Bring All the Colors of the Rainbow to Your Collection

Posted  on June 7, 2016

By Liz Mason, Vice President, Product, Gale

Searching for an “unparalleled assemblage of newsletters, newspapers, and periodicals by, for, and about gays and lesbians?” Archives of Human Sexuality and Identity, Part 1: LGBTQ History and Culture since 1940 brings together approximately 1.5 million pages of primary sources on social, political, health, and legal issues impacting LGBTQ communities around the world. Rare and unique content from microfilm, newsletters, organizational papers, government documents, manuscripts, pamphlets, and other types of primary sources sheds light on the gay rights movement, activism, the HIV/AIDS crisis, and more.

LGBTQ issues were at the forefront of the news in 2015. A major U.S. Supreme Court ruling on same-sex marriage, high-profile transgender celebrity appearances, and many related stories dominated social news. Many media have declared the Rainbow Revolution in full effect. And while LGBTQ resources have been published for many years (the USC library began their collection in 1952), access to materials has been limited and not broadly publicized. In fact, libraries with significant LGBTQ collections remain small in number.

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Understanding Community Goals Leads to Success for Libraries and Communities – A post from the 2016 Library of the Year

By Leah Sewell, Communications Editor, Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library

Have you ever been on the other line of a survey call? I haven’t, personally, but I’ve often wondered if I would be a willing participant. Perhaps in the midst of a particularly juicy book, soaking up one-on-one time with my fast-growing 9-year-old or closely watching a new recipe simmer, what would compel me to answer the phone, but also to converse with a researcher for an indeterminate spell? Well, for one thing, I’d pretty much drop everything and let dinner burn to gab with any stranger, on the phone or otherwise, when the topic is libraries.

You see, in my career as the Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library’s Communication Editor, I am enamored with the “public” part of the public library. How does the public feel about our services? How will they react to a minor or a major change? How can we woo them, engage them, help them feel a part the community through literacy and learning, and subsequently change their lives for the better?

My library is focused on the public and the public good. It’s asking the right questions, discovering people’s goals and needs and assisting them so they can reach them. Ultimately, it’s about making a difference in the community by working with our fellow citizens to make their lives better. That’s a good chunk of the reason why we’re the Library Journal / Gale, a part Cengage Learning 2016 Library of the Year. We have our ears to the ground.

When the 2016 Pew Research Center report, Libraries at the Crossroads, was released in September 2015, I wondered about the people on the other end of those cell phones and land lines. Those individuals that Pew cites variously as “a share of Americans” or “a majority of Americans,” or “low-income Americans” are real individuals with busy lives, loved ones and their own dinners to prepare. Yet, they all sat a spell to gab about libraries.

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Why Advocacy Matters for Public Libraries

Posted on May 31, 2016

By Rhonda Sewell 

Long gone is the notion of public libraries lingering in the shadows and doing little to advocate their value to their communities and promote their many offerings, programs, and activities. Advocacy and unapologetic promotion of our transformative systems is now a major priority. Such ideas hold a sacred place in our discussions surrounding public service, strategic goals, funding, construction, marketing, and digital implementation for libraries. Even the Twittersphere of endless hashtags has transitioned from reading sentiments to action items and rallying statements such as #LibrariesMatter, #LibrariesTransform, and #SaveOurLibraries.

Because doing more with less is a reality for public libraries, especially as competition for funding sources and customer demands increases, advocacy matters now more than ever.  “Advocacy, the process of acting on behalf of the public library to increase public funds and ensure that it has the resources needed to be up to date, is critical to the success of libraries,” states the Public Library Association (PLA)[i].

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Huddle Up Your Sports Enthusiasts

Posted May 23, 2016

Join the 2016 Summer Reading Program
Are you ready for the swarm of kids eager to learn about today’s most admired sports and athletes? 2016 Summer Reading Program is upon us, and learning shouldn’t stop when classes are out for the summer. Keep your library’s school-aged users engaged and on track with fun and authoritative eBooks from Gale.

From DK and Britannica Digital Learning to ABDO Publishing and more, young learners will have better access to your sports resources with the ability to save content to Google Drive for later use. 

