LI 813 (---) to Male, A Pathfinder
Service, Leadership, Mentorship
Historical Note: I have left this artifact unedited from when I
wrote it in 2012 because I believe that is important to name our historical biases. Many of the resources I
recommend in this artifact contain advice that reinforces
a binary gender system, or other outdated information. The context for this piece is that I was the only openly
transgender student at the university during this time (2012), and lacked access to the resources that shaped my
This pathfinder demonstrates my proficiency in reference and user services as the system I created is user
friendly and demonstrates my ability to synthesize a wide variety of information into one resource.
The topic, transitioning to the male gender and sex, was selected as it is difficult to research due to a
lack of standardized terminology. Coupled with the intense emotions which surround transition locating
reliable resources can be extremely difficult for those who are in that process or those who care about
someone who is trans. My experience transitioning, coupled with the training I received in LI 813 enabled me
to build this pathfinder, bringing all of the best resources I encountered on my personal journey in one
place to provide an easier start for those who will come after me.
Additionally "(----) to Male: A Guide" demonstrates my technological skills. In LI
843 the pdf of this pathfinder was transformed from a long document to a vibrant
website through the use of CSS 3 and HTML 5. While I created the website I
considered how to add and arrange images, develop a site map and page hierarchy,
and run validation checks both on the code and accessibility for those who struggle with disabilities.
The use of technology to repackage information was already present in the LI 813 assignment. During the
early stages of the creation of this artifact I used Microsoft Office, online resources, databases and
print materials to compile the information necessary for someone to transition. The resulting artifact was
bulky. Through use of my web design techniques the bulky pdf was streamlined and the detailed information
is made accessible and user friendly.
Meeting the needs of patrons is a key aspect of a pathfinder. The resources are rarely gathered for a hypothetical
audience, but in response to an immediate need, as is the case with the (----) to Male community. This project also
demonstrates creativity in the types of sources selected. It is difficult to locate authoritative resources about or
for transgender and transsexual individuals. Mentorship is also easily visible as this pathfinder gathered the resources
that I had used or found later in a form that would clear a path for those who will transition after me.
LI 862 Metadata Crosswalk: MARC to Dublin Core
The organization of information goes far beyond understanding how to use an organization system. This crosswalk, a table
which enables metadata (information about a resource) to be transferred from one organization scheme to another
demonstrates my ability to apply my understanding of information to a practical exercise.
By going from a more structured, detail heavy language like MARC to the more fluid and less detailed Dublin Core my
ability to determine what information is critical to locating the resource is clearly displayed.
The "behind the scenes" service of metadata is extremely critical. It is these systems and information about the resources
that make the information searches conducted by patrons and reference staff possible. Additionally there is integrity
demonstrated in the completion of this crosswalk. While information loss was inevitable I took great pains to ensure that
nothing was left out which might compromise or misrepresent the artifact that I was describing.
Copyright © Azariah Liron 2020