Connecting Librarians for K-20 Transitions

Libraries can be a powerful influence in helping students prepare for the high school to college transition.  They can be even more powerful when they work together.  The LIRT Transitions to College Committee has compiled the resources on this page to help librarians connect with those at other institutions on transitions-related projects. 

 

Transitions to College Map

This map allows you to identify other librarians in your geographic area who are interested in collaborating on transitions projects.  Want to compare notes with a school librarian on how you teach information literacy?  Want to work with a local public library to develop digital learning objects?  Use this map to find collaborators, and consider adding yourself using this form.  Having problems viewing the embedded map?  Visit the full map here.  Hint: if you use multiple Google accounts, you might have difficulty viewing the map, as Google can easily confuse your login credentials.  If you have problems viewing the map, try logging out of all accounts and clearing your browsing history.

In its current version, the map is somewhat difficult to search.  To search the map's contents more easily, click here to view and download a spreadsheet of all librarians on this map.

 

Talking Points

Here are some ideas and considerations when reaching out to a potential collaborator:

  • To get the conversation started, try reaching out over email and mentioning that you saw the person's name on the Transitions Map.  Express an interest in chatting to see what opportunities there are to collaborate.
  • Remember, your potential collaborator might have some ideas of her/his own, so be flexible and keep an open mind.
  • Approach the partnership with the right attitude.  Be humble and remember that you have a lot to teach and learn from each other.
  • If possible, consider accompanying your collaborator to one of her/his work meetings.  This will give you a better sense of that library's culture.
  • When reaching out to school librarians, remember that many don't work during the summer.
  • When reaching out to academic librarians, remember that many of them use summer to work on special projects, so summer might be one of their best times to plan collaborations.

 

Case Studies

Many libraries are already collaborating on transitions-related projects.  Below are some resources and ideas to inspire you and get you thinking what you can do locally at your own library.

  • Kent State University runs a high school outreach program called Informed Transitions.  Primarily, the program focuses on teaching information literacy to high schoolers, promoting positive attitudes about libraries among students, and helping students be successful in completing their current research assignments.
  • Librarians from Blue Valley High School and Rockhurt University collaborate to host the annual College Readiness Dialogues program in Kansas City.  The Dialogues provide an opportunity for open and relaxed conversations between librarians and faculty from high school and higher education on the issue of student college readiness.
  • INFOhio, Ohio's K-12 library network, sponsors the College and Career Readiness P20 Task Force.  This Task Force created a LibGuide that encourages high school teachers to collaborate with local academic librarians to schedule on-campus visits.
  • The IUPUI University Library started the program College Ready, College Bound, to establish what information literacy skills students have when they complete high school and whether these skills prepare them for academic success in college.  College Ready, College Bound has worked to foster conversations between high school and academic librarians on the issue of college readiness.  The project has also created an advisory board consisting of representatives from IUPUI, Ivy Tech Community College, the Indiana Department of Education, K-12 schools in Marion County, and the IUPUI Library board.  For more information, read this brochure or read Huisman and Orr's chapter, "Funding the Way: Seeking Grants to Study the High School to College Transition and the Role of Libraries" in Burhanna's book, Informed Transitions.

If you have any questions about this page or have suggestions for content to add, please contact any of the LIRT Transitions working group members: Mark Robison (mark.robison@valpo.edu), Becky Richardson (rrichardson5@murraystate.edu), or Pamela Monroe (pamela.monroe@famu.edu).