Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Wisconsin Digital Archives Collection Connection : Winter Weather Driving in Wisconsin

Picture of a snow and ice covered road.
Courtesy of Pixabay
Wisconsin winters can be unpredictable, causing roads to quickly become slippery and hazardous, even deadly. Drivers rely on the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (DOT) to maintain roads to make winter driving safe. Have you ever wondered how much snow the DOT is responsible for removing from the roadways in any given winter, how much salt and ice melter is needed to keep the roadways clear, or how much maintaining the winter roads costs? You will find answers to those questions and many more about winter weather driving in the Wisconsin Digital Archives!

Picture of tire tracks in the snow.
Courtesy of Pixabay
With the winter driving season upon us, drivers need to plan ahead and be aware of icy, snowy road conditions in order to stay safe. In order to plan ahead, the DOT provides drivers safety tips and ways to plan and be prepared for winter driving conditions. Visit the DOT's Winter Driving webpage for information about how to prepare your vehicle, safe winter driving tips, making a survival kit and what to do if you're stranded in the cold.

To stay on top of the latest road conditions visit the DOT's 511 Wisconsin travel information website or simply dial 511 on your phone. Safe travels!

Written by:
Mary Hutnik and Abby Swanton, Resources for Libraries and Lifelong Learning

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Do Uses of Downloadable Content Offset Circulation Decreases?

DPI first collected data about uses of downloadable content (e-book, e-audio, and e-video) in the public library annual report for FY 2010, so comparing combined uses of e-content and total circulation between 2010 and 2011 is less meaningful than for subsequent years. Still, we have enough data for initial examination.

Number of libraries where total circulation increased30520616414710462
Number of libraries where total circulation decreased < 2%4552434036
Number of libraries where uses of down­loadable content offset circulation decreases233421
Number of libraries where: a) uses of down­loadable content offset circulation decreases; and b) circulation decreased < 2%233019

In 2014 relatively few libraries had enough uses of downloadable content to offset their decrease in total circulation. The libraries that did have enough uses were primarily those with less than two percent decreases in circulation. The increase in combined circulation and uses of downloadable content ranged from 11 uses (Jane Morgan Memorial Library) to 8,967 (Madison Public Library).

We also haven't seen a trend in offsets for multiple years. No library has offset its circulation decreases for three years in a row. Three offset their decreases in 2012 and 2013, and two other libraries did in 2013 and 2014.

Do uses of downloadable content offset circulation decreases? The magic data 8 ball says "don't count on it."

These are the 21 libraries libraries where uses of downloadable content offset circulation decreases from 2013 to 2014:

Combined Total Circulation and Uses of Downloadable Content
Amery Public Library104,999105,649650 (0.62%)
Beaver Dam Community Library398,540401,0732,533 (0.64%)
Burlington Public Library217,964218,589625 (0.29%)
Calhoun Memorial Library46,34948,7032,354 (5.08%)
Cameron Public Library25,13225,828696 (2.77%)
Durand Community Library29,45529,612157 (0.53%)
Eckstein Memorial Library15,37815,565187 (1.22%)
Hauge Memorial Library25,50825,53022 (0.09%)
Iola Village Library48,40648,601195 (0.40%)
Jane Morgan Memorial Library29,37529,38611 (0.04%)
Karl Junginger Memorial Library42,31542,892577 (1.36%)
Madeline Island Public Library10,59010,63040 (0.38%)
Madison Public Library4,037,0924,046,0598,967 (0.22%)
Minocqua Public Library180,932181,650718 (0.40%)
Muscoda Public Library21,02521,05227 (0.13%)
New London Public Library139,532141,1431,611 (1.15%)
Presque Isle Community Library13,17513,409234 (1.78%)
Ripon Public Library157,076158,2171,141 (0.73%)
Sheboygan Falls Memorial Library136,915138,2251,310 (0.96%)
Shell Lake Public Library47,01647,589573 (1.22%)
Spooner Memorial Library113,934114,202268 (0.24%)

If you have any questions about the data used to write this blog post, please feel free to contact me at

Written by Jamie McCanless, Public Library Development Team

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

You're a BadgerLearn Pro

BadgerLearn Pro connects you to free, continuing education resources at Here's a few archived webinars we've added to our collection this month.

