The Craft of Library Instruction: Using Acting Techniques to Create Your Teaching Presence

Wednesday, 9/7/2016
  • 2:00 PM-3:30 PM (Eastern)
  • 1:00 PM-2:30 PM (Central)
  • 12:00 PM-1:30 PM (Mountain)
  • 11:00 AM-12:30 PM (Pacific)

Library instruction is like a theatre performance. You play a role as the instruction librarian. There is a live audience. You may receive reviews or evaluations. Or maybe the teaching experience feels more like an audition—a bit unnerving. Based on their recently published book “The Craft of Librarian Instruction: Using Acting Techniques to Create Your Teaching Presence,” join Julie Artman, Jeff Sundquist, and Doug Dechow for a fun and creative approach to library instruction as they reveal how acting techniques can hone your presentation skills, your teaching style, and your performance to create an invigorating (and stress-free) learning experience for your students.

Attendees of this webcast are eligible for a 50% discount on the presenters’ ebook, The Craft of Library Instruction. To claim your discount, input the coupon code CRAFT7 when placing your order on the ALA Store. Be sure to order your copy before November 1st!

Learning Outcomes

Through the use of acting methods and techniques, participants will learn how to:

  • Rehearse and prepare for instruction sessions by centering yourself through visualization, memorization, and improvisation;
  • Connect with students through personalization and role-playing, and by exploring teacher identity; and
  • Sharpen a unique teaching presence through reflection and intentional instruction.


Who Should Attend

Intended for newly hired instruction librarians, librarians with little or no teaching experience, those dealing with shyness or ‘stage fright,’ as well as more experienced librarians in need of a refreshed perspective, “The Craft of Librarian Instruction” will add an undeniable star quality to your instructional performance.


Julie Artman has worked as a theatre director, producer, acting coach, and actor in New York City, Los Angeles, and regionally. Currently, Julie is Chair of Collection Management at Leatherby Libraries, Chapman University, and teaches in the Department of Theatre. Julie’s next book will explore the nature of acting and directing through the interplay of Zen teachings and practices..

Jeff Sundquist is Assistant Professor and Collection Management Librarian at Eastern Washington University.  After earning a BA in Theater at UCLA, he stayed to pursue an MLIS and MA in Scandinavian Studies concurrently, the latter degree hinging tightly on the works of Ibsen and Strindberg. Jeff is working on a new book about the theatrical reception of Norwegian playwright Jon Fosse.

Douglas R. Dechow is the Digital Humanities and Sciences Librarian at Leatherby Libraries, Chapman University. Doug's book Generation Space: A Love Story, co-authored with Chapman English Professor Anna Leahy and based on their experiences following the end of the space shuttle program, will be published in February 2017 by Stillhouse Press. Doug is co-editor of Intertwingled: The Work and Influence of Ted Nelson and co-author of a book about theSmalltalk programming language entitled Squeak: A Quick Trip to ObjectLand.



ACRL member: $50
ALA member: $75
Nonmember: $90
Student: $40
Group*: $295

* Webcasts take place in an interactive, online classroom environment with one user/one login. If you select the group rate, one person must register, login, and keyboard during the event. A group registration allows an institution to project the Webcast to participants in the same location.

How to Register

  • Locate the webcast by the date of the event.
  • Select the "Register" link next to the Webcast title on ALA's webcast registration page (linked above).
  • You will need to log in with your ALA ID & password. If you do not have an ALA ID & password, you will be asked to create one in order to register.

Webcasts will be recorded and made available to registrants as an archive, so if you sign up but cannot attend the live event, you will receive the archived webcast recording.


Tech Requirements

ACRL Webcasts are held in an Adobe Connect virtual classroom. Speakers or a headset for listening to the presentation are required. You may ask questions through text-based chat.  Adobe works on both PC and Apple platforms.


If you have a question about an e-Learning opportunity or need to make arrangements for special assistance, please contact Margot Conahan (