Public Administration Academy of the Republic of Armenia is the Coordinator of the Erasmus+ “Library Network Support Services (LNSS): modernising libraries in Armenia, Moldova and Belarus through library staff development and reforming library services” Project. The duration of LNSS Project is 3 years.
Partners of the LNSS Project are:
Associate Partners are:
14. Electronic Library Consortium of Armenia- Armenia
15. REM. Moldova Library Consortium-Moldova
16. National Library of Belarus-Belarus
Find us on social media:
Erasmus Days 2021 at PAARA
On October 14-16, various “Erasmus Days” events were held worldwide, entailing training courses, conferences, webinars, film screening, and round-table talks and so on.
PAARA, being the grant holder and coordinator of the Erasmus+ CBHE LNSS (Library Network Support Services (LNSS): Modernising Libraries in Armenia, Moldova and Belarus through Library Staff Development and Reforming Library Services” ) Project, also joined in celebrating the Erasmus Days, by organizing a one-hour interactive course-discussion on “Time Management and Identification of Work Priorities”. The course was developed within the LNSS Project. The discussion was chaired by PAARA Vice-Rector, LNSS Project Coordinator Tereza Khechoyan.
More than forty participants attended the discussion. Among them were the staff members and students of PAARA, as well as civil servants and representatives of other organizations, who were interested in the topic. At the end of the interactive course, certificates of participation were handed to the attendees.
Introducing LNSS Project Management Good Practices within Erasmus + Information Days
On November 6 and 7 annual Erasmus + Information Days were held in Yerevan at Armenian National Agrarian University.
The purpose of the Information Days is to introduce young people, students, university community with details of Erasmus + International Credit Mobility Projects and Youth Programme opportunities, as well as to provide information on Capacity Building Projects in Higher Education.
For the first time a panel discussion was organized within the framework of the event with the rectors of 5 Armenian higher education institutions.
Arsen Lokyan, Rector of Public Administration Academy spoke about the importance of capacity building projects implemented within the framework of the EU funded Programme and Tereza Khechoyan, the Vice-rector of the Academy and Coordinator of the “Library Network Support Services (LNSS): modernising libraries in Armenia, Moldova and Belarus through library staff development and reforming library services” Project, made a presentation: “Good CBHE Project Management Practices”.
Dorota Rytwińska, Coordinator of Erasmus+ Higher Education Mobility Unit at the National Agency for the Erasmus+ Programme in Poland and Aleksandr Rytov, Head of International Programs and Projects Office of Belarusian State University also attended the event. They presented their country experience of Erasmus + programme.
LNSS Final Management Meeting and Conference took place in Moldova
LNSS final Management Meeting and Conference took place in Moldova on October 3-5, 2018. On October 3, the Academy of Public Administration of Moldova hosted the representatives of member institutions of the Project. Oleg Balan, Rector of Academy of Public Administration of Moldova, Arsen Lokyan, Rector of Public Administration Academy of RA and Claudia Melinte, Head of National Erasmus+ office in Moldova and representatives of EU Delegation to Moldova, Mr. Gintautas Baranauskas and Igor Sarov, Ministry of Education, Culture and Research greeted the guests. PAARA Vice-rector and LNSS Project coordinator Tereza Khechoyan presented the activities and achievements of the Project during the recent three years. Representatives and librarians of all institutions of the consortium also reported on activities carried out within the lifetime of LNSS, Project’s overall achievements and impact on their institution, obstacles, challenges and outputs of sustainability and dissemination activities.
Alecu Russo Balti State University hosted the conference participants on October 4. According to the agenda, the representatives of European partner institutions presented the results of their activities. Gerard Cullen and Angela Repanovici spoke on the rationale of EMI in LNSS. Irish partners Gerald Cavanagh and Padraig Kirby touched upon the participation of Limerick Institute of Technology in the Project. Angela Repanovici from Transilvania University of Brasov made a presentation ‘’LNSS Armenia, Belarus and Moldova Survey: Methodology and Results at the End of the Project’’. Manolis Koukourakis, Head of the library of the University of Crete presented the summary of student evaluation feedbacks from pilot trainings. Heads of libraries of Belarusian State University Vladimir Kulazhanka, (“The LNSS Project and the Development of the Network of Open Access Repositories in Belarus”), Anna Chulyan, Yerevan Brusov State University of Languages and Social Sciences (“Open access in Armenia”) and Elena Harkonita, Alecu Russo Balti State University (“Innovative Services Developed within LNSS Project”) made presentations on their experience in development of library services in their institutions.
Within three days the participants visited the libraries of the two Moldovan institutions engaged in the Project, got acquainted with the process of their everyday work, repositories and witnessed the tangible technical upgrade thanks to the LNSS Project.
The last day of the meeting was devoted to the budget and financial issues, as well as the discussions of further cooperation opportunities. In the result, the heads of libraries of 9 institutions of the three EU Eastern Partnership countries – Armenia, Belarus and Moldova, signed a Memorandum of Cooperation and Partnership. It reassures their willingness to share the modules developed during LNSS project, their best practice and experience in development and improvement of services and professional skills among library specialists both within and outside of the Consortium members and other public libraries.
At the end of the Conference all stakeholders and partners congratulated each other and thanked the LNSS Project coordinator Mrs. Tereza Khechoyan for successful and productive cooperation and expressed hope that their achievements and ties of three years will serve a new ground for consolidation around new ideas and projects.
The LNSS Project Final Dissemination Event took place
Public Administration Academy of RA has been coordinating “Library Network Support Services (LNSS): modernizing libraries in Armenia, Moldova and Belarus through staff development and reforming library services” Project in the framework of Erasmus+ Programme for three years and it has now reached its logical conclusion.
On September 14, the representatives of Public Administration Academy of RA and other member institutions of the Project consortium – Yerevan Brusov State University of Languages and Social Sciences and Goris State University – participated in the dissemination workshop of the Project.