Bring 'Em Back: Re-engaging Your Library Users

From NoveList
Where have all the patrons gone? Are you seeing a decline in the number of once-regular visitors stopping in to browse for a book or place a book on hold in your catalog? How can you bring them back?

Merchandising Your Collection: Adapting retail practices in a public library

From McMillan Library
A look at a public library that focused on merchandising its collection by maximizing self-service options, creating a social commons, improving wayfinding and displaying as many items as possible. This last included increased use of genre collections and a partial implementation of BISAC style categories, while still retaining Dewey shelving for non-fiction stacks.

Resource Description and What? RDA for Non-Catalogers

From Nebraska Library Commission
Have you heard the catalogers in your library mumbling about RDA, FRBR, and other mysterious acronyms? Would you like to find how recent cataloging changes could affect you? Resource Description & Access (RDA) is the new cataloging code that replaced AACR2 early in 2013. Get a translation of "cataloger-ese" to explain what RDA is.

Multimedia in Spanish with Wisconsin Media Lab

From BadgerLink
In this 15 minute training from October 22, 2015 learn about Spanish language videos and teaching resources in Wisconsin Media Lab.

Legal Research for Any Librarian

From Georgia Library Association
If you encounter public patrons who come to the library seeking legal help (for example, how to get social security benefits or pursue a discrimination claim) Sarah Mauldin and Meg Butler will guide you through federal tools and resources that are freely available online.

BadgerLearn Pro is a joint project under active development.

Our Partners:

Bridges Library System Logo DPI Logo Indianhead Federated Library System Logo UW SLIS logo Milwaukee County Federated Library System  WiLS Logo Winnefox Library System Logo
IMLS logo

Written by:
Kara Ripley, Resources for Libraries and Lifelong Learning

Monday, December 21, 2015

NISO Privacy Principles Released

National Information Standards Organization logo
NISO logo 
In 2015 the National Information Standards Organization (NISO) hosted community discussions with librarians, vendors, and publishers to develop a consensus framework to support patron privacy in digital library and information systems, focusing on "better privacy protection into their operations and the subsequent formulations of a framework document on the privacy of patron data in these systems." One of the central issues is finding a better balance between using services that use personal data and respecting users' privacy. The discussions led to the published Consensus Principles on Users' Digital Privacy in Library, Publisher, and Software-Provider Systems.

There are 12 principles that the group listed:
  1. Shared Privacy Responsibilities 
  2. Transparency and Facilitating Privacy Awareness 
  3. Security
  4. Data Collection and Use
  5. Anonymization
  6. Options and Informed Consent
  7. Sharing Data with Others
  8. Notification of Privacy Policies and Practices
  9. Supporting Anonymous Use
  10. Access to One's Own User Data
  11. Continuous Improvement
  12. Accountability 
Description of the principles is in the report. The report states that the 12 principles are a starting point, and encourages everyone involved in library-user services to further the conversation. 

Written by:
Ryan Claringbole, Public Library Development Team

Friday, December 18, 2015

Looking for an Adult Programming Idea?

For all of you National Public Radio fans out there, the TED Radio Hour is not new.  But for those who haven't heard of TED talks, this website may provide you with an abundance of programming ideas. In 1984 when the program began, TED focused primarily on Technology, Entertainment, and Design.  That is no longer the case since the talks cover topics from science to business.

At the same time, TEDx events are independently operated to help share ideas in communities around the world. Libraries can apply for an event free license to livestream the event at your library on February 16, 17, or 18, 2016. Choose a day and apply for a free license to hold a simulcast viewing event for up to one full day. Choose "TedxLive Event" on the application form, and apply soon, as application approvals do take time. Also make sure that you have the technical requirements to show the simulcast. When applying for your license, please use the naming convention “TEDx*your library name*Library*Live” as the name for the event, such as TEDxEdmondsLibraryLive.

