Wednesday, April 15, 2015

2015 State of America's Libraries Report

The American Library Association released its 2015 State of America's Libraries Report, detailing issues and trends of the previous year affecting America's public, academic and school libraries. The highly anticipated report includes the 2014 list of Top Ten Most Challenged Books as reported to ALA's Office for Intellectual Freedom. Here's an overview of the report's key findings:

Libraries provide people of all ages and backgrounds with unlimited possibilities to participate in a media- and technology-enriched society. As community anchors, libraries touch people’s lives in many ways and stand as protectorates of the tenets of a democratic government. This report discusses current issues, developments, and practices of academic, school, and public libraries.

Academic libraries provide resources and services to support the learning, teaching, and research needs of students, faculty, and staff. Surveys show that both students and faculty value high-quality digital and print collections and the instructional support that helps them use these resources. Academic librarians are finding creative ways to repurpose library spaces and make optimal budgeting choices.

School libraries provide learning environments that enable students to acquire the reading, research, digital literacy, and citizenship skills necessary for college and career readiness. Certified school librarians ensure that 21st-century information literacy skills, dispositions, responsibilities, and assessments are integrated throughout all curriculum areas.

Public libraries serve as community anchors that address economic, educational, and health disparities in the community. They offer educational programs, print and digital books, access to databases, meeting spaces, and instruction on how to use new technologies. More than two-thirds of Americans agree that libraries are important because they improve the quality of life in a community, promote literacy and reading, and provide many people with a chance to succeed.

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