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LITA ALA Annual Precon: Islandora for Managers

Mon, 2016-04-25 12:44

Learn about the open source digital repository, Islandora, from experts, in this afternoon of diving into the framework.

Islandora for Managers: Open Source Digital Repository Training
Friday June 24, 2016, 1:00 – 4:00 pm
Presenters: Erin Tripp, Business Development Manager at discoverygarden inc. and Stephen Perkins, Managing Member of Infoset Digital Publishing

Register for ALA Annual and Discover Ticketed Events

This Islandora for Managers workshop will empower participants to manage digital content in an open source, standards-based, and interoperable repository framework. Islandora combines Drupal, Fedora Commons and Solr software together with additional open source applications. The framework delivers easy-to-configure tools to expose and preserve all types of digital content. The Islandora for Managers workshop will provide an overview of the Islandora software and open source community. It will also feature an interactive ‘how to’ guide for ingesting various types of content, setting permissions, metadata management, configuring discovery, managing embargoes and much more. Participants can choose to follow along using a virtual machine or an online Islandora sandbox.

Erin Tripp

Erin Tripp is currently the Business Development Manager at discoverygarden inc. Since 2011, Erin’s been involved in the Islandora project; a community supported framework of open source technologies for digital repositories. In that time, Erin’s been involved in more than 40 different Islandora projects ranging from consulting, custom development, and data migrations. Prior to coming to discoverygarden inc., Erin graduated from the University of King’s College (BJH), worked as a broadcast journalist with CTV Globemedia, and graduated from the Dalhousie University School of Information Management (MLIS) where she won the Outstanding Service Award in 2011.

Stephen Perkins

Stephen Perkins, an official agent and consultant of discoverygarden, is Managing Member of Infoset Digital Publishing. Infoset provides content and technology solutions for institutions, publishers, and businesses. Stephen has more than 20 years experience directing small-to-medium scale IT projects, specializing in digital asset management solutions for the Humanities. He has extensive experience in architecting solutions for cultural heritage institutions, reference publishers, and documentary editing projects.

More LITA Preconferences at ALA Annual
Friday June 24, 2016, 1:00 – 4:00 pm

  • Digital Privacy and Security: Keeping You And Your Library Safe and Secure In A Post-Snowden World
  • Technology Tools and Transforming Librarianship

Registration Information

Register for the 2016 ALA Annual Conference in Orlando FL

Discover Ticketed Events

Questions or Comments?

For all other questions or comments related to the preconference, contact LITA at (312) 280-4269 or Mark Beatty,

Categories: Library News

Transmission #2

Mon, 2016-04-18 12:27

Welcome back to Begin Transmission, the biweekly vlog interview series. Joining me for today’s discussion is none other than Brianna Marshall, our fearless leader here at the LITA Blog. Remember to follow her on Twitter @notsosternlib.


Begin Transmission will return May 2nd! Stay tuned.

Categories: Library News

A Linked Data Journey: Beyond the Honeymoon Phase

Fri, 2016-04-15 14:16

Image courtesy of Grant MacDonald under a CC BY-NC 2.0 license.


I feel that this series is becoming a little long in the tooth. As such, this will be my last post in the series. This series will be aggregated under the following tag: linked data journey.

After spending a good amount of time playing with RDF technologies, reading authoritative literature, and engaging with other linked data professionals and enthusiasts, I have come to the conclusion that linked data, as with any other technology, isn’t perfect. The honeymoon phase is over! In this post I hope to present a high-level, pragmatic assessment of linked data. I will begin by detailing the main strengths of RDF technologies. Next I will note some of the primary challenges that come with RDF. Finally, I will give my thoughts on how the Library/Archives/Museum (LAM) community should move forward to make Linked Open Data a reality in our environment.


