I stopped with the MSc Digital Libraries course last week and I will explain why. Because some fellow students have read this message on Twitter or Facebook and were asking about an explanation, this post is in English.
I wanted to participate in the course for several reasons:
– Learning new things about digital libraries, which is also the focus of my day-to-day work;
– Exchange of ideas, experiences and thought with teachers and students, for me one of the most important items;
– The title MSc which for me is only a side effect of the whole study.
Before the residential period I was very enthusiast and eager to participate in both residential periods in October and in February. But after the first residential period in October (for the first time ever after going to a course, conference or something alike) I have lost my enthusiasm and motivation:
– The number of active participants for the whole course is very low;
– I was disappointed to see that about halve of the participants in the residential period were exchange students;
– The level of experience and knowledge of (digital) libraries among the participants was not as high I as expected it to be;
– During the residential period I found out that the whole course would take me 4 instead of 2 years because of the distance education.
I had expected that during but certainly after the residential period there would be much more interaction and collaboration between students (and perhaps teachers).
So during the Christmas holidays I had to think things over. I was not considering joining the residential period in February and I for myself had to decide whether or not I would continue the course.
I am still reading many articles, blogs etc. about digital libraries, I can go to conferences, so I keep up with all the things concerning (digital) libraries. As far as I can see now, the main reason for me to continue the course would be to study for the MSc title and I am (at this moment) not convinced that studying 4 years is worth it just for a title.
After discussing my thoughts with the professor at Boras, I took the decision to stop. She mentioned many items to convince me to continue the courses; new students will be allowed to join, it will be possible to speed of the course so it will be possible to finish in less then 4 years, new teachers who I haven’t met yet, will be interesting conversation partners etc.
And now… I feel reliefed that I took the decision. No regrets (so far). I can still recommend the course to librarians who do not work fulltime and have not so much experience yet.