Can’t afford a new book? Get it for FREE at the library!

Just wanted to link to this fantastic video posted by the Free Range Librarian on the power of libraries in a poor economy.

Go us!

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Course Wrap-up

I really enjoyed all of the learning that I participated in this semester as part of LIS768. While I was familiar with many of the technology tools we used in this class, it was good to look at them anew from the perspective of the library and its users. The collaborative nature of the class, both through our discussions and in our blogging really helped to clarify issues from many points on the technology spectrum.

I think a lot of the learning we had in this class was about pushing people’s boundaries. Does this mean that every library should be Deweyless or have interactive areas like the Augmented Library? Not necessarily. But every library can take steps towards a greater level of user-centered design. Maybe a teen librarian puts up a MySpace page instead of banning MySpace. Maybe instead of banning cell phones, we text users when their books are due. There are a lot of baby steps between Library 1.0 and Library 2.0. Each library has the responsibility to determine where they and their users need to be at this moment, and be ready to re-evaluate those ideas on a regular basis.

I took this class because I became excited about the Web 2.0 technologies that I learned about in LIS753. I’m a person who loves technology and enjoys using it, especially in creative ways. However, I gained from this class not more fun tech tricks, but a better understanding of where libraries should be going, regardless of the technology they use to get there.

I hope to maintain this blog (though I said that at the end of 753) and hope to keep tabs with all of you on how we can continue to grow in this process. Thanks for all your thoughts, ideas and reality checks.

Paper Abstract

In the history of libraries, never before has there been such a demand to create library services for teens. And never before has it been so challenging to reach and attract young people as it is today. The Millennials, as this generation is called are a “cohort of young adults who have grown up with personal computers, cell phones and the internet and are now taking their place in a world where the only constant is rapid change” (Pew Research Center). Trying to reach out to this generation with the same-old library service of top-down policies and red tape will drive them away.

Instead, it’s time to embrace the teachings of Library 2.0 and remake the library for all users, especially young people. According to Sarah Houghton-Jan, “Library 2.0 simply means making your library’s space (virtual and physical) more interactive, collaborative, and driven by community needs” (Houghton-Jan). In order to create library 2.0 for young people, we need to find a way to make the library more interactive, so it will be attractive to teens. Next, we need to figure out how to collaborate with our teen users to keep them coming back. Lastly, we need to determine what teens really need from the library in order to make an impact in their lives and transform teens from problem patrons to lifelong library lovers. By using a variety of sources including experts in the field of teen services, ways to make the library more interactive, collaborative and focused on user needs will be explored.