Modularity. Modularity is a huge advantage RDF modeling has over modeling in other technologies such as XML, relational databases, etc. First, you’re not bound to a single vocabulary, such as Dublin Core, meaning you can describe a single resource using multiple descriptive standards (Dublin Core, MODS, Bibframe). Second, you can extend existing vocabularies. Maybe Dublin Core is perfect for your needs, except you need a more specific “date”. Well, you can create a more specific “date” term and assign it as a sub-property of DC:date. Third, you can say anything about anything: RDF is self-describing. This means that not only can you describe resources, you can describe existing and new vocabularies, as well as create complex versioning data for vocabularies and controlled terms (see this ASIST webinar). Finally, with SPARQL and reasoning, you can perform metadata cross-walking from one vocabulary to another without the need for technologies such as XSLT. Of course, this approach has its limits (e.g. you can’t cross-walk a broader term to a specific term).

Linking. Linking data is the biggest selling point of RDF. The ability to link data is great for the LAM community, because we’re able to link our respective institutions’ data together without the need for cross-referencing. Eventually, when there’s enough linked data in the LAM community, it will be a way for us to link our data together across institutions, forming a web of knowledge.


Identifiers. Unique Resource Identifiers (URIs) are double-edged swords when it comes to RDF. URIs help us uniquely identify every resource we describe, making it possible to link resources together. They also make it much less complicated to aggregate data from multiple data providers. However, creating a URI for every resource and maintaining stables URIs (which I think will be a requirement if we’re going to pull this off) can be cumbersome for a data provider, as well as rather costly.

Duplication. I have been dreaming of the day when we could just link our data together across repositories, meaning we wouldn’t need to ingest external data into our local repositories. This would relieve the duplication challenges we currently face. Well, we’re going to have to wait a little longer. While there are mechanisms out there that could tackle the problem of data duplication, they are unreliable. For example, with SPARQL you can run what is called a “federated query”. A federated query queries multiple SPARQL endpoints, which presents the potential of de-duplicating data by accessing the data from its original source. However, I’ve been told by linked data practitioners that public SPARQL endpoints are delicate and can crash when too much stress is exerted on them. Public SPARQL endpoints and federated querying are great for individuals doing research and small-scale querying; not-so-much for robust, large-scale data access. For now, best practice is still to ingest external data into local repositories.

Moving forward

Over the past few years I have dedicated a fair amount of research time developing my knowledge of linked data. During this time I have formed some thoughts for moving forward with linked data in the LAM community. These thoughts are my own and should be compared to others’ opinions and recommendations.

Consortia-level data models. Being able to fuse vocabularies together for resource description is amazing. However, it brings a new level of complexity to data sharing. One institution might use DC:title, DC:date, and schema:creator. Another institution might use schema:name (DC: title equivalent), DC:date, and DC:creator. Even though both institutions are pulling from the same vocabularies, they’re using different terms. This poses a problem when trying to aggregate data from both institutions. I still see consortia such as the Open Archives Initiative forming their own requirements for data sharing. This can be seen now in the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) and Europeana data models (here and here, respectively).

LD best practices. Linked data in the LAM community is in the “wild west” stages of development. We’re experimenting, researching, presenting primers to RDF, etc. However, RDF and linked data has been around for a while (a public draft of RDF was presented in 1997, seen here). As such, the larger linked data and semantic web community has formed established best practices for creating RDF data models and linked data. In order to seamlessly integrate into the larger community we will need to adopt and adhere to these best practices.

Linked Open Data. Linked data is not inherently “open”, meaning data providers have to make the effort to put the “open” in Linked Open Data. To maximize linked data, and to follow the “open” movement in libraries, I feel there needs to be an emphasis on data providers publishing completely open and accessible data, regardless of format and publishing strategy.


Linked data is the future of data in the LAM community. It’s not perfect, but it is an upgrade to existing technologies and will help the LAM community promote open and shared data.

I hope you enjoyed this series. I encourage you to venture forward; start experimenting with linked data if you haven’t. There are plenty of resources out there on the topic. As always, I’d like to hear your thoughts, and please feel free to reach out to me in the comments below or through twitter. Until next time.

Categories: Library News

LITA ALA Annual Precon: Digital Privacy

Thu, 2016-04-14 12:47

Don’t miss these amazing speakers at this important LITA preconference to the ALA Annual 2016 conference in Orlando FL.