“It’s not a secret how important the role of libraries in education is” – said the PAARA Rector Arsen Loyan in his greeting speech. “It is difficult to underestimate the role of the current Project. A Project which contributed to the library support service to furnish them with modern technical means, equipment and IT”.
Arsen Lokyan thanked the people who had worked hard in the framework of the Project and supported its fulfilment.
The coordinator of Armenian National Office of Erasmus+ Lana Karlova greeted the participants of the workshop. She pointed out the importance of libraries in globalization period. “A librarian is an open book which must be able to digest the information, new methods and to apply them in their work. It’s an honor to be a librarian. The librarian should not only have and apply certain knowledge but he/she should be a psychologist, too”.
Project coordinator and Vice-rector of Public Administration Academy of RA Tereza Khechoyan presented the path the project has passed, difficulties encountered in the process, created linkages and its outcomes. She confessed that they might not predict the difficulties on the way in the begining. But with the help of professional colleagues they managed to overcome those difficulties and to speak about positive outcomes.
The librarians of three countries Armenia, Moldova and Belarus, needed training. And the European partners provided great assistance. It is worth mentioning that 1156 participants were trained in the framework of the Project.
“The main target of the Project was the development of 8 modules” – Mrs. Khechoyan said. “Project monitoring and pilot trainings were also essential. We have been cooperating with the library of the American University of Armenia. We have paid visit to the library of the American Embassy. Thanks to the Project, the institutions of the Project consortium, particularly their libraries, have solved the problem of equipping with modern technical means”.
Anna Chulyan – Head of the library of Yerevan Brusov State University of Languages and Social Sciences – spoke about the improvement of the capacities of the librarians, and the expected and unexpected outcomes of the Project. She thanked the Project coordinator Tereza Khechoyan and the European partners for their professional support and friendly relations. Then she acknowledged that they had received more from the Project than expected. One of the most essential achievements is their entrepreneurial activity: the staff the Linguistic University have started training courses for the librarians of schools, and first of all the regional schools.
Artush Ghukasyan – Rector of Goris State University – thanked the executives of Project for including their institution in the Project. Naira Safaryan – the executive of the Department of Foreign Relations and Cooperation at GSU – presented their achievements and pointed out the technical replenishment which enables them to digitize the collections, as well as integration to national and international library networks and firm ties created with other libraries.
Padraig Kirby briefly introduced their experience of over 20-years as librarians and touched upon their role in exchange of the librarian experience. He mentioned that their main goal is to develop the information literacy. The international network in the framework of this Project will be of great help.
LIT librarian Jerald Cavanagh stressed that joint work brings people closer, shapes wonderful relationships that can be the beginning of new initiatives. The participants of the workshop agreed that the three-year Project had played a great role in strengthening the library capacity of participating institutions. Their common wish was to continue the cooperation, as the parties united around this project were definitely reliable partners.
Master classes conducted by Irish partners are over
Master classes by the European partners of Erasmus+ “Library Network Support Services (LNSS): modernizing libraries in Armenia, Moldova and Belarus through library staff development and reforming library services” Project from Limerick Institute of Technology – Jerald Cavanagh and Padraig Kirby, came to an end at Public Administration Academy of RA. During them the trainers touched upon a number of topics related to information literacy.
57 librarians, lecturers, post-graduate students (26 at GSU, 31 at PAARA) attended the one-week long master classes launched on September 7, at Goris State University and at Public Administration Academy of RA.
Certificates of participation were handed over at the end of the classes.
Master Classes by LNSS Project European Partners (Limerick Institute of Technology)
Erasmus+ “Library Network Support Services (LNSS): modernizing libraries in Armenia, Moldova and Belarus through library staff development and reforming library services” Project comes to its end.
Members of the project consortium are Yerevan Brusov State University of Languages and Social Sciences and Goris State University. The activities of the Project are coordinated by Public Administration Academy of RA.
For the past three years, representatives of the member universities of the program (librarians, PhD students, lecturers) have participated in numerous seminars, workshops, various trainings, visited a number of libraries, got acquainted with their activities. On September 7, another one-week seminar within the framework of the project was launched at Goris State University. On September 10-14, it will continue at Public Administration Academy of RA to deliver master classes on eight modules elaborated by the project participants.
Arsen Lokyan – the Rector of PAARA – greeted the participants. He thanked Jerald Cavanagh, Institute Librarian/Project Leader Erasmus+ and Padraig Kirby, Research, Development and Innovation Project Officer of the Limerick Institute of Technology Library for their productive cooperation. He also expressed hope that the improved cooperation will not end with this project. There are all preconditions to make the cooperation sustainable within other projects.
The project European partners also thanked their Armenians colleagues and pointed out the importance of the Project. They expressed their willingness to share their professional skills with the Armenian institutions and promote new initiatives.
“English as a Medium of Instruction” training completed at PAARA
On July 16, 2018 “English as a Medium of Instruction” training which was held under the Erasmus + “Library Network Support Services (LNSS): modernizing libraries in Armenia, Moldova and Belarus through library staff development and reforming library services” capacity building project came to an end at Public Administration Academy of RA. During the two and a half-month training, staff and faculty at the two levels of language proficiency had the opportunity to improve, and strengthen their English communication skills and enhance the ability to teach in that language. Rector of the Academy Arsen Lokyan handed over certificates to the participants who had successfully completed the course, expressing his appreciation to the instructors and stressed the importance of English proficiency in modern education.
Library National Awareness Day at Goris State University
On June 1, 2018, Goris State University hosted the events of Library National Awareness Day. It was preceded by master class ‘How to become a better teacher by using information and communication technologies’ on May 31, which was led by Angela Repanovici (Transylvania University of Brasov, Romania) and Manolis Koukourakis (University of Crete, Greece). Armenian institutions participating in the project in the framework of Erasmus+ “Library Network Support Services (LNSS): modernizing libraries in Armenia, Moldova and Belarus through library staff development and reforming library services” project, as well as European partners and the staff of regional and municipal libraries of Syunik took part in the event.