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Worldmark Global Health and Medicine Issues:

a “Comprehensive” and “Informative” Resource

Posted on May 20, 2016

Searching for “very useful” information on global health and medicine issues in the modern world?  Worldmark Global Health and Medicine Issues, 1st Edition addresses health and medicine topics relevant to everyone’s lives across the globe. Organized alphabetically, the encyclopedia gives readers easy access to authoritative information on various topics.

This article was published in Booklist‘s May 15, 2016 issue; by Barbara Bibel. Read what she had to say!

CONTENT With the speed of modern travel and the global connections of commerce and industry, health issues quickly become international. This new encyclopedia does an excellent job of placing health and medical problems within social, political, and economic contexts. Using primary source documents, photographs, charts, and graphs to supplement the text, the book provides a brief but comprehensive overview of 90
topics affecting world health.

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Data-Driven Decision Making Ideally Locates New Library Construction

Posted on May 9, 2016

When Dedham Public Library realized the time had come to replace both its 19th century main library and early 20th century branch, the primary question was, where is the best place to construct a new library to meet the needs of our 21st century patrons?

A professional librarian with more than four decades of experience in public and academic libraries was called upon to help answer the question. Mary Ann Tricarico, BA, MLS, MA, DA, began researching, tabulating and analyzing information to create a strategic planning document to optimally locate the new construction. “All my career I’ve been involved in answering complex questions about communities, patron populations, borrowing patterns and usage data – all hand- calculated and hand-tabulated,” she says, noting that it’s an expensive and time- consuming activity.

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The Biggest Large Print Myths Busted!

Thorndike Large Print Books Same Size!

Spoiler Alert: The large print format offers benefits for people under the age of 60 with perfectly good eyesight.

Have you ever been so good at something you’ve found yourself pigeonholed? Being typecast can feel like a mixed blessing—your claim to fame shines bright, creating the shadow in which your other great qualities hide. If large print books were people, they would feel this acutely.

No doubt, large print books are a well-known solution for visually impaired readers, and those readers are typically seniors. Unfortunately for large print, being so good at solving this one problem for this one audience has led to a narrow, and sometimes inaccurate view of the usefulness of the format overall.

We’d love to enlist the expert MythBusters Adam Savage and Jamie Hyneman to explore the issue in detail, but if you’ve ever seen the Discovery Channel show, you know their mythbusting process tends to involve blowing things up, and we’d hate to see our beloved books so abused.

So, without the pyrotechnics, here are the biggest large print myths: BUSTED!

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InfoTrac: Environmental Studies and Policy: A “Solid” and “Viable” Collection

Searching for a “solid” resource of “considerable substance” to answer inquiries about environmental concerns? Your search ends here with the InfoTrac: Environmental Studies and Policy Collection, featuring over 5.4 million articles and “more searching flexibility than that of most platforms.” Engage and support students with an easily searchable, mobile-responsive design and integrated Google Apps for Education tools.

Read a review from Library Journal, April, 2016

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Help Yourself! Self-Help Books on GVRL

Posted on March 31, 2016

Originally posted in February 2016 by Library Journal

It can be hard to maintain a positive outlook and self image in a world that places so much emphasis on material wealth and physical beauty rather than how we feel and think. We underestimate the importance of learning to love ourselves as we are rather than the way society tells us we should be. The right self-help books can and do provide a wealth of information to help you on your journey to understanding and improving yourself on your own terms. Gale Virtual Reference Library (GVRL) provides a collection of insightful guides to help you meet your goals and reach your full potential.

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Give Your Job Search a Boost Using GVRL

Posted on March 24, 2016

Originally posted in November 2015 by Henrietta Verma of Library Journal

Job seekers are some of your library’s most frequent users. They all seek the same goal—satisfying employment, quickly—but they have varying skills, educational levels, and different needs. One may need a part time job while his children are at school, for example, while another may be seeking leads on a high-level corporate position. Still others will be looking for internships and volunteer work that will enhance their résumé while they seek paying work. Among the thousands of books available on GVRL are many for those seeking a new job or a career change. See below for links to just a few of the relevant titles.

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