Digital Privacy and Security: Keeping You And Your Library Safe and Secure In A Post-Snowden World
Friday June 24, 2016, 1:00 – 4:00 pm
Presenters: Blake Carver, LYRASIS and Jessamyn West, Library Technologist at Open Library

Register for ALA Annual and Discover Ticketed Events

Learn strategies on how to make you, your librarians and your patrons more secure & private in a world of ubiquitous digital surveillance and criminal hacking. We’ll teach tools that keep your data safe inside of the library and out — how to secure your library network environment, website, and public PCs, as well as tools and tips you can teach to patrons in computer classes and one-on-one tech sessions. We’ll tackle security myths, passwords, tracking, malware, and more, covering a range of tools from basic to advanced, making this session ideal for any library staff.

Jessamyn West

Jessamyn West is a librarian and technologist living in rural Vermont. She studies and writes about the digital divide and solves technology problems for schools and libraries. Jessamyn has been speaking on the intersection of libraries, technology and politics since 2003. Check out her long running professional blog

Jessamyn has given presentations, workshops, keynotes and all-day sessions on technology and library topics across North America and Australia. She has been speaking and writing on the intersection of libraries and technology for over a decade. A few of her favorite topics include: Copyright and fair use; Free culture and creative commons; and the Digital divide. She is the author of Without a Net: Librarians Bridging the Digital Divide, and has written the Practical Technology column for Computers in Libraries magazine since 2008.

See more information about Jessamyn at:

Blake Carver

Blake Carver is the guy behind LISNews, LISWire & LISHost. Blake was one of the first librarian bloggers (he created LISNews in 1999) and is a member of Library Journal’s first Movers & Shakers cohort. He has worked as a web librarian, a college instructor, and a programmer at a startup. He is currently the Senior Systems Administrator for LYRASIS Technology Services where he manages the servers and infrastructure that support their products and services.

Blake has presented widely at professional conferences talking about open source systems, Drupal, WordPress and IT Security For Libraries.

See more information about Blake at:

More LITA Preconferences at ALA Annual
Friday June 24, 2016, 1:00 – 4:00 pm

  • Islandora for Managers: Open Source Digital Repository Training
  • Technology Tools and Transforming Librarianship

Registration Information

Register for the 2016 ALA Annual Conference in Orlando FL

Discover Ticketed Events

Questions or Comments?

For all other questions or comments related to the preconference, contact LITA at (312) 280-4269 or Mark Beatty,

Categories: Library News

Jobs in Information Technology: April 13, 2016

Wed, 2016-04-13 14:58

New vacancy listings are posted weekly on Wednesday at approximately 12 noon Central Time. They appear under New This Week and under the appropriate regional listing. Postings remain on the LITA Job Site for a minimum of four weeks.

New This Week

Qualcomm, Inc., Content Integration Librarian, San Diego, CA

Multnomah County Library, Front End Drupal Web Developer, Portland, OR

City of Virginia Beach Library Department, Librarian I/Web Specialist #7509, Virginia Beach, VA

Visit the LITA Job Site for more available jobs and for information on submitting a job posting.

Categories: Library News

Creating a Technology Needs Pyramid

Wed, 2016-04-13 08:00

Technology Training in Libraries” by Sarah Houghton has become my bible. It was published as part of LITA’s Tech Set series back in 2010 and acts as a no-nonsense guide to technology training for librarians. Before I started my current position, implementing a technology training model seemed easy enough, but I’ve found that there are many layers, including (but certainly not limited to) things like curriculum development, scheduling, learning styles, generational differences, staff buy-in, and assessment. It’s a prickly pear and one of the biggest challenges I’ve faced as a professional librarian.

After several months of training attempts I took a step back after finding inspiration in the bible. In her chapter on planning, Houghton discusses the idea of developing a Technology Needs Pyramid similar to the Maslow Hierarchy of Needs (originally proposed by Aaron Schmidt on the Walking Paper blog). Necessary skills and competencies make up the base and more idealistic areas of interest are at the top. Most of my research has pointed me towards creating a list of competencies, but the pyramid was much more appealing to a visual thinker like me.