In his opening speech, Arsen Lokyan – Rector of Public Administration Academy of RA, which is the coordinating institution of the Project – appreciated the warm greeting, and considered the Project a wonderful opportunity for the participating institutions to have remarkable libraries and quality library service, which will contribute to the development of science and education.
“We all know that the purpose of this project is to contribute to the library network development, library staff development and reforming library services.
I also attach importance to the fact that thanks to the project, we have gained many friends.
I would like to thank the administration of Erasmus+ Programme, our European partners for their assistance and consultancy during the whole period of the Project.”
Coordinator of the LNSS project Tereza Khechoyan – Vice-rector of Public Administration Academy of RA, also appreciated this opportunity and emphasized the importance of organization of Library National Awareness Days. Mrs. Khechoyan introduced the achievements of the project over the past three years, the courses for librarians, professors and students, training modules for librarians and two pilot trainings, which have been organized not only for the universities of Armenia, but partner universities of Belarus and Moldova as well. In the framework of the Project, 820 people were trained in various subjects, and by the end of the Project this number will exceed the threshold of 1000. Tereza Khechoyan thanked the library experts Gerard Cullen, Angela Repanovichi, Manolis Koukourakis, Jerald Cavanagh and Padraig Kirby who represent the ‘Pyramid’ group (Germany), Transylvania University of Brasov (Romania), University of Crete (Greece) and Limerick Institute of Technology (Ireland). Their consultancy and assistance were a great contribution to the success of the LNSS Project.
Completing Tereza Khechoyan’s words, Rector of Goris State University Artush Ghukasyan touched upon the importance of the Project for the university, and highlighted the opportunity of gaining additional knowledge and introduced their SWOT analysis. He was confident that the project purposes, like digitization and modernization of libraries, replenishment of e-resources, development of professional and information literacy skills of librarians, acquisition of library equipment, and integration into national and international library networks, make the Project ambitious, yet justified.
After the welcome speeches Angela Repanovici, Manolis Koukourakis, Gerard Cullen, Anna Chulyan (Head of library of Yerevan State University of Languages and Social Sciences After V.Brusov) and Artur Vardazaryan (New Horizon, NGO) delivered presentations on target issues (Digital libraries of Armenia, Open access to international academic databases in Armenia, Copyright restrictions for libraries, Scientometrics, Interrelation and interaction of ASPIRE and LNSS Projects, Reforming library services, etc.).
Further opportunities of cooperation were also discussed.
A. Lokyan – Rector of Public Administration Academy of RA and A. Ghukasyan – Rector of Goris State University signed an Agreement of Cooperation between the two institutions, the aim of which is drafting and realizing mutually beneficial projects in the sphere of education and science.
At the end of the event the participants visited the library of Goris State University.
English as a Medium of Instruction
On May 3, Public Administration Academy of RA started ‘English as a Medium of Instruction’ training program in the framework of Erasmus+ “Library Network Support Services (LNSS): modernizing libraries in Armenia, Moldova and Belarus through library staff development and reforming library services” Project. It seeks for improving, increasing and developing the knowledge of English of the staff. Both the librarians of the Academy and professorial staff are involved in the project.
Eight training modules have been worked out in the framework of LNSS Project. They will be taught in all partner institutions after the end of the Project.
In this context, the initiative which aims at improvement of knowledge of English as a foreign language is highly appreciated. That’s why, this training program is another ground and opportunity for the staff to improve their communication skills and teaching capacities in English.
Lecture on Sciencometrics
The main indicator that testifies the ranking of a researcher is how many other researchers have referred to the given researches, or how many of them have cited him/her in their research work. That’s why the researcher’s work must be accessible for the academic society in all parts of the world.
On April 20, Dr. Angela Repanovici’s (Transylvania University of Brasov, Romania) presentation for the professors, postgraduate students and librarians of the Public Administration Academy of RA, was devoted to that issue. It was held in the framework of Erasmus+ “Library Network Support Services (LNSS): modernizing libraries in Armenia, Moldova and Belarus through library staff development and reforming library services” Project.
In her presentation entitled “Visibility and impact of academic product”, she spoke about various methods and indicators of scientometrics, bibliographic databases where all academic journals and individual articles are accessible for everybody, which is an influential factor for the rating of both researchers and academic journals. Angela Repanovici said that one might find names of researchers working in Armenia and names of academic journals published in Armenia in those sites as well, but unfortunately, the number is not very big. Therefore, if the researchers are interested in accessibility of their research works and want to popularize them as a reliable scientific material for others, they should pay a close attention to that issue.
Second Monitoring of LNSS Project
Since 2015 Public Administration Academy of RA has been coordinating “Library Network Support Services (LNSS): modernizing libraries in Armenia, Moldova and Belarus through library staff development and reforming library services” project in the framework of Erasmus + programme. Apart from PAARA, other members of the Project consortium are Yerevan Brusov State University of Languages and Social Sciences and Goris State University. Three years after the beginning of the Project, the institutions summarize the work they have done, highlight the achievements and work out routs for further activities.
On April 5, 2018, Lana Karlova, Programme Coordinator, and Edith Soghomonyan, Programme Officer, conducted Project monitoring at Public Administration Academy of RA. Speaking about the importance of the Project, Ms. Karlova said that libraries are the face of the universities, that’s why they must undergo changes in order to keep up with time. She expressed hope that everything the participants got from the Project will not end with the end of the Project, but it will continue to accompany them during the course of their activities.
