I'm currently at the airport heading home from a packed weekend at ALA! Here's a report of the weekend's activities:
In the morning I attended a committee meeting for ALCTS (Association for Library Collections & Technical Services) continuing resources section.
Rethinking Patron Engagement: Making Data-Driven Decisions
This session was absolutely packed! It was a panel of five librarians who spoke about assessment efforts at their libraries to gauge patron engagement.
Mark Andersen, the director of learning and economic advancement at Chicago Public Library, talked about a logic model that they developed to evaluate programming at the library: Inputs (participants), outputs (# of participants, # of classes taught etc.), outcomes (what happens to the participants), and indicators (did what we want this program to accomplish actually accomplish it?)
Diana Plunkett, manager of strategic initiatives at Brooklyn Public Library, talked about using data to identify and reach out to new patron groups. Part of the way they do this is by publicizing visualizations of data for the public using a tool called Tableau.
After the session, Dana and I met with a rep from Kanopy
the video platform that will be taking over some of our New Day Films streaming licenses later this year. Kanopy also offers a PDA program that seems very advantageous for libraries.
We then all met up to attend a session called Making a Makerspace Happen: A discussion of the current practices in library makerspaces and experimentation at University of Maryland, Baltimore
Sunday was mostly devoted to presenting. We all attended Dana’s poster session in the morning, handing out app cards and poster info and chatting with the librarians who stopped by about our digital and physical demand driven acquisitions policy. I represented at our other poster session about the EdLab and library tools we have created was in the afternoon. The afternoon session was mobbed and our poster had a crowd around it at all times. Everyone was very interested in the EdLab tools and the app cards, business cards, and poster info handouts we brought were gone within minutes!