In order to construct a pyramid for the Reference Services department, we held a brainstorming session where I asked my co-workers what they feel they need to know to work at the reference desk, followed by what they want to learn. At Houghton’s suggestion, I also bribed them with treats. The results were a mix of topics (things like data visualization and digital mapping) paired with specific software (Outlook, Excel, Photoshop).

Once we had a list I created four levels for our pyramid. “Need to Know” is at the bottom and “Want to Learn” is at the top, with a mix of both in between. I hope that this pyramid will act as a guideline for our department, but more than anything it will act as a guide for me going forward. I’ve already printed it and pinned it to my bulletin board as a friendly daily reminder of what my department needs and what they’re curious about. While I’d like to recommend the Technology Needs Pyramid to everyone, I don’t have the results just yet! I look forward to sharing our progress as we rework our technology plan. In the meantime I can tell you that whether it’s a list, graphic, or narrative; collecting (and demanding) feedback from your colleagues is vital. It’s not always easy, but it’s definitely worth the cost of a dozen donuts.

Categories: Library News

Top Strategies to Win that Technology Grant: Part 1

Fri, 2016-04-08 08:00

Do you remember the time when you needed to write your first research paper in MLA or APA format?  The long list of guidelines, including properly formed in-text citations and a References or Works Cited page, seemed like learning a new language.  The same holds true when approaching an RFP (Request for Proposal) and writing a grant proposal.  Unfortunately with grants, most of us are in the dark without guidance.  I am here to say, don’t give up.

Get Familiar with the Grant Writing Process and Terms
Take free online courses, such as the ones offered by the National Network of Libraries of Medicine Grants and Proposal Writing course (Note: you do not have to be a medical librarian to take advantage of this free course) or WebJunction’s archived webinar – Winning Library Grants presented by Stephanie Gerding. Read a few books from the American Library Association (ALA).  Browse the list below.  This is a sure way to begin to demystify the topic.

Change the Free Money, Shopping Spree Thinking
I have failed at grant writing many times because I started writing a list of “toys” I wanted.  I would begin browsing stores online and picturing awesome technology I wanted.  Surely my patrons would enjoy them too.  I never thought, will my patrons need this technology?  Will they use it?  As MacKellar & Gerding state in their books, funders want to help people.  Learning about the community you serve is step one before you start your shopping list or even writing your grant proposal.

Write Your Proposal in Non-Expert, Jargon-Free, Lay Language
Some professionals may have the tendency, as they excitedly share their project, to go into tech vocabulary.  This is a sure way to lose some of the grant planning or awarding committee members who may not be familiar with tech terms or a particular area of technology.  Be mindful of the words you use to explain your technology needs.  The main goal of a proposal is to make all parties feel included and a part of the game plan.

Start Small and Form Partnerships
To remove the daunting feeling you may have of writing a proposal, find community partners or colleagues that can assist in making the process enjoyable.  For example, a library can participate in grant proposals spawned by others. What better way to represent our profession than to become the researcher for a grant group.  Research is our secret weapon.  The master researcher for the grant may add some items that help fund library equipment, staff, or materials in support of the project request.  It may not be a grant proposal from the library, but a component may help the library in support of that initiative.  Another idea is to divide the grant proposal process into sections or phases among staff members.  As you know, each of us have strengths that fit into a phase of a grant proposal.  Tap into those strengths and divide the work needed to get that funding.

Create SMART Outcomes and Objectives
Ensure that outcomes and objectives are SMART, which stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-Bound.  How will you know if the project is succeeding or has been a success?  Also, it is helpful to see how your technology grant request correlates with your library’s and/or institution’s technology plan.

Grants are a great way to receive recognition from peers, administration, and the community you serve.  For those in academia, this is a wonderful way to grow as a professional, add to your curriculum vitae and collect evidence towards a future promotion.  It can even become enjoyable.  Once you mastered writing MLA or APA papers, didn’t you want to write more papers?  Come to think of it, forget about my research paper and grant writing analogy.

Find future posts on technology grant writing tips on our LITA blog.

Categories: Library News

Jobs in Information Technology: April 6, 2016

Wed, 2016-04-06 14:38

New vacancy listings are posted weekly on Wednesday at approximately 12 noon Central Time. They appear under New This Week and under the appropriate regional listing. Postings remain on the LITA Job Site for a minimum of four weeks.

