New SLR articles examine LGBTQ literature and school library programs in special ed schools

For Immediate Release
Tue, 02/26/2013

Contact:

Jennifer Habley
Web Communications Manager
American Association of School Librarians (AASL)
800-545-2433 ext. 4383
jhabley@ala.org

CHICAGO — Two new research articles covering the topics of LGBTQ-themed literature for teens and school library services provided to students with special needs are now available online as part of the American Association of School Librarian’s (AASL) peer-reviewed online journal, School Library Research (SLR).

"School Library Research offers two new research studies featuring aspects of library programming for distinctive populations," said Jean Donham, SLR co-editor. "One study examines issues of themed literature in school library collections to serve LGBTQ teens. The second study examines school library program considerations for special needs populations and the need for specialized education for school library professionals, both pre- and in-service. SLR aims to disseminate original research to expand our professional knowledge and improve our practice."

In their article, “Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Questioning (LGBTQ)-Themed Literature for Teens: Are School Libraries Providing Adequate Collections?” researchers Sandra Hughes-Hassell, Elizabeth Overberg and Shannon Harris report on their study to determine if young adults have access through school libraries to LGBTQ-themed literature. The research team studied library collections in 125 high schools in one southern U.S. state for the inclusion of LGBTQ-themed fiction, nonfiction and biographies, including a core collection of 21 recommended titles. In general, they found the school libraries were under-collecting LGBTQ-themed titles.

Mega Subramaniam, Rebecca Oxley and Christie Kodama share their findings on the role the school librarian plays in empowering staff in special ed schools in their article, “School Librarians as Ambassadors of Inclusive Information Access for Students with Disabilities.” To conduct their study, the team of researchers examined  ways school library programs empower students in schools serving only students with a specific disability (vision impaired, autism, etc.), the challenges school library programs face in these schools and the specialized training made available to these librarians to ensure the delivery of efficient services.

School Library Research (ISSN: 2165-1019) is the successor to School Library Media Research (ISSN: 1523-4320) and School Library Media Quarterly Online. The journal is peer-reviewed, indexed by H. W. Wilson's Library Literature and by the ERIC Clearinghouse on Information & Technology and continues to welcome manuscripts that focus on high quality original research concerning the management, implementation and evaluation of school library programs.

The American Association of School Librarians, www.aasl.org, a division of the American Library Association (ALA), promotes the improvement and extension of library services in elementary and secondary schools as a means of strengthening the total education program. Its mission is to advocate excellence, facilitate change and develop leaders in the school library field.