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RELATED RESEARCH PROJECTS

mapping_info_access

Mapping Information Access is a collaborative academic research project to study and understand the landscape of information access and availability in public schools and libraries in the United States.

There are more than 18,000 public school districts and more than 9,000 public library systems in the US. Each of these institutions is as a central node of information access for the communities they serve. Administrators must balance ideals of free speech and information with concerns about social norms, age-appropriateness, and budgets. These decisions then shape the flow of information to students, patrons, and other constituents. Yet the contours of this flow are not well understood. There exists no comprehensive record of the sorts of challenges faced, or decisions made,...

IN THE NEWS

Jun. 19, 2017
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The American Library Association (ALA) will hold its 2017 Annual Conference and Exhibition in Chicago on June 22-27. The theme of the conference is "Transforming Our Libraries, Ourselves."

Visit with the iSchool at Booth #4742 in the Exhibit Hall from June 23-26. For a complimentary pass, contact the ischool-advancement [at] illinois.edu (iSchool Advancement Office). Passes are offered to alumni, current students, prospective students, and their guests. Please note that this is an exhibits-only pass; it will not allow access to any of the workshops or conference sessions.

Alumni and students are invited to attend the...

May. 31, 2017
schlipf-book

Adjunct Professor Fred Schlipf and iSchool alumnus John Moorman (PhD '03) drew upon their wealth of experience working in libraries when writing The Practical Handbook of Library Architecture, which will be available this fall from ALA Editions. The authors, both retired directors of public libraries, have consulted and taught about library building design, presented on the subject at conferences, and served on a variety of library committees.

The handbook details the overarching rules of functional library design, which include keeping space flexible, designing for security, providing bright but low-glare lighting, making library users comfortable, keeping things simple, planning for growth, and never losing control over the building. The vocabulary list in the handbook began as a handout from the how-to-do-it course on library buildings that Schlipf taught at the iSchool for many years.
 
"John and I have been presenting conference programs on library...

May. 11, 2017
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The App Authors project has been underway for over a year now, bringing kids and technology together to create apps through a child-centered curriculum at Kenwood Elementary and the Douglass Branch of the Champaign Public Library. The program, developed by the iSchool's Center for Children's Books (CCB), provides kids with varying levels of experience the opportunity to develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills. App Authors is now expanding its reach, working at sites in Maryland and Oregon as well as remaining in Champaign. 

"We're excited about expanding our reach this year," said Deborah Stevenson, PI of the project and director of the CCB. "Our partnerships with the Frederick County Public Libraries in Maryland and the...

Apr. 19, 2017

Register for formal interviews with the Seattle Public Library.

Apr. 18, 2017
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Kafi D. Kumasi will deliver the 2017 Gryphon Lecture on Friday, April 28, at the iSchool. Sponsored annually by The Center for Children's Books (CCB), the lecture features a leading scholar in the field of youth and literature, media, and culture. It is free and open to the campus and public.

In "Check the Rhyme: Harnessing Hip Hop’s Enduring Literacies with Teens Through Libraries," Kumasi will address the following:

Hip Hop has become a worldwide cultural and commercial phenomenon that significantly shapes the way young people view and interact in the world. At a time when Black and Latino male youth are being hyper-criminalized and incarcerated at high rates in the U.S., it is important to remember the...

Mar. 1, 2017

Professor Alistair Black and doctoral student Steven Witt discussed their research at the Penn Libraries symposium, The Science of Information, 1870-1945: The Universalization of Knowledge in a Utopian Age, which was held February 23-25 at the University of Pennsylvania and the Beckman Center at the Chemical Heritage Foundation in Philadelphia. 

Black presented, "'All information flows toward it, or returns to it in a form worked up into shape': The Intelligence Branch and Libraries of the British War Office, 1873-1914."

Abstract: Intelligence has always been an aspect of organized warfare. It was not until the 1873, however, that the British Army effectively recognized this formally by establishing a dedicated division, under the auspices of the War Office, named the "Intelligence Branch," whose work was to be supported by collections of printed materials in...

Feb. 28, 2017
Doctoral student Melissa Hahn helps a Kenwood Elementary School student build an app. (Photo by L. Brian Stauffer)

Students at Kenwood Elementary School in Champaign are building their own phone apps. Some hope their apps will help solve big problems, such as curbing pollution or money management. Others will let users fight monsters that are trying to take over the world, or let users design a look for their nails.

Through an after-school program called App Authors, the students are getting an idea of what the career of a software designer might be like, as well as gaining experience in coding and learning to work as a team to solve problems.

The program was designed by researchers at the iSchool. The goal is to get students – especially those with limited access to technology...

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