Call Number, Volume 67, Number 2, Fall 2008 Page: 3
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Fall 2008 Call Number
Herman L. Totten
Professor and Dean
Associate Director Ph.D. Program
Director Georgia and Nevada Cohorts
Ana D. Cleveland
Director Houston Program
Director of Research for LIS
Director, Texas Center for
Margaret Irby Nichols
continued on p. 4
UP TO A COLLEGE WHAT'S IN A NAME?
In the Dean's Column (p. 1-2), Dr. Herman
Totten announces that the School of Library and
Information Sciences (SLIS) is now the Department of
Library and Information Sciences (LIS) within the
College of Information, Library Science, and
Technologies (CILST). He also notes that Dr. Wendy
Wilkins, UNT Provost and Vice President for
Academic Affairs, called the college name a
"placeholder." As reported in the Denton Record-
Chronicle on the day following the August 21, 2008
UNT System Board of Regents decision to approve the
new college, Provost Wilkins spoke of a "working
title": "'This will change over time,' she said in
response to regent questions about the title. The
university is trying to be sensitive to alumni of the
programs. 'We don't want to alienate our graduates,'
she said." The Provost had requested a shorter name,
but the Dean insisted on the longer name for exactly
that reason: the great value that SLIS has always placed
in the opinions of you, our constituents: our alumni,
students, faculty, staff, and, of course, alumni and
others on our Board of Advisors.
We are seeking your input on this critical
decision. We'll start by answering some questions you
What does it mean to become a college?
If you have been confused by academic
terminology, you are not alone. Although one may say
"I went to school at UNT" or "I went to college at
UNT" in casual conversation, academia has more
specific meanings for these terms. Within universities,
administrative units called colleges traditionally focus
on general education, whereas schools focus on
professional education. As the professions have
broadened their scope and size, however, we are seeing
a shift. Today many university colleges offer a variety
of professional specializations in multiple departments
and programs; provide relevant courses for
undergraduate general education across the university;
engage in theory-based scholarly research by faculty
members and doctoral students; and obtain external
funding for both scholarly and professional research
projects that benefit all students and programs.
By becoming a college, we are placing ourselves at
the forefront of this movement. We are in excellent
company with other UNT professional colleges, such
as our new neighbor in Discovery Park, the College of
What does this mean for Library and
In the Editorial (p. 5), Margaret Nichols provides
an illuminating view of trends in the organization and
names of academic units of library and information
studies across the country, along with a brief history of
our School at UNT. Consolidation of academic units
is the norm, but we are unusual in taking the lead on
(and thus control of) our own consolidation at UNT.
By incorporating the Department of Library and
Information Sciences in the College, LIS becomes not
a smaller presence, but a larger and more visible and
powerful presence in the profession and in the
university, part of a greater whole. Our name remains
the same except for the change from "school" to
"department" and-best of all-our master's program
remains the ALA-accredited professional LIS degree in
Thus we have managed change without change.
In the LIS world, change is a given and change is
How can you be involved in naming the college?
Should the name remain the College of
Information, Library Science, and Technologies
(CILST)? Should it be different? Should it be shorter?
Please email your response with the subject line
"College name" by January 31, 2009 to Jurhee Curtis
at Jurhee.Curtis@unt.edu or mail it with "ATTN:
College name" to Jurhee Curtis, UNT/CILST, 1155
Union Circle #311068, Denton, TX 76203 5017.
Include in the message your name and your
relationship to UNT LIS (e.g., alum, student).
The LIS Board of Advisors will discuss your
responses at its February 2009 meeting and make a
recommendation to the LIS Department Chair and
the College Dean. The Dean will also ask the LT
Department to poll its constituents and faculty for
suggestions and recommendations. The final choice of
college name will be determined by the College faculty
at its March 2009 meeting. If the name is to be
changed, then the new name must be approved by
Provost Wilkins by April 2009, the UNT System
Board of Regents at its May 2009 meeting, and the
Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board at its July
This is an exciting time for all of us. Stay tuned
for the results!
TEXAS ALMANAC MOVES TO UNT
Reference and information specialists in particular will be interested in the fact that as of May 5, 2008
the Texas Almanac became the property of the Texas State Historical Association, now housed on the UNT
campus (see Call Number, spring 2008, p.6). For 150 years, the biennial was published by A.H. Belo-related
entities, in recent years by the Dallas Morning News. Well established as a basic reference tool in Texas
libraries, the almanac provides detailed coverage of Texas government, economic and social statistics, and
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University of North Texas. College of Information. Call Number, Volume 67, Number 2, Fall 2008, periodical, 2008; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc75578/m1/4/: accessed November 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT College of Information.