Archive of ‘Library Services’ category

Case Study: iCentre digital spaces: what path should we take now?

Designing iCentre digital spaces for school library service delivery: what path should we take now?

The goal of this study is to evaluate both our current digital spaces and potential design changes in order to maintain dynamic and appropriate school library web services.


The library team at an all-girls secondary college in Brisbane, Queensland have begun a new phase in strategic directions. In 2016, new contexts have demanded a change in thinking about learning, life and work in the modern world.  The world now is change-filled and necessitates an approach that understands “everything we produce remains a work in process, in perpetual beta” (Richardson, 2016, para.5). This has implications for the services offered by the iCentre.  Evaluating and re-visioning the iCentre digital spaces is an important step in this process. A new vision and mission statement have been developed and the team has identified that the purpose of a revisioned digital space for the iCentre is to allow the college community to experience and learn the literacies of a connected world.  Due to timeframes and practical implications, this case study will only investigate the Library Management System and the iCentre Website.  Despite being essential to the provision of literacy development by the iCentre, social Media services will not be investigated at this time.

Expected Outcome of the project:
This case study will detail and analyse two of the existing virtual spaces, the Library Management System (LMS) and the iCentre Website with a view to understanding the contextual school library needs of the community and make recommendations to the iCentre team for their ongoing strategic plans.  The case study aims to adopt an evidence-based approach with an information science focus, incorporating user feedback, best research evidence and the professional experience and expertise of the iCentre team and external partners (Booth, 2002, p.53).

Two key research questions will guide this case study:

RQ.1   Do the current iCentre digital spaces meet our communities needs for school library services?

RQ. 2 What are the key considerations for the future of iCentre digital services and spaces identified from research evidence, user feedback and professional experience and expertise?

Case study plan:
The major steps required to complete the case study project include:

Digital School Library Services Research

*   Research the literature on best practice in digital school library services

*   Research the context of the iCentre school library services

*   Research the literature on emerging trends in school library services

Library Management System Research

*   Identify the needs for an LMS

*   Identify the contextual positives & negatives of the current LMS

*   Research and evaluate alternative LMS providers


*   Identify the needs for an iCentre Website

*   Identify the contextual positives & negatives of the current iCentre Website

*   Research and evaluate design changes for the iCentre Website

The resources required:

*   Research for literature review

*   Meeting time with iCentre team

*   Contact details for LMS system providers and schools using those systems

*   Meeting with Website developers

*   Release time to visit school and investigate a variety of LMS

*   Survey artefacts

*   Focus Group interviews

*   PMI feedback on LMS choices for iCentre team

A projected timeline (Due October 10)

July 11 –  August 31

Focus Group – iCentre team complete a PMI of current LMS

Focus Group – iCentre team brainstorm needs of the iCentre website

Survey – students needs of the iCentre website (10% of student population – equal horizontal representation of students from year 7 – 12)

Survey – staff needs of iCentre website

Visit schools to view a range of LMSs

Meeting with website developers

Meetings with LMS providers for professional demonstration of products

LMS PMI artifact completed by iCentre staff

September 1 – 30

Literature review –  best practice in digital school library services

Literature review – emerging trends in school library services

Focus group with students finding information in different web environments – observational data and interview

Drafting case study report including recommendations for potential design changes in order to maintain dynamic and appropriate school library web services.

Seek feedback on processes and findings on INF537 Forums & via blog posts

October 1 – 10

Finalise case study report for submission


INF533 Reflection Assessment 4 – Part C

Untitled design (3)

Literature in digital environments (INF533) has challenged participants to incorporate digital environments into their schemata for both the literature genre and literacy pedagogy. Throughout the modules in this course, we were challenged to consider questions such as:

  • What impact has the digital revolution had on books, reading and literature?
  • What challenges and opportunities might digital literature bring to the classroom?
  • What are the policy and practice considerations for including digital literature in school library collections?

These questions have been considered in the reflection on learning in INF533 that follows.

