ALA announces Libraries Ready to Code faculty fellows

For Immediate Release
Fri, 04/07/2017

Contact:

Shawnda Hines
Press Officer
Washington Office
(202) 628-8410
 
WASHINGTON - Today, the American Library Association (ALA) and Google, Inc., announce the Library and Information Science (LIS) faculty selected to participate in Phase II of the Libraries Ready to Code project, which launched in January 2017. The faculty cohort will develop graduate level course models that equip Master of Library & Information Science (MLIS) students to deliver coding programs through public and school libraries. 
 
The ALA-Google Ready to Code (RtC) Faculty Fellows are: Dr. Colette Drouillard, Valdosta State University (GA); Dr. Melissa Johnston, University of West Georgia; Dr. Rachel Magee, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Dr. Jennifer Moore, Texas Woman’s University; Dr. Joe Sanchez, City University of New York; and Dr. Natalie Taylor, University of South Florida. 
 
"To ensure the nation’s libraries are staffed with expert librarians who can design and deliver youth coding programs, we need top-notch educators to design graduate level curricula for pre-service and in-service students," said ALA President Julie B. Todaro. "Libraries around the country are increasing access to computer science and coding opportunities for all youth, regardless of their gender, socioeconomic background or ethnicity. Youth who develop the computational thinking skills fostered by coding and other computer science (CS) programs will be ready for careers in and out of the tech sector. By preparing the next generation of librarians to design and deliver coding programs, these RtC Fellows will open doors of opportunity for countless young people and help drive the nation’s economy."
 
RtC Fellows will collaborate in re-designing select media/technology courses from their respective institutions to embed RtC concepts. After teaching the redesigned courses in Fall 2017, the RtC Fellows will share their revised syllabi and course models with colleagues across the LIS community and serve as ambassadors to encourage other LIS faculty to embed RtC concepts in their curricula. The project will be evaluated for impact and effectiveness, and findings will be broadly disseminated.   
 
"Libraries are the place to engage children and teens in computational thinking and coding activities, and as faculty we need to make sure librarians are equipped with a core skill set," said Mega Subramaniam, a principal investigator of the project, Associate Professor and Associate Director of the Information Policy and Access Center at the University of Maryland’s College of Information Studies and board member of ALA’s Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA). "Ready to Code II gives us a critical opportunity to re-envision the LIS curriculum and get it right for the next generation of children’s and teen librarians."
 
The RtC Faculty will join Ready to Code II team members: Dr. Mega Subramaniam; Marijke Visser, co-principal investigator and Associate Director, ALA Office for Information Technology Policy (OITP); Linda Braun, Learning Consultant, LEO: Librarians and Educators Online; Caitlin K. Martin, Learning Research Consultant; Dr. Alan S. Inouye, Director, OITP; and Christopher Harris, OITP Youth and Technology Fellow. 
 
"We’re excited to continue partnering with the ALA to help librarians across the country inspire youth to develop computational thinking skills and pursue computer science," said Hai Hong, who leads U.S. outreach on Google's CS Education team. "Libraries are at the heart of education in our communities promoting digital inclusion, inspiring lifelong learners and providing knowledge and critical skills needed for tomorrow’s workforce. Equipping librarians to cultivate computational thinking and coding skills is an important step in providing these learning opportunities to all youth."