New This Week

Santa Clara County Library District, Virtual Library Manager, Campbell, CA

Mendocino County Library, Librarian II, Ukiah, CA

The Ohio State University Libraries, Assistant / Associate Director for Information Technology, Columbus, OH

Visit the LITA Job Site for more available jobs and for information on submitting a job posting.

Categories: Library News

Begin Transmission #1

Mon, 2016-04-04 10:00

Welcome to the new LITA Vlog series, Begin Transmission. Every two weeks your host (that’s me) will sit down with a guest to talk about libraries, tech, the state of the profession, and their thoughts on LITA.

Begin Transmission will provide another channel for you to learn from your fellow LITA members. I hope you’ll enjoy this first episode, featuring LITA Blogger Marlon Hernandez. When he’s not writing seriously interesting posts for the blog, he’s working for NASA Jet Propulsion Lab. He has a truly unique perspective on the profession.

Look for our next transmission dropping here on the LITA Blog on Monday, April 18th.

Categories: Library News

Look who’s talking: Conducting a needs assessment project to inform your service design

Fri, 2016-04-01 14:11

If you can’t tell, I’m on a research data services kick of late, mostly because we’re in the throes of trying to define our service model and move some of our initiatives forward all while building new partnerships.

What I didn’t mention in my previous post is all the lead-up work we’re doing to lay the groundwork for those awesome services I discussed. And there is quite a bit to do in that regard, so I thought it would be helpful to provide some tips on what you can do to set the stage for a successful launch of these types of services. Here goes!

If you have a specific population/audience in mind for your services, getting feedback from them is essential. This can take many forms, although we tend to rely on the tried and true (and often dreaded survey). Which is great if you want to collect a high amount of data that may or may not lead to follow-up questions. But what if you want to do something a little different?

  • Getting started

If you want to publish or share your results, get Institutional Review Board (IRB) clearance first. This is a pain, and it often falls in the Exempt category, but because there are people involved in your research project, it’s best to get the green light from the IRB board so you don’t have to worry about it later. This will entail filling out forms describing your project, how you will collect and manage the data, and how you will ensure compliance with human subject research protocol such as confidentiality. Prior to submitting something to IRB, the principal investigator will have to complete CITI training or something similar to verify his/her understanding of the processes involved.

  • Let me count the ways


Decide how you want to conduct your needs assessment. Each methodology has its pros and cons. I mentioned surveys are always popular and they tend to yield high numbers. But the drawback is that you cannot ask for clarification, participants have a limited number of choices (especially if you have a lot of multiple choice questions), and you have to design your questions very carefully so that they are clear, and are asking what you really need to know, otherwise the results could be skewed or meaningless, or both.

Interviews are great if you want to gather qualitative data and don’t mind reaching smaller numbers, but having more in-depth information might be more useful for your purposes. As with surveys, IRB will require that you have a clear script in place and that you ask the same questions every time so you will need to make sure you have this information ahead of time. Sending teams of two to each interview might be helpful so that you have two sets of note-takers who can catch different things and can cover for each other if something unexpected comes up. If you plan to record a conversation, this will need additional clearance from IRB and you will have to make sure you have a clear process in place for starting and stopping the recording and letting participants know they are going to be recorded or taped.

Another option is to conduct focus groups. This can also take various forms, everything from asking questions, to leading participants through a design process as part of a design thinking activity, or simply asking for feedback in reaction to a prototype of some sort. You will have to make sure you recruit a representative group, have a location, a clearly established process, and a way to guide the conversation as it unfolds in addition to capturing what was said.

A final alternative is to conduct ethnographic and participatory research. Instead of simply asking a question, you are letting your audience tell you what they want or expect for a specific service. In other words, they are taking an active part in the design process itself. Nancy Fried Foster is an expert in this area, and I highly recommend looking at her work if you’re interested in this methodology. Having participants draw a picture of their “ideal” space or service can lead to some fun conversations!