Changing definitions

Once upon a time storytelling was an oral tradition. Due to Gutenberg’s press, it evolved to include print. The Third Industrial Revolution has expanded the mediums of storytelling yet again and the narratives and dialogues of human experience are now also shared via interactive, transmedia, digital spaces. In the twenty-first century, when someone tells us they are reading a book, it can no longer be assumed that they are turning paper pages from the beginning to the end of a story. While this may be the case, they might also be plugged in, clicking, swiping, pinching, listening, viewing or interacting (Sadokierski, 2012). Lamb suggests that a book can now be defined as a published collection of related pages or screens (2011, p.13). As discussed in a blog post on this topic, titled Digital storytelling – distinguishing features, these new forms of storytelling not only change our definition of the physical book but also require new conceptions of author, editor, publisher and reader. Associated with this shift is a new breed of reader who, with the availability of connective technologies, is vocal, social, creative and collaborative resulting in reciprocal relationships between authors and readers (James Kennedy, as cited in Valenza & Stephens, 2012, p.78). Further to this, new technologies are changing our view of literature. An author goes beyond the classical definition of literature when they integrate digital and literary features in authentic ways and a synergy is formed between textual, artistic, multimodal and functional elements (Walsh, 2013, p.187). Consequently, the very nature of narrative and story are changing because of digital environments (Unsworth, 2008, p.63). These new definitions of book, reader and literature hold important implications for those involved in school libraries where literacy is the goal and the focus of our life work is to educate young people for successful futures.

Changing literacies

The emergence of digital literature means that new reading environments are now connected and participatory and this has implications for our understanding of what it means to be literate. Digital literacy broaches the idea that participation in contemporary society requires a set of skills beyond those of traditional literacy that included reading, writing, listening and speaking. Rowan states that “this is not just a question about working on screens rather than on paper, it is about moving between different forms and different genres with a degree of confidence. It is about editing and production” (2012, p.112). It follows then that literacy pedagogy also needs to be examined and Walsh’s research confirms that literacy needs to be redefined within current curriculum contexts (2010, p.211).  As discussed in the blog post titled The place for digital storytelling in the classroom, incorporating digital texts and storytelling into classroom programs has the potential to provide students with opportunities for comprehending narrative elements, engagement in collaborative and explorative production practices and building digital competencies. Exposing students to multimodal literature and an opportunity to experiment with producing such stories is one method of digital literacy pedagogy explored in INF533 via the Digital storytelling project.

The digital story experiment

Screen Shot 2015-10-12 at 9.40.53 pm

Through the Digital storytelling project, I was required to create a digital text, experiment with digital tools and platforms, experience social-networked literature and incorporate digital media texts into reading and literacy experiences in the school context. Pushing beyond my comfort zone, I chose to create a fan fiction response to John Green’s The fault in our stars on Instagram. Among the students for whom this project was designed, Instagram is the social media tool of choice and was therefore selected for this project. As a platform for digital storytelling, Instagram presented a number of challenges. These included copyright considerations, embedding multimedia elements and offering the reader an opportunity to interact with the story. These challenges and the creative problem solving used to overcome them are discussed in the blog post: Fan fiction on Instagram – the digital story experiment.

Changing professional practice

The reality that the digital revolution is changing books, storytelling and reading is a fact teacher librarians need to embrace because it has implications for our pedagogy and library management. These implications are discussed in three blog posts written for INF533:

In essence, the world is now characterised by ubiquitous connectivity and change resulting in the need for school library practitioners to redefine reading, remodel collections and rethink pedagogy in order to support students’ literacy development and promote lifelong reading practices.


Fora.TV. (2009, September 23). Once Upon These Times: New Stories for New Audiences [Video file]. Retrieved from

Lamb, A. (2011). Reading redefined for a transmedia universe. Learning and leading with technology, 39(3), 12-17. Retrieved July 25, 2015, from login.aspx?direct=true&db=ehh&AN=67371172&site=ehost-live

Rowan, L. (2012). Imagining futures (Ch. 13). In L. Rowan, & C. Bigum (Ed.),Transformative approaches to new technologies and student diversity in futures oriented classrooms: Future proofing education (pp. 217-225). Dordrecht: Springer Science +Business Media B.V.

Sadokierski, Z. (2013, November 12). What is a book in the digital age? [Web log post]. Retrieved October 02, 2015, from

Unsworth, L. (2006). E-literature for children: Enhancing digital literacy learning. Oxford, UK: Routledge.

