Frequently Asked Questions for the Subsidized "Scholarly Communication: From Understanding to Engagement" RoadShow Workshop

Scholarly Communication: From Understanding to Engagement

  1. Submitting an Application
  2. Hosting a Workshop
  3. Costs and Funding
  4. Previous Hosts

Submitting an Application

1.) I’d like to find other institutions in my area so that we may submit an application together. Can you help?
Institutions may publicly express their intent to apply for the 2020 program by posting a comment in the discussion on ALA Connect. We hope this helps you identify potential collaborators so that you can consider submitting a joint application.

2.) My institution's application was not selected last year. Do we need to reapply to be considered again?
Yes, a new application is required each year to be considered. Applicants will need to update their preferred dates to host and may wish to make other revisions (to the essays or to identify new partners, for example). You may be able to reuse much of your previous application material, however, such as the letters of support. If you do not have a copy of your previous year's application and would like one, please contact Chase Ollis at

3.) What advice can you offer about preparing a strong application?
In general, those who have been selected in the past not only met the required criteria and most/all of the preferred criteria, but made a compelling case in their essays and letters around two key points. First, they showed that the approach we offer was the right level for their community. Second, they demonstrated that they had capacity to continue being engaged and illustrated concretely how they would maintain awareness among library staff.

4.) Can an ACRL Chapter apply to host this event? What about a library consortium or state association?

5.) Can international institutions apply to host the subsidized workshop?
Yes. Please note, for workshops outside of North America, additional support from the host institution, including organizing local transportation and lodging, may be required.

6.) How long does the statement of support need to be?
We’d recommend keeping it brief, a few paragraphs at most. Remember, this is a competitive process so you’ll want to make a compelling argument throughout the application about why we should choose you!

7.) Where should I send my essay and statement of support?
The essay and statement of support should be pasted directly into the online application form under the appropriate questions.

8.) Our area of the country has a large contingent of higher education institutions. Would it be feasible for ACRL to approve 2 requests from our region?
While feasible, this would be highly unlikely. The ACRL Research and Scholarly Environment Committee will review applications and select up to five locations, aiming for geographic diversity. In every year we have offered the subsidized version of this workshop, we have had to turn away applicants. We expect that the selection process will involve some tough decisions this time as well.

9.) On the application form there are several boxes to fill in for "Participant institutions.” What is a “participant institution?” Are these just the other institutions we would invite?
Yes. We ask applicants to identify one “host” to be the primary coordinator for the registration and event coordination/logistics duties. We expect most hosts will provide the space for the workshop to be held. To broaden the reach of the workshop, hosts should indicate one or more “participant institutions,” which are other libraries who would be sending their staff.

11.) How much weight will be given to the preferred criterion of being an organizational member in the selection process?
There are several preferred criteria that may be used to weight applications, including organizational membership, institutional and geographic diversity, and diversity in types of library staff participating. We expect a large number of applications each year, and the preferred criteria may be the deciding factor in selecting one application over another. Get more information on becoming an organizational member.

12.) If we’re not selected as one of the locations to receive the workshop at a lower cost, what other options are there?
ACRL also offers the opportunity for institutions to bring this workshop, as well as a number of others, to their own regions at full cost. Please contact Chase Ollis at to discuss dates, locations, and for complete workshop details.

Hosting a Workshop

13.) Who is the appropriate audience for this event?
This workshop is appropriate for those with administrative responsibilities, with new leadership assignments in scholarly communication or digital publishing, as well as liaisons and any others who are seeking to advance their professional development in scholarly communication. Hosts may consider this as an opportunity to invite staff outside the library (i.e. research office, graduate college), and this workshop could serve as a stepping stone for the library, perhaps along with campus partners, to organize a later event for graduate students and faculty. See a full description of the workshop here.

14.) Could we hold the subsidized workshop later than August 31?
No, not for the subsidized program, in part as this marks the end of ACRL's fiscal year. However, institutions can choose to bring the workshop to their regions at full cost at a timing of their choice.

15.) When is the earliest the subsidized workshop could be scheduled?
March 1, 2020. We ask for you to indicate 3 dates, at least one week apart from each other, in the application. If you want to include any comments about timing, please indicate this when you apply in the "Other information for consideration" box in the online application form.

16.) What type of facility/space is needed to host?
One single room is all it takes, set up with round or conference tables (not theater or classroom style). This allows participants to engage more easily in hands-on activities. Breakout rooms are not necessary. For full workshop host responsibilities, please see our guide to hosting an ACRL RoadShow.

17.) What kind of A/V is required?
The presenters need a podium, wireless microphone, screen, projector, and computer. Participants will also work with flip charts and markers. Internet connectivity for the presenters is good to have (but not essential) and participant internet is nice, but not required. To ensure accessibility for all participants, a microphone for audience use is highly recommended. If you think your participants will bring devices and expect to have power at their tables, you may choose to supply it. The presenters don’t ask participants to work on laptops during the day. For full workshop host responsibilities, please see our guide to hosting an ACRL RoadShow.

18.) There is a max of 100 participants and a minimum of 45. Can we self-limit to, say, only 50?
Yes. Since it is the host responsibility to manage all aspects of registration and participant selection, if any, you could limit to less than 100. Please include the number of participants you expect to invite and include a brief sentence or two explaining why in your application.

