Texas Public Libraries: Serving Communities to Enhance Digital Literacy: (A New Report From the Texas State Library and Archives Commission)
Texas State Library and Archives Commission (TSLAC) has announced the release of a new report, Texas Public Libraries: Serving Communities to Enhance Digital Literacy. Created through a TSLAC partnership with the Bureau of Business Research IC2 Institute at The University of Texas at Austin, this publication gathered primary data from main and branch libraries throughout Texas to identify areas of urgent need relating to digital literacy in communities statewide. This research was made possible by support of the Institute of Museum and Library Services, with funds from the American Rescue Plan Act to support digital access and literacy in communities throughout the state.
The Texas Public Libraries: Serving Communities to Enhance Digital Literacy report documents the many ways Texas public libraries are providing both formal and informal digital literacy training to their communities. According to the findings, these efforts account for approximately $70 to $90 million in statewide investment by the state’s libraries.
“The report highlights the impressive work of Texas libraries and supporting digital literacy training in their communities,” said Gloria Meraz, TSLAC Director and Librarian. “However, the report also finds that libraries statewide identify significant unmet needs and point to the benefit of increased opportunities for training and resources. The Texas State Library and Archives Commission will use these findings to guide the development of programs at both the local and state level.”
Researchers conducted in-depth interviews with more than 300 librarians representing communities of all sizes. The full findings of the survey reflect policy and administrative actions that may be beneficial in addressing critical issues confronting Texas library staff who want to improve their patrons’ digital literacy knowledge and skills. Data from interviews and surveys identified gaps and challenges that exist, and those findings are the foundation for the recommendations of the survey.
The following are some of the recommendations included in the report that focus on potential action areas at the state and local level:
Establish a grant program related to digital literacy in Texas libraries
Foster mentoring and peer support for small libraries
Provide more programmatic attention to older adults/seniors
Create local public library partnerships
- Full report (PDF)
- Executive summary (PDF)
- Survey tool for main libraries (PDF) and branch libraries (PDF)
- Verbatim responses from Library Directors:
- Training curriculums (PDF)
- Partnerships (PDF)
- Community needs (PDF)
- Most important community needs (PDF)
- Demographics (PDF)
- Strategies and plans (PDF)
- Priorities for new resources (PDF)
- What works and does not work (PDF)
- Unique and innovative approaches (PDF)
- Recommendations for TSLAC (PDF)
- Additional comments about digital literacy (PDF)
- Estimates of digital literacy expenditures (PDF)
- Direct to Complete News Release
About Gary Price
Gary Price (firstname.lastname@example.org) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. He earned his MLIS degree from Wayne State University in Detroit. Price has won several awards including the SLA Innovations in Technology Award and Alumnus of the Year from the Wayne St. University Library and Information Science Program. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com.