ALA Calendar & the Event Content Type

Drupal allows us to create one set of events but to filter and display them in more than one calendar view. This is done using taxonomy tagging in conjunction with views. In plain English, it means that a unit can add their events to the ALA Calendar, have them display along with all the other events, and then pull them into a calendar view displaying only their own events in their own area of, while end users can further filter the events to locate events of interest to them. 

Calendar is not intended to replace the Conference Scheduler, which is where functions from events should display. For example, add your unit's conference, forum, or institute to the calendar as a multi-day event, but don't add the sub-events, as that would be too labor-intensive.

Thanks to Rebecca Gerber of the ALA Library, the ALA Calendar has been launched in, at, while the Affiliate & Chapter Planning Calendar view displays at: Taxonomies available include ALA Units, Audiences, Controlled (Topical), Event Type, Geographic Area, Items ALA Generates, and Types of Libraries. It is the interplay of these tags that makes it possible to create calendar views to show specific event types, and that allow filtering by intended audience and other parameters.

Training & Access

We recommend that at least one person in each unit have rights to enter events and deadlines in the calendar. We plan to have an ALA Staff Calendar view for internal deadlines and events, so units whose work is mainly internal should still send at least one person to training.

Access to the event content type is created following training, since a clear understanding of the interplay of the taxonomies is required. To gain access to the calendar to add your unit's events, have your unit manager request access for you via TrackIt, and a training session will be scheduled.

Best Practices for Calendar & Events


  • ALA and division conferences, pre-conferences, institutes, symposia and other events, whether face to face or virtual, should be added to the calendar. Individual conference event items (e.g. specific classes or sessions) should not be added.
  • Deadlines for scholarships, awards, and other processes should be added.
  • Only one 'reminder' per deadline is allowed, and reminders should be set 2-4 weeks out. ("Early bird registration for [title] closes in 2 weeks!)
  • Always use the URL option to send calendar viewers to a page with more information about your event.
  • Library related non-ALA events may be added to the calendar, but must be tagged non-ALA so that they can be filtered.
  • Calendar should not be used for Online Learning or recordings. Please use other established methods to promote those activities.

Tagging Notes

  • All ALA office, division, and round table events must tag their event with the ALA Events tag from the Event Type taxonomy, as well as all other relevant tags.
  • Pre-conferences should be tagged with the Pre-Conference tag and may optionally also be tagged with the Conference tag.
  • To make it possible to have fewer taxonomies, the tags for Affiliates, Chapters, and Related Groups & Organizations are located in the ALA Units taxonomy.
  • Use the Member Leader tag in Audiences for events of interest to or required of member-leaders.
  • When an item will be of interest only to ALA staff, such as project or other deadlines, use the internal ALA tag.

If you’re not sure how to properly tag an event for calendar display, contact Patrick Harrington .

Coming Soon: Getting a Calendar View on Your Microsite

Once the ALA Calendar has sufficient content for your unit's events, ITTS will assist you by creating a calendar view to display on your site. Contact us about this by entering a TrackIt ticket. Your unit should have an internal discussion about what tags will be used to create your calendar, so that you can begin creating and tagging items that you want to display in advance of the calendar view creation.