The participants of the Project shared their knowledge, new opportunities and changes in their thinking that they have gained in the course of modules, trainings and visits. They introduced their results since the start of the Project, told about the cooperation between the Project participant countries and institutions, as well as the meetings, trainings and visits to various libraries.
Vice-Rector for International Affairs of Public Administration Academy of RA Tereza Khechoyan and Gayane Nikoghosyan, Chief librarian of the scientific and technical library of PAARA have participated in the kick-off meeting of LNSS Project in Transylvania University of Brasov, Romania, with a view to get acquainted with the participant institutions, needs of their libraries, staff, opportunities and expectations of the participant institutions.
Tereza Khechoyan, Project coordinator, and Tatevik Movsisyan, Leading specialist at Quality Assurance Department have participated in the meeting of the representatives of member institutions of the Consortium, which was devoted to quality assurance. It took place in the University of Crete, Greece.
In the framework of the Project Gerard Cullen and Sabrina Hutter have conducted trainings English for Specific Purposes in the Academy. Then, the Pilot Training Module on Essential management and transferable skills for librarians and library staff: Time Management: Prioritizing for Time and Workload was organized. Its participants visited the library of the US Embassy in Armenia.
Pilot training Module was drafted on Access to Libraries and Society for Learners with Special Needs. Its purpose was to draw the participants’ attention to the problems of the people with special needs. The treatment of the society toward these people and the need to create special conditions have also been discussed. A cognitive visit has been organized to Papazyan Library at the American University of Armenia.
The purpose of Awareness Day for the Project participants was the evaluation of input of libraries and librarians in the process of education and stimulation of access to Armenian libraries.
During the meeting at Public Administration Academy of RA the librarians of the Academy informed that the library resources are being digitized. 418 books have already been digitized. Thanks to it, you can rarely hear the expression “The book is occupied”. The library users can order the book in the e-list by filling in the e-form the relevant data.
Representatives of the Goris State University also took part in the meeting and spoke about the changes in their libraries and their expectations after the start of the Project.
The representatives of the National Erasmus+ Office in Armenia encouraged the participants to take the initiative, especially in managing the Project website by displaying the most important material to attract the attention of the visitors.
Lana Karlova thinks that it is very important that in the course of realization of the Project, some disadvantages of the participants may now be viewed as advantages. It testifies the success of the Project.
Limerick Institute of Technology Library has been short listed in three categories at this year
Limerick Institute of Technology Library has been short listed in three categories at this year’s Education Awards 2018.
The Education Awards recognize, encourage and celebrate excellence in the third level education sector on the island of Ireland from both State and privately funded institutions.
LIT Library is shortlisted in the categories of;
Disability is not a Reason for being Isolated
Another stage of the “Library Network Support Services (LNSS): modernizing libraries in Armenia, Moldova and Belarus through library staff development and reforming library services” project came to an end. During trainings that were organized in the coordinating institution, the participants of module ‘Access to Libraries and Society for Learners with Special Needs’ acquired new knowledge, and took their opportunity to deliberate over the problems of the people with special needs, the attitude of the society toward them, the urgency of special conditions for them and personal contribution for the improvement of their living conditions.
On December 11, the participants paid a study visit to the AGBU Papazian Library of the American University of Armenia. It has been functioning since 1990s just after the foundation of the University, and it is open not only for the AUA students and professorial staff, but for the whole society as well. Library Director Satenik Avagyan and Head of Reference Hasmik Galstyan introduced to the participants the history of foundation of the library which is the only open university library in Armenia, its capacities, principles of work and utilization methods of innovative technologies. The peculiarity of the library is its accessibility for the people with special needs. One can easily move in a wheelchair through the whole territory of the reading hall without any aid, and take the book one desires from the low and comfortable shelves. In addition to the available printed literature, the visitors can use e-literature, and people with eye impairments are free to use audiobooks, etc. Briefly, there are all facilities to make learning more pleasant, and to eliminate every obstacle for the disabled people.
The project participants exchanged and discussed their impressions over the visit to the AUA library in a group work. Though library services of the member institutions of the project are incomparable with those in the AUA, nevertheless each of them are eager to make their libraries more accessible for the people with special needs. It is a way to include them in the society, which is an urgent issue nowadays. The use of constantly improving IT gives that opportunity.
On December 18, the very last day of training, the trainer Tereza Khechoyan, Vice-rector of the Public Administration Academy of RA suggested the participants to make up groups (librarians, professors, students) and represent three most important points they had learned in the Papazyan library of the American University of Armenia. The groups presented the most noteworthy and instructive experience that they would like to have in their university libraries. Then, the trainer summed up the issues that were discussed and showed videos with participation of the disabled. They confirmed once again that disability is not a reason for being isolated and deprived of active lifestyle. People with disabilities do sports and participate in sport competitions. They are also engaged in art, music and dances. It is very important not to let their buoyancy die out, and the society should appropriately treat the people who somehow differ from others and have this or that health problem.
In the end of the training the participants made their proposals on later improvements of the Project. They assessed the training and received certificates of participation.
Libraries should be Available to People with Special Needs
People with disabilities are the most vulnerable group in our society. Their needs are in the focus of ‘Library Network Support Services (LNSS): modernizing libraries in Armenia, Moldova and Belarus through library staff development and reforming library services’’ project. The attention of the participants was drawn to these issues during the pilot training “Access to libraries and society for learners with special needs”, launched on 29 November at Public Administration Academy of RA. Tereza Khechoyan (the Project Coordinator, PAARA Vice-rector) Angela Repanovici (Transilvania University of Brasov, Romania) and Manolis Koukourakis (University of Crete, Greece) greeted them.
Library staff members of the Public Administration Academy of RA, Yerevan Brusov University of Languages and Social Sciences, Goris State University, National Library of Armenia, Shirak State University after Nalbandyan, Anania Shirakatsy Armenian National Lyceum and other libraries, as well as administrative staff members, faculty members, MPA and PhD students of the Academy took part in the training course.