Valenza, J. K., & Stephens, W. (2012). Reading Remixed. Educational Leadership, 69(6), 75-78. Retrieved from

Walsh, M. (2010). Multimodal literacy: What does it mean for classroom practice? Australian Journal of Language and Literacy, (October), 211-239. Retrieved September 27, 2015, from




The changing landscape of reading and its impact on the role of the Teacher Librarian


Our world is changing

There is no doubt that the world of books and literature is undergoing tremendous change in which communication is transitioning from print to digital and paper books are being replaced by eBooks. Those of us involved in industries such as publishing, book selling and libraries are negotiating both the challenges and opportunities that these new platforms deliver. Those of us in education are also coming to terms with the new literacies students will need for working and learning in digital environments.

Reading and books are changing

“Once upon a time, reading was as simple and straightforward as decoding words on a page. No more. Digital age technologies have made such an impact on the way we interact with content that the old definitions of reading and books no longer apply” (Lamb, 2011, p.13).

Physically, books are changing from pages enclosed within a hard or paper cover to screens on eReaders, smartphones and tablets. The content and structure of books is also changing. No longer are books restricted to a linear construct containing text and images from beginning to end. A modern reader might find themselves encountering hyperlinks, sound, motion and artefacts entering and exiting stories from multiple points in a branched narrative (Lamb, 2011, p.13). Resultant from this evolution in the format of the book are changes in the skills and strategies used to read and comprehend information (Felvegi & Matthew as cited in CSU, 2015, para.4).

In Reading redefined for a transmedia universe (2011), Lamb explores five electronic reading environments: eBooks, interactive storybooks, reference databases, hypertext and interactive fiction, and transmedia storytelling. Some of the features she highlights from these new reading environments include:

  • note taking tools;
  • highlighters;
  • virtual book marks;
  • dictionaries;
  • search tools;
  • display controls to manipulate font, background, colour and orientation;
  • read aloud functionality;
  • photos, maps, audio and video elements; and
  • multimodal, nonlinear participatory elements such as web-based clues, mobile apps, social media connections, activities and games (p.14-16).

School Libraries & the job of the Teacher Librarian is changing

In 2011, Amazon reported that eBook sales outstripped print for the first time (Rapaport, 2011, para.1). The fact is, we have to come to terms with the reality that the future of books and reading will be increasingly digital. Upon examination of the Australian Library and Information Association (ASLA) Standards of professional excellence for teacher librarians (2014), a number of arguments for the provision of digital literacies in school libraries can be highlighted. Such provision necessitates a Teacher Librarian’s skill repertoire include the ability to:

  • provide access to digital resources and eBooks in school library collections as these will be crucial to the achievement of the school community (standard 1.4);
  • evaluate the quality of an eBook or digital information for the library collection which involves the ability to judge whether the media elements and technology tools are integral to the reading experience (Lamb, 2011, p.17) thus enhancing learning (standard 2.4);
  • understand how new forms of reading necessitate changes in reading literacy pedagogy (Felvegi & Matthew, 2012, p.41) so that students develop the skills needed to navigate and comprehend the variety of modes and media incorporated into these reading experience (standard 1.2 & 1.3);
  • engage in emerging reading formats in order to encourage learners to read for enjoyment and empower understanding (standards 2.1 & 3.2)


Australian School Library Association. (2004, December). Standards of professional excellence for teacher librarians. Retrieved July 25, 2015, from

Charles Sturt University (CSU). (2015). Emerging literary experiences, INF533:  Literature in digital environments. Retrieved July, 2015.

Lamb, A. (2011). Reading redefined for a transmedia universe. Learning and leading with technology, 39(3), 12-17. Retrieved July 25, 2015, from login.aspx?direct=true&db=ehh&AN=67371172&site=ehost-live

Rapaport, L. (2011, May 20). Says Kindle E-Book Sales Surpass Printed Books for First Time. Bloomberg. Retrieved July 25, 2015, from

Image Attribution

Rocket eBook. [Photography]. Retrieved from Encyclopædia Britannica ImageQuest.

