Equity in Action: Fostering an Antiracist Library Culture

Course Overview

Library staff at all levels within their organizations have the power—and the responsibility—to help cultivate an antiracist culture, from evaluating spaces, programs, services, and collections to examining policies and practices to reflecting on one’s own implicit biases. Creating an internal culture founded on principles of equity, diversity, and inclusion is essential to building a community-centered library that meets the needs and expectations of its users.

In this course, you will learn about the concrete actions library leaders are taking to make their libraries antiracist today and in the future, and the tools that make it possible. Practical coursework, along with targeted support, will take you from theory to application, helping you to transform your library services to better meet the needs of all your users—and bring in new ones.

Certificate of Completion Provided
15 PD credits available

When you attend this interactive online course, you’ll come away with:  

  • The tools necessary to audit current library collections and programs through a culturally competent lens

  • The ability to assess the inclusiveness of current collection development and RA practices, acquisitions, marketing, plus assessing scheduling practices, branch hours, and staff hiring and retention

  • The ability to recognize common problematic stereotypes, tropes, and microaggressions in media

  • A refresher on key diversity and cultural literacy concepts such as white privilege, unconscious bias, cultural appropriation, and intersectionality

 

REGISTER

 


The course features live guest speakers in interactive sessions with Q&A as well as self-guided assignments, readings, and weekly discussion topics to support deeper learning. You’ll work in small groups with facilitators experienced in anti-oppression work to complete assignments and field research that will fuel your diversity initiatives.

Inspiring Live Guest Speakers + Project-Based Learning:

Engage with presenters via live video stream, visual presentations, and chats, and workshop practical solutions in groups, with guidance from an advisor, to map out your own equity and inclusion initiatives. You’ll leave with well-developed strategies designed to make a lasting impact on your community.

Online course features:

  • Instructor-led online course features personalized interaction over three weeks

  • Real-time guest speakers and conversation via live webcast (with recordings available afterward)

  • Self-guided track with video lessons and supporting resources in the online classroom to provide a foundation for your work

  • Homework assignments to help you make progress on your goals

  • Individualized attention from course facilitators who work with you in a coaching environment to help sort out challenges

  • Ongoing group conversation via discussion forums

  • Articles, videos, and other resources

  • Access all course content for 6 months after the course ends

In this course you will complete assignments to build your own equity-based initiative over three weeks in an interactive online classroom environment with personal coaching from an expert in the field. In addition, you’ll have access to our foundational bonus content—a series of webinars from Library Journal and School Library Journal contributors along with rich supporting materials in the form of readings, activities, and videos—to explore at your own pace.

Live Interactive Sessions: Tuesdays: September 29, October 6 & 13, from 2-4 PM ET. Plus, self-guided options and additional bonus content offered so you can follow along at your own pace.

Live sessions bridged with online workshops, video lessons, assignments, discussions, and resources designed to help you build your own diversity initiative.

Also Available On-Demand! 

Can’t make a live session? All sessions will be available to you “on-demand” following the initial broadcast.

Who should take this course:

This event is excellent for public librarians, both adult and youth services; academic librarians; and school librarians. The program will be especially relevant to librarians in collection development, collection management, merchandising and displays, programming, outreach, and library marketing. 

Bonus: Register early and get immediate access to archival video recordings from related courses, a curated list of resources from our editors, and other bonus materials!

Group rates are available 

Have a team attend and increase your impact!

Please contact us at libraryjournal@edmaker.co to learn more about our discounted rates.

Can’t make a live session? No worries. All sessions will be available to you “on-demand” following the initial broadcast. 

Part 1: Tuesday, September 29, 2020, 2-4:15 pm ET

Session 1 | 2:00-2:15 pm ET

What Does It Mean To Be Antiracist?  
Mahnaz Dar, Reference and Professional Reading Editor at Library Journal and School Library Journal, will provide an introduction to the course, highlighting key concepts, including #ownvoices, privilege, and intersectionality, and explaining how the discussion groups and assignments will work.

Speaker:
Mahnaz Dar
, Reference and Professional Reading Editor, Library Journal/School Library Journal
 

Session 2 | 2:15-3:00 pm ET

Acknowledging the Elephant in the Library: Making Implicit Biases Explicit
Serving diverse and marginalized populations is rewarding, but complicated, work. Among the barriers to inclusive service is implicit bias. It is important for information professionals to examine and acknowledge their own privileges and biases, and recognize their role in creating and sustaining a welcoming environment in the library for every person who seeks access to the library’s materials, services, programs, and spaces. In this session, you'll unpack the concept of implicit bias, as well as the closely related concepts of stereotypes, microaggressions, and cultural competence, and walk away with ideas for how to use this deeper understanding to enhance your critical information practice.

Speaker:
Nicole A. Cooke, PhD, MEd, MLS,
Augusta Baker Endowed Chair and Associate Professor, School of Library and Information Science, College of Information and Communications, University of South Carolina
 

Intermission | 3:00-3:15 pm ET
 

Session 3 | 3:15-4:00 pm ET

Dismantling White Supremacy in the Library
In this session, participants will gain a deeper understanding of white supremacy and how it operates on institutional and individual levels. You will learn how to recognize and address explicit and implicit racist manifestations. Real-world examples will help contextualize the phenomena of white supremacy within public, school, and academic libraries. Most importantly, the session will move beyond understanding white supremacy, focusing on tangible steps toward dismantling racist systems of oppression.

Speaker:
Cassie Sheets, Adjunct Instructor, College of Humanities and Sciences, University of Montana (MT)
 

Part 2: Tuesday, October 6, 2020, 2-4 pm ET

Session 1 | 2:00-2:45

How Diverse Is Your Library? Conducting an Equity Audit
In this session, an expert librarian will discuss how you can assess the level of equity at your library by conducting regular audits of collections, displays, and programming. This vital work will help you align offerings to community needs, identify gaps in service, and set benchmarks for equity, inclusion, and diversity. You will learn how to perform a diversity audit, including which salient data points should be included, how to gather the requisite information, how to set goals to address gaps, and how to make diversity and inclusion integral parts of collection management and promotion.

Speaker:
Karen Jensen
, MLS, Creator and Administrator, Teen Librarian Toolbox
 

Intermission | 2:45-3:00 pm ET
 

Session 2 | 3:00-3:45 pm ET

Cultivating Antiracist/Antibias Workplaces and Hiring PracticesCreating an antiracist culture at your library must involve consideration of staff culture and hiring practices. In this session, you’ll learn how to develop and implement antiracist/antibiased recruitment and hiring practices (including antiracist interviewing and candidate selection), steps to take toward fostering inclusive workplaces, and how to conduct an organizational talent equity audit at your own library.

Speaker:
Kawanna Bright PHD,
Assistant Professor, East Carolina University College of Education (NC)

 

Part 3 - Tuesday, October 13, 2020, 2-4 pm ET

 

Session 1 | 2:00-2:30 pm ET

Using Local History to Combat Racism
Learn how connecting to your community’s past can open up rich conversations about the future in this inspiring session. This session provides a deep dive into how librarians can use their institutions’ historical collections and resources to help patrons, students, and community members explore, critically analyze, and combat systemic racism.
Speaker: 
Angel Jewel Tucker
, Youth Services Manager, Johnson County Library, Overland Park, KS

 

Session 2 | 2:30-3:15 pm ET

Reassessing Our Core Values
What does true antiracist work look