Tereza Khechoyan presented the LNSS project coordinated by Public Administration Academy of RA. Then she spoke about disability and the rights of persons with disabilities. She mentioned that the Republic of Armenia signed the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in 2007 and ratified in 2010 and in 1993 Armenia was among the first CIS countries to adopt the Law “On Social Protection of Disabled Persons in the Republic of Armenia”.
Mrs. Khechoyan also presented statistical data on the number and age of disabled persons in Armenia, followed by video screening about prominent people with special needs and illnesses. The video about the English physicist-theorist Steven Hawking stirred up great interest. It was also reminded how to treat people with disabilities, what words and phrases to use when talking to them or about them.
One of the major issues discussed was the accessibility of libraries to persons with disabilities. It refers to both furnishing the libraries with technical equipment and the adaptation of building facilities (building entrance, ramps, remote control doors, elevators, etc.) for people with special needs. A video on the most beautiful, most interesting and unique libraries in the world was presented to the participants of the training course.
Training on Quality Assurance Issues at the University of Crete
From 25-29 September 2017 the meeting of the representatives of the consortium member institutions of the “Library Network Support Service (LNSS): modernizing libraries in Armenia, Moldova and Belarus through library staff development and reforming library services” Project was held at the University of Crete (Greece), which was dedicated to quality assurance issues.
Mrs. Tereza Khechoyan, Vice-rector for International Relations and the Project Coordinator, and Ms. Tatevik Movsisyan, professional education quality assurance specialist of the PAARA, attended the meeting. Among the participants, there were the representatives of the consortium member HEIs, in particular librarians and quality assurance specialists, as well as the Project European partners.
During the meeting, Project Coordinator Mrs. Tereza Khechoyan presented the events implemented since launching the LNSS Project and the results. In respect of the project achievements, it should be mentioned that in the framework of the pilot trainings of the developed eight modules and the ESP (English for Specific Purposes), teaching modules and quality assurance courses, delivered by the European partners, 522 specialists: librarians, teachers and students, have been trained.
The consortium members: the representatives of the nine HEIs of the three Eastern Partnership States (Armenia, Moldova and Belarus) were assigned to develop and present the vision and SWOT analysis of the 2018 “National Awareness Day”.
During the five-day meeting the quality assurance process, approaches to quality assurance, quality management and its purpose, contents of a quality assurance plan, contemporary influences on quality, total quality management and implementation, ISO standards, quality assurance in the European Higher Education Area (Bologna process) and so on were introduced to the participants.
In the course of the meeting, the risk management in education was also presented to the participants. The meeting ended with the “English as a Medium of Instruction” training program.
During the five-day training issues on quality assurance standards for libraries and the upcoming activities in the frame of the LNSS project were reflected upon.
For the participants a study visit was organized to the Library of the University of Crete, where they got acquainted with the building facilities, as well as the book restoration work and methods at the special laboratory of the library. A visit was also paid to the Public Library of the city of Rethymno, which stood out not only with its rich literature, but also with its building facilities and modern technologies meant for the people with special needs.
The Path to Knowledge Lies through Library
On May 3 “Library Awareness Day” under the slogan “A Gateway to Knowledge” started at Public Administration Academy of RA.
PAARA is the Coordinator of the Erasmus+ “Library Network Support Services (LNSS): modernising libraries in Armenia, Moldova and Belarus through library staff development and reforming library services” Project. The Armenian partners are Yerevan Brusov State University of Languages and Social Sciences, Goris State University and Electronic Library Consortium of Armenia.
The aim of the “Library Awareness Day” event was to evaluate the contribution of libraries and librarians in educational processes and to promote library access in Armenia.
PAARA Rector Arsen Lokyan delivered an opening speech and greeted the participants. He stressed the importance of the three-year project, activities of member partners of the consortium during the last years and peculiarities of the process.
Head of the National “Erasmus+” Office in Armenia, Ms Lana Karlova greeted the participants on behalf of the NEO Armenia. She recalled her studentship, the early 90-s when libraries were the only warm and light places, a place where people met, read, talked and made discussions on various topics.
“Library is a center which plays a great role in education. When one attends the library of any institution, observes its atmosphere and service level, he makes sense of that institution”, said Lana Karlova.
She mentioned that over 100 Armenian librarians have already been trained within this project. She was hopeful that the Project will contribute to new collaborations and foster student mobility.
EU partners of the Project Dr Angela Repanovici (Transilvania University of Brasov, Romania) and Dr Manolis Koukourakis (University of Crete, Greece) underlined their satisfaction with the Project progress, its outcomes and feedback. They particularly appreciated the devotion, enthusiasm and hard work of the Project coordinator Tereza Khechoyan. They highlighted the activities directed to Project awareness through internet, trainings and events stressing the partners’ cooperation and joint efforts.
PAARA Vice-rector for International Relations and the Project Coordinator Tereza Khechoyan reported on successful steps, achievements and challenges towards library access. She also presented the activities of the development of eight educational modules to train the librarians, as well as the courses in the PAARA within the Project (“Time Management: Prioritizing for Time and Workload”, “English for Specific Purposes”). Students, members of administrative and academic staff have had active participation in these activities. Among the activities that the Vice-rector mentioned were the preparation of educational modules within the action plan of LNSS project at Limerick Institute of Technology (Ireland) and the details of reports in Dresden University of Technology (TU Dresden, Germany). Ms Khechoyan particularly emphasized the importance to train librarians and supply the libraries with new equipment. She presented experience of a number of countries: “Our country has much to do. But this program helps to overcome the challenges step by step by training our librarians and supplying the libraries with new equipment”.
The participants of the meeting got acquainted with the ancient and modern extraordinary library-museums via video films.
