals. WPI thrives on innovative practice and welcomes diverse perspectives, insight, and people from diverse lived experiences, to enhance the community environment and propel the institution to the next level in a competitive, global marketplace.

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