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01/08/2018

Homelessness and libraries: an interview with Ryan J. Dowd

Posted by Rob Christopher

It may surprise you to hear that staff at public libraries interact with almost as many homeless individuals as staff at shelters do. But as Ryan J. Dowd, who has spent most of his career as Executive Director of a large homeless shelter near Chicago, observes, "Libraries are one of the few places in a community where everyone — homeless and not homeless — are likely to mix." He advocates for an empathy-driven approach to these individuals in his new book The Librarian's Guide to Homelessness.

You open your book by discussing some of the myths surrounding individuals who are homeless. In your view, which myth is the most pervasive and damaging?

I think there are two...

12/21/2017

Interview: McCook and Bossaller on their updated public librarianship text

Posted by Rob Christopher

For the new third edition of Introduction to Public Librarianship, Kathleen de la Peña McCook decided to bring a new co-author on board, noted public library scholar and advocate Jenny S. Bossaller. In this interview they discuss their collaboration and how the field of public librarianship continues to change.

Name one piece of advice you wish someone had given you when you were new to public librarianship.

Kathleen de la Peña McCook: Be engaged and active in community groups--local history, human rights, the Sierra Club especially.
 
Jenny S. Bossaller: When you work in the library, you become the face of the library to the public. Be professional, and treat everyone who walks in the door (and those who don’t) with dignity.
 
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12/11/2017

What's graphic design got to do with me? Diana K. Wakimoto explains

Posted by Rob Christopher

Diana K. Wakimoto speaks directly to library staff in her new book, and so we wanted to speak directly to her about why graphic design is such a useful set of skills for any librarian regardless of job description.

First off, I can imagine someone saying, “I’m not on the marketing team, I don’t do PR for the library—why do I need to know anything about graphic design?”

Graphic design is so much more than marketing and PR. It's about communicating to the best of our abilities with our patrons in our communities. Graphic design is visual communication. It's about solving problems and providing great service for our communities and all librarians are about that. So whether you're the one creating the flyer and bookmarks or you're the one giving them out to your library patrons, knowing more about graphic design can only help you be a better...

11/30/2017

Interview: Marie R. Kennedy and Cheryl LaGuardia on effectively promoting electronic resources

Posted by Rob Christopher

In this interview, Marie R. Kennedy and Cheryl LaGuardia discuss the new second edition of their ALA Neal-Schuman book Marketing Your Library’s Electronic Resources: A How-To-Do-It Manual for Librarians.

Teaching with Technology @ The FIC; photo by  Richard CawoodThe first edition has been one of our bestsellers. Why did you write a...

11/28/2017

Top tips for a data reference interview

Posted by Rob Christopher

The reference interview - or consultation - is a well established technique used by librarians and information professionals. This helps establish the issues that a researcher wishes to cover. More fundamentally it also defines the kind of relationship a researcher will have with those offering advice. Now that the use and management of research data is so important to academics it has become an important potential element of the reference interview. This extract from The Data Librarian's Handbook shows how it can be used to bridge traditional librarianship and the expertise required by the data librarian.

Established researchers often know what datasets are available in their field of study, or at least the main sources and providers from which to...

10/09/2017

Hilda K. Weisburg on the new AASL Standards

Posted by Rob Christopher

Recipient of the 2016 American Association of School Librarians’ (AASL) Distinguished Service Award, in this post Hilda K. Weisburg explores the six Common Beliefs of the new AASL Standards. Her latest ALA Neal-Schuman book is Leading for School Librarians: There Is No Other Option

Are you ready for the new AASL National School Library Standards for Learners, School Librarians, and School Libraries or are you feeling some trepidation about them?  As a leader, you must get up to speed rapidly so you can tweak and revamp your lessons as necessary.  It is natural to want to cling to what you have known and used since 2007, but stop and think — it’s been ten years.  How much has the world changed since then?  How much have you changed? You – and your students – are doing things you couldn’t possibly have done, or even imagined, then.

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08/30/2017

The No-nonsense Guide to Project Management

Posted by Rob Christopher

Read an exclusive interview with Barbara Allan in which she discusses writing her new book, The No-nonsense Guide to Project Management, and offers advice on the skills needed for both small and larger, complex projects.

 

What research did you do for the No-nonsense Guide to Project Management?

My earlier book on project management was published by Facet in 2004 and this provided a starting point. A lot has changed since then so I carried out a huge amount of online research in the academic and professional literature, as well as searching the websites of library and information services to identify good case studies. In addition, I researched the current professional project...

06/13/2016

Books hot off the press, Meet the Authors at the ALA Store in Orlando

Posted by Rob Christopher

Located just inside the Shuttle Bus Entrance at the Orange County Convention Center, the ALA Store offers products that meet the widest range of your promotional and continuing education/professional development needs—as well as fun gift items. Make sure to carve out some time in your schedule during the conference to stop by and examine the many new and bestselling items available!

ALA Store hours:

  • Friday, June 24            12:00 pm – 5:30 pm
  • Saturday, June 25       8:30 am – 5:00 pm
  • Sunday, June 26          8:30 am – 5:...
09/17/2013

Back-to-School with Coteaching: Reading Comprehension Strategies and Instructional Partnerships

Posted by Rob Christopher

For this guest post we welcome Judi Moreillon, author of several books including the recent ALA Editions title Coteaching Reading Comprehension Strategies in Elementary School Libraries: Maximizing Your Impact.

 

All across the country the new school year is getting underway. As school librarians consider their unique contributions to learning and teaching in their schools this year, they can make time to review and recommit to their role in reading.

The American Association of School Librarian’s published a position statement on the School Librarian’s Role in Reading that notes: “Guiding learners to become engaged and effective users of ideas and information and to appreciate literature...

01/10/2013

Continuing the Conversation: How to Improve Your Library Instruction

Posted by Dan Freeman

We just wrapped up Sarah Steiner’s workshop: How to Improve Your Library Instruction: Assessment in Five Minutes. Below are slides and resources.


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