Within the “Awareness day” meetings and discussions are scheduled in partner institutions – Yerevan Brusov State University of Languages and Social Sciences and Goris State University.
LNSS Project Intermediate Meeting in Dresden (Germany)
On March 1-3, 2017, TU Dresden (Germany) hosted the representatives of consortium member universities of “Library Network Support Services (LNSS): modernizing libraries in Armenia, Moldova and Belarus through library staff development and reforming library services” project in a workshop meeting dedicated to the annual reports of the first year activities of the Project. PAARA vice-rector and the Project coordinator Tereza Khechoyan and senior librarian Gayane Nikoghosyan participated in the meeting.
Dresden University of Technology is one of the leading universities in Germany and the largest one in Saxony. It has high international rate and one of 11 Universities of Excellence in Germany which was awarded in 2012. The Project coordinator T. Khechoyan delivered a report on the Project activities carried out by the consortium so far, starting from the signing of the Grant Agreement to the organization of pilot trainings of eight educational modules developed for training of librarians and the observation visit of EU representatives for monitoring the course of the trainings in nine universities. As the speaker mentioned, one of the most impressive outcomes of the Project is the number of trained librarians, academic staff and students: the number of participants who were trained and awarded certificates in nine universities involved in the Project amounts 426, from which 152 in three Armenian HEIs, 170 in four Belarusian universities and 104 in two Moldovan universities. The representatives of consortium member universities have taken three training courses during this period: “English for Specific Purposes”, “Curriculum Training” and “Pilot Trainings” within the designed modules.
Apart from the report, T. Khechoyan also introduced the activities and achievements of the PAARA within the LNSS project. Consortium members – representatives of nine universities of three Eastern Partnership Countries (Armenia, Moldova and Belarus) and four universities of European Union countries (Ireland, Germany, Romania and Greece) made reports on their activities since the beginning of the project. The meeting was full of discussions concerning further tasks and timetable of the activities, as well as the design and content of the Project website. They also touched upon the financial aspect of the project. The participants introduced their drafts on National Library Awareness Day in their local universities and in the three countries as well (Armenia, Moldova and Belarus).
Until March 15, all consortium members were assigned to submit their brief reports on Project activities and financial resources in accordance with EU requirements to the coordinator university, as well as the final revised drafts of the training modules and Library Awareness Day events developed by each university taking into consideration remarks made during the discussions.
For exchange of experience, a visit to the Saxon State and University Library Dresden (SLUB Dresden) was organized which was created in 1996 through the merger of the Saxon State Library and the University Library Dresden.
Its collection numbers nearly nine million, making it one of the largest public archival centers in the Federal Republic og Germany. It also includes the storage of ancient manuscripts, which the LNSS consortium representatives were given a chance to visit.
The functions of the Library were explained to the participants: accompanied by the librarians, they got acquainted with the organization and implementation of its everyday activities.
The workshop took place together with the representatives of consortium of the twin LNSS project implemented in Western Balkans. It provided an opportunity to draw parallels between the activities of LNSS projects of the two regions, to compare the advantages and existing gaps and to exchange viewpoints, ideas and experience.
Time is Money. Time Management is Necessity.
On December 21, the pilot course on “Time Management: Prioritising for Time and Workload” in the framework of “Library Network Support Service (LNSS): modernizing libraries in Armenia, Moldova and Belarus through library staff development and reforming library services” came to its end.
The PAARA vice-rector, associate professor at the Chair of Public Administration and Program director Teresa Khechoyan presented her own concerns on time management, talked about the ties between time management and human nature, factors that have impact on time management, as well as accurate determination of priorities. The program participants – librarians from the Public Administration Academy of RA, State University of Languages and Social Sciences after V.Brusov and Goris State University, as well as librarians from different libraries and PAARA staff members and master students who are involved in the program – during the interactive group discussions tried to make clear the degree of their own skills in time management.
In the framework of LNSS the participants also visited the Center of Information Resources in the US Embassy to Armenia, got acquainted with the activities and capacities of the Embassy library.
On the last day of the program the participants performed group work on unveiling the causes of time waist and the ways to fight against them; they summed up the information and the experience that they had received.
All the participants were awarded with participation certificates.
The trainer Teresa Khechoyan was hopeful that the participants would use the knowledge that they had received in the course to manage their time as effectively as possible. And they always will remember the wise words: “Time is money”.
Visit to the US Embassy in the Framework of LNSS Pilot Course
On December 12 participants of the pilot course on “Time management and defining work priorities” in the framework of the program “Library Network Support Services (LNSS): modernizing libraries in Armenia, Moldova and Belarus through library staff development and reforming library services” visited the US Embassy in Armenia. The aim of the visit of the group which consisted mainly of librarians was to get acquainted with the embassy library and library activities. Nerses Hayrapetyan – Head of Information Resource Center – met the Program participants.
John Goshert – press attaché of the Embassy – presented the Ambassador of the USA Richard Mils’ four practical priorities. They are: to introduce the US foreign policy as precisely as possible; to favour the improvement of economic relations between the USA and Armenia; to help Armenia in anti-corruption struggle; and to assist the civil society and NGOs. John Goshert believes that libraries play great role in realization of the latter priority. The libraries can promote the formation of civil society. And the Embassy directly communicates with the citizens through the American Corners in Yerevan, Gyumri, Vanadzor, Kapan and Charentsavan. They are American-style libraries, which, by means of various formats, provide with information about the USA.
Then, Anna Mkrtchyan – the Social Media Coordinator of the US Embassy – introduced modern platforms. The US Embassy builds communication with the society through these platforms.
The program participants noticed that the literature in the Embassy library was mainly informative. The Head of Information Resource Center Nerses Hayrapetyan reckoned it to be common, because there are many kinds of books today, and the word book doesn’t mean publication only. Along with the published books there are audio- and e-books, as well. Of course most people are troubled with the threat of new technologies against the published books. The humankind have got used to them over the ages, and the abolition of libraries is looming. Nerses Hayrapetyan agreed that the new generation quickly gets used to the new reading devices, nevertheless he thinks that libraries will always be required.
