Library Services for Multicultural Patrons: Strategies to Encourage Library Use


Increasingly, libraries are struggling to deal with a growing diversity in the cultural background of their patrons. Problems arising from this cultural diversity afflict all library types?school, public and academic. Library Services for Multicultural Patrons is by and for all libraries that are striving to provide multicultural services to match the growing diversity in the cultural background of patrons.

The book is designed to offer helpful tips and practical advice to ...

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Library Services for Multicultural Patrons: Strategies to Encourage Library Use

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Increasingly, libraries are struggling to deal with a growing diversity in the cultural background of their patrons. Problems arising from this cultural diversity afflict all library types—school, public and academic. Library Services for Multicultural Patrons is by and for all libraries that are striving to provide multicultural services to match the growing diversity in the cultural background of patrons.

The book is designed to offer helpful tips and practical advice to academic, public, and school librarians who want to better serve the multicultural groups in their communities. The contributors to the book are themselves practicing librarians and they share creative ideas for welcoming multicultural patrons into libraries and strategies for serving them more effectively. Librarians will find in these chapters tried and true tips and techniques for marketing and promotion, improving reference services for speakers of English as a second language, and enhancing programming that they can easily implement in their own libraries and communities.

The chapters are divided into the following categories for ease of access: 1) Getting Organized and Finding Partners, 2) Reaching Students, 3) Community Connections, 4) Applying Technology, 6) Outreach Initiatives, 6) Programming and Events, and 7) Reference Services.

Librarians of all types will be pleased to discover easy-to-implement suggestions for collaborative efforts, many rich and diverse programming ideas, strategies for improving reference services and library instruction to speakers of English as a second language, marketing and promotional tips designed to welcome multicultural patrons into the library, and much more.

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Editorial Reviews

American Reference Books Annual
The book will be valuable in any library where there is a growing diversity of patrons being served.
Kerol Harrod
Covering a variety of cultures, libraries, and locations around the country, this is the right anthology at the right time.
Howard C. Bybee
Society world-wide and therefore educational institutions and libraries of all types are increasingly multi-cultural. This book is a valuable and timely resource for modern librarians everywhere.
Emily Griffin
Covering a wide range of professional advice and instruction, this anthology is an essential guide for librarians serving diverse populations.
Vera Gubnitskaia
This is an exciting assortment of experiences by information professionals from a wide variety of institutions.
Brenda Lincke Fisseler
The goal of any library is to be that place in the community where diversity is not just accepted but encourage, cultivated and respected.
Kerry A. FitzGerald
Our tagline is Expanding Horizons, Enriching Minds. The experience and insight shared in this new anthology will help us do just that. A thoughtful resource.
Courtney L. Young
Placing a spotlight on multicultural library users, the essays in this book provide a roadmap for effective community engagement and collaboration.
An excellent compilation of essays that will help any librarian reach his or her multicultural patrons. ... Readers of this book will be able to step outside of their cultural identities and adapt these success stories to their current needs. Any librarian trying to reach a certain cultural demographic should read this timely publication.
American Reference Books Annual (ARBA)
The book will be valuable in any library where there is a growing diversity of patrons being served.
Library Journal
What do graphic novels, poetry readings, and oral history projects have in common? They are among many ideas used in successful outreach efforts by libraries serving ethnically diverse patrons. In this resource edited by Smallwood (Preserving Local Writers, Genealogy, Photographs, Newspapers, and Related Materials) and Becnel (library science, Appalachian State Univ.), 49 predominantly American contributors share their diversity service expertise via 37 articles arranged by theme: getting organized and finding partners, reaching students, community connections, applying technology, outreach initiatives, programming and events, and reference services. An underlying message is for librarians to leave their comfort zones, collaborate, and take risks to establish practical connections with new immigrants and other diverse populations. This comprehensive handbook—targeting academic, public, and school librarians—is the first of its kind since Katherine Hill's Diversity and Multiculturalism in Libraries (1994) and Reaching a Multicultural Student Community by Karen E. Downing, Barbara MacAdam, and Darlene P. Nichols (1993). Staffing, funding, resource planning, and overcoming language barriers are among the topics addressed. VERDICT A useful array of ideas for administrators, IT staff, and frontline librarians seeking programming and service success with children, students, working adults, and the elderly in our increasingly multicultural world.—Betty J. Glass, Univ. of Nevada Lib., Reno
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780810887220
  • Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 10/12/2012
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 352
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Carol Smallwood has worked as a public library systems administrator and consultant, and in school, academic, and special libraries. She has authored, co-authored, edited, and co-edited several books, including Librarians as Community Partners: An Outreach Handbook (2010), How to Thrive as a Solo Librarian (Scarecrow, 2011), and Preserving Local Writers, Genealogy, Photographs, Newspapers, and Related Materials (Scarecrow, 2012). Her articles have appeared in numerous journals, including American Libraries.

Kim Becnel is assistant professor of library science at Appalachian State University in Boone, North Carolina. Becnel teaches and researches in the areas of public library management, youth services, and children’s literature. Her work has appeared in Middle Management in Academic and Public Libraries (2011), Library Management Tips that Work (2011), Diversity in Youth Literature: Opening Doors Through Reading (2012) and Public Libraries.

