Online Courses

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Online Courses

The Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) is pleased to offer a variety of quality online education courses every winter, spring, summer and fall.  All courses will run between four and six weeks and will be taught in an online learning community using Moodle. Many courses are offered asynchronously (self-directed), meaning you won't need to log on at a specific time. Students who complete the course receive a certificate of completion for their records. 

Fall 2021 Course Offerings

The Library in the Middle: Serving Tweens Through Change and Self-Discovery - Registration Now Open!
Young people in the 'tween,' 'preteen,' or 'preadolescent' ages - a group as diverse as the names by which we call them - are experiencing a time of rapid growth and transition. The challenges of puberty are frequently accompanied by big questions about themselves: who they are and how do they fit into the world? How does their background, life experience, family, race, religion, sexuality and gender identity shape their lives? What kind of person do they want to be, and how can they grow into that role? For library workers, it can be challenging to determine where and how this age group best fits into public library service. This class will address preadolescent development and common experiences, and how to apply those concepts to create effective library collection development and programming for tweens. 
Please note: this course meets synchronously on October 7, October 21 and November 4 at 11:00am CDT.
Instructor: Kylie Peters

Winter 2022 Course Offerings

The Newbery Medal: Past, Present and Future
What does it mean when we recommend Newbery Award winners to the children in our communities? Should the ALA seal of approval stand for 100 years? Why is that gold medal often considered the “kiss of death” by kids?  How can we help parents and teachers understand what the Newbery Medal is – and isn’t? This 6-week online course will give participants a solid grounding in the history of the Medal and how it’s changed over time; an opportunity to read, discuss and consider past and present Newbery winners with their colleagues from across the nation; a chance to talk to former Newbery Committee members and a Newbery author, and suggestions for programming using Newbery-winning books.
Instructor: KT Horning

Utilizing the Competencies to Boost Skills and Services
Utilizing the Competencies to Boost Skills and Services will be a highly reflective class designed to help participants explore applications of the 2020 Competencies for Librarians Serving Children in Libraries. The course will focus on finding ways to demonstrate competence in the field, strategically plan library service using the competencies, action steps to put new competency-aligned practices into place, and creating artifacts to strengthen professional portfolios. Weekly activities will include assigned readings, discussion posts, and artifact creation. We will focus on one competency section each week, until Week Six, which will combine administrative and management skills with professionalism and professional development.
Instructor: Amanda Yother 

Previous 2021 Course Offerings

The Newbery Medal: Past, Present and Future
Utilizing the Competencies to Boost Skills and Services
The Library in the Middle: Serving Tweens through Change and Self-Discovery
Home Learners and the Public Library
Full STREAM Ahead: How to take Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) to the next level with maker kits

Frequently Asked Questions

Are these self-directed courses or real time?  What is the time commitment involved?
Almost all courses are offered asynchronously (self-directed). (Exceptions are explicitly noted in the course description.)  A course may hold several synchronous chat sessions throughout the course; however, chat sessions are scheduled and announced at the start of the course.

Participants will be expected to log in to the online course and interact several times a week. This can include reading online, working on assignments, reading and responding to the discussion boards. Participants will be given weekly deadlines, but will be able to work at times that are most convenient to the student. 

Do you offer college credit or CEUs for these courses?
ALA is not currently certified to offer CEU credits for courses; however, all students who complete their coursework will receive a Certificate of Completion to take to their local or state accrediting body and apply for CEU credits.

Requirements vary by state and school district regarding certification and continuing education credits.  The decision to grant CEU credits remains entirely up to your state or school district.  If you are in need of credits, check with your state and/or school district before enrolling to determine eligibility.  Some states will review your certificate of completion and course syllabus to determine eligibility.  A PDF copy of the syllabus can be provided to you upon request.

Cancellation & Transfer Policy

Cancellations must be made in writing and postmarked or faxed to the ALA/MACS department by no later than seven days before the class starts.  Cancellations will result in a full refund less a $35 processing fee.  NO phone cancellations will be accepted.  Refunds will be processed two weeks after the start of the course.  ALSC reserves the right to cancel a course for reasons including insufficient numbers of students.

If you are registered but unable to take a course you may transfer your registration to another student if that student falls under the same registration category.  For instance, an ALSC member may transfer her registration to another ALSC member free of charge.  If you would like to transfer your registration to someone in a different category, the difference between prices must be paid at the time of transfer.  All requests for registration transfers must be made in writing no later than seven days before the start of the course.  Please address all requests, including the reason for the transfer and both parties' membership numbers, to ALSC, at   Transfers may not be made once a course has started.


Contact ALSC Program Officer, Continuing Education and Conferences, Sarah Polen, at or 1-800-545-2433 ext.4026