A simulcast viewing experience connects your library audience with great ideas and with a global community of thinkers, artists, and storytellers. Your community, whether a small group or a large audience, can be among the first to see and hear these talks; and even more, a TEDxLive event can make for a great discussion.

 Image of a person giving a TED talk
Image of a person giving a TED talk

The theme of the 2016 Conference is Dreams matter. TED2016 will be dedicated to the greatest dreams we are capable of dreaming, will stare hard at humanity’s toughest challenges and listen carefully to those who can show us a way forward.

Written by:
Terrie Howe,
Public Library Development Team

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Collaborative Resource Sharing Pilot Project with South Central Library System

Guest post by Kathy Wolkoff and Mary Fahndrich, Outerlibrary Loan Services, Madison Public Library

Madison Public Library, the ILL clearinghouse for the South Central Library System, recently launched a WISCAT borrowing pilot project in collaboration with RL&LL [Department of Public Instruction, Resources for Libraries & Lifelong Learning]. We use ILLiad to manage our request volume and primarily borrow via OCLC, but as more Wisconsin library systems have left OCLC, it has become harder for us to fully and efficiently clear our requests in-state before venturing further afield. We’d already been handling in-state lending requests from WISCAT via ILLiad for about five years, so in June we took on the challenge of trying to make ILLiad and WISCAT play nicely with each other on the borrowing side.

We had a few technical problems at the outset (we’ll call them operator error), but we’re happy to report that we were able to dramatically improve our success at filling requests in-state. From June through November, we’ve filled 39% of our requests from Wisconsin public libraries, compared with 30% during the same period in 2014. Libraries that we hadn’t had reliable access to before are now able to share their collections with us, and we have a vastly improved workflow over our former method, which could safely be described as “send out an email and hope for the best.”

Our fill rates are up, returns are a breeze, we’re improving our balance between borrowing and lending in-state, and our member libraries are saving on postage costs. On all fronts, we count this in the win column for Wisconsin resource sharing.

Written by:
Kathy Wolkoff and Mary Fahndrich, Interlibrary Loan/Outerloan Department, Madison Public Library, South Central Library System

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

BadgerLink & Wisconsin Media Lab: an Expanding Partnership

Wisconsin Media Lab curates high-quality K-12 educational multimedia content at no direct cost to Wisconsin residents. BadgerLink partners with Wisconsin Media Lab to provide access to their great licensed content. This collaboration saves both organizations staff time, duplication of effort, and money; BadgerLink helps to promote and provide authentication for Soundzabound, Digital Science Online, and Ciencias en EspaƱol and is able to offer these resources to Wisconsin residents alongside our other licensed content.
Wisconsin Media Lab logo
Wisconsin Media Lab logo
In addition to providing the licensed content above, Wisconsin Media Lab also produces award-winning classroom resources that connect to Wisconsin’s academic standards, span all curricular areas, and are vetted by Wisconsin educators.

You can now access select Wisconsin Media Lab produced classroom resources directly from the BadgerLink website:

Screenshot from Wisconsin Biographies
Screenshot from Wisconsin Biographies,

Currently, the Wisconsin Media Lab budget does not allow for any new production projects. Wisconsin Media Lab will release one more episode of Wisconsin Biographies, on Stephen Babcock, later this month.

Please contact BadgerLink or Wisconsin Media Lab if you have any questions!

Written by:
Gail Murray & Kara Ripley
Resources for Libraries & Lifelong Learning

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Addressing the Digital Skills Gap

According to the recently released Pew Research Center report - Searching for Work in the Digital Era, "The internet is a central resource for Americans looking for work, but a notable minority lack confidence in their digital job-seeking skills."

Resource used in Job Search - Courtesy Pew Research Center
Resources Used in Job Search - Pew Research Center
The lack of digital skills is critical in a time when the job seekers are more likely to use online resources in their job search than they are to rely on close personal connections, professional contact or employment agencies.

Job seekers who are in the market for a new job for the first time in 10 or 15 years or more encounter an entirely different process than they would have in the past.