  • Who’s on first

Who will conduct the assessment? This may be everyone in a specific unit or department, a handful of people, or even just one person. Your methodology will influence the number of data collectors needed. You will also want to think about any training the group will undertake as part of these activities. Especially if you’re collecting data in a more qualitative format, you will want to ensure that everyone is doing this in as uniform a fashion as possible and you may need several training sessions to prepare.

  • The right stuff

Have all your materials ready ahead of time, especially if they involve asking specific questions, or having participants walk through a set of prescribed activities. Make sure you have instructions clearly spelled out and provide handouts for anything that requires a deeper explanation.

  • Getting Organized

Schedules are tough to organize even for internal meetings, let alone with others on campus, so having a form where participants can designate their preferred time or fill in one of their own is much easier than playing email ping-pong in nailing down a date and time.

  • Marketing is key

We found out the hard way that one approach is not always ideal. We sent out a mass email to faculty only to receive two responses. When liaisons sent out the same exact message, we saw an immediate increase in numbers. Make sure you explain the purpose of the research and make it as easy to indicate willingness to participate as possible. The source of the message counts as well-an email from a generic library account may not garner much attention, but a forwarded message from a department head might do the trick.

  • Data analysis and dissemination

I won’t get too much into the weeds of how to analyze the data you collect, except to say that you will need to set aside ample time for this activity. Once the results are compiled and you have your action items identified, make sure you share the results back with the participants so that you can show them the product of their involvement no matter how small. This will go a long way towards ensuring that they will actually use the bright, shiny new services you create based on their input.

  • Follow-through

Whatever you do, make sure you do something! There’s nothing worse than collecting valuable (hopefully) information only to have it sitting dormant for months on end because this wasn’t high on someone’s priority list. Make sure you have the commitment and resources you need before you begin the project so that you can implement the ideas that emerge as a result in a timely manner.

Categories: Library News

Yes, You Can Video! Repeat!

Thu, 2016-03-31 11:41

Don’t miss this repeat of the highly popular how-to guide for creating high-impact instructional videos without tearing your hair out.

Tuesday April 12, 2016
1:00 pm – 2:30 pm Central Time
Register now for this webinar

This LITA Webinar promises a fun time learning how to create instructional videos.

Have you ever wanted to create an engaging and educational instructional video, but felt like you didn’t have the time, ability, or technology? Are you perplexed by all the moving parts that go into creating an effective tutorial? In this session, Anne Burke and Andreas Orphanides will help to demystify the process, breaking it down into easy-to-follow steps, and provide a variety of technical approaches suited to a range of skill sets. They will cover choosing and scoping your topic, scripting and storyboarding, producing the video, and getting it online. They will also address common pitfalls at each stage.


Anne Burke

Anne Burke
Undergraduate Instruction & Outreach Librarian
North Carolina State University Libraries


Andreas Orphanides

Andreas Orphanides
Librarian for Digital Technologies and Learning
North Carolina State University Libraries

Then register for the webinar

Full details

Can’t make the date but still want to join in? Registered participants will have access to the recorded webinar.


  • LITA Member: $45
  • Non-Member: $105
  • Group: $196

Registration Information

Register Online page arranged by session date (login required)
Mail or fax form to ALA Registration
Call 1-800-545-2433 and press 5

Questions or Comments?

For all other questions or comments related to the course, contact LITA at (312) 280-4269 or Mark Beatty,

Categories: Library News

Jobs in Information Technology: March 30, 2016

Wed, 2016-03-30 16:14

New vacancy listings are posted weekly on Wednesday at approximately 12 noon Central Time. They appear under New This Week and under the appropriate regional listing. Postings remain on the LITA Job Site for a minimum of four weeks.

New This Week:

Yale University, Archivist – Metadata Specialist, ID 36555BR, New Haven, CT

Visit the LITA Job Site for more available jobs and for information on submitting a job posting.

Categories: Library News

LITA Top Tech Trends Panel at ALA Annual 2016

Wed, 2016-03-30 11:00

Help LITA celebrate the kick off to its 50th year by participating or nominating a Top Tech Trends panelist.

Submit your nomination here.