Reflection: Literature across the curriculum

Screen Shot 2015-02-16 at 8.26.27 pm

As a Teacher-Librarian, literature and the impact of reading on learners and learning, has been a key focus of my practice. In the first forum post for Literature Across the Curriculum, students were asked why read? In response to this, some of the reasons I listed included:

“comprehension skills; meaning making; language mastery; motivation to learn; memory; engagement with language; understanding and making sense of the world; pleasure; and deep engagement.”

As a result of the learning throughout this subject, some of the other reasons I would add include: to live vicariously; to explore diverse topics and subsequent perspective; enjoy the pleasure of finding a mirror to oneself; to explore ones own nature, thoughts and feeling; to build social skills; and to seek information.

The course work for Literature Across the Curriculum has broadened my understanding of the value of literature in education beyond the English classroom. The requirement to produce a unit of work that used literature to teach one of the cross curriculum priority areas was one of the challenges that contributed to this learning. The ideas generated for this unit of work have already been shared with teachers in my school and there is much enthusiasm for a fiction unit such as this to be incorporated into our curriculum mapping. The course has also led to professional growth by expanding my knowledge of the special role teacher-librarians play to ensure stories are a part of the lives and learning of the young people and to develop readers who choose to read. The readings about the necessity of enabling adults to match the right book to the right child highlighted the need for teacher-librarians to have knowledge of both books and children’s biopsychosocial development. This was a pertinent reminder for those of us in Queensland secondary schools that have Year 7 joining our communities this year.

Exploring the connections between the digital environment and the world of books was a learning outcome of Module 4 entitled Literature and the digital experience. The trends in this area mean that the professional practice of a teacher-librarian in the twenty-first century requires understanding eBooks, hypertext fiction, book apps and stories in multi-media formats. It also necessitates considering if/how these can be incorporated into library collections and pedagogy. Furthermore, it impacts our understanding of literacy, which is changing to incorporate new ways of reading. My own explorations during this module led me to discover the Lizzie Bennet Diaries and publish an article about these on my libraries website ( One key statement that I take away from the course is that in the digital age, the ability to read remains the key to successful participation in society.

As the subject draws to a close, the challenges and opportunities afforded have been many and have already started to impact my working life. In particular, I believe these understandings need to be translated to my professional practices as a teacher-librarian to build literacy and inspire a love of reading.

Reasons why school libraries should be using social media

Using social media to enhance service provision can be a difficult prospect for school libraries because there are often a number of hurdles in the way. These hurdles may include:

  • Fear of the misuse and abuse of these technologies – schools have a responsibility to keep students safe and often the fear of students accessing inappropriate information online, unsafe behaviours and cyber bullying results in schools developing policies that restrict technologies and social media use.
  • Fear of academic distraction – keeping classroom disruptions to a minimum is a key goal of teachers and possible interruptions caused by phones, devices, texting and social media is a significant issue that schools need to consider.
  • Giving away intellectual property – schools &/or education systems own the copyright on all resources produced for their context. Some administrators have difficulty in adopting an open source model and may restrict online sharing and collaboration.
  • It’s all too hard – there may be a lack of knowledge, experience and understanding of how to use social media for library services and taking that first step seems just too hard for some.

These hurdles suggest there are many reasons why school libraries are not on social media. Nevertheless, there are many examples of libraries, in and out of the school sector, using social media to successfully enhance their services. Three examples of these are presented in the following infographic:


These examples demonstrate how libraries can use social media. If Teacher-Librarians are going to be persuaded into the social media landscape, however, they will need to be convinced why it is a good idea. Here are some good reasons why school libraries should use social media:

  • Social media can provide online channels for broadcasting library content and drawing attention to the collection material. The National library of Australia believe that these media also provide high-value word-of-mouth marketing and are a successful method of reputation management and brand strengthening (Dellit & Schindeler, 2012, p.3)
  • Through social media, libraries can interact with users and provide opportunities for them to join groups and share ideas and information. When discussing why she blogs, Terri Bennett, a public library director from New York says that blogs “have the power to break down the institutional wall between libraries and their community members” (in Brookover, 2007, p.28). Furthermore, social media can provide opportunities for libraries to respond to feedback, both positive and negative, and to engage in conversation with patrons and better understand their needs (Burkhardt, 2009, para.3 & 5).
  • Digital Citizenship education – Teacher-Librarians are in a great position to be leaders of digital citizenship practices in their schools and teaching social media can be one method of enacting this. Joyce Valenza believes that using social media for learning will open students to:
    • respect for and creative use of intellectual property;
    • operating search tools so they work harder for them – receiving pushed information through feeds and widgets;
    • understanding their digital footprint;
    • building their own Professional Learning Networks (PLNs);
    • connecting with authors and experts;
    • communicating research; and
    • valuing intellectual freedom (2009).
  • Crowd sourcing involves individuals contributing to the collective to create a product that is far greater that the sum of individual achievements (Thomas & Seely Brown, 2011, olc.767). Wikipedia is a great example of this. Trove, an online library service of the National Library of Australia, is a world leader in crowd sourcing. They believe libraries can use crowd sourcing to facilitate participation and contribution to the work of an organisation, advocating this enriches their collections in ways previously not possible (Dellit & Schindeler, 2012, p2).

For school libraries contemplating going down the path of using social media, there are some important considerations that need to be kept in mind, including:

  • Strategies – a social media strategy is important as it articulates what individual libraries wish to gain from using social media. This will then inform the tools chosen, the types of conversations that will take place and the time and energy invested in these communications.
  • Policies – having guidelines for social media use is particularly important in the school setting where the age of students, institutional values and parental concerns necessitate consideration. Sharlyn Lauby’s blog post, 10 Must-Haves for Your Social Media Policy, contains good advice for those considering a social media policy.  If libraries are contemplating patron/student-generated content through crowd sourcing, this also necessitates the establishment a clear set of guidelines. The New York Public Library’s Policy on patron-generated web content is an excellent example of such policies.
  • Licensing – when publishing to social media, school libraries need to adhere to the ethical use of the creative materials they share and attribute sources appropriately. This can be a legal issue as well as role modelling good practices for students. Teacher-Librarians should also consider having a discussion with their school principal about licensing the work they publish and participating in a creative commons culture of sharing information with the view that access to information has always been a core value of libraries.
  • Staff roles – good social media communications take time. When libraries are sure their reasons for using social media mirror their core values, staff roles need to be redefined in order to allocate time in the working day for staff to learn these technologies and then engage in these environments on behalf of the library.
  • Risk & trust – mistakes can be made and when these are online the potential audience is always large. Letting go of the culture of perfect and trusting users to play a role in library services are essential to the successful use of social media which at it’s core must be about understanding, connecting with and involving users (Farkas, 2008, para.16).


Brookover, S. (2007). Why we blog. Library Journal132(19), 28.

Burkhardt, A. (2009, August 25). Four reasons libraries should be on social media [Web log post]. Retrieved February 1, 2015, from

Dellit, A., & Schindeler, S. (2012, February 7). VALA2012 concurrent session 2: Discovery. In Trove: The Terrors and Triumphs of Service-based Social Media. Retrieved February 1, 2015, from

Farkas, M. (2008, January 24). The essence of Library 2.0? [Web log post]. Retrieved February 1, 2015, from

Lauby, S. (2009, April 27). Should your company have a social media policy? [Web log post]. Retrieved February 2, 2015, from

New York Public Library. (2015). Policy on patron-generated web content. Retrieved February 2, 2015, from

Thomas, D., & Brown, J. S. (2011). A new culture of learning: Cultivating the imagination for a world of constant change. Lexington, KY: CreateSpace.


Embracing Library 2.0

Universities Begin Winter Semester

2015 is the ten-year anniversary of the Library 2.0 movement (Wallace, O’Connell & Hsang Lui, 2015, para. 1). Since its inception, libraries have been trying to transform the way they serve and interact with customers (Casey & Savatinik, 2010, para. 2). This service model is participatory and based on the underlying principals of Web 2.0 including collaboration, conversation, community, content creation and crowd sourcing. In Building Academic Library 2.0, a presentation for a symposium sponsored by the Librarians Association of the University of California, Berkeley Division in 2007, suggestions were put forward about how to embrace the Library 2.0 ethos. In his opening remarks, Shel Waggener, states that today’s library should endeavour to know what people need and plan for it. He goes on to specify that forming partnerships is essential to this understanding. Following these opening remarks, the keynote speaker, Meredith Farkas agrees that Library 2.0 is essentially about meeting user needs. She also says that libraries need to: embrace a position of radical trust; get rid of the culture of perfect and adopt constant iterative processes; keep up with new technologies; and look outside the library for information and inspiration.

