New Librarianship Master Class to be Offered Again

Last summer I offered a MOOC on the basics of New Librarianship. Over 2,300 people enrolled. However, many said they couldn’t participate at the time, or had to drop out for other obligations. Now, thanks to the State Library of Illinois’ ILEAD USA project, I’m offering it again.

Starting June 30th and running through July 27th, I’ll be re-running the MOOC. To be clear, this is the same course as last summer, not a follow-on. Also, unlike last summer, there will be no Continuing Education or College Credit options (though I will send out a delightful certificate of completion for those who want it).

Another important to note, the original site for the Master Class will remain up as an archive. There will be a new URL for this MOOC with fresh new discussion boards and such.

So, more details to come.

Posted in New/Participatory Librarianship, Teaching | 5 Comments

Nerd Absurd’s 100th Podcast

I’m a big fan of the Nerd Absurd podcast and had a blast talking to Virginia, Nick, Leland, and Andrew. We talked libraries, maker spaces, MOOCs, tenure and academia. Perhaps that’s why I have such a good time….they let me ramble.

Take a listen and check out their other great episodes at:

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I Want Your Blood…Donated

As many of you know, I have been battling Hodgkin’s Lymphoma for the past year. I’ve been through chemo and most recently a stem cell transplant. Throughout this entire ordeal, I have received numerous blood transfusions that have enabled me to keep fighting. Through the kindness of others, I have been able to live.

So, to pay it forward, my wife, friends, and I are coordinating a blood drive with the American Red Cross on Wednesday, June 4th. It will take place at Holy Cross Church in Dewitt, NY from 1:00-7:00pm. We are asking everyone to please consider coming out and donating blood that day. It’s such a wonderful thing you can do for those who really could use your help. It takes about an hour of your time although the actual donation takes about 10 minutes.

You can contact my wife directly (AMDLRDL@YAHOO.COM) to set up an appointment or call the American Red Cross. Please join us in giving back to our community!

I’d also ask my area librarian friends to post a flyer (download it here) on any community boards you may have. And feel free to pass this along to others who may be able to help. Together we can make a difference! Thank you.

Blood Drive

Posted in Cancer, News | 4 Comments

The Faithful and the Radicals

“The Faithful and the Radicals” Opening Keynote for Expect More, The NYLA-SSL Annual Conference 2014. Syracuse, NY.

Abstract: School librarians must have faith in the work and the work of their colleagues. Yet faith alone will not advance the cause. Advancing school librarianship requires radical action.




cny from R. David Lankes on Vimeo.

Posted in 2014, New/Participatory Librarianship, Presentation | 1 Comment

Stand for Those We Miss and Love

When my father died there were no testimonials at the funeral service. Aside from a few remarks of the priest, no one stood and spoke for my father. When I asked the priest about this later, he pointed out that there would be plenty of opportunity to talk about my dad at the wake and in the weeks to come, but the service was a time to think about God’s words. It is an argument that I understand, but it I think that’s God’s words could only be enhanced by the memories of a man that we knew and loved.

So today I stand up for JoAnn Gunter. I never met JoAnn, but came to know her through her amazing daughter Buffy Hamilton. With Buffy as our intermediary JoAnna and I cheered each other on through our trials with cancer. This weekend JoAnn died of pancreatic cancer.

Today I stand for Joanne Silverstein, my dearest friend and closest colleague who died of breast cancer. I stand for Jeffry Katzer, a mentor through my Ph.D. program who died of prostate cancer. I stand for Jill Abdo, mother to my son’s best friend who succumbed to colon cancer. I stand for Grandmother Anne Goodman who died of colon cancer, and my Grandmother Dottie who died of leukemia.

I stand as someone who has fought with cancer and as someone who will remember you. Someone who says your life was important. I stand to remind those who remain that life can be hard. I stand to remind everyone that cancer takes and takes and takes. I stand to remind everyone that no matter how much we are loved, or how much good we seek to do, we all can be taken too soon.

Yet I also stand to remind all of us to be brave. That while darkness has taken these beautiful people, it is because of the light they added to our lives that we remember them. To remind all of us that to mourn is natural, but so is celebration. Take time today to stand and celebrate those in your life who you have lost, who you will miss, those who made your life better. Stand today; stand still if just for a moment, and celebrate those people in your life who are gone, but remain a part of you.

Posted in Cancer | 15 Comments

IMLS Grant Funding Program to Boost Library Workers’ Online Teaching Skills

A press release on a new IMLS grant we’re doing with the fantastic folks at South Central Regional Library Council

Original story at

IMLS Grant Funding Program to Boost Library Workers’ Online Teaching Skills

By: Diane Stirling
(315) 443-8975

3logosThe School of Information Studies (iSchool), as a partner with the South Central Regional Library Council of Ithaca and The 3Rs Association, Inc., will be developing a program to strengthen the teaching and learning skills of library workers who provide outreach education using online learning environments.