People who have good digital skills and have used computers, online social media, and online research tools in their careers or personal lives can adapt more easily than displaced workers who may not have needed to develop digital skills.

Job Seekers Lack Confidence - Pew Research Center
Job Seekers Lack Confidence - Pew Research Center
Wisconsin public libraries are beginning a conversation about working collaboratively to share best practices and develop tools for use to develop skills of staff members and patrons alike.

Resources for Libraries and Lifelong Learning recently asked public libraries about their willingness to work together and about the degree to which they are currently working with Job Center.

About half of respondents are already working with a Job Center and about half are ready to engage in discussion and planning, others look forward to learning more about the project before committing.

If you would like to participate, please take the survey here:Supporting Patron's Job Search Needs

We look forward to scheduling time to talk and plan ways to maximize the time and talent of public library staff to help residents in communities across Wisconsin build their job search skills.

Written by:
Martha Berninger, Resources for Libraries and Lifelong Learning

Monday, December 14, 2015

Library of the Month: Shattuck Middle School Library

Shattuck Middle School Library in Neenah WI is always changing to keep up with the needs of its staff and approximately 1,000 students. Over the summer, librarian Teresa Slivinski began to implement her vision of transforming the library into a learning commons. She painted walls, reupholstered furniture, added lighting, and moved things around to make flexible work spaces. Students now have comfortable, colorful, and inspiring spaces to read, study, and work with their district-issued Chromebooks. Booth seating provides spaces for small group collaboration, and a tech bar allows students a place to plug in and use their devices in the library.  

Students reading.
Photo courtesy of Teresa Slivinski, Shattuck Middle School

Another change this year is Shattuck Middle School’s partnership with literacy staff to facilitate a new “literacy block,” a daily 30-minute reading workshop in which all students read fiction of their choice three days per week and nonfiction articles the remaining two days. During the fiction days, students read novels, eBooks, literary nonfiction, and graphic novels of their choice. Coming soon, the literacy block will offer book clubs, in which students select a book to read with their peers. “The literacy block has meant a tremendous boost in library visits,” says Slivinski. “Our previous circulation records have been shattered. November’s statistics are projected to be up by 65% over last year!”

It was lesson planning for the literacy block that inspired Slivinski to present students with an animated video explaining BadgerLink. “I had a few extra lessons to design,” she says, “ and it occurred to me that I could use the extra time to reach an annual goal of spreading the word to more people about BadgerLink.” Slivinski’s video, featuring her dancing avatar (below), shows students how BadgerLink works and directs them to independently find an article about the Green Bay Packers. The BadgerLink team noticed a spike in resource usage when Slivinski showed students her video, which led the team to reach out to Slivinski to thank her for her promotion of BadgerLink, and to get a better understanding of how she promotes BadgerLink in her school.

Librarian avatar.
Photo of avatar courtesy of Teresa Slivinski, Shattuck Middle School
Slivinksi is looking forward to even more resource promotion in the future, using the new literacy period as a time to encourage exploration of BadgerLink and it’s many resources.  “Before, I was pretty limited by time and curriculum. In a sense, the literacy period gave me a captive audience. Now, thanks to our district’s technology resources and our new literacy block, almost all staff and students in this school know about a free online library they can access anywhere in Wisconsin. Next quarter, I want to examine a way to increase our use of the literature resources, including TeachingBooks and NoveList.”

Written By:
Teresa Slivinski, Shattuck Middle School
Gail Murray, Resources for Libraries & Lifelong Learning

Friday, December 11, 2015

Library Division Seeking LSTA Advisory Committee Nominations

The LSTA Advisory Committee advises the State Superintendent of Public Instruction on matters pertaining to the administration of the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) program. The primary responsibilities of the committee are to advise the State Superintendent and the Division for Libraries and Technology on the development of the 2018-2022 Wisconsin Long-Range Plan for LSTA; establishment of the annual grant criteria, priorities, and categories; grant applications and grant awards; and Evaluation of the 2013-2017 LSTA program.

