PLA Conferences and Continuing Education

Image of PLA 2016 Conference attendees in the atrium lobby of the Colorado Convention Center, Denver, Colo.

We know that as the role of public libraries keeps expanding, staff must constantly adapt and absorb new responsibilities. How will they keep up? At PLA, we help keep public library professionals a step ahead through in-person and online continuing education opportunities. Our conference doesn’t just convene public library people, it welcomes them into meaningful partnership. And our continuing education opportunities don’t just improve public library services, they build public library leaders.

Upcoming Conferences and Education Events

PLA Leadership Academy
March 20–24, 2017
Portland, Ore.

Designed to empower participants with the knowledge necessary to be innovative and successful leaders of change, the PLA Leadership Academy includes a three-and-a-half day, in-person educational/networking event; a professional coach program with experienced public library leaders and city managers; and development of real-world projects to be implemented at attendees’ libraries.

PLA at 2017 ALA Annual Conference
June 22–27, 2017
Chicago, Ill.

PLA is hosting a free preconference on Friday, June 23, Project Outcome Workshop: Simple Tools to Measure Our True Impact on the People We Serve, for libraries interested in a deep-dive training into Project Outcome, PLA’s free outcome measurement toolkit designed to help libraries measure the impact of their programs and services. This free, full-day workshop will teach participants how to deploy outcome measures in their library, collect and use resulting data, and leverage the project’s support network to ensure successful adoption. Space is limited and registration is required. Learn more and register today!

PLA will also host a variety of educational programs, business meetings, and special events at the 2017 ALA Annual Conference. More information will be available soon.

PLA 2018 Conference
March 20–24, 2018
Philadelphia, Pa.

PLA is heading to Philadelphia for the PLA 2018 Conference, and we want to make sure you’re coming, too! Visit the conference website for some preliminary information to get you started on planning and budgeting your trip. Interested in being a presenter at PLA Conference? The call for proposals to present educational programs and preconferences is now open! The deadline for submitting proposals is April 14, 2017 at 11:59 PM Eastern.

Offered biennially, the PLA Conference is the premier event for public libraries, drawing thousands of librarians, library support staff, trustees, friends and library vendors from across the country and around the world. This multi-day event offers over 100 top-quality education programs, social events that include author luncheons and networking receptions, and a bustling exhibits hall featuring the latest in products and services.

Other Conferences and Education Events

PLA Dynamic Planning Institute
PLA’s new Dynamic Planning Institute empowers attendees with the knowledge and skills to create a dynamic strategic plan, in a timely manner, which will serve as a living document and create actionable pathways for decision making, community involvement, and funding priorities. The program combines a two-and-a-half day, in-person workshop with 3 months of personalized online learning.

PLA 2016 Conference
April 5–9, 2016
Denver, Colo.
Thanks to the more than 8,000 public library professionals, exhibitors, speakers, and supporters who joined us in Denver and online for the PLA 2016 Conference! Visit the PLA 2016 website to relive the memories through photos, to download handouts, and to participate in the #PLA30Day Challenge.

Online Learning
A variety of online learning opportunities, including webinars (both live and on-demand) and online courses, offered by PLA. Want to be part of PLA's successful online continuing education program? Submit a proposal for a webinar.

Turning the Page
Build advocacy skills and confidence through Turning the Page! A fully customizable advocacy training curriculum is now available through Turning the Page: Building Libraries, Strengthening Communities.