The LITA Top Technology Trends Committee is currently seeking nominations for panelists to participate in their popular panel discussion session at ALA Annual 2016. We are looking for a diverse panel of speakers ready to offer insights into a range of technology topics impacting libraries today and into the future.

Have someone you’d love to hear share their thoughts about current and future trends in technology? Want to share your own thoughts on some tech topics? Let us know what you or your nominee have to offer to the discussion!

For more details and a chance to nominate yourself or someone else, visit this site.

Nominations are due by April 15th, 2016.

Spread the Word!!!

Emily Clasper
Suffolk Cooperative Library System
LITA Top Tech Trends Committee Chair

Categories: Library News

2016 LITA Forum – Call for Proposals

Tue, 2016-03-29 11:38

The 2016 LITA Forum Committee seeks proposals for the 19th Annual Forum of the Library Information and Technology Association in Fort Worth Texas, November 17-20, 2016 at the Omni Fort Worth Hotel.

Submit your proposal at this site

The Forum Committee welcomes proposals for full-day pre-conferences, concurrent sessions, or poster sessions related to all types of libraries: public, school, academic, government, special, and corporate. Collaborative and interactive concurrent sessions, such as panel discussions or short talks followed by open moderated discussions, are especially welcomed. We deliberately seek and strongly encourage submissions from underrepresented groups, such as women, people of color, the LGBT community and people with disabilities.

The Submission deadline is Friday April 29, 2016.

Proposals could relate to, but are not restricted to, any of the following topics:

  • Discovery, navigation, and search
  • Practical applications of linked data
  • Library spaces (virtual or physical)
  • User experience
  • Emerging technologies
  • Cybersecurity and privacy
  • Open content, software, and technologies
  • Assessment
  • Systems integration
  • Hacking the library
  • Scalability and sustainability of library services and tools
  • Consortial resource and system sharing
  • “Big Data” — work in discovery, preservation, or documentation
  • Library I.T. competencies

Proposals may cover projects, plans, ideas, or recent discoveries. We accept proposals on any aspect of library and information technology. The committee particularly invites submissions from first time presenters, library school students, and individuals from diverse backgrounds.

Vendors wishing to submit a proposal should partner with a library representative who is testing/using the product.

Presenters will submit final presentation slides and/or electronic content (video, audio, etc.) to be made available on the web site following the event. Presenters are expected to register and participate in the Forum as attendees; a discounted registration rate will be offered.

If you have any questions, contact Tammy Allgood Wolf, Forum Planning Committee Chair, at

Submit your proposal at this site

More information about LITA is available from the LITA website, Facebook and Twitter.

Categories: Library News

Universal Design for Libraries and Librarians, an important LITA web course

Mon, 2016-03-28 15:01

Consider this important new LITA web course:
Universal Design for Libraries and Librarians

Instructors: Jessica Olin, Director of the Library, Robert H. Parker Library, Wesley College; and Holly Mabry, Digital Services Librarian, Gardner-Webb University

Offered: April 11 – May 27, 2016
A Moodle based web course with asynchronous weekly content lessons, tutorials, assignments, and groups discussion.

Register Online, page arranged by session date (login required)

Universal Design is the idea of designing products, places, and experiences to make them accessible to as broad a spectrum of people as possible, without requiring special modifications or adaptations. This course will present an overview of universal design as a historical movement, as a philosophy, and as an applicable set of tools. Students will learn about the diversity of experiences and capabilities that people have, including disabilities (e.g. physical, learning, cognitive, resulting from age and/or accident), cultural backgrounds, and other abilities. The class will also give students the opportunity to redesign specific products or environments to make them more universally accessible and usable.


By the end of this class, students will be able to…

  • Articulate the ethical, philosophical, and practical aspects of Universal Design as a method and movement – both in general and as it relates to their specific work and life circumstances
  • Demonstrate the specific pedagogical, ethical, and customer service benefits of using Universal Design principles to develop and recreate library spaces and services in order to make them more broadly accessible
  • Integrate the ideals and practicalities of Universal Design into library spaces and services via a continuous critique and evaluation cycle

Here’s the Course Page

Jessica Olin

Jessica Olin

Is the Director of the Library, Robert H. Parker Library, Wesley College. Ms. Olin received her MLIS from Simmons College in 2003 and an MAEd, with a concentration in Adult Education, from Touro University International. Her first position in higher education was at Landmark College, a college that is specifically geared to meeting the unique needs of people with learning differences. While at Landmark, Ms. Olin learned about the ethical, theoretical, and practical aspects of universal design. She has since taught an undergraduate course for both the education and the entrepreneurship departments at Hiram College on the subject.