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Table of Contents


Part I: Getting Organized and Finding Partners
Chapter 1: Becoming a Multicultural Services Library: A Guided Journey to Serving Diverse Populations
Donna Walker and Padma Polepeddi
Chapter 2: No Surprise, Community Engagement Works
Theresa Beaulieu
Chapter 3: International Advisory Committee at the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library
Meryle A. Leonard
Chapter 4: The Gathering Place: A Multicultural Experience at the Joseph F. Smith Library
Zoia Adam-Falevai and Becky DeMartini
Chapter 5: Partnerships Linking Cultures: Multicultural Librarianship in British Columbia's Public Libraries
Allan Cho and Con Ada
Chapter 6: The Bridge: Librarians Collaborate with the Office of Multicultural Affairs, a Division of Student Affairs
Fantasia Thorne and Kimberly Williams

Part II: Reaching Students
Chapter 7: Connecting Native American Students to Cline Library
Amy Hughes and Carissa Tsosie
Chapter 8: Delivering Library Instruction in a Native Language
LaVentra E. Danquah and Wendy G. Wu
Chapter 9: The Role of Teacher-Librarians in Encouraging Library Use by Multicultural Patrons
Danielle M. Colbert-Lewis and Sean C.D. Colbert-Lewis, Sr.
Chapter 10: Expanding Services to International Students and Scholars at Midsized and Small Universities and Colleges
Amauri Serrano and Beth Cramer
Chapter 11: Reaching Out to International Students at the University of Lethbridge Library
Nicole Eva
Chapter 12: The Solo Career College Librarian: Reaching Out to Non-Traditional Students
Alice Graves
Chapter 13: Serving Diverse Populations: Outreach to Chinese and African American Users
Kelly Rhodes McBride and Xiaorong Shao

Part III: Community Connections
Chapter 14: The Community Speaks for Itself: Indigenous Speakers in the Labriola National American Indian Data Center
Joyce Martin
Chapter 15: Connecting with Multicultural Teens (and their Families by Extension)
Ashley Ansah
Chapter 16: Soy Culto! Connecting with the Hispanic Population
Joyce Nutta and Julie Ventura
Chapter 17: Fotonovelas and Historietas: Adult Comic Books from Mexico in American Libraries
Cynthia Houston
Chapter 18: Reaching Out Through Graphic Novels
Mike Buono

Part IV: Applying Technology
Chapter 19: The Multilingual Glossary Project and My Language: Two Online Programs to Assist Libraries to Deliver Services to Multicultural Patrons
Oriana Acevedo and Nicky Lo Bianco
Chapter 20: Developing a Job Help and Computer Skills Program for Recent Immigrants
Nyssa Densley and Heather Ross
Chapter 21: Opening the World: Creating a Multilingual Video to Introduce Library Services to Refugees and Immigrants
Judy Anghelescu
Chapter 22: Virtual Services to Latinos and Spanish Speakers
Audrey Barbakoff and Kristina Gomez
Chapter 23: Web-Based Language Technologies
Frans Albarillo

Part V: Outreach Initiatives
Chapter 24: “If You Build It, [They] Will Come”: Actively Inviting Multicultural Users to Academic Libraries by Offering Family Literacy Workshops
Ladislava Khailova
Chapter 25: Community Family Literacy Programs at the Azusa City Library
Maria A. Pacino
Chapter 26: An Oral History Guide
Mark Donnelly
Chapter 27: Librarians’ Role as Educators in Promoting Library Resources for Multicultural Patrons While Advancing a National Health Initiative
LaVentra E. Danquah and Wendy G. Wu
Chapter 28: Programs, Signage, and the Kitchen Sink: Attracting Multicultural Patrons to School Libraries
Kris Baughman and Rebecca Marcum Parker

Part VI: Programming and Events
Chapter 29: Raising Awareness in Academic Libraries with Multicultural Exhibits, Installations and Decorations
Fantasia Thorne and Kimberly Williams
Chapter 30: Bridging the Gap: Exploring the Racial Divide in Louisiana
Derek Mosley and April Grey
Chapter 31: Cafe a las Siete/ Coffee at Seven: Cross-cultural Programming at a Public Library
Diana J. Lennon
Chapter 32: So You Think You Can Write? Programming That Encourages Creativity
April Grey and Derek Mosley
Chapter 33: English Conversation Clubs at the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library
Staci Falkowitz

Part VII: Reference Services
Chapter 34: Active Listening Without Visual Cues: Phone Reference Tips for ESL Learners
Erika Bennet and Erin Brothen
Chapter 35: The Culturally Relevant Reference Interview: How to Enhance Reference Transactions in an Era of Diversity
Erika Bennet and Erin Brothen
Chapter 36: Risk Looking Stupid
Mike Buono
Chapter 37: Genealogy Reference for Diverse Customers
J. Wendel Cox and James K. Jeffrey

Bio List

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