At the Mt Alvernia iCentre, we are four years into our journey of embracing Library 2.0 services and have identified a need to enter into a phase of reviewing and reconsidering of our virtual spaces for learning. This blog post will consider how our change process might be informed by the insights presented at the Berkeley symposium.

  1. Meeting user needs

The first phase of our journey was about moving into digital environments to complement our physical collections, services and spaces. This was driven by the changing information landscape and the College’s strategic directions to embed technology into classroom pedagogies. In order to do this, we engaged in creating a website, building digital resource collections and joining social media networks. This period involved a lot of experimentation, learning, and advocacy. Through reflection, research and feedback, we have identified that some of our work has been successful and yet there is room for improvement in meeting user needs. When asked if his class used the library website, one teacher responded with “why should we, what is in it for us?” This is a very important point – we need to make conversations with teachers, students and parents our priority, to listen carefully to what they need, and to use our expertise to meet these needs. Throughout this, we must ensure we communicate our intentions clearly and keep our processes transparent.

  1. Embracing a position of radical trust

Not only should we be meeting the needs of our users, but also think about ways of giving users the opportunity to be participants in our iCentre services, spaces and collections. While we have been very busy curating resources in Pinterest, pushing great ideas to our followers on Twitter and building a beautiful website, this has more often than not, followed a more traditional library model of “us on behalf of them” rather than the “us with them” philosophy of Library 2.0. In order to shift more in the direction of involving users as co-creators, we need to embrace a position of radical trust much like that evidenced in the crowd sourcing processes used by Wikipedia and the Ushahidi website which are powerful examples of collectives in action. Thomas and Seely Brown maintain this is important in the digital age in which participation now “shapes and augments the stream of information” (2011, loc. 596). In digital collectives, the contributions of people, skills and talents lead to results greater than the sum of individual achievements (2011, loc. 767).  As we move forward, we are thinking about ways that we can embed user comments, tags and ratings to feed user-created content back into our website as suggested by Casey & Savastinuk to create a more informative product for subsequent users (2010, para. 11). In the iCentre, we are taking a first step in this direction by involving our teachers in our efforts to curate resources in Pinterest and their expert knowledge of the curriculum and students, we hope, will build an even stronger collection. Our hope is that it will also provide a sense of ownership in the collection and make it more useful and more widely used.

  1. Getting rid of the culture of perfect and adopting constant iterative processes

This is something that we value highly in the iCentre. We position ourselves as learners and view our endeavours to date as only the beginning of an ever-changing process. We value ongoing assessment and need to continue thinking about methods of embedding feedback to inform our services.

  1. Keeping up with new technologies

Learning is a key value in the iCentre and we believe every member of the community is a learner. As a staff, we endeavour to enact this value. Each member of our professional team that consists of two Teacher-Librarians and three Library Technicians is engaged in formal study. Each member of the team is also committed to building a Professional Learning Network (PLN) through connections made in person and online. Through these avenues, we are constantly discovering and sharing new technologies and thinking about ways that these might benefit the students we work with.

  1. Looking outside the library for information and inspiration

Louise Starkey maintains the impact of connected environments is widespread and is changing the nature of knowledge.  Her research suggests that, “ideas about ‘knowledge’ appear to be changing from something that is found in the heads of individuals or in books to something that is not fixed, is debatable, accessible through a range of media and created through networks, connections and collaboration” (2011, p. 22). Given this, it is important that we consider ways of providing our users with the tools and skills that will connect them to ideas beyond the library and empower them to form their own networks. For this reason, we believe it is important to keep investing in a website that offers avenues for these connections rather than restricting students’ library experience to the OPAC.


As we move forward in our journey to develop Library 2.0 services, a key focus must be on involving our community of users every step of the way. We need to listen carefully to their needs when planning, we need to involve them as co-creators of information and we need to do this by embracing a position of radical trust. At the same time, we need to continue our practice of positioning ourselves as learners in order to adopt constant iterative processes, keep up with new technologies, and look beyond the library for inspiration.



