Austin Public Library, Dozens of Partners Work toward Digital Empowerment

Patti Fowler, Regional Library Branch Manager; Sue Soy, Development Administrator; John Speirs, Program Coordinator Digital Inclusion, Austin Public Library
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Published: 23 August 2016
Austin Public Library, Dozens of Partners Work toward Digital Empowerment

Austin Public Library has long been a leader in providing public access to information through its 23 locations. But a recent partnership opportunity called DECA is magnifying efforts across the community to ensure that every Austin resident has the opportunity to be fully engaged in our digital society and is comfortable using digital and communications technologies. Working with the City of Austin Office of Telecommunications & Regulatory Affairs, Austin Free-Net and nearly 80 community stakeholder groups who have adopted the name Digital Empowerment Community of Austin (DECA), the Austin Public Library is part of a plan to strategically expand services... Read more

WebJunction Experience: Blended Learning Strengthens Library Practice

Liz Morris
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Published: 22 August 2016
WebJunction Experience: Blended Learning Strengthens Library Practice

How would you complete this sentence? "I like my online learning to be ____." WebJunction users consistently use adjectives like "relevant," "hiqh-quality," and "convenient" to describe their online learning priorities, and we love to design and deliver resources to meet those needs.

My colleagues have written elsewhere about our fantastic free webinars and the inspiring self-paced courses in our free course catalog. Supercharged Storytimes is a recently completed program offered via WebJunction that highlights our expertise in providing another type of learning opportunity: blended-learning. Blended learning is central to many of our long-term programs that engage cohorts of learners over... Read more

Library Access for All Students: Stories from Five ConnectED Libraries

Erin M. Schadt
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Published: 18 August 2016
Library Access for All Students: Stories from Five ConnectED Libraries

In April 2015, President Barack Obama announced the ConnectED Library Challenge, an effort to "put a library card in the hand of every student," and in January 2016 the White House hosted a convening of representatives from about 50 of the 60 communities that accepted the ConnectED Library Challenge to strategize and celebrate.

We were curious to hear how the ConnectED challenge went for these libraries and to share their experience and advice more broadly for libraries considering expanding public library access to students.

We contacted five library systems that participated in the ConnectEd challenge and were astounded by the... Read more

Social Library, Volume 65

Jennifer Peterson
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Published: 16 August 2016
Social Library, Volume 65

In this latest edition of the Social Library we've highlighted a handful of libraries who are creating a stage for karaoke crooners, two libraries who are supporting Harry Potter fandom, one who is connecting locals to historic bars and breweries, and a few more who are fanning the Olympic flame. Whether aligning with current events, passing fads or timeless staples, libraries around the world are connecting with their communities in meaningful and entertaining ways. If you'd like to see your library featured in the Social Library series, please let us know via social@webjunction.org or find us on Facebook.

Burlington... Read more

Posted In: Social Library

WebJunction Experience: Self-paced Courses

Kathleen Gesinger
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Published: 15 August 2016
WebJunction Experience: Self-paced Courses

As much as libraries are about information, they are just as much about people. Interacting with lots and lots of people. Is it any surprise that the two most-viewed self-paced courses in the WebJunction Course Catalog are Dealing with Angry Patrons and Extreme Customer Service, Every Time? It gives us hope that, even though there are a number of frustrated or angry patrons, there are literally thousands of library staff actively looking to better serve those patrons. Library staff are finding ways to diffuse challenging interactions and get to the root of someone's information need, even if that need is... Read more

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