Holly Mabry

Holly Mabry

Holly Mabry received her MLIS from UNC-Greensboro in 2009. She is currently the Digital Services Librarian at Gardner-Webb University where she manages the university’s institutional repository, and teaches the library’s for-credit online research skills course. She also works for an international virtual reference service called Chatstaff. Since finishing her MLIS, she has done several presentations at local and national library conferences on implementing universal design in libraries with a focus on accessibility for patrons with disabilities.


February 29 – March 31, 2016


  • LITA Member: $135
  • ALA Member: $195
  • Non-member: $260

Technical Requirements:

Moodle login info will be sent to registrants the week prior to the start date. The Moodle-developed course site will include weekly new content lessons and is composed of self-paced modules with facilitated interaction led by the instructor. Students regularly use the forum and chat room functions to facilitate their class participation. The course web site will be open for 1 week prior to the start date for students to have access to Moodle instructions and set their browser correctly. The course site will remain open for 90 days after the end date for students to refer back to course material.

Registration Information:

Register Online, page arranged by session date (login required)
Mail or fax form to ALA Registration
call 1-800-545-2433 and press 5

Questions or Comments?

For all other questions or comments related to the course, contact LITA at (312) 280-4268 or Mark Beatty,

Categories: Library News

Jobs in Information Technology: March 23, 2016

Wed, 2016-03-23 20:57

New vacancy listings are posted weekly on Wednesday at approximately 12 noon Central Time. They appear under New This Week and under the appropriate regional listing. Postings remain on the LITA Job Site for a minimum of four weeks.

New This Week:

Yale University, Senior Systems Librarian / Technical Lead, ID 36160BR, New Haven, CT

Misericordia University, University Archivist and Special Collections Librarian, Dallas, PA

University of Arkansas, Accessioning and Processing Archivist, Fayetteville, AR

University of the Pacific, Information and Educational Technology Services (IETS) Director, Stockton, CA

Visit the LITA Job Site for more available jobs and for information on submitting a job posting.

Categories: Library News

LITA and ALA 2016 elections now open

Wed, 2016-03-16 12:18

Help shape the future of LITA by voting and then staying in touch with your elected officials to make your voice heard.

The 2016 election will be open March 15 – April 22, and results will be announced on April 29. For the 2016 election, eligible members will be sent their voting credentials via email between March 15-18, 2016.  If you have not as yet received your voting email, you can initiate the process at this ALA Elections Page.

Use the 2016 ALA Council Candidate Sorter to filter by division, round table, ethnic caucus, library type, geography, and participation in the Spectrum Scholars and Emerging Leaders programs.

Candidates for LITA Vice-President/President-Elect

David Lee King

Andromeda Yelton

Candidates for LITA Directors-at-large (two elected for three year terms)

Breanne Kirsch

Topher Lawton

Holbrook Sample

Evviva Weinraub

Candidates for LITA Councilor

Aaron Dobbs

Debra Shapiro

LITA Members Running for ALA President

Christine Lind Hage

LITA Members Running for ALA Council

Robert Banks

Ana Elisa de Campos Salles

Mario M. Gonzalez

Mel Gooch

Jennifer Rushton Jamison

Chulin Meng

Kathryn Miller

Scott Piepenburg

Lauren Pressley

Colby Mariva Riggs

Edward L. Sanchez

Jules Shore

LITA Nominating Committee:

Michelle Frisque, Chair
Galen Charlton
Dale Poulter

For questions about your membership status for voting, please contact ALA’s Member and Customer Service (MaCS) at 1-800-545-2433, press 5 (International members should call +1-312-944-6780) or Visit the ALA Election page for more information about this year’s vote and to view candidates running for ALA offices.

Categories: Library News