Category Archives: Education & Training

NCompass Live: Here’s What Python Does for Us: What Can it Do for Your Library?

Learn how to save library staff time on next week’s FREE NCompass Live webinar, ‘Here’s What Python Does for Us: What Can it Do for Your Library?’ on Wednesday, July 8 at 10:00am CT.

Programming with Python can alleviate the burden of routine, time-consuming tasks for library workers. In this session, attendees will learn how Python is being used at North Carolina State University Libraries to query GOBI and produce automated monthly reports for the Collections & Research Strategy department. GOBI, our print and ebook ordering vendor platform, does not offer an API, so reports used to be compiled through manual title-by-title searching. What used to take up to 15 hours per month (and was the cause of much frustration) now takes just 30 minutes and one press of a “run” button, all thanks to Python’s diverse set of libraries and abilities. Following a presentation of this script and how it was developed, attendees will learn methods for identifying the right Python packages and methodologies for their unique needs and project ideas, even if they are new to programming.

Presenter: Katharine Frazier, University Library Technician, North Carolina State University Libraries.

Upcoming NCompass Live shows:

  • July 15 – The Taming of the Site: Helping Users Find What They Need Where They Expect It
  • July 22 – Creating Accessible Materials for Library Instruction
  • July 29 – Pretty Sweet Tech

For more information, to register for NCompass Live, or to listen to recordings of past events, go to the NCompass Live webpage.

NCompass Live is broadcast live every Wednesday from 10am – 11am Central Time. Convert to your time zone on the Official U.S. Time website. The show is presented online using the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Before you attend a session, please see the NLC Online Sessions webpage for detailed information about GoToWebinar, including system requirements, firewall permissions, and equipment requirements for computer speakers and microphones.

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What’s Up Doc? New State Agency Publications at the Nebraska Library Commission

New state agency publications have been received at the Nebraska Library Commission for May and June 2020.  Included are audit reports from the Nebraska Auditor of Public Accounts, reports from the Nebraska Department of Economic Development, and new books from the University of Nebraska Press, to name a few.

Most items, except the books from the University of Nebraska Press, are available for immediate viewing and printing by clicking on the highlighted link above, or directly in the .pdf below.  You can read synopses of the books received from the University of Nebraska Press in the Book Briefs blogposts.

The Nebraska Legislature created the Nebraska Publications Clearinghouse in 1972, a service of the Nebraska Library Commission. Its purpose is to collect, preserve, and provide access to all public information published by Nebraska state agencies.  By law (State Statutes 51-411 to 51-413) all Nebraska state agencies are required to submit their published documents to the Clearinghouse.  For more information, visit the Nebraska Publications Clearinghouse page, contact Mary Sauers, Government Information Services Librarian; or contact Bonnie Henzel, State Documents Staff Assistant.

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Free ALA webinar: “Last Chance for a Complete Count”

ALA is offering a webinar for library staff: 2020 Census: Last Chance for a Complete Count, on July 8 at 2 pm ET. Registration is free. After the session, the recording will be posted at ala.org/census.    

New guide on adapting census outreach in response to COVID-19:  
ALA released a new publication, “Libraries and the 2020 Census: Adapting Outreach in Response to COVID-19 (PDF).” The free guide explains changes to the 2020 Census process and highlights opportunities for libraries to adapt census outreach activities.    

Check your community’s response rate:  
How does your area compare in its response rate to date? Which neighborhoods are lagging behind? Find current data to inform your outreach and messages on the 2020 Census Response Rate Map or the Census 2020 Hard to Count Map.    

Share your event on the Census Counts calendar:  
Is your library planning a 2020 Census event (including virtual events)? Submit it to the national Census Counts calendar. Check the calendar for other events from partners in your community.
Posted in Books & Reading, Education & Training, General, Information Resources, Library Management, Public Relations, Technology, What's Up Doc / Govdocs | Leave a comment

NCompass Live: Nebraska Libraries in the Time of COVID: Planning for Reopening

Join us on NCompass Live next Wednesday, July 1 at 10am CT, for ‘Nebraska Libraries in the Time of COVID: Planning for Reopening’.

Public libraries are major hubs of activity in our communities, so staff must take extra precautions when they start offering more in-person services during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Join us to hear what ‘reopening’ looks like in some Nebraska libraries. Library staff will share their planning processes, strategies, experiences so far, and lessons learned as they ensure that their libraries are safe for both their staff and patrons.

Presenters: Cecelia Lawrence, Director, North Platte Public Library; Steve Fosselman, Director and Celine Swan, Youth Services Librarian, Grand Island Public Library; Denise Harders, Director, Central Plains Library System.

