When I Fell in Love

By Kati D.  As I sit here reflecting on my career as a librarian, I can clearly remember the moment I fell in love with libraries. When I was 11 years old, I rode my bike every Saturday to the library. I would take a packed lunch and spend the entire day camped out in … Read more

Analytics On Demand Helps Alabama Library Chart the Path Ahead

Analytics On Demand

Sue DeBrecht is Director of the Emmet O’Neal Library in the municipality of Mountain Brook, a wealthy suburb of Birmingham, Alabama with 20,000 residents. Sue loves information, and Analytics On Demand — a data solution that helps libraries quickly and easily learn more about their users and their communities — provides a wealth of it. Emmet O’Neal turned to Analytics On Demand to gain a more granular view of patrons and potential patrons than other sources of demographic data can provide. “We know where we are now, but we need a better idea of where to focus our attention in the next five years,” says Sue.

The library is tightly involved with its community, and is fortunate to have a healthy budget, loyal donors and volunteers, and a library foundation with a $3 million endowment. Still, directors want to make smart budget decisions, and key insights from Analytics On Demand will inform the library’s programming, strategic planning, and marketing.

Read moreAnalytics On Demand Helps Alabama Library Chart the Path Ahead

Keeping the Little Deuce Coupe Running Strong

America has a serious love affair with cars. According to The World Bank, there are 786 motor vehicles per 1,000 people in the US – the highest ratio in the world. The birthplace of mass automobile manufacturing remains its stronghold. And for a large number of car-owners, maintaining and servicing their own vehicle is part of the fun; for others, it’s a necessity.

For patrons looking for do-it-yourself auto repair and maintenance information, you can’t beat the venerable Chilton’s repair manuals. Car-lovers have depended on these sources for dependable, up-to-date information since Kaisers roared down the street. Today auto enthusiasts of all skill levels can access auto repair information in ChiltonLibrary, the continually updated online resource.

Read moreKeeping the Little Deuce Coupe Running Strong

To Change the Way Students Learn, We Must Change Professional Development

By Dan Alpert, Program Director: Equity/Diversity and Professional Learning, SAGE Publications

Each year, scathing critiques of public education flood our newspapers and social media.  It may be an old story, but public school K-12 educators are at a critical point in time this school year.  We are deep into the massive project of implementing rigorous new standards for college and career readiness.  Despite the passage of 60 years since Brown v. Board of Education, 50 years since the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and despite significant shifts in our nation’s demographics, we’ve made little progress closing sizable achievement gaps between our privileged and marginalized student populations.  And the inauguration of new high-stakes assessments, the brainchildren of two interstate consortia – PARCC and Smarter Balanced — will undoubtedly launch a fresh, new wave of dire predictions.

Read moreTo Change the Way Students Learn, We Must Change Professional Development

In Other News: Martin Luther King Jr.

A look at a current news item through the lens of different titles available on GVRL.

By Michelle Eickmeyer

That the marches which fueled the Civil Rights Movement occurred 50 years ago is unbelievable. How can it be 50 years already… and how can it only have been 50 years? Present history will tell us that race relations in the United States are far from equal and the conversation rages on regarding fair treatment and assumptions.

Read moreIn Other News: Martin Luther King Jr.

In Other News: King Abdullah

A look at a current news item through the lens of different titles available on GVRL.

By Michelle Eickmeyer

This week, you get a bonus post. I had nearly finished a post on Martin Luther King Jr when news broke late last night of King Abdullah’s death. Its available, nearly finished, here. Stay tuned for what will surely be an upcoming post on Yemen.

Read moreIn Other News: King Abdullah