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Curtin Malaysia librarians conduct library workshop for SMK Riam staff and students

Miri – 25 June 2019 – A library technical team from The Library & Learning Commons department of Curtin University Malaysia (Curtin Malaysia) recently conducted a Library Cataloguing and Classification Workshop at the Resource Centre of Sekolah Menengah Kerajaan Riam here.

Headed by Senior Librarian Sorina Ramli, the Curtin Malaysia librarians imparted the finer points of library cataloguing and classification to five teachers and 19 library prefects of the school, as well as helped them explore ways to improve the layout of their library and encourage more students to use it.

The librarians introduced the rules and procedures of the Dewey Decimal Classification and the Library of Congress Subject Heading systems, which are the world standards for library cataloguing and classification, and emphasised the importance of proper cataloguing and labelling of books according to the standards. Following this, they helped the teachers and students improve the layout of their library for easier navigation by library users.

According to Sorina, the one-day workshop was part of The Library & Learning Commons department’s ongoing community engagement initiatives focused on training and guiding school teachers and students in library management, which it has continued to carry out for a number of years. 

“Most school teachers have very little knowledge of library management, thus managing a school library can be quite burdensome for them. As a result, many schools have turned to us for assistance and we are more than happy to help,” she said.

Sorina thanked school principal Normah Binti Abdul Latiff and Resource Centre teacher Choong Ling Ling for giving the Curtin Malaysia librarians the opportunity to share their expertise and ideas for improvement with the teachers and students.

Besides conducting workshops on cataloguing and classification, The Library & Learning Commons department also conducts Information Literacy Skills (ILS) workshops for teachers and students. Earlier this year, ILS workshops were conducted at Sekolah Menengah Sains Miri, Sekolah Menengah Kerajaan Pujut and Sekolah Menengah Vokasional Miri to help their students build their information literary skills and prepare for high-level studies.

A ‘Librarians Leadership Camp’ was also hosted at the university campus in collaboration with Pusat Kegiatan Guru (PKG) Miri for students of Sekolah Menengah Sains Miri to help them brainstorm and plan ways to revamp their school library.

Curtin Malaysia’s Head of Library and Learning Commons Mac’Earldon Mike Maxwell said The Library and Learning Commons department is strongly committed to leveraging its vast knowledge and experience in library management to benefit the community, particularly school and community libraries.

“The library of yesteryear is no longer relevant in this 21st Century. Libraries need to change the way they are managed to suit millennial students and changing trends in education,” he remarked.

He said that The Library at Curtin Malaysia is a good example of a modern library, with a collection consisting of over 32,800 printed books, 4,300 audio-visual items, 500 print journals, 250,000 electronic books, 150,000 electronic journals and 600 online databases. Through the latest digital technologies and the Internet, its online resources are easily accessible by users anywhere and at any time.

The Library & Learning Commons department serves over 4,000 students and staff at the university. Its facilities include The Library occupying approximately 16,100 square feet on three floors, which is complemented by two common study areas across the campus. The three spaces combined can accommodate over 700 people.

For more information on Curtin Malaysia, visit its website (, its Facebook page (CurtinMalaysia), Twitter profile (curtinmalaysia), Instagram (curtinmalaysia), YouTube channel (Curtin Malaysia) or LinkedIn page (Curtin Malaysia).

Sorina (centre, kneeling) and Curtin Malaysia librarians with teachers and students who attended the workshop.

The modern library at Curtin Malaysia.