Upcoming NCompass Live shows:

  • July 8 – Here’s What Python Does for Us: What Can it Do for Your Library?
  • July 15 – The Taming of the Site: Helping Users Find What They Need Where They Expect It
  • July 22 – Creating Accessible Materials for Library Instruction
  • July 29 – Pretty Sweet Tech

For more information, to register for NCompass Live, or to listen to recordings of past events, go to the NCompass Live webpage.

NCompass Live is broadcast live every Wednesday from 10am – 11am Central Time. Convert to your time zone on the Official U.S. Time website. The show is presented online using the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Before you attend a session, please see the NLC Online Sessions webpage for detailed information about GoToWebinar, including system requirements, firewall permissions, and equipment requirements for computer speakers and microphones.

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NCompass Live: Who are These People & Why are They in My Library? Using Empathy & UX to Understand Your Library Patrons

Find out ‘Who are These People & Why are They in My Library?’ and learn about ‘Using Empathy & UX to Understand Your Library Patrons’ on next week’s FREE NCompass Live webinar, on Wednesday, June 17 at 10:00am CT.

How often does your library make decisions about services offered without checking with library users first? Are library administrators or external agents making decisions on behalf of library patrons without understanding their needs? Are you puzzling over why some of your programs are poorly attended, or services under utilized? Do you sometimes feel like you are floundering in the dark, trying to make sense of patron behavior? Have you done usability testing, but need to go beyond that to learn even easier methods for assessing and improving library services? In this session we will discuss ways to know your users better through some powerful UX techniques like: creating user personas, diagramming user journey maps, conducting focus groups and surveys, field studies, and card sorting. This session, conducted by a librarian at a university and a UX professional from the private sector, will include demonstrations showcasing both qualitative and quantitative UX methods. Attendees will leave with ready models to put to work in their library.

Presenters: Jennifer DeJonghe, Reference and Instruction Librarian, Metropolitan State University; Rich Harrison, User Experience Consultant, Horizontal.

Upcoming NCompass Live shows:

  • June 24 – Pretty Sweet Tech – How to Leverage Online Learning to Build New Skills
  • July 15 – The Taming of the Site: Helping Users Find What They Need Where They Expect It

For more information, to register for NCompass Live, or to listen to recordings of past events, go to the NCompass Live webpage.

NCompass Live is broadcast live every Wednesday from 10am – 11am Central Time. Convert to your time zone on the Official U.S. Time website. The show is presented online using the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Before you attend a session, please see the NLC Online Sessions webpage for detailed information about GoToWebinar, including system requirements, firewall permissions, and equipment requirements for computer speakers and microphones.

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Niche Academy is Open!

NLC Niche Academy and Reopening Lives Tutorials. Online Learning.

Two new online learning resources are now available!

First, the Nebraska Library Commission Academy is available to librarians as a thirty-day trial through Niche Academy. Lessons include topics such as:

  • Code of Ethics for New Directors
  • 10 Strategies for Community Organizing in Libraries
  • 2020 United States Census
  • Virtual Programming: Working with Presenters and Performers
  • Research Essentials

Please check it out and let me know what you think! Each lesson is eligible for 1 CE credit for those enrolled in the Nebraska Public Librarian Certification program, just submit a CE Activity Report form when completed.

Second, the Reopening Lives Academy is a collaborative project between Niche Academy and librarians all over the United States to help answer patron questions as libraries work on reopening.

…many of us are anticipating a surge of patrons with questions about unemployment, taxes, and financial resources. We anticipate questions about public and personal health, and how the CARES act (and other legislation) will affect or help small businesses and entrepreneurs.

Niche Academy

These short tutorials are intended to help librarians and patrons answer these many different questions and provide quick resources with quality information on topics such as COVID-19, wearing masks, mental health, and writing resumes.

If you want to learn more about the collaborative project (or are interested in participating), there is more information posted on the Niche Academy blog.

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Free webinar: “Moving Forward: Key Findings from New Libraries’ COVID-19 Response Survey”

Free webinar: “Moving Forward: Key Findings from New Libraries’ COVID-19 Response Survey”
Fri., June 12, 1-2 p.m. Central   
Register at http://www.ala.org/united/survey
Presented by the Association of College & Research Libraries (ACRL), the Public Library Association (PLA), and the ALA Chapter Relations and Public Policy & Advocacy offices, with support from United for Libraries

A new survey from the American Library Association captures how public, academic, and school libraries are continuing to adjust services while preparing for the phased reopening of their facilities. Join survey administrators and librarians as they discuss results, trends, and reopening practices, as well as new data on current and projected library budget and staffing impacts related to the crisis.

