A Publication of the Public Library Association Public Libraries Online

Kathleen Hughes Author Archive


Email: khughes@ala.org   Website: http://ala.org/  


Social Work in Public Libraries

Guidance for Social Work Positions at the Library

While a library/social work partnership may seem like a no-brainer, there is much for a library system to consider before partnering with a social work professional. We’d like to share some of those considerations to help you determine if a social work program could be a good fit for your library.

laptop keyboard and printed data charts

From Alone to Together Again: Using Data to Deliver Value

Meet Patron 11. Let’s call her a super fan! She’s a 35-44 year-old white woman with a husband and two children. They use many of the library’s services – they max out their borrowing, they spread out in the space, they rattle off the new services the library rolls out, and they are strong advocates […]

inquire within logo

Local PBS Stations Help Libraries Plan for the Year Ahead

WQED/Pittsburgh’s Inquire Within Network offers a model for collaboration between public libraries and public television stations. Libraries should ask their local public television stations these questions and get resources to kick-start, reimagine, or build upon community-responsive programming.

ALA's Build America's Libraries Logo

Act to Ensure Libraries Part of Infrastructure Act

Within the next two weeks Congress will make historic decisions about how to invest in our nation’s infrastructure. ALA is asking advocates to act to ensure libraries aren’t left out.

Public Libraries Podcast logo

FYI Podcast — Hosting Digital Author Events

In this episode, Stesha Brandon, Literature and Humanities Program Manager at the Seattle Public Library (SPL) shares how SPLA successfully moved author programming to a digital format during the COVID-19 pandemic. Tune in for tips and great ideas on creating or improving your library’s digital author programming.

Short story dispenser dispensing a story

Short Story Dispensers Make Strides, Despite Pandemic

French publisher Short Édition made waves in U.S. libraries with its innovative Short Story Dispenser.

Yellow background with various ball-shaped illustrations text says Feature Article Sept/Oct Public Libraries

Learning From Our Statistics

To utilize statistics effectively, librarians need to have an understanding of the underlying principles. An oft-neglected area of study in librarianship, statistical fundamentals are approached here in a simple rules format with examples. The purpose is to help librarians gather and use statistical information in new and better ways. This is of particular concern at this point in time when traditional library statistics like circulation and visitation are dropping nationwide due, in part, to the proliferation of convenient digital information sources

image of a library with the words Libraries as Community Hubs for Citizen Science

Online Training: Libraries as Community Hubs for Citizen Science

With support from the National Library of Medicine, SciStarter, a popular citizen science platform, assembled a team with expertise in instructional design, education, libraries, inclusive practices, digital design, micro accreditation, and, of course, citizen science to produce a free series of self-guided tutorials, trainings, and accompanying modules to help people from all walks of life discover and engage in authentic science.

illustration of light blue mask

Gaining Patron Cooperation on Mask Wearing

As COVID-19 infection rates start to go down and libraries across the country begin to reopen, what is the best way to keep everyone safe?

person sitting crosslegged at a desk demonstrating the idea of working from home

The Future of Remote Work is Flexibility

The potential value of remote work is not just about being remote, but about new ways of working.

Gaming 4 Science Logo

Calling All Gamers: How a Day of Online Gaming Can Help Advance Health Research

Love video games? Put your gaming skills toward a great cause and join SciStarter, the Network of the National Library of Medicine All of Us Research Program, libraries around the world and other passionate volunteers — citizen scientists like you — for Gaming 4 Science Day during Citizen Science Month!

Public Libraries Podcast logo

FYI Podcast: Misinformation, Disinformation, and More

This episode is about misinformation, disinformation, and mal-information. Whether it is lies about the election, or COVID-19, or conspiracy theories, we have seen just how insidious the spread of misinformation can b

Build America's Libraires Act logo and ALA logo

Build America’s Libraries Act: Advocate for Critical Infrastructure

The Build America’s Libraries Act would provide $5 billion for upgrades to the nation’s library infrastructure to address challenges such as natural disasters, COVID-19, broadband capacity, environmental hazards, and accessibility barriers

Public Libraries Podcast logo

New FYI Podcast! A Discussion of Imposter Syndrome

How often do you catch yourself feeling like you are in ‘over your head’ at work? Imposter syndrome – the sense that you are inadequate for the task in front of you despite past proof of your ability – can wreak havoc on your career and keep you from taking on new challenges. It can […]

illustration of a person pressing a button on a vending machine

Short Story Dispenser Connects Libraries to Communities

Short Édition’s Short Story Dispenser was embedded in four pilot communities around the country through a project called “Fostering Creative Community Connections,” a partnership between the Public Library Association (PLA) and French publisher Short Édition, and made possible by a grant from the Knight Foundation.