Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Help a librarian out: a survey on teen/ya library services

It's been quiet here since I talked about leaving my job, and it's not because I haven't been busy. I have been. Over the last few months, I've done a lot of thinking about my career and librarianship and what I want out of both of them. I've also picked up an amazing freelance job that has really pushed me further toward pursuing my passion, I've published an article in VOYA, and I've had a proposal accepted to talk about Contemporary YA lit at this year's YALSA YA Lit Symposium in St. Louis. Honestly, it's been a whirlwind in the best sort of ways.

In thinking about my dreams and goals in librarianship, I've done a lot of thinking about teen/ya services and how for many libraries, they're a luxury. They're not a priority for any number of reasons (time, staff, and money being the three biggies that encompass about everything) and knowing the value these services have on teens and in communities, I've become real fired up about ways even the smallest libraries can reach this group.  I'm thinking about this beyond the library world, too. I'm thinking about reaching teens through the places they are -- school, clubs and organizations, and so forth. 

This is the part where I ask for your help. I've developed a survey about library services to teens/young adults, specifically as they relate to reader's advisory and collection management. For those maybe unfamiliar with the term "reader's advisory," it's the fancy wording for helping people find books; "collection management" refers to figuring out what books to buy for the library and which ones to get rid of that are taking up space on a shelf. I want to know how libraries are helping teens find books to read and how librarians are finding the books to buy for their collection.

If you can give me any insight, I would be so appreciative. Please pass this along to anyone who can weigh in. It's my hope to not only reach libraries where teen services (and reader's advisory) thrive, but I am especially eager to hear from libraries where they do not and where there is a need for these sorts of services. No library is too big or too small, and I'm open to the range of libraries who serve teens/young adults, so I welcome input from school, public, and academic libraries.

NOTE: There is a scroll bar for the survey on the right-hand side. It'll take you to the other questions and the "submit" button. You do not need to comment on this post to share your answers.

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