The Prison Library as an Agent of Rehabilitative Change

Monday, 10/7/2019 - Monday, 11/11/2019

Many prisoners regret their criminal behavior and resolve to change their ways. Few places in the prison offer a more exciting opportunity to get inmates invested in lasting rehabilitative change than the prison library, yet many Departments of Correction undervalue the changed-based potential of both library and Librarian as vital pieces of the rehabilitative puzzle.

Ways to advocate for the library as a program environment (as opposed to being a simple management tool) will be discussed. Library-based programs such as consequential thinking, book discussions, writing-as-therapy, humor-as-therapy in the correctional environment, and the respectful treatment of women will be examined. The instructor will also share examples of course materials, curricula, and post-program data analysis.

Learning Outcomes

  • Participants will create a short, persuasive project proposal that they can submit to their respective institutions
  • Participants will be introduced to a variety of rehabilitative programs currently offered in prison libraries
  • Participants will be able to advocate for the rehabilitative potential of their library to institution.

Who Should Attend

  • Current professional prison libraries
  • Library Science students interested in prison librarianship
  • Professional librarians with a strong interest in services to prisoners
  • Public librarians who are motivated to partner with prison librarians to expand library services to prisoners


William D. Mongelli

Institution Librarian Massachusetts Correctional Institution, Norfolk, MA

Since his nine-month internship in prison library management through the University of Pittsburgh in 1985, Bill has worked as a librarian for the Massachusetts Department of Correction (DOC), taught inmates Lexis research skills, consequential thinking, humor-as-therapy, book discussions and ABE library orientation. He has given DOC workshops on legal research, prison library history, and constructive workplace humor. Since 2001, Bill has taught both in-person and online courses in prison library management for San Jose State University



  • $130 for ASGCLA members
  • $175 for ALA members
  • $210 for non-ALA members
  • $100 for student members and retired members

How to Register

  • Online
  • By Fax: download, complete and fax form (PDF format) to (312) 280-1538
  • By Mail: download, complete and fax form (PDF format) to American Library Association, ATTN: MACS/Online CE Registration, 50 E. Huron Street, Chicago, IL 60611

Tech Requirements

ALA uses Moodle for all online educational courses. It is hosted at Learn more about Moodle at

All content for this course will be provided by the instructor. No textbook required. 



Continuing Education Credit- A certificate of completion will be sent to each participant upon successful completion of a course.

Although this course is not CEU-certified, many licensing boards will accept it for credit. 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 description to determine eligibility. 




Questions about your registration should be directed to Technical questions about the webinar should be directed to Ninah Moore at

Thank you and we look forward to your participation!