“I am not sure about the types of the libraries in 20 years, but I am sure that they will exist. Libraries do not only serve for the people, who go, borrow a book, take it home, read it and return it to the library again. Unfortunately, library activities in our society are generally limited in just these functions.”
Whereas, the functions are wide: meetings, lectures, academic consultation, films, etc. simply, relevant conditions are needed for these all.
And what about the possible “threat” of exclusion of published books by the e-ones? Nerses Hayrapetyan displayed statistic data on this issue. For example, due to 2016 statistic data, only 19% of adult Americans prefer e-books. And the comparison of number of advocates of different kinds of books have displayed that each kind has its own faithful reader.
The Head of Information Resource Center spoke about the privileges of libraries. If you need information on any issue, what would you prefer – to turn to librarian, or to search it on the Internet? The answer is unequivocal: library is the most preferable source to provide accurate, comprehensive and grounded information. Though you can find information on the Internet faster, but it will hardly be reliable, because a person usually doesn’t have access to information base, where s/he can find reliable and complex information on certain issue. And libraries generally provide this kind of potential.
The library of the USA Embassy is open for everyone. Simply you should know that you cannot find fiction or professional literature here. It provides you only with references.
At the end of the meeting Nerses Hayrapetyan presented the Program participants with books that were published in the framework of grants of the Public Affairs Section of the US Embassy.
Time and Time Management
What is time management and why is it important? Why to prioritize work due to their importance and urgency? What factors can impact on the correct time use? Members of the pilot course on “Time management and defining the work priorities” within “Library Network Support Services (LNSS): modernizing libraries in Armenia, Moldova and Belarus through library staff development and reforming library services” Project had an opportunity to receive answers to these and other questions on November 30. The Public Administration Academy of RA hosted the members of the course. The Academy is the coordinating institution of the program.
Previously to the main course, Dr Angela Repanovici (Transylvania University of Brasov, Romania) and Dr Manolis Koukourakis (University of Crete, Greece) greeted the participants. They have been monitoring the program in Armenia for the second time. Taking the opportunity, the guests expressed their happiness for meeting their Armenian colleagues again. They appreciated the cooperation, and were hopeful in its continuity.
The third module of the program is called “General and exchangeable skills of administration for the librarians and library staff”. The participants of the course were from the library staffs of Public Administration Academy of RA, Yerevan Brusov State University of Languages and Social Sciences and Goris State University, as well as the PAARA staff who are involved in the program. The course was led by the PAARA Vice-Rector, associate professor at the Chair of “Public Administration”, head of the program Tereza Khechoyan.
The subject of the course was not chosen accidentally, as everybody has time problem or, rather time management. And it is the only recourse that is equally given to the mankind. So, everyone should find the solution of the problem within him/herself by managing his/her own time, day, year and life in the correct way. The skills of the participants in time managing were checked via questionnaires during the course. Factors that influence on time management were considered. A film was also presented, where life was compared with a cup of coffee: the kind of cup doesn’t matter, but the content matters.
The course will continue on the next Monday.
LNSS Project Monitoring
On October 20, 2016 “Library Network Support Service (LNSS): modernizing libraries in Armenia, Moldova and Belarus through library staff development and reforming library services” Project monitoring took place at the Public Administration Academy of the Republic of Armenia.
The Project grantholder is the Public Administration Academy of the Republic of Armenia, hence, the Project officer, representative of Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA) Ms. Almudena Saenz de Miera met the project participants from the HEI, particularly librarians and staff members from the PAARA, Yerevan Brusov State University of Languages and Social Sciences and Goris State University. Ms. Lana Karlova and Ms. Ani Torosyan, representatives of the Armenian national office of Erasmus+ Program also took part in the meeting. The meeting tended summarize the committed activities and to clarify the upcoming steps.
Participants of the English for Specific Purposes (ESP) training in the framework of LNSS Project confess that their expectations from the project are more than real. The PAARA Rector Mr. Arsen Lokyan, Rector of the Public Administration Academy of RA, welcomed the participants and wished the monitoring of the previous activities have their positive effect on the further ones.
Ms. Lana Karlova informed that Ms. Almudena Saenz de Miera’s visit has more comprehensive purpose: i.e., as representative of the activities committed in Armenia by the European Commission, to be aware of the current programs in the HEI that participate in the projects committed by the European Commission. And the purpose of her visit to PAARA was to discover the issues risen during the project commitment and to find ways to solve those issues.
Ms. Tereza Khechoyan, PAARA Vice-rector for International Relations and the Coordinator of “Library Network Support Service (LNSS): modernizing libraries in Armenia, Moldova and Belarus through library staff development and reforming library services” Project presented history of collaboration between the member countries and institutions. She also introduced the Project and spoke about kick-off meeting, trainings and several activities within the Project and dissemination of Project implementation activities.
Ms. Gayane Nikoghosyan, senior librarian of the PAARA Scientific Library, Ms. Anna Chulyan, library director of Yerevan Brusov State University of Languages and Social Sciences, and Ms. Naira Safaryan, assistant professor of Goris State University, highly appreciated the project.
“We are not librarians, but we are information managers” said Anna Chulyan. “And our aim is to introduce the library as a value.”
Project participants answered to the questions of LNSS Project officer and National Erasmus+ Office representatives in Armenia.
Curriculum Development for Librarians at Limerick Institute of Technology (Ireland)
22 August – 2 September 2016, training modules’ development scheduled by the LNSS project action plan took place at Limerick Institute of Technology (Ireland).
Representatives of the LNSS project consortium member 9 educational institutions: librarians and professors from Armenia, Belarus and Moldova attended the development activities of eight training modules for librarians.