Casey, M. E., & Savastinuk, L. C. (2010). Library 2.0. Library Journal, (May), 21st ser. Retrieved January 24, 2015, from

Starkey, L. (2011). Evaluating learning in the 21st century: A digital age learning matrix. Technology, Pedagogy and Education, 20(1), 19-39. doi:10.1080/1475939X.2011.554021

Thomas, D., & Brown, J. S. (2011). A new culture of learning: Cultivating the imagination for a world of constant change. Lexington, KY: CreateSpace.

UC Berkeley Events. (2007, November 19). Building Academic Library 2.0. Retrieved January 26, 2015, from

Wallace, J., O’Connell, J. and Hsang Liu, Y. (2014, November). INF506: Social Networking for Information Professionals [Module 4]. Lecture. Retrieved January 26, 2015, from

Image Attribution

Universities Begin Winter Semester. [Photography]. Retrieved from Encyclopædia Britannica ImageQuest.


ASU Libraries: do they achieve the 4C’s of social media?


The Library 2.0 movement is all about transforming libraries into participatory services based on the underlying principles of Web 2.0. These principles include collaboration, conversation, community and content creation (CSU, 2015, para. 2).   The Arizona State University (ASU) Libraries are an example of how one organisation is attempting to put these services into action using tools such as Youtube, Twitter, Facebook and online forms.

The Library 2.0 model is a customer driven service and as such, feedback is an essential component (Casey & Savastinuk, 2010). Investigating the ASU Libraries services reveals much evidence of engagement with users. Most particularly, the online suggestions box encourages input from users and the responses provided by the libraries clearly demonstrate they value this input and adjust services in response where possible and applicable. The libraries response in these forums is important and Schrier tells us that in order to build trust with customers, libraries must answer people’s questions out of a desire to help rather than a desire to promote the library (Schrier, 2011). In this respect, the example below, of the ASU’s online suggestion box, demonstrates the libraries use of collaboration and communication to receive feedback, to answer questions helpfully and to provide customer driven offerings.

Jan 21, 2015 · suggestion box

Submitted:  January 20, 2015
Regarding:  Online Catalog

Comment/Suggestion:  When viewing the list of checked out books, it would be really nice to have a way to export the list to a bibliography tool, such as BibTeX.

Library Response: Thank you for the suggestion. While the ASU Libraries does not support BibTeX, we were able to create a button to export checked out items to RefWorks, which is a web-based bibliography database manager that allows you to collect, organize and manage a personal database of book and article citations. You will now see this button in your library account when you are viewing checked-out items.

RefWorks Button

We hope this improves your research experience at ASU Libraries. 

A second example of the ASU Libraries incorporating the Library 2.0 model is their connection to community. The ASU Facebook page and Twitter contains a number of example of valuing community above collections, including providing charging stations for users and rewarding feedback in the form of prizes for completing surveys.

ASU Tweet 2015-01-24 at 11.47.05 am


ASU Facebook 1 2015-01-24 at 11.52.37 am ASU Facebook 2 2015-01-24 at 11.53.18 am

Meeting user information needs and communicating the usefulness of the collection to users is an essential role of libraries. Miller states that this communication must reach the user “where they happen to be, and in association with the task they happen to be undertaking” (2005, para. 18). The ASU Libraries Youtube channel – The Library Minute is a very good example of a library performing this role.

ASU Youtube channel 2015-01-24 at 12.54.07 pm

Despite searching the ASU Libraries website, I could not find any examples of the fourth principle of Library 2.0, that is, content creation. A more thorough investigation into the catalogue and twitter feed might provide some examples of this but there are no obvious user reviews, invitations to participate in tagging resources or user generated content on the site.

Casey, M. E., & Savastinuk, L. C. (2010). Library 2.0. Library Journal, (May), 21st ser. Retrieved January 24, 2015, from
Miller, P. (2005). Web 2.0: Building the new library. Ariadne, (45). Retrieved December 28, 2014, from
Schrier, R. A. (2007). Digital librarianship & social media: The digital library as conversation facilitator. D-Lib Magazine, 17(7/8). doi:doi:10.1045/july2011-schrier
Image Attribution