A grant of $336,665 has just been awarded to support the three-year project by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) via its Laura Bush 21st Century Librarians Program. The monies will enable development of a program to guide transfer of in-person teaching skills and pedagogy to the online environment; help librarian-trainers evaluate and gain experience with various online delivery platforms; and teach library workers how people learn effectively in online education situations.

Project principal investigator is Mary-Carol Lindbloom, executive director of the South Central Regional Library Council. She conceived the skill-building program and invited the iSchool to participate. iSchool Professor R. David Lankes is Syracuse University’s liaison to the project. He will provide input into course development and delivery and oversee graduate assistant and hourly students who will be hired to help implement the program. iSchool faculty members Marilyn Plavovos Arnone and Jill Hurst-Wahl, plus WISE distance-education coordinator Alison Miller, also will help formulate program content.

The group plans to develop “train the trainer” materials for 120 librarians who are responsible for providing continuing education through their libraries. They also will develop an online learning segment, to deliver to 240 librarians from throughout New York State that illustrates best practices to support online learning.

Finding What Works

As more teaching changes from in-person classrooms to online platforms, there is a need for clear guidelines on what works and what doesn’t in terms of the pedagogy, technologies, and devices used in the online environment, according to Professor Lankes. “What’s happening is that people are saying, ‘I’ve taught this in person for 10 years; I’ll teach it online.’ Yet, it’s not like ‘shazam’, and you can teach it online. What we’ve learned at Syracuse since we began doing online education in 1993 is that there is no ‘shazam’ to this; there is a lot to think about when you make the transition to online teaching and learning. There are a lot of good instructors who do very interactive things when everyone’s seated around the table. The question then is, how do you do something like that in the online environment?”

Transferring Skills

Professor Arnone said that librarians are experiencing situations where the outreach and education they do increasingly involves online elements. The program will help develop skills for online teaching and unique aspects of learning via an online environment. The goal is to boost presentation and technology skills which library workers can use to conduct effective online sessions. “This is about being able to teach effectively and transfer what you know into an online environment, and understanding the differences in online learning, since not everyone likes it,” Arnone noted.

Those who teach online need to understand how to gain attention, make content relevant and interesting, and build learners’ confidence, while also setting clear expectations for the experience, she added. In addition to addressing those aspects, workers will learn how to offer “multiple means of representation–opportunities to present information in ways that learners can feel good about–so it’s coming to them in the way that they prefer. Addressing disability issues and accessibility for online learners, and the adjustments that can be made for online learning, also will be incorporated, Professor Arnone said.

Materials and presentations created for the program’s 10 informational modules will be available to the worldwide library community through the project’s LibGuides website, via WebJunction, and as disseminated through library conferences and publications.

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New Librarianship on Kanopy

I’m thrilled to team up with Kanopy to make the New Librarianship videos from last summer’s MOOC widely available to their customers. Kanopy, from their website, “is a leading distributor of online educational videos, offering colleges, schools, hospitals, corporates and other educational institutions a comprehensive, one-stop shop for all their streaming video needs.”

Here is the press release.


To celebrate National Library Week, Kanopy is offering a complimentary subscription to R. David Lankes’ New Librarianship Master Class Collection to all Kanopy customers. Lankes is a professor and Dean’s Scholar for the New Librarianship at Syracuse University’s School of Information Studies and Director of the Information Institute of Syracuse. His book, The Atlas of New Librarianship won the 2012 ABC-CLIO/Greenwood Award for the Best Book in Library Literature. Lankes is a passionate advocate for librarians and their essential role in today’s society.

Featuring 41 videos, the collection provides a foundation for practicing librarians and library science students in new librarianship. The collection seeks to generate discussion about the future direction of the profession. It is available to you courtesy of David Lankes and Kanopy in the spirit of creating a collaborative platform for librarians from around the world to debate and share in the key challenges and issues facing librarians today and into the future.
Topics include:

Overview and Introduction

• Introduction to the Series
• Introduction to New Librarianship


• The Mission of Librarians: The Importance of Worldview
• Knowledge Creation: Introduction to Knowledge
• Facilitating: Access
• Communities: Environment
• Improve Society: Values of Librarianship


• The Mission of Libraries: Expect More Than Books
• Video Mission Statements
• Why Libraries? Collective Buying Agent
• Library as Platform
• The Grand Challenges of Library and Information Science


• Moving from Sharing to Lending and Back Again
• Kill the User
• The Deficit Model

To access the video collection, simply visit your Kanopy video portal and search for “New Librarianship”. If you are not a Kanopy customer, we would be happy to provide this resource at no charge to you. Please contact Shannon Spurlock to arrange this:

Posted in New/Participatory Librarianship, Publications News, Teaching | Leave a comment