Speakers:

  • Anastasia Diamond-Ortiz, Chief Executive Officer/Director, Lorain Public Library System
  • Dawn La Valle, Director, Division of Development, Connecticut State Library
  • Denise Fritsch, Ed.D., Dean of Institutional Effectiveness, Gateway Community and Technical College
  • Mary Jane Petrowski, Associate Director, Association for College and Research Libraries
  • Emily Plagman, Manager, Impact & Advocacy, Public Library Association

United for Libraries
The Association of Library Trustees, Advocates, Friends and Foundations
A division of the American Library Association
312-280-2160
www.ala.org/united

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NCompass Live: Identity and Impostor Syndrome in Library Makerspaces

Learn how to master ‘Identity and Impostor Syndrome in Library Makerspaces’ on next week’s FREE NCompass Live webinar, on Wednesday, June 10 at 10:00am CT.

Do makerspaces belong in libraries? Are librarians makers? As makerspaces become more prevalent in libraries, many librarians are questioning their role in the community of tinkerers and creators known as the “Maker Movement.”

Gender imbalance and a lack of diversity in makerspaces can lead to impostor syndrome, or “a false and sometimes crippling belief that one’s successes are the product of luck or fraud rather than skill” (Merriam Webster). Impostor syndrome can affect anyone, but studies suggest that women and people of color are more likely to experience these feelings of inadequacy.

This session will share the findings of one librarian’s examination of her impostor syndrome and consider factors that can contribute to self-doubt in library makerspaces. She will share the results of conversations and interviews with her peers, as well as strategies for managing impostor syndrome. Participants are encouraged to take time to reflect on a time when they felt out of place or unsure of themselves, and share their own approaches for conquering impostor syndrome.

Presenter: Leanne Nay, Digital Engagement Librarian, Indiana University Libraries.

Upcoming NCompass Live shows:

  • June 17 – Who are These People & Why are They in My Library? Using Empathy & UX to Understand Your Library Patrons
  • June 24 – Pretty Sweet Tech – How to Leverage Online Learning to Build New Skills

For more information, to register for NCompass Live, or to listen to recordings of past events, go to the NCompass Live webpage.

NCompass Live is broadcast live every Wednesday from 10am – 11am Central Time. Convert to your time zone on the Official U.S. Time website. The show is presented online using the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Before you attend a session, please see the NLC Online Sessions webpage for detailed information about GoToWebinar, including system requirements, firewall permissions, and equipment requirements for computer speakers and microphones.

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NCompass Live: Automating Virtual Student Library Cards

Learn about ‘Automating Virtual Student Library Cards’ on next week’s FREE NCompass Live webinar, on Wednesday, June 3 at 10:00am CT.

This session will describe how Scott County Library and Shakopee Public Schools collaborated to automate virtual student library card creation in Shakopee, MN. Participants will learn how to:

  1. Plan, partner, and collaborate with project stakeholders, including the Library, school district administrators, and technology departments.
  2. Deploy technical process for automating student library card creation in a SirsiDynix Symphony system. Code discussed is open source and freely available on GitHub.
  3. Educate the school community about how to use this new resource.

Presenters: Kristy Rieger, Library Technology Manager, Scott County (MN) Library; Sandra Reishus, 6-12 Media Specialist / Innovation Hub Coordinator, Shakopee (MN)Public Schools; Nathaniel Strauss, IT Manager, Shakopee (MN) Public Schools.

Upcoming NCompass Live shows:

  • June 10 – Identity and Impostor Syndrome in Library Makerspaces
  • June 17 – Who are These People & Why are They in My Library? Using Empathy & UX to Understand Your Library Patrons
  • June 24 – Pretty Sweet Tech

For more information, to register for NCompass Live, or to listen to recordings of past events, go to the NCompass Live webpage.

NCompass Live is broadcast live every Wednesday from 10am – 11am Central Time. Convert to your time zone on the Official U.S. Time website. The show is presented online using the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Before you attend a session, please see the NLC Online Sessions webpage for detailed information about GoToWebinar, including system requirements, firewall permissions, and equipment requirements for computer speakers and microphones.

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Authority Control Class

Libraries use authority control to manage the names, uniform titles, series, and subject headings in their catalogs. Participants in this class will learn what authority control is and why it is needed, how to read a MARC authority record, and how to use the Library of Congress authority file. The class will also include discussion of how to keep headings in your local systems up-to-date, and the relevance of authority control.

Prerequisite:Understanding MARC21 Bibliographic Records” class.

This class will be held online from June 22nd to July 26th. To receive full credit, participants must complete all assignments by July 26th.