Training was carried out under the guidance and with the counseling of experienced professionals of the library science: Jerald Cavanagh, Padraig Kirby from Limerick Institute of Technology (Ireland), Gerard Cullen from the Pyramid Group (Germany), Angela Repanovici from Transylvania University (Romania) and Manolis Koukourakis from Crete University (Greece).
With the support of the European partners, conducting the courses, representatives of the nine consortium member universities prepared and presented the strengths and weaknesses of the university libraries of the three countries, as well as developed draft versions of the eight training modules for librarians.
Participants also discussed and developed the draft version of the action plan for the awareness day on the needs of libraries to be organized next year.
Next are the development of the revised and final versions of the modules and organization of the first pilot training at nine universities from Armenia, Moldova and Belarus.
21st Century Libraries
On June 23-24 the Public Administration Academy of the RA hosted the participants of the Program of English for Specific Purposes (ESP) in the framework of Erasmus+ “Library Network Support Services (LNSS): modernizing libraries in Armenia, Moldova and Belarus through library staff development and reforming library services” project. PAARA is the coordinator of the Program, which has started since 2015 is PAARA. Prof. Angela Repanovici (Transylvania University of Brasov) and Dr. Manolis Koukourakis (University of Crete, Greece) conducted the second ESP training in the framework of the mentioned program. Librarians and members of the administrative staff of the PAARA and Yerevan Brusov State University of Languages and Social Sciences took part in the trainings.
After greeting the participants, the PAARA Rector Arsen Lokyan underlined the regular course of the program and its undisputable productivity.
“I am convinced, that the training will be fruitful, and it will provide the participants with rich material and will lead to further meetings” said the Academy rector.
The trainers also greeted the participants and informed about the knowledge and skills that they would provide with during two-day training.
The current Module of “English for Specific Purposes” covers the following issues: Essential management and transferable skills for librarians and library staff, Information Literacy and research skills, Innovative online library services for 21st century librarians, The Electronic library, Access to libraries and society for learners with special needs/disabilities, and Library collection development policies.
It is worth mentioning, that interactive methods used in the training will contribute to gaining as much information and practical skills as possible.
The program will end in final roundtable discussion, and the participants will be given certificates.
English for Specific Purposes (ESP) training in the framework of Erasmus+ “Library Network Support Services (LNSS)
Since 2015 the Public Administration Academy of the RA has pledged itself to supervise the English for Specific Purposes (ESP) training in the framework of Erasmus+ “Library Network Support Services (LNSS): modernizing libraries in Armenia, Moldova and Belarus through library staff development and reforming library services” project. Course of English for Specific Purposes was held on May 19-20. The librarians and administrative staff of the PAARA and Yerevan Brusov State University of Languages and Social Sciences took part in the course. The course was held by the Project representatives Gerard Cullen and Sabrina Hutter.
In order to make the course more effective, the participants were divided into two groups due to their knowledge in English. The conductor of the “beginners” discovered the participants’ knowledge in English. Then he tried to improve their knowledge by a number of exercises, tasks and translations.
The participants of intermediate and advanced group received theoretical skills in writing CV of international standards, in making impressive public speech, and finally, they tried to use their knowledge and skills in practice.
At the end of the two-day course the participants were granted with certificates.
Kick-off meeting of the LNSS Project took place in Romania
March 8-9, 2016 Brasov Transylvania University (Romania) hosted the kick-off meeting of the LNSS project, which was attended by the representatives of the Consortium member institutions. It gave an opportunity to get acquainted with all members of the consortium partner universities, needs of their libraries, with the staff, the opportunities offered by the project and the expectations of the participating universities.
The activities to be realized under the project were discussed, timelines adjusted and requirements for presentation of financial statements clarified. In the near future trainings will be held for library staff and faculty at 9 universities of the three countries – Armenia, Moldova and Belarus on “English for specific needs”. The trainings will be conducted by European partners of the consortium at respective universities in Yerevan, Minsk, Grodno, Brest, Chisinau, and Balti. It will be followed by the training for preparation of training modules in Ireland, at Limerick Institute of Technology. After completion participants of the above mentioned training courses will prepare eight training modules for university librarians, faculty and students.
The meeting was attended by Tereza Khechoyan, Vice-rector for International Relations of the Public Administration Academy of the RA and Gayane Nikoghosyan, Chief Librarian of the scientific and technical library. A detailed description of the Project as well as tasks, timelines and reporting requirements were introduced to the representatives of the consortium member institutions by T. Khechoyan, as the Project coordinator, and M. Salukvadze, the financial manager of the Project, made a thorough consultation on financial documents, their completing order and reporting details.
Needs and expectations of their libraries and library staff from LNSS project were presented by each university of the consortium.
The LNSS project was successfully kicked off and the scheduled activities of the project started.
Participation in the Kick-off meeting of the Erasmus + Grantholder Institutions
Public Administration Academy of the RA is the coordinator of the “Library Network Support Services: modernizing libraries in Armenia, Moldova and Belarus through library staff development and reforming libraries (LNSS)” project implemented within Erasmus + programme.
Out of the 515 applications submitted, 140 have been selected for EU funding, including the application of the Public Administration Academy for LNSS project. The Academy is the first and only coordinating institution in Armenia selected within Capacity Building for Higher Education Programme.
On the 27-28 January, 2016 the kick-off meeting of the 140 Grantholder institutions organized by the EU Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA) was held in Brussels. During the meeting project management, work organization, financial management, report preparation and other issues of the winner projects awarded EU funding were discussed.
Mr. A. Lokyan, Rector of the Public Administration Academy of the RA and Mrs. T. Khechoyan, Vice-rector for International Relations, participated in the event.
The event enabled to have meetings with EACEA representatives, project officers, and representatives of other projects and discuss many issues of common interest.