Members of the Advisory Committee are appointed by the State Superintendent of Public Instruction to serve staggered three-year terms. Membership includes representatives from libraries and library systems of various types and sizes and from different geographic areas of the state. Committee members are appointed to serve a three-year term with the committee usually meeting twice a year. Meetings in 2016 will take place Thursday, June 2nd and Thursday, December 1, 2016.

Terms of four committee members end on December 31, 2015; suggestions or self-nomination forms are now being accepted (until January 20, 2016) for new members to replace those persons whose terms end December 2015. Please complete an Advisory Committee form that can be completed online until Section IV - labeled Signature. Please print the form and sign. Scan the signed form to your email and send the form as an attachment to Terrie Howe or faxed to Terrie's attention at (608) 267-9207.

The LSTA Advisory Committee website is currently in flux but the address will soon be:

Written by:
Terrie Howe, Public Library Development Team


Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Time to Celebrate!

WEMTA Conference 2016 logo
WEMTA 2016 logo
The WEMTA (Wisconsin Educational Media & Technology Association) Awards season is here! This is a great way to honor someone for their service, efforts, ideas, enthusiasm, leadership, support mentorship, guidance and patience. You can nominate someone or yourself. 
You have the power to make a difference! Possible awards include:

 · Administrator of the Year
 ·  Excellence Award
 ·  Forward Award
 ·  Lifetime Achievement Award
 ·   Professional of the Year
 ·   Special Service Award

Go to WEMTA awards to find out more about each award and how to nominate someone.  Get the word out! It's the best way to let people know 
what you do.

Written by: Nancy Anderson
Resources for Libraries and Lifelong Learning

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Got Analog A/V? Floppies? RADD!!

Today's guest blogger is Dorothea Salo, Faculty Associate at the School of Library & Information Science at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Does your local archives, library, museum, or historical society have unique audiovisual (A/V) materials that need to be digitized for access and preservation? How about floppy disks you don't have a drive for?
There's a RADD solution for that!
Photo of RADD space with various electronic equipment.
RADD space (photo taken by Dorothea Salo)

Recovering Analog and Digital Data (RADD), in the Laboratory Library at the School of Library and Information Studies (SLIS) at UW-Madison, is a collection of equipment for digitizing audiovisual media such as:

* Audiocassettes, reel-to-reel tapes, and microcassettes
* VHS, Betamax, and U-Matic videotapes
* Mini-DV, Hi8, and Digital8 camcorder tapes

RADD can also capture data from several kinds of obsolete digital media, such as:

* 5.25" floppy disks
* 3.5" floppy disks
* Iomega Zip and Jaz disks

These and similar materials are at significant risk of partial or total information loss if not captured quickly. RADD's main builder, SLIS Faculty Associate Dorothea Salo, hopes RADD can improve access to the great backlog of at-risk A/V media representing much of Wisconsin's 20th- and early 21st-century cultural heritage.

"I know there's tons of it tucked away in Wisconsin libraries and archives," said Salo of analog A/V materials, "and I also know it's incredibly expensive to outsource and really hard to do anything with in-house. For a lot of this material, it's RADD or nothing, and I'd rather it be RADD."

The project has captured interest in Madison. The local weekly paper Isthmus featured it in an April story and Madison Magazine honored it as a social innovation in its 2015 "M-List" issue

Salo is actively seeking libraries, archives, museums, and historical societies with unique Wisconsin A/V collections to partner with for LSTA and other grants. She is also interested in smaller collections that could be digitized as SLIS classwork, or as a practicum for individual SLIS students. Institutions lucky enough to afford to pay for digitization are welcome to contact Salo for RADD's standard ratesheet.

Opportunities to train working professionals on A/V digitization and digital-media capture techniques are also welcome. "My ultimate dream is making portable mini-RADDs to ship out into the field, and teaching people how to build their own and use them," said Salo. "Some of this equipment can't possibly be shipped -- a U-Matic player weighs something like 40 pounds -- but a lot of it is pretty light, pretty small."

Salo can be contacted at with potential projects or equipment donations. RADD news and documentation can currently be browsed at

Written by:
Dorothea Salo, School of Library and Information Studies, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Monday, December 7, 2015

Every Veteran is a Story : Resources at the Wisconsin Veterans Museum

Guest post by Russ Horton, Reference & Outreach Archivist at the Wisconsin Veterans Museum, WI Dept. of Veterans Affairs

The Wisconsin Veterans Museum logo
Courtesy of the WVM
The end of each calendar year brings two significant veteran-related observances: Veterans Day on November 11 and Pearl Harbor Day on December 7. These two events often spur an increase in patron questions about both individual veterans and a community's ties to the military. For instance, how many veterans from my city/county/Wisconsin have served in the military? How many men and women from my city/county/Wisconsin were at Pearl Harbor? The Wisconsin Veterans Museum (WVM) is a great resource for libraries and their patrons to find answers to such questions.

A great example of the resources available is in the Wisconsin and Pearl Harbor page that WVM created to answer some of the most common questions about that historic event. It provides a list of the Wisconsin service people who were killed on December 7, 1941, allows visitors to listen to Pearl Harbor veterans describe their experience through audio excerpts from WVM's oral history collection, and features several documents and objects from Wisconsin Pearl Harbor veterans.

Many other resources under the Researchers tab can prove useful to libraries and patrons researching Wisconsin veterans. WVM's Civil War database allows users to search by the name of the soldier or regiment, as well as by residence. A similar database is currently available for Spanish-American War, with a World War I database forthcoming in the near future.

Beyond all of this, the staff at WVM have developed an expertise in helping patrons find answers to their military and veteran related questions. Libraries and patrons are encouraged to contact staff at WVM if they cannot find an answer on the website.

Guest post written by:
Russ Horton, Reference & Outreach Archivist at the Wisconsin Veterans Museum, WI Dept. of Veterans Affairs  

Friday, December 4, 2015

Let's celebrate!

It’s the season for sharing and celebrations!  Wisconsin has good reason to celebrate the amazing resource sharing network that many dedicated professionals have built over the years. Let’s celebrate the library staff that continues to sustain and improve this network for Wisconsin residents.
Hands in the air in celebration
Our culture of freely sharing library materials across city and county lines and across library types has created a system virtually problem-free. Wisconsin resource sharing works so well, in fact, you may not even notice. You may take for granted that all states have this kind of cooperation, when in fact, Wisconsin is unique. Take a look at these examples of the hundreds of interlibrary loan requests made December 1, 2015.

  • 30 copies of  A dog named Christmas for Greenwood Elementary School
  • A photocopy from the “Journal of clinical oncology” for Northcentral Technical College 
  • A handbook of auditory research The Vestibular System for the Gundersen Health System Library in La Crosse
  • A photocopied article from “The Physics Teacher” for Hedberg Public Library in Janesville
  • 15 copies of  The spirit catches you and you fall down: a Hmong child, her American doctors and the collision of two cultures for a book club in Sheboygan
  • California newspaper microfilm for a genealogist at the La Crosse Public Library
  • A DVD “NFL America's Game: the Super Bowl champions, 1972 Miami Dolphins, Super Bowl VII” for the Eager Free Public Library in Evansville
  • A music CD “Bob Welch greatest hits” for the Fond Du Lac Public Library
  • 25 copies of the book Speak for the Dodgeville High School library

Let’s take pride in an efficient system that each day sees materials like these shared throughout the state on behalf of Wisconsin's library users.   Let’s celebrate!

Written by: Christine Barth
Resources for Libraries & Lifelong Learning

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Passing on Good Advice

“I always pass on good advice. It is the only thing to do with it. It is never of any use to oneself.” 
- Oscar Wilde (An Ideal Husband)

Next week is my last as a working librarian - I retire on December 11th.  Over the past few weeks I've been thinking a lot about the places I've worked and all the wonderful folks that I've worked with during these past 30 years.  It's been a great trip but I'm ready to do something different during the next chapter of my life.  As I look back on my career, I keep thinking about the choices that I've made and what's influenced those choices.  Unlike Oscar Wilde's character above, I do rely and act upon the advice that I receive.
Photo of Isabel Bloom figurines
Isabel Bloom figures & friends
(photo by Denise Anton Wright)

The best work-related advice that I ever received came from Dr. Charles Bunge, one of my professors at UW-Madison School of Library and Information Studies back in the early 1980s.  He advised all of his students that the library world was a very small place and to never "burn our bridges."

At the time I don't think I fully realized what great advice this was.  But I put it to good use a few years later.  The not-for-profit book jobber where I'd been working as a staff librarian experienced financial reversals and my position was slated to be eliminated.  I was given 30 days notice and was expected to write my copy for our spring catalog before I left.  It was not a good time for me to be without a job.  We had purchased our first house (a fixer-upper) the previous year, my husband had recently left a very stressful full-time teaching gig at a women's prison, and Christmas was coming.  Let's face it, I was having a serious "little match girl" moment.  

Hurting from the shabby way that I felt I was being treated, I fantasized about leaving my job in a "blaze of glory" - quitting on the spot and telling them what they could do with their catalog. However, the gentle advice of Dr. Bunge drifted back to me.  I took the high road, finished out the year, and did a great job on my catalog copy.

Everything worked out for the best.  Through connections I'd made by being active in our state library organization, I learned of a temporary position at an academic library and wound up working there for over six years.  That position - in turn - led to my next job at a regional library system where - among other things - I had the responsibility of working with that same not-for-profit book jobber in providing continuing education.  Had I burned my bridges, it all would have been incredibly awkward and uncomfortable.

What's the best work-related advice that you've ever received?  I'm going to post this question on our "Library Administration" Google+ community and see what we can all learn from each other.


Written by Denise Anton Wright, Public Library Development

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

It's The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

December is a wonderful time to prepare for the public library annual report. As the fiscal year
Joyful winter dog
Oh joy! Annual report season is around the corner! (Pixabay)
wraps up, statistics and vital numbers collected over the past 12 months are compiled and solidified. As the new year unfolds, the previous year's numbers will be requested by the Division for Libraries and Technology.

As libraries anticipate the joyful season of entering annual statistics into LibPAS, preparations done now can help maximize your data experience. Specifically, the following suggestions are intended for library staff serving youth and the library directors who support them.

1. Have a conversation! Data collection doesn't happen in a vacuum, so make it a point to talk about how data is collected, recorded, and reported.  Make sure everyone is aware of important definitions (e.g. children are defined as ages 0-11) and how numbers are interpreted (e.g. attendance at a children's program includes all who attended, even if attendees are not children). If your record keeping has holes, consider starting the new year with a new plan.

2. Bookmark the annual report webpage: and become familiar with the resources and contact information listed.

3. Review the documents "Youth Services Definitions and Examples" and "A Closer Look at Literacy Offerings" both updated for the 2015 annual report.

4. View the Youth Services Online Training Module to test your knowledge about how to report the data you have collected during the past year. 

5. If all else fails, contact your system youth services consultant or liaison with your questions.  If they can't help you, contact Tessa or Jamie on the Public Library Development Team.

huskies pulling sled
Here's to supportive teamwork in the months ahead! (Pixabay)
Written by:
Tessa Michaelson Schmidt, Public Library Development Team

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

BadgerLink Resource Name Change

Wisconsin Newspaper Association logo
logo courtesy of
Wisconsin Newspaper

BadgerLink works with the Wisconsin Newspaper Association to provide access to 242 daily and weekly Wisconsin newspapers from 2005 to 90 days ago. This resource, Wisconsin Newspaper Association Digital Research Site, has changed its name. Now when searching for recent Wisconsin newspapers, you will use the Archive of Wisconsin Newspapers--it is the same great content you found in Wisconsin Newspaper Association Digital Research Site, just with a shorter name!

If you link to Wisconsin Newspaper Association Digital Research Site on your website, please change the name to Archive of Wisconsin Newspapers. The Authenticated URL did not change.

Contact BadgerLink if you have any questions!

Written by:
Kara Ripley, Resources for Library and Lifelong Learning