A Short Guide to LAUC
HISTORY AND PURPOSE OF LAUC
The Librarians Association of the University of California (LAUC), founded in 1967, is a UC-wide organization of all librarians employed at least half time by the University. Membership is automatic and entails no dues. In 1971, the Association was authorized to use the name of the University, and in 1975, LAUC was formally recognized as an official unit of the University. The formal objectives of LAUC are: To advise the University on professional and governance matters; to make recommendations concerning UC librarians' rights, privileges, and obligations; and to promote full use of UC librarians' professional abilities.
IMPROVING UC LIBRARIES
Perhaps LAUC's most important function is the advice it provides to the systemwide, campus, and library administrations on the best course for the University's libraries. Because the front-line librarians who work most closely with faculty and students in fulfilling the University's educational mission are often leaders in LAUC, the organization is able to convey user needs to senior management. LAUC has provided leadership in such crucial areas as: Cooperative collection development; and resource sharing during a period of retrenchment; the impact of new information technologies on libraries; enhanced bibliographic access to diverse collections and service to diverse users.
The LAUC statewide organization is composed of an Executive Board, including the President, Vice-President/President-Elect, Secretary, immediate Past President, and the chairs of the ten campus divisions. The Executive Board meets by conference call about twelve times each year. Larger assemblies, to which each division sends delegates in proportion to the size of its membership, are held annually in the spring. The assembly hears reports from guest speakers, the President and the chairs of committees; discusses current issues; and debates and votes on resolutions and recommendations.
AD HOC COMMITTEE PROJECTS
LAUC ad hoc committees are formed as needed to explore various aspects of policy, practice, and planning.
LAUC annually administers a research program with funding provided by the Office of the President. Since 1980, over 200 projects have been supported by this systemwide program and over $600,000 has been awarded.
Librarians are academic appointees at the University of California. Academic status confers privileges, rights, and responsibilities on librarians as professional employees whose work is closely related to the teaching and research functions of the University. Self-governance, University support of professional development, and discretionary use of time in the fulfillment of responsibilities reflect this status, based on academic traditions of autonomy and sustained professional growth. Academic status, therefore, includes but is not limited to: The freedom to perform a range of functions within the profession, a choice of avenues for professional development, performance evaluation based on activities relevant to the profession, review by one's peers, and job security as stated in University policies and contracts.
Librarians, like other academic staff, are evaluated for appointment, advancement, and promotion by committees of their peers, elected or appointed at each of the campus divisions. Like faculty, librarians are required to progress through a three-part series, consisting of the ranks of Assistant, Associate, and full Librarian.
last updated: July 2013