December 16, 2017

America’s Star Libraries: Top-Rated Libraries | LJ Index 2017

We are pleased to announce the results of the tenth edition of the LJ Index of Public Library Service, sponsored by Baker & Taylor’s CollectConnect. The LJ Index rates U.S. public libraries based on selected per capita output measures. This year, 7,409 U.S. public libraries qualified to be rated in the Index. In this edition, there are 259 Star Libraries, each receiving three-Star, four-Star, or five-Star designations.

LJ’s Top Trends in Library Architecture | Year in Architecture 2017

As demonstrated in this year’s 82 building projects, completed between July 1, 2016, and June 30, 2017, academic and public institutions are now regarded as places of community, of gathering, and of collaboration, even as reading remains in play. From Long Beach’s Michelle Obama Neighborhood Library to Harvard University’s Cabot Science Library, LJ explores some of the top trends in library architecture this year.

Renee F. Hill | LJ/ALISE Excellence in Teaching Award Winner 2017

The range of the 23 courses she leads (many of which she designed herself); her passion for teaching; her ability to create online asynchronous courses and make them come alive and feel personal to her students; and the extension of her role as an educator far beyond the MLIS classroom are only a few of the reasons Renee F. Hill has won the 2017 LJ/ALISE Excellence in Teaching Award, sponsored by Rowman & Littlefield.

Straight from the Source | Innovation

Libraries possess a not-so-secret weapon when it comes to assessing the needs of their patrons—the frontline staff who engage with their communities every day. How can library leaders best tap staff members’ expertise, make staff at all levels feel safe and welcome to contribute, and harness that information to develop programs and policies that meet real-world needs?

Stigma-Free Reading for Adults | Collections

Nashville Public Library, the 2017 Gale/LJ Library of the Year, launched the Fresh Reads collection to adult new readers in 2017 to offer stigma-free reading to promote literacy and learning.

Convening Community Conversations | Programming

It can be challenging to start a substantive conversation, not just small talk, among people of differing experiences and opinions, even—or especially—when they are neighbors. But libraries, as institutions used and trusted by a broad cross section of the population, are uniquely positioned to convene productive dialog that can help patrons abandon the “echo chamber” and start talking to one another.

Virtually There | Product Spotlight

Public interest in virtual reality (VR) technology is on the rise. People can view VR apps on the latest smartphones using headsets as inexpensive as the $12.99 Google Cardboard. And high-end, PC-driven head-mounted displays are now available for $600 or less, with a growing number of realistic games or educational “field trip” applications available to transport users from their living rooms and classrooms into immersive environments.

Placements & Salaries 2017: Librarians Everywhere

Recent graduates are experiencing faster placements and earning more money than last year’s, this year’s snapshot of the job market suggests.

Placements & Salaries 2017: 2017 Salaries

The average full-time salary for employed 2016 graduates is $51,798, up 7.45% over 2015. The average hourly wage was $19, which translates to an annual salary of almost $40,000.

Placements & Salaries 2017: Job Journey

This year we explored whether graduates had been exposed to working in a library prior to enrolling in an LIS master’s program.