School of Information and Library Science
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill


Institute of Information Studies and Librarianship
Charles University


May 19 - May 31, 2013




Barbara Wildemuth, 919-962-8072,


This course is a two-week summer seminar which provides an intensive introduction for library science students and professionals to all aspects of librarianship in the Czech Republic.  The course features lectures and tours both in Prague, the Czech capital, and in outlying towns within the country.  Students will become familiar with libraries of many types, including public, academic, special and monastic, and will also visit archives and museums relating to librarianship.

This seminar is provided in partnership with the faculty of the Institute of Information Studies and Librarianship at Charles University, the oldest LIS institution in the Czech Republic.  The UISK pages containing information about the seminar will be available soon. They will contain information about arrivals and practical matters, as well as links to information about some of the out-of-Prague destinations on our schedule.

The seminar, which has been offered since 2002, is available for academic credit through the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Participants may earn three hours of graduate credit for attending and completing all class requirements.

Details in seminar announcement

Schedule Highlights

May 19: Welcome/orientation meeting, 8pm in hotel lobby

May 20: National Library of the Czech Republic (Pejsova); Klementinum; Vltava river cruise

May 21: Parliamentary Library (Sosna); Old Carolinum (Lojka); Lecture: History of the Czech lands (Lojka); Prague city tour (Lojka)

May 22: Lectures at UISK: Welcome and introduction to the Institute (Drobikova); Manuscripts and early printed books in the Czech lands, Digital libraries at the National Libraray (Marek); Digitization and digital libraries aggregation (Lhotak); Book provenance research - The database PROVENIO (Sipek); Development of IT in the Czech libraries (Svoboda); Visit to the Libri Prohibiti (Gruntorad)

May 23: Zlata Koruna Monastery (Spinar); Cesky Krumlov

May 24: Municipal Library of Prague (Rehak); Lecture: Academic libraries in the Czech Republic (Landova)

May 27: Jan Palach Library, Faculty of Arts, Charles University; Strahov Monastery Library; Nostic Palace Library and lecture on Baroque aristocratic and bourgeois libraries in the Czech Republic (Sipek)

May 28: Liberec Regional Research Library and Building of Peace and Reconciliation; Walk in Prachov Rocks

May 29: Lectures at National Library of Technology: Considering information provision in a global context: The Czech National Library of Technology embarks on its next mission of discovery (Kruger); Patent and other intellectual property databases (Pavkova); Providing an access to rare collections of personal libaraies (Vorlickova); Competitive intelligence in the Czech Republic (Mlcoch); Guided tour of the National Technical Library (Kruger)

May 30: Kromeriz Public Library (Kasparkova); Chateau Library of the Kromeriz Palace; Archepiscopal wine cellars

May 31: Vysehrad Castle; Certificate Ceremony; Farewell dinner

Course Objectives

The objectives of the class are to enable the students to:

  1. Understand the rich history and structure of Czech librarianship,
  2. Comprehend the impact that the both the imposition of the Communist regime and the overthrow of that regime in 1989 had on the flow and availability of information within the nation,
  3. Learn about the education of librarians in the Czech Republic, and
  4. Become aware of both the similarities and differences of information agencies in the Czech Republic and in the US.

Course Requirements

Prior to arriving in Prague, each participant should read: Marvanová, E. (ed.) (2009). Libraries and LIbrarianship in the Czech Republic. Second upated edition. Prague: National Library of the Czech Republic. It provides the context for our visit.

The class will be conducted as a seminar. The active participation of all class members is expected. Each student will be expected to attend all lectures and tours. In addition, each student will independently study some aspect of Czech librarianship in depth and will write a seminar paper which will be graded by the UNC instructor. Guidance in writing this paper may be provided both by the UNC instructor and by the faculty at Charles University. The seminar paper should be between 15 and 20 (double-spaced) pages in length with the topic to be selected according to the student’s interest, with the approval of the UNC instructor.  The paper should not be purely descriptive but  should be analytical and discuss and explain the topic, address controversies in the area, and reach normative conclusions and/or make recommendations about the topic under discussion.  The paper should reflect familiarity with the important literature in the area, an understanding of the various sides to the issue or problem under consideration and the development of defensible conclusions and/or recommendations. 

The seminar will also be supported by a Sakai course site. All registered students and seminar participants will have access to the resources (including communication tools and a wiki) available in the site.

Papers Completed Summer 2013

Bruce, Allyssa. (2014). Czech Librarianship.

Ellis, Sally. (2013). A Survey of Czech and U.S. Parliamentary Libraries.

Gwilym, Linda. (2014). E-Government in the Czech Republic.

Minor, Jennie. (2013). Reading as Refuge during World War II: A Discussion of the Theresienstadt Ghetto Central Library.

Seifert, Julie. (2014). National Digital Libraries in the Czech Republic and the United States.


Grades will be assigned according to the grading system of the Graduate School of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The grades used are:

H        High Pass
P        Pass
L        Low Pass
F        Fail

Honor Code

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has had a student-administered honor system and judicial system for over 100 years. Because academic honesty and the development and nurturing of trust and trustworthiness are important to all of us as individuals, and are encouraged and promoted by the honor system, this is a most significant University tradition. The system is the responsibility of students and is regulated and governed by them, but faculty members share the responsibility and readily recommit themselves to its ideals. If students in this class have questions about their responsibility under the honor code, please bring them to the instructor or consult with the Office of the Dean of Students or the Instrument of Student Judicial Governance. This document contains all policies and procedures pertaining to the student honor system. Your full participation and observance of this important aspect of the University is encouraged and expected.

Creative Commons License The INLS 890-976 website, UNC-CH, 2013, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License. Address all comments and questions to Barbara M. Wildemuth at

This page was last modified on July 21, 2014, by Barbara M. Wildemuth.