Class participants will access the course web site in order to read materials, discuss issues in a forum, and complete assignments. The class is held asynchronously, which means that participants are not required to be online at any particular time during the five weeks; however, there is a class schedule with due dates that participants are expected to meet. The instructor will interact with the participants during the course to offer feedback and provide explanations of material.

A few days before the class starts, class participants will be sent information about accessing the class.

To register: Go to Authority Control in the Nebraska Library Commission Training Portal. Registration closes June 14th.

This workshop is approved for the NLC Cataloging Certification Program. Courses are open only to Nebraska residents or those who are employed by a Nebraska library.  

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NCompass Live: Pretty Sweet Tech – How to Make Digital Literacy Less Boring

Learn ‘How to Make Digital Literacy Less Boring’ on next week’s Pretty Sweet Tech FREE NCompass Live webinar, on Wednesday, May 27 at 10:00am CT.

Special monthly episodes of NCompass Live! Join the NLC’s Technology Innovation Librarian, Amanda Sweet, as she guides us through the world of library-related Pretty Sweet Tech.

How would you describe Digital Literacy to a patron without making it sound dull as dirt? With more people turning to online learning and resources during the current crisis, Digital Literacy skills are more important than ever. Learning things like online privacy and security, how to effectively communicate online, and how to find and evaluate information online are all vital to our success in the world. Yet many patrons just don’t care. It’s boring.

In this session, I will provide some ideas of what has worked in libraries I’ve visited, and ask you what has worked in your library! We won’t cover all the topics in digital literacy, but you will get a general idea of how to convert a dry digital literacy category into an entertaining learning event! Instead of advertising a “How to Communicate Online” event, call it “What Are You Trying to Say?”

Don’t bring people together over privacy and security. Connect people through a shared desire to stay safe in the wilds of the inter-webs. Make it a game that parents can play with their kids. You are caught in the inter-webs! Avoid the digital obstacles to get you and your kids out safely. Make sure to end the session with a splashy handout they will want to stick on the fridge.

These are just a few of the tantalizing ideas you will encounter in this session. If you want to learn more, check out my Digital Literacy Guidebook. More resources and ideas are being added daily this month. If you’re in Nebraska, the course to Build a Digital Literacy Plan starts on May 25th.

Upcoming NCompass Live shows:

  • June 3 – Automating Virtual Student Library Cards
  • June 10 – Identity and Impostor Syndrome in Library Makerspaces
  • June 17 – Who are These People & Why are They in My Library? Using Empathy & UX to Understand Your Library Patrons

For more information, to register for NCompass Live, or to listen to recordings of past events, go to the NCompass Live webpage.

NCompass Live is broadcast live every Wednesday from 10am – 11am Central Time. Convert to your time zone on the Official U.S. Time website. The show is presented online using the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Before you attend a session, please see the NLC Online Sessions webpage for detailed information about GoToWebinar, including system requirements, firewall permissions, and equipment requirements for computer speakers and microphones.

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Four Ways New Technology Is Revolutionizing the 2020 Census

From scribbled answers in 1790 to online responses in 2020, innovation has always been part of the Census. The Census Bureau has always been a leader in using, adapting and developing new technologies, but the 2020 Census will be the most sophisticated and high tech yet. 

The census began in 1790 with collected information handwritten by U.S. Marshals visiting outposts in every corner of the new nation. Every decade since, the ways the U.S. Census Bureau has tried to meet its goal of counting every person living in the United States have undergone changes as dramatic as the growth of the nation itself.

Through the centuries, the decennial count progressed from in-person collections of handwritten answers to mass mailings of paper questionnaires in 1970. Among other changes along the way: creation of an electrical punch card tabulator for the 1890 Census and the first use by a government agency of the world’s first modern computer – the UNIVAC 1 – for the 1950 Census. It was developed by engineers John W. Mauchly and J. Presper Eckert, whose corporation was a division of Remington Rand.

In the previous century, Herman Hollerith, a former Census Office employee, invented a punch card tabulating machine used by the Census Bureau from the 1890 Census forward. Hollerith founded the Tabulating Machine Company, which eventually became International Business Machines (IBM).

America Counts spoke with Robert Colosi, a mathematical statistician in the Census Bureau’s Decennial Statistics Studies Division, about ways technology is revolutionizing the census.

He shared four specific changes that have had a major impact on how the Census Bureau counts everyone once, only once, and in the right place.

Innovation 1: Using Satellite Imagery to Check Addresses

Before the Census Bureau can count every person in the country, it must first collect addresses for every housing unit. One way the Census Bureau uses this address list is to mail census materials, including invitations to respond online, by phone or by mail.

