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RELATED RESEARCH PROJECTS

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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

May. 1, 2018
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Assistant Professor and MS/LIS Program Director Nicole A. Cooke will give the keynote address at the Northeast Ohio Regional Library System's Critical Conversations Mini-conference, Tolerance is Not Enough: Libraries Respond to Hate, which will be held on May 3 in Twinsburg, Ohio. The interactive event will focus on helping library staff assess their own cultural identities and biases and on looking at how these biases impact service.

Cooke's presentation, and the theme of the conference, are based on the column she wrote for Library Journal, which was among its most popular pieces in 2017. In her talk, "Tolerance is Not Enough: Striving Towards a Critical and Proactive LIS Practice," she will discuss the need for library professionals to celebrate—not just...

Apr. 29, 2018

If you work in a library and are interested in meeting other librarians and staff, please join us at this professional networking event. We ask that you consider some ice-breaker questions in advance. Either: What are you glad you learned in library school? or What do you wish you'd learned in library school? We aim to provide a space  for central Illinois residents and visitors who support the work of libraries to meet colleagues in the field and have productive conversations about our challenges and ideas.

The iSchool will provide tasty snacks and the venue will have a cash bar for your convenience. 

Apr. 4, 2018
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As participation in library publishing grows, the development of a strong evidence base to inform best practices and demonstrate impact is essential. To encourage research and theoretical work about library publishing services, the Library Publishing Coalition (LPC) gives an annual Award for Outstanding Scholarship in Library Publishing. The award recognizes significant and timely contributions to library publishing theory and practice.

The LPC Research Committee is delighted to announce that this year's award recipient is Daniel G. Tracy (MS '12), information sciences and digital humanities librarian at the iSchool and assistant professor at the University Library, for his article, "Libraries as Content Producers: How Library Publishing Services Address the Reading Experience." The work is an excellent discussion of an important and timely issue. With the growing interest in nascent...

Mar. 27, 2018

Doctoral candidate Emily Lawrence will present their research at the 2018 Popular Culture Association National Conference, which will be held March 28-31 in Indianapolis. Lawrence will give the talk, "Promoting Romance Reading and Improving Taste," during the Libraries, Archives & Museum area's "Embracing Scorned Literature" session.

According to Lawrence, objections to taste elevation are woven throughout the practical literature of contemporary Readers' Advisory (RA), the core library service dedicated to helping library patrons select leisure reading materials. Their talk will examine taste elevation and the romance genre.

"Do recent efforts to get library patrons reading popular romance constitute an instance of taste elevation? An affirmative answer may at first seem counterintuitive, since the romance genre is both profoundly popular and consistently denigrated," said Lawrence.

"Drawing on Hume's account of the ideal critic, I argue that good taste...

Feb. 27, 2018
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Senior Lecturer Maria Bonn will discuss scholarly communication at The Collective, an annual gathering of librarians, archivists, and library staff at academic libraries. The 2018 Collective, which will take place from February 28-March 1 in Knoxville, Tennessee, will center around the theme, "The Library as Test Kitchen," and feature a "test kitchen environment" where participants can "try out 'recipes' for next generation librarianship."

Bonn will present "Soup from a Stone: Collective Development of Open Educational Resources that Welcome Undderrepresented Voices to Scholarly Communication" with Josh Bolick, scholarly communication librarian at the University of Kansas Libraries, and William Cross, director of the Copyright & Digital Scholarship Center at North Carolina State University (NCSU) Libraries.

Communication is about community and collaboration. Here we ask our...

Feb. 22, 2018
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Master's student Natalie Leoni is the winner of this year's Graduate Student Exhibit Contest and the C. Barbara Mueller Award for Excellence in Exhibition Design, sponsored by the University of Illinois Library. Her exhibit, "Mapping Fiction," showcases holdings from the University Library's collections, displaying literary maps from books such as Winnie-the-Pooh and The Hobbit. The exhibit highlights how maps like these were created and disseminated.

According to Leoni, the inspiration for her exhibit came from a field trip taken by her History of the Book class last semester. 

"Our class went to the Maps Library, where Jenny Johnson had laid out several interesting maps for us to examine. I was drawn to a book that was devoted to the galactic maps of Star Trek. It made me wonder...

Feb. 6, 2018
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iSchool master's student Lisa Morrison won the award for best paper at BOBCATSSS 2018, which was held in Riga, Latvia, from January 24-26. The BOBCATSSS Symposium is organized each year by library and information science students from European universities who plan and implement both the content and the management of the conference as a part of their studies.

Morrison coauthored the paper, "Reading Data - The Missing Literacy from LIS Education," with Associate Professor Terry L. Weech. 

"The paper analyzes the syllabi from required courses in three LIS programs, and it argues for required courses to include more data literacy instruction to ensure that future librarians have the skills they will need regardless of the type of...

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