Friday, June 8, 2012

1 in 3 have no Internet

Nice video from the Gate's Foundation:

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Of Interest to Academic Librarians

Check out the 2012 Top Ten Trends in Academic Libraries:  A Review of the Trends and Issues Affecting Academic Libraries in Higher Education

Saint Mary's TC Library started doing patron-driven acquisition (PDA) for print materials last year. I must say it has been an awesome success thus far. Students love it--we alert them each time we purchase their book, and (anecdotally) I think it has built more community in and out of the library. We are on the cusp of entering into the eBook foray; in my research all the plans we're considering give the PDA eBook option.

We're certainly working on communicating our value to SMU both internally and externally. Our director is meeting more frequently with program directors, we're being intentional about highlighting services we offer, we're entrenched in the new online programs launched this Spring at Saint Mary's (more so than we've ever been with traditional programs--we're even helping with course design), and we're working with our Marketing Department to brand and share ourselves. First steps included easy stuff like having a wiki where we all add positive feedback we receive. That can be used in promotional materials later.

Anyway, I agree with the trends listed here. For those of you tight on time, highlights of the longer article are available at

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Scenarios for the Future of the Book

"ACRL has released a new report, "Futures Thinking for Academic Librarians: Scenarios for the Future of the Book," to help librarians reexamine their assumptions, which may be grounded in the current e-book zeitgeist. Authored by David J. Staley, director of the Harvey Goldberg Center for Excellence in Teaching in the History Department of Ohio State University, the report is a companion to the 2010 report Staley co-authored for ACRL, "Futures Thinking for Academic Librarians: Higher Education in 2025." This new report presents four scenarios, based in part on feedback from academic library directors. It includes scenarios which intentionally favor the continued existence of the printed book as a viable technology, so that academic and research librarians may expand their thinking about the future to include a richer set of environmental conditions."

The report is freely available:

Friday, May 11, 2012

Free Webinar: Made in a Library

"What happens when you take a place that has traditionally been about learning and transform it into a place of doing and making? Find out, when we look at how librarians, teachers, students, faculty and communities are turning their focus to creation—whether providing digital tools for game makers, programmers, musicians and authors, or makerspaces for 3-D printing and other “real-life” projects."

May 15 from 12-2 (central)


Monday, May 7, 2012

Upcoming Webinar: Libraries and the Era of the Learner: A Vision for the Future

"Join us for a discussion exploring lifelong learning as an economic driver in the 21st century and the expanding role of libraries in this "era of the learner." Building on discussions about 21st century skills and workforce development, we’ll hear from futurist Garry Golden on the changing workforce and the role that public libraries can play. We’re excited to take a glimpse into the future and to hear how libraries can identify changes, explore implications and pave the way for learners in the 21st century. This session will build on discussions from a face-to-face convening to be held in April, but will benefit and be of interest to all working in libraries."

Presented by: Garry Golden, Futurist, Forward Elements
May 16, 2012
Start time: 2:00 Eastern / 11:00 Pacific

For a preview, see A Visitor From the Future

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Facing the Future...

Two readings of interest:

1. Think Like A Startup: a white paper to inspire library entrepreneurialism by Associate Dean Brian Mathews at Virginia Tech. He self published this work (including hiring a graphic designer) and it received 10,000 downloads in the first two weeks.

"In concise terms: startups are organizations dedicated to creating something new under conditions of extreme uncertainty. This sounds exactly like an academic library to me. Not only are we trying to survive, but we’re also trying to transform our organizations into a viable service for 21st century scholars and learners."

2. 10 Changes to Expect from the Library of the Future
Not much new here but an interesting distillation of what might be in the air...or at least what the "staff writers" think about libraries.

Have you read either of these? Any thoughts? Do they help us with the future?

Monday, April 23, 2012

Libraries: Creating a Culture of Learning

"When a student struggles in school, it’s often assumed that the teachers, school system and/or student are responsible. However, through our research at CEHD we’ve discovered that family and community are primary factors in ensuring success and creating a culture of learning."

"The most effective way to encourage students to succeed in school is to build a strong foundation and culture of learning outside of the school, which starts by instilling a love of learning within parents."

"We engage libraries, employment centers, community colleges, businesses, and other institutions, to form a local network of learning between families and communities."

Learn more: