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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

Jul. 26, 2017

Three iSchool master's students have been selected by the Association of Research Libraries (ARL) Committee on Diversity and Leadership to participate in the Initiative to Recruit a Diverse Workforce (IRDW) as ARL diversity scholars.

Underwritten by ARL member libraries, the IRDW offers numerous financial benefits to program participants as well as leadership development provided through the ARL Annual Leadership Symposium, a formal mentoring program, career placement assistance, and an ARL research library visit. This program reflects the commitment of ARL members to create a diverse research library professional community that will better meet the challenges of changing demographics in higher education and the emphasis on global perspectives in the academy.

The 2017–2019 ARL diversity scholars are: 

Jul. 26, 2017
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Exactly twenty years after starting work as a graduate assistant in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Lynne M. Thomas (MS '99) is returning as the new head of the library.

Thomas has been the curator of rare books and special collections at Northern Illinois University since 2004 and the head of distinctive collections there since 2014. She'll begin her appointment at the library and assume the Juanita J. and Robert E. Simpson Rare Book and Manuscript Library Professorship on September 1.

"One of the things I learned at the U of I is the importance of the concept that rare books are for everyone," Thomas said. "These are important parts of our cultural heritage, and we make history available for everyone in a hands-on fashion that balances...

Jul. 25, 2017
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Thanks to a summer program at the University of Illinois, Melanie Nernberg, an undergraduate student from California, can work with an iSchool faculty member and learn about the graduate school experience. 

The Summer Research Opportunities Program (SROP) brings to campus talented undergraduate students from populations underrepresented in graduate education so they can experience graduate study and research. Students benefit from the opportunity to develop important relationships with faculty and learn from them as well as about the culture and expectations of graduate school. 

"Through this experience, SROP participants gain the insight, validation, and support to apply...

Jul. 13, 2017
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The K-12 LIS licensure program hosted its third annual Summer Getaway: Professional Development for School Librarians from June 12-14 at the School. Over forty Illinois school librarians and iSchool MS students attended this unique professional development opportunity.

Led by school library professionals, each day of the event offered an in-depth session focused on a single, high-demand topic. Participants learned how they can become advocates for their school library programs; address the needs of twenty-first-century learners; and use social media for branding, digital outreach, and instruction.

During the conference, Associate Professor Kate McDowell, Assistant Professor and MS/LIS Program Director Nicole A. Cooke, and Graduate Studies Advisor Karla Lucht facilitated closing sessions based on their research areas. Two closing session recordings are available...

Jul. 5, 2017
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Nicole A. Cooke, assistant professor and MS/LIS program director, has received two grants from the American Library Association (ALA) for her diversity research. The grants, worth $7,500, include the Carnegie Whitney Award and the ALA Diversity Research Grant. 

She received the Carnegie Whitney Award for her project, "The Interracial Books for Children Bulletin: A Bibliography of Diverse Books." The purpose of the project is to compile a bibliography of the books and media reviewed by the Interracial Books for Children Bulletin. 

"With the goal of addressing LIS practitioners and scholars, children's literature scholars, authors, illustrators, publishers, and multicultural literature aficionados, this resource will be used as a teaching and research tool in classrooms and will aid collection development librarians in diversifying their collections," said Cooke.

Cooke and Miriam E. Sweeney (PhD '13), assistant professor in the School of Library and...

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
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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...

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