19.)  How would you advise we handle the lunch break during the workshop?
To ensure the best use of time for participants and presenters, we strongly urge hosts to have lunch catered in the room, rather than expecting participants to leave and return.

20.) Will there be an online version?
ACRL has extended the reach of this workshop by adding related materials to its popular Scholarly Communication Toolkit. Librarians can make use of these tools to enhance their own knowledge or adapt them to offer related workshops on their own campuses. In addition to the in-person workshop, presenters may offer live webcasts through ACRL’s eLearning program and develop additional recorded videos that would be housed in the toolkit.

Costs and Funding

21.) Will the host institution be responsible for organizing travel, lodging or incidentals for the ACRL presenters?
ACRL will cover presenter costs for travel and lodging. The presenters will make their own lodging and travel arrangements, but we expect hosts to work with the presenters to recommend lodging and local ground transportation options and communicate regularly with presenters regarding program logistics. Hosts are responsible for costs associated with printing and providing workshop materials (printing handouts, flipcharts, name badges, etc.), catering (as appropriate), and other operational costs.

22.) Can the host charge a registration fee to cover costs (name badges, photocopies, snacks, $2000 fee)?
Hosts may divide costs among participant institutions, or may choose to charge a registration fee to cover costs. We have designed this to be a very affordable event for hosts. We expect that the cost for name badges and photocopies of handouts will be nominal, and anticipate that mosts hosts would have complimentary access to facilities and A/V equipment on campus. It is optional whether you would like to include food and beverage (coffee, cookies, lunch, etc.) as part of the event.

If any registration fees are charged, they should be on a cost-recovery basis only. This event may not serve hosts in generating revenue to support other activities. If you feel it necessary to charge individual participants a registration fee, please indicate this on the application when asked and include your rationale along with estimated costs and fee per person.

23.) Are external vendor or institutional sponsorships for cost recovery permissible?
We moved from fully underwriting this workshop to offering a partial subsidy in 2012 in part to ensure local commitment and ownership. We understand that hosts may wish to keep costs for individual attendees low, and you are free to ask each library dean/director to contribute rather than charging individuals a registration fee. Additionally, there may be another college/university mechanism (i.e., a staff development fund) that could be tapped. You could also approach a library friends group, if you have one, or an individual donor who has made a commitment to the library/chapter in the past. As for vendors, if you approach a local business (a printer, caterer or someone similar with whom you routinely do business and have a good relationship) that would be fine. But hosts may not seek funding from a national vendor of library products/services. This includes your local sales representative of a national vendor. In part this is because ACRL approaches these same organizations to fundraise for our conference and other programs, but largely it is because of our desire to ensure that there is local commitment.

Previous Hosts

Please see the below interactive map to view previous host sites for the subsidized RoadShow. A list of previous hosts organized by year is also below the map.


Auraria Library: Denver, CO
University of North Alabama: Florence, AL
Utah Academic Library Consortium: Provo, UT
ACRL Delaware Valley Chapter: Philadelphia, PA
University of Oregon: Eugene, OR


West Virginia University: Morgantown, WV
Bowdoin College: Brunswick, ME
University of North Carolina, Greensboro: Greensboro, NC
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign: Urbana, IL
New York University Abu Dhabi: Abu Dhabi, UAE


Portland State University: Portland, OR
University of Nebraska, Lincoln: Lincoln, NE
Worcester Polytechnic Institute: Worcester, MA
Council of Research and Academic Libraries (CORAL): San Antonio, TX
University of Delaware; Newark, DE


Georgia College & State University: Milledgeville, GA
College of William and Mary: Williamsburg, VA
University of California, Berkeley: Berkeley, CA
University of Missouri: Columbia, MO
ACRL Maryland Chapter: Baltimore, MD


Auburn University: Auburn, AL
Iowa State University: Ames, IA
Tri-College University Libraries: Fargo, ND
University of South Carolina: Columbia, SC


Michigan State University: East Lansing, MI
Baylor University: Waco, TX
Council of Atlantic University Libraries/Conseil des bibliothèques universitaires de l’Atlantique: Fredericton, NB, Canada
California State University: San Marcos, CA
University of Mississippi: Oxford, MI


Academic Libraries of Indiana: Indianaoplis, IN
Council of Prairie and Pacific University Libraries: Edmonton, AL, Canada
PA Academic Library Consortium: Philadelphia, PA
University of Texas at Austin: Austin, TX
Wesleyan University: Bloomington, IL


Atlanta University Center: Atlanta, GA
Colorado State University: Pueblo, CO
James Madison University: Harrisonburg, VA
University of New Mexico: Albuquerque, NM
University of Toronto: Toronto, ON, Canada


City University of New York: Brooklyn, NY
Washington Research Libraries Consortium: Washington, DC
University of Hawaii at Manoa: Honolulu, HI
St. Thomas University: St. Paul, MN
Academic Library Association of Ohio: Columbus, OH


Auraria Library: Denver, CO
Bryan College: Dayton, TN
Florida State University: Tallahassee, FL
Kansas State University: Manhattan, KS
Lehigh Valley Association of Independent Colleges: Bethlehem, PA


ACRL Louisiana Chapter: Baton Rouge, LA
State University of New York: Buffalo, NY
Texas Tech University: Lubbock, TX
University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez: Mayagüez, PR
Washington University; St. Louis, MO