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Study Guide

Field 074: Library Media Specialist

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Sample Selected-Response Questions

Competency 0001
The School Library Media Program

1. A school librarian ensures that the library includes resources that present multiple perspectives on controversial issues. Which statement best explains why this practice is valuable?

  1. The library program must meet the academic needs of all students in all areas of the curriculum.
  2. Critical thinking skills and academic success can be fostered by access to a variety of materials.
  3. A choice of sources and formats promotes information literacy for individuals who process information in diverse ways.
  4. Intellectual freedom and access to information are essential for effective and responsible citizenship.
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Correct Response: D. This question requires the examinee to recognize the role of information in a democratic society and the school library media program's responsibility to support and promote the principle of intellectual freedom. The American Association of School Librarians (AASL) encourages school librarians to take a leadership role in protecting students' First Amendment rights to "read and receive information and ideas" by providing students with access to "a relevant, balanced, and diverse school library collection that represents all points of view" ( By providing resources that present multiple perspectives on controversial issues, school librarians can broaden students' knowledge, encourage them to consider diverse points of view, and help them to think critically about their own and others' ideas, thus helping students to become informed, responsible citizens of a democratic society.

Competency 0002
Roles and Responsibilities of the Library Media Specialist

2. In which situation is a school librarian most clearly acting in the role of instructional partner?

  1. An elementary school librarian collaborates with teachers during planning meetings to integrate information skills and resources into instruction.
  2. An elementary school librarian provides each teacher with a small collection of resources for his or her classroom at the beginning of the school year.
  3. A middle school librarian makes an effort to fulfill teachers' requests for instructional resources and materials on the day of the request.
  4. A middle school librarian sends teachers regular e-mails that describe newly acquired library resources.
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Correct Response: A. This question requires the examinee to apply knowledge of the library media specialist's role as an instructional partner who works collaboratively with teachers to integrate multiple literacies and emerging technologies into the curriculum for teaching and learning. Collaboration requires shared responsibility and participation in planning instructional activities. The school librarian and teachers can collaborate to create authentic learning tasks, integrating literacy skills and resources available in the classroom and the school library.

Competency 0003
Information, Technology, and Literary Resources

3. Graphic novels are characterized primarily by which feature?

  1. Plot action focuses on resolving a complex moral dilemma.
  2. Story lines and characters are developed in sequential panels of art and limited dialogue.
  3. Vocabulary is concrete and highly contextualized.
  4. A consistent color palette in illustrations throughout the text conveys a specific mood.
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Correct Response: B. This question requires the examinee to demonstrate knowledge of characteristics, genres, authors, and works of literature for children, young adults, and adults. Graphic novels typically present narratives in sequential panels that feature illustrations and dialogue. The illustrations serve to establish the narrative tone, reveal character, provide details of setting, convey mood, and propel the action. Descriptive text and dialogue are usually limited.

Competency 0004
Collection Development and Resource Management

4. Use the excerpt of data below from a school library program's collection map to answer the question that follows.

Marks Elementary School
Students Served: 645
Total titles in collection 12,500
Fiction titles (% of total collection) 55%
Nonfiction titles (% of total collection) 45%
Average age of fiction collection 10 years
Average age of nonfiction collection 8 years

Which collection development priority is best supported by these data?

  1. acquiring more contemporary resources for the fiction collection
  2. increasing the total number of resources in the collection
  3. updating the nonfiction collection with more current resources
  4. creating an even balance of fiction and nonfiction resources
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Correct Response: C. This question requires the examinee to demonstrate knowledge of how to develop criteria and implement procedures for evaluating and deselecting resources for library media center collections. Nonfiction resources, particularly in fields such as the sciences, technology, history, geography, and government, should reflect up-to-date knowledge, perspectives, and global circumstances. Within five years of their publication dates, many applied and pure science and technology books become outdated. History, geography, and government texts of this age may include information that is no longer accurate, as well.

Competency 0005
Skills for Multiple Literacies

5. As eighth-grade students prepare research papers, the school librarian guides them in using the correct format for citing the sources of information and quotations they are using. This activity will contribute most to the development of students' understanding related to which national information literacy standard?

  1. Use technology and other information tools to analyze and organize information.
  2. Respect the principles of intellectual freedom.
  3. Use information and technology ethically and responsibly.
  4. Create products that apply to authentic real-world contexts.
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Correct Response: C. This question requires the examinee to demonstrate knowledge of the content of national information literacy and technology standards, and strategies for integrating those standards into the school curriculum. An understanding of the ethical and responsible use of information includes awareness of the appropriate uses of copyrighted materials. As students learn to correctly cite sources that they use for research projects, they develop awareness and understanding of the meaning of intellectual property and of what constitutes plagiarism.

Competency 0006
Individual and Collaborative Learning and Inquiry

6. A school librarian is collaborating with fourth-grade classroom teachers in providing instruction related to research and inquiry processes. Which standard for reading informational text would provide the best opportunity for such a collaboration?

  1. Determine the main idea of a text and explain how it is supported by key details; summarize the text.
  2. Compare and contrast a firsthand and secondhand account of the same event or topic; describe the differences in focus and the information provided.
  3. Describe the overall structure (e.g., chronology, comparison, cause/effect, problem/solution) of events, ideas, concepts, or information in a text or part of a text.
  4. Explain how an author uses reasons and evidence to support particular points in a text.
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Correct Response: B. This question requires the examinee to apply knowledge of strategies for collaborating with teachers to plan, implement, and assess inquiry learning. Comparing and contrasting a firsthand and a secondhand account of the same event or topic and then describing the differences between the two accounts' focus and information would provide an opportunity for students to develop important research skills, such as choosing relevant sources and evaluating the reliability and objectivity of sources.

Competency 0007
Social Responsibility and Legal and Ethical Issues

7. According to the federal Children's Internet Protection Act (2001), school library programs that use federal funds for Internet use must take which action?

  1. putting systems in place for capturing individual students' Internet history
  2. obtaining permission in writing from parents/guardians for minors to use the Internet at school
  3. establishing school computer access rules and requirements that are based on students' ages
  4. installing filtering systems on school computers to block Internet material considered harmful to minors
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Correct Response: D. This question requires the examinee to apply knowledge of the requirements of the Children's Internet Protection Act (CIPA). CIPA requires schools and libraries that receive federal discounts on Internet access to adopt and implement an Internet safety policy that includes technology protection measures that block or filter minors' Internet access to materials considered harmful to minors.

Competency 0008
Administration of the School Library Media Program

8. A high school librarian regularly uses student and staff surveys to gather data about their information and curricular needs, recreational reading preferences, topics of interest, and use of the library. The librarian can best use these data to

  1. guide decisions about library program resources, services, and time
  2. ensure that the library program mission statement remains current
  3. identify effective strategies for marketing the library program
  4. provide documentation for library program staff performance evaluations
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Correct Response: A. This question requires the examinee to demonstrate knowledge of strategies for collaboratively developing a comprehensive strategic plan for the school library media program that is aligned with district goals and objectives. Surveying students and teachers is an effective method for a school librarian to use to determine how well the school library is meeting their needs. The school librarian can best use information gathered from such surveys to make decisions about resources, services, and scheduling.