How to take expensive online courses free at the library




Do you want to take online courses? And know they’re legit? Some companies offer thousands of courses. You can take as many as you want, if you want to pay $20-30 a month for a subscription. A bit out of your budget? Maybe you can get around it the same way you can get around other information expenses. Go to the library. … Continue reading






What do Americans think of libraries? Poll results




Do you know all the educational services your library provides? According to a recent Pew Research poll, many American’s don’t. A majority thinks libraries offer acceptable service for their communities’ educational needs; 37% answered “very well” and 39% answered “pretty well. Most people, library users or not, are satisfied for themselves, their families, and their communities. If you are among the people who think libraries do a good job, but don’t know what all they offer, you can be even more satisfied.  … Continue reading






The school librarian: an endangered species?




Every good school has a library. And a school librarian. Too many school districts have decided that having good schools is too expensive. School librarians, like other librarians, have a master’s in library science They must also have a valid teaching certificate. Unfortunately, many school districts are getting rid of their librarians. I wrote earlier specifically about Chicago, but the problem is nationwide and has been building for years. … Continue reading






Encouraging college students to use the library




Classes have started at colleges and universities. Some time at the beginning of every term, academic librarians conduct tours of the library and visit classes to offer library instruction. Or perhaps meet them in the library’s own classrooms. What are they trying to accomplish? What happens when they don’t get through to students? The results can be comical. They also help perpetuate a cycle of ignorance. After all, some students who never catch on graduate anyway. And some of them wind up teaching somewhere. … Continue reading






Research for ordinary people




Scientists in their labs or historians poring over manuscript collections and archives are researchers. Many of them become well known in their profession, and maybe even with the general public. People who search the web for sites that they then pass on to a writer are also researchers, very likely making $2 an hour somewhere in Asia. They are at the low end of status and responsibility for Internet work. What does either kind of research have to do with most people? Everyone does research. Not everyone does it professionally. For most people, that research is not likely to result … Continue reading