Census Bureau employees used to “canvass” neighborhoods in person, jotting down new addresses and correcting old ones on paper.

This long-running operation, known as Address Canvassing, is one of the ways the Census Bureau updates its Master Address File or MAF. The Census Bureau also works with the United States Postal Service (USPS) to confirm already existing addresses on file.

Address canvassing was costly and time-consuming. Employees traveled a total of 137 million miles to update the MAF before the 2010 Census.

“The number of miles we traveled was astronomical,” Colosi said. “We’re not going to do that for the 2020 Census.”

In 2015, the Census Bureau began using aerial images from a network of satellites.

The Census Bureau developed computer software that allows employees in offices to compare satellite images from 2010 to new ones taken in real time. This helps them identify new houses, apartment buildings and other units to verify in the traditional Address Canvassing operation.

Thanks to the new In-Office Address Canvassing system, census workers reviewed 100% of all addresses in the United States for the 2020 Census and validated 65% in the office, removing them from the in-field workload.

That means workers needed to canvas fewer neighborhoods in person, saving time and money.

Address listers or canvassers hit the streets in August 2019 and completed the operation two months later, on track for the 2020 Census.

Innovation 2: Introducing Online Self-Response

The 2020 Census is the first time everyone has the option to respond to the census online as well as by phone or mail.

The Census Bureau has an Internet Self-Response tool designed to make it easy to complete the questionnaire online and keep responses secure. Directions for responding online will be included in letters, postcards and other mailings sent to most homes beginning in mid-March.

Every response submitted on the internet is encrypted. That means data are changed into a code that only Census Bureau data analysts can read. Responses travel through a secure cloud computer network and the Census Bureau locks them in a “digital vault”.   

The Internet Self-Response instrument, the website for completing the census online, is available in English and 12 other languages.

Census Bureau employees, called census response representatives will also provide computers and tablets for access to the Internet Self-Response tool at places like libraries, community centers, health care centers and places of worship. This is particularly helpful in rural and other areas with limited or no internet access. 

Innovation 3: Introducing Mobile Devices to Enumeration

From collecting census responses and job applications to storing questionnaires, the Census Bureau has used millions of pieces of paper to gather and file information. Now it relies much more on technology – and much less on paper.

In 2020, census takers who go door-to-door to help people respond will collect information on smartphones using a custom application created by the Census Bureau. 

“The Systems Engineering and Integration Team created 52 systems in our ‘system of systems,’” Colosi said. “There’s a whole group of systems related to that one contract of enumeration and operations control. All of it was built by Census Bureau staff and contractors.”

To protect privacy, we encrypt all data and devices require two-factor authentication to be unlocked.

When a device connects to the internet, encrypted data immediately transmits to the Census Bureau’s digital vault – and is no longer on the device. Encrypted data are only stored on the devices until they connect to the internet.

Software in the smartphones also provides specific routes for census takers to follow to visit homes. Optimizing routes in this way helps census takers do their jobs more efficiently. 

If a device is lost or stolen, the Census Bureau will remotely wipe it clean of all applications and information.

Innovation 4: New Ways to Protect Data

The Census Bureau is the leading source of quality data about the nation’s people and economy in its many surveys and programs, including the 2020 Census.

Opportunities to share and protect its data continue to grow with technology and innovation, particularly through data mashups.

Data mashups are algorithms that combine different data sources to expand graphical understanding of the data but can also find the origin of a particular set of data.  

To protect against that, the Census Bureau has developed processes to protect its data from people who might try to make such mashups. Its Disclosure Avoidance System helps prevent improper disclosure of data. This addition is one of several advances the Census Bureau has made to safeguard an individual’s data.  

“When we produced products in the old days, we didn’t have super high-tech and savvy users,” Colosi said. “The idea of computing data mashups to try and combine different data sources to find individual responses was not common. Now it is.”

All responses to the 2020 Census are confidential and protected by law. Title 13 of the Federal Code prohibits the Census Bureau from publishing or disclosing any private information, including names, addresses and telephone numbers.

“Our cybersecurity meets the latest, highest standards for protecting your information,” Census Bureau Chief Information Officer Kevin Smith said. “We work with industry experts to continually review and refine our approach to make sure we are staying ahead of threats and ensuring quick response. From the moment we collect your responses, our goal — and legal obligation — is to keep them safe.”

Census Bureau employees take an oath to keep your answers confidential. Violators face up to five years in prison and $250,000 in fines.

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Census Bureau Launches COVID-19 Data Hub

COVID-19 Data Hub The U.S. Census Bureau has released a new resource page on Census.gov to help federal
agencies, businesses, and communities make decisions related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Similar to the Census Bureau’s resources pages created during natural disasters, this resource
page includes information on population demographics, economic indicators and businesses.

Learn More

It features a new interactive data hub that centralizes already-released data from the American Community Survey and the County Business Patterns program to facilitate users’ access to data useful in pandemic-related decision making. The data hub, released as a beta version, will be updated periodically as the situation changes and as feedback is received from users.  You can sign up for COVID-19 Data Hub Updates here.
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2020 Census Updates

Nebraska is still FIRST in Census responses in our region! Here’s all the latest news from the Census Bureau:

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United for Libraries Login Update

Logo: United for Libraries Association of Library Trustees, Advocates, Friends and Foundations

The United for Libraries platform has been updated!

The new system should be easier to use with some shiny new features. More details about those features will be coming soon, but for now, the login information has changed. There will no longer be one general login for libraries and library boards. Members will register for their own individual logins through the United for Libraries website. This includes the Trustee Academy courses, the Short Takes for Trustees, and other United for Libraries resources.

Access to these resources has been provided for Library Trustees and Directors by the Nebraska Library Commission.

To request a login, please submit a United for Libraries Login Request form.

If you have any questions, please contact Holli Duggan.

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NCompass Live: Reading for Justice: A Database for YA & Youth Literature

Join us to learn about ‘Reading for Justice: A Database for YA & Youth Literature’ on next week’s FREE NCompass Live webinar, on Wednesday, May 20, 10:00am-11:00am CT.

The Reading for Justice Database aims to provide librarians and patrons with better access to YA and children’s literature book subjects centered around social justice. This database began as a project in Dr. David McKoskey’s Database Management course at St. Catherine University. The project then continued to develop through an independent study where the goal was to build a website and user interface for the database. The website includes a search page, report page, and an administrative page for editing.

The presentation will cover the initial stages of the database’s development, the challenges of gathering data, preventing a “default” from skewing our data, and the overall process of connecting the database to our user interface. We hope we have created something that librarians and patrons would find useful for identifying books centered around themes of social justice.

Presenters: Laura Bell, St. Catherine University; Katie Retterath, Visual Resources Specialist, Macalester College; Dr. David McKoskey, St. Catherine University, Adjunct Professor.

Upcoming NCompass Live shows:

  • May 27 – Pretty Sweet Tech – How to Make Digital Literacy Less Boring
  • June 3 – Automating Virtual Student Library Cards
  • June 10 – Identity and Impostor Syndrome in Library Makerspaces
  • June 17 – Who are These People & Why are They in My Library? Using Empathy & UX to Understand Your Library Patrons

For more information, to register for NCompass Live, or to listen to recordings of past events, go to the NCompass Live webpage.

NCompass Live is broadcast live every Wednesday from 10am – 11am Central Time. Convert to your time zone on the Official U.S. Time website. The show is presented online using the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Before you attend a session, please see the NLC Online Sessions webpage for detailed information about GoToWebinar, including system requirements, firewall permissions, and equipment requirements for computer speakers and microphones.

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Pretty Sweet Tech: New Digital Literacy Course

For those who are adding or revamping new digital literacy offerings in your library, the Nebraska Library Commission is offering a comprehensive course to Build a Digital Literacy Plan for your library!

There is no one way to implement digital skills. However, we can explore what our community needs, and how the library can help through a combination of developing programs in-house, working with local and national organizations to meet each community’s growing digital needs. By the end of this course, you will:

  • Define digital literacy in your own words, with practical examples.
  • Identify a target audience to narrow focus and seek the best sources to meet tangible needs.
  • Explore a variety of digital literacy categories to determine what works best for you and your community.
  • Use planning worksheets and guides to build a digital literacy plan and prioritize what and how to deal with important items.

Along the way, we will share ideas and compare notes of what worked for others in the state. If you would like to register for this course, please go to http://nlc.nebraska.gov/scripts/calendar/eventshow.asp?ProgId=19463. I’m teaching the course, so I hope to “see” you there.

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NCompass Live: 2020 Census Outreach for Libraries

The 2020 Census is happening right now! We’ll discuss tips and tricks for ‘2020 Census Outreach for Libraries’ on next week’s FREE NCompass Live webinar, on Wednesday, May 13, 10:00am-11:00am CT.

The Morton-James Public Library in Nebraska City, NE, was awarded a Library Census Equity Fund Grant from the American Library Association to bolster library services to hard-to-count communities and help achieve a complete count in the 2020 Census. Join us to hear more about the grant, how the library is using the funding, and to learn ways that libraries can help educate community members on the importance of answering the 2020 Census questionnaire.

Presenters: Denise Davis, Librarian, Morton-James Public Library, Nebraska City, NE; Mary Sauers, Government Information Services Librarian, Nebraska Library Commission

Upcoming NCompass Live shows:

  • May 20 – Reading for Justice: A Database for YA & Youth Literature
  • May 27 – Pretty Sweet Tech – How to Make Digital Literacy Less Boring
  • June 3 – Automating Virtual Student Library Cards
  • June 10 – Identity and Impostor Syndrome in Library Makerspaces
  • June 17 – Who are These People & Why are They in My Library? Using Empathy & UX to Understand Your Library Patrons

For more information, to register for NCompass Live, or to listen to recordings of past events, go to the NCompass Live webpage.

NCompass Live is broadcast live every Wednesday from 10am – 11am Central Time. Convert to your time zone on the Official U.S. Time website. The show is presented online using the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Before you attend a session, please see the NLC Online Sessions webpage for detailed information about GoToWebinar, including system requirements, firewall permissions, and equipment requirements for computer speakers and microphones.

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What’s Up Doc? New State Agency Publications at the Nebraska Library Commission

New state agency publications have been received at the Nebraska Library Commission for March and April 2020.  Included are annual reports from a variety of Nebraska state agencies, economic development reports from the Nebraska Public Power District, Audit reports from the Nebraska Auditor of Public Accounts, and new books from the University of Nebraska Press, to name a few.

Most items, except the books from the University of Nebraska Press, are available for immediate viewing and printing by clicking on the highlighted link above, or directly in the .pdf below.  You can read synopses of the books received from the University of Nebraska Press in the Book Briefs blogposts.

The Nebraska Legislature created the Nebraska Publications Clearinghouse in 1972, a service of the Nebraska Library Commission. Its purpose is to collect, preserve, and provide access to all public information published by Nebraska state agencies.  By law (State Statutes 51-411 to 51-413) all Nebraska state agencies are required to submit their published documents to the Clearinghouse.  For more information, visit the Nebraska Publications Clearinghouse page, contact Mary Sauers, Government Information Services Librarian; or contact Bonnie Henzel, State Documents Staff Assistant.

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Book Briefs: New University of Nebraska Press Books at the Nebraska Publications Clearinghouse

The Nebraska Publications Clearinghouse receives documents every month from all Nebraska state agencies, including the University of Nebraska Press (UNP).  Each month we will be showcasing the UNP books that the Clearinghouse receives.  UNP books, as well as all Nebraska state documents, are available for checkout by libraries and librarians, for their patrons, in Nebraska.

Here are the UNP books the Clearinghouse received in March and April 2020:

The Better Angels : Five Women Who Changed Civil War America Robert C. Plumb

Harriet Tubman, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Clara Barton, Julia Ward Howe, and Sarah Josepha Hale came from backgrounds that ranged from abject enslavement to New York City’s elite. Surmounting social and political obstacles, they emerged before and during the worst crisis in American history, the Civil War. Their actions became strands in a tapestry of courage, truth, and patriotism that influenced the lives of millions—and illuminated a new way forward for the nation.

In this collective biography, Robert C. Plumb traces these five remarkable women’s awakenings to analyze how their experiences shaped their responses to the challenges, disappointments, and joys they encountered on their missions. Here is Tubman, fearless conductor on the Underground Railroad, alongside Stowe, the author who awakened the nation to the evils of slavery. Barton led an effort to provide medical supplies for field hospitals, and Union soldiers sang Howe’s “Battle Hymn of the Republic” on the march. And, amid national catastrophe, Hale’s campaign to make Thanksgiving a national holiday moved North and South toward reconciliation.

Exodus ‘Gbenga Adeoba (Series: African Poetry Book Series)

Winner of the Sillerman First Book Prize for African Poetry, ‘Gbenga Adeoba’s collection Exodus focuses on forms of migration due to the slave trade, war, natural disasters, and economic opportunities.
              
Using the sea as a source of language and metaphor, Adeoba explores themes of memory, transition, and the intersections between the historic and the imagined. With great tenderness and power his poetry of empathy searches for meaning in sharply constructed images, creating scenes of making and unmaking while he investigates experiences of exile and displacement across time and place.

How to Survive Death and Other Inconveniences Sue William Silverman (Series: American Lives)

Many are haunted and obsessed by their own eventual deaths, but perhaps no one as much as Sue William Silverman. This thematically linked collection of essays charts Silverman’s attempt to confront her fears of that ultimate unknown. Her dread was fomented in part by a sexual assault, hidden for years, that led to an awareness that death and sex are in some ways inextricable, an everyday reality many women know too well.
              
Through gallows humor, vivid realism, and fantastical speculation, How to Survive Death and Other Inconveniences explores this fear of death and the author’s desire to survive it. From cruising New Jersey’s industry-blighted landscape in a gold Plymouth to visiting the emergency room for maladies both real and imagined to suffering the stifling strictness of an intractable piano teacher, Silverman guards her memories for the same reason she resurrects archaic words—to use as talismans to ward off the inevitable. Ultimately, Silverman knows there is no way to survive death physically. Still, through language, commemoration, and metaphor, she searches for a sliver of transcendent immortality.

In the Mean Time : Temporal Colonization and the Mexican American Literary Tradition Erin Murrah-Mandril (Series: Postwestern Horizons)

The 1848 Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, which transferred more than a third of Mexico’s territory to the United States, deferred full U.S. citizenship for Mexican Americans but promised, “in the mean time,” to protect their property and liberty. Erin Murrah-Mandril demonstrates that the U.S. government deployed a colonization of time in the Southwest to insure political and economic underdevelopment in the region and to justify excluding Mexican Americans from narratives of U.S. progress. In In the Mean Time, Murrah-Mandril contends that Mexican American authors challenged modern conceptions of empty, homogenous, linear, and progressive time to contest U.S. colonization.

Taking a cue from Latina/o and borderlands spatial theories, Murrah-Mandril argues that time, like space, is a socially constructed, ideologically charged medium of power in the Southwest. In the Mean Time draws on literature, autobiography, political documents, and historical narratives composed between 1870 and 1940 to examine the way U.S. colonization altered time in the borderlands.

Rather than reinforce the colonial time structure, early Mexican American authors exploited the internal contradictions of Manifest Destiny and U.S. progress to resist domination and situate themselves within the shifting political, economic, and historical present. Read as decolonial narratives, the Mexican American cultural productions examined in this book also offer a new way of understanding Latina/o literary history.

A Kingdom of Water : Adaptation and Survival in the Houma Nation J. Daniel d’Oney (Series: Indians of the Southeast)

A Kingdom of Water is a study of how the United Houma Nation in Louisiana successfully navigated a changing series of political and social landscapes under French, Spanish, British, and American imperial control between 1699 and 2005. After 1699 the Houma assimilated the French into their preexisting social and economic networks and played a vital role in the early history of Louisiana. After 1763 and Gallic retreat, both the British and Spanish laid claim to tribal homelands, and the Houma cleverly played one empire against the other.

In the early 1700s the Houma began a series of adaptive relocations, and just before the Louisiana Purchase in 1803 the nation began their last migration, a journey down Bayou Lafourche. In the early 1800s, as settlers pushed the nation farther down bayous and into the marshes of southeastern Louisiana, the Houma quickly adapted to their new physical environment. After the Civil War and consequent restructuring of class systems, the Houma found themselves caught in a three-tiered system of segregation. Realizing that education was one way to retain lands constantly under assault from trappers and oil companies, the Houma began their first attempt to integrate Terrebonne Parish schools in the early twentieth century, though their situation was not resolved until five decades later. In the early twenty-first century, the tribe is still fighting for federal recognition.

Sacrament of Bodies Romeo Oriogun (Series: African Poetry Book Series)

In this groundbreaking collection of poems, Sacrament of Bodies, Romeo Oriogun fearlessly interrogates how a queer man in Nigeria can heal in a society where everything is designed to prevent such restoration. With honesty, precision, tenderness of detail, and a light touch, Oriogun explores grief and how the body finds survival through migration.


 

The Soul of the Indian : An Interpretation Charles A. Eastman (Ohiyesa) (Series: Bison Classic Editions)

The Soul of the Indian is Charles A. Eastman’s exploration and documentation of religion as he experienced it during the late nineteenth century. A Dakota physician and writer who sought to bring understanding between Native and non-Native Americans, Eastman (1858–1939) became one of the best-known Native Americans of his time and a significant intellectual figure whose clarity of vision endures today.

In a straightforward manner Eastman emphasizes the universal quality and personal appeal of his Dakota religious heritage. First published in 1911, The Soul of the Indian draws on his childhood teaching and ancestral ideals to counter the research written by outsiders who treated the Dakotas’ ancient worldviews chiefly as a matter of curiosity. Eastman writes with deep respect for his ancestors and their culture and history, including a profound reverence for the environment, animals, and plants. Though written more than a century ago, Eastman could be speaking to our own time with its spiritual confusion and environmental degradation. The new introduction by Brenda J. Child grounds this important book in contemporary studies.


**All synopses courtesy of University of Nebraska Press  (https://www.nebraskapress.unl.edu/)

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