ALA TechSource and ACRL to host Gaming, Learning, and Libraries Symposium

Jenny Levine

Internet Development

ALA Specialist & Strategy Guide

ITTS & Publishing

For Immediate Release

July 10, 2007

ALA TechSource and ACRL to host

Gaming, Learning, and Libraries Symposium

CHICAGO - For the first time ever, top gamers will meet in Chicago to discuss how gaming impacts our nation's libraries. ALA TechSource, in collaboration with the Association of College & Research Libraries (ACRL), are proud to announce the first annual Gaming, Learning, and Libraries Symposium to be held in Chicago, from July 22 to 24 at the Chicago Marriott O'Hare hotel.

Never before have librarians had such a unique opportunity to hear from so many leading thinkers and practitioners in the fields of gaming and librarianship. Several of the most renowned scholars in the applications of gaming will discuss how libraries can use gaming as a method to support learning and literacy.

Programs for academic, public, and school librarians will make attendees think about gaming in a different way. Whether an experienced gamer who wants to start a program at their library, or a newbie who is intrigued, but has no idea where to start, the symposium will offer an array of programs that will assist with library gaming efforts. The symposium will feature open play, scores of experts and librarian gamers who can answer questions.

The breadth of unique programs and access to a prime lineup of speakers, all focused on gaming and libraries, offers an exciting opportunity for librarians to get involved with gaming and take it to the next level within their libraries.

Keynote speakers include:

  • James Paul Gee, Mary Lou Fulton presidential professor of Literacy Studies at Arizona State University

    "Libraries, Gaming, and the New Equity Crisis," 9:15 a.m., July 23

  • Henry Jenkins, director, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Comparative Media Studies Program

    "What Librarians Need to Know about Games, Media Literacy, and Participatory Culture," 1:30 p.m., July 22

  • Liz Lawley, director, Lab for Social Computing, Rochester Institute of Technology

    "Games without Borders: Gaming Beyond Consoles and Screens," 12 p.m., July 24

  • Greg Trefry, game designer, GameLab

    "Big Fun, Big Learning: Transforming the World through Play," 8:15 a.m., July 24

Special guest speakers include:

  • Eli Neiburger, manager, Information Access & Systems, Ann Arbor District Library "The Payoff, Up Close and Personal," 3:45 p.m., July 22

  • Scott Nicholson, assistant professor, GameLab, Information Institute of Syracuse at the Syracuse University School of Information Studies

    "Who Else Is Playing? The Current State of Gaming in Libraries," 2:30 p.m., July 22.

More than 25 sessions will cover such topics as creating games for information literacy; implementing gaming programs; teaching kids how to make their own games; gaming for adults; digital downloads for gamers; online fiction games; intellectual freedom issues surrounding gaming; collection development for games and more.

In addition, a special session will focus on board gaming, while an entire track dedicated to Second Life will highlight how libraries are creating a presence in this virtual world and what they are gaining from it.

For more information on, or to register for, the Gaming, Learning, and Libraries Symposium please visit

The Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL), a division of the American Library Association, is a professional association of academic librarians and other interested individuals. It is dedicated to enhancing the ability of academic library and information professionals to serve the information needs of the higher education community and to improve learning, teaching, and research.

ALA TechSource is a unit of the publishing department of the American Library Association. ALA TechSource publishes Library Technology Reports, Smart Libraries Newsletter (formerly Library Systems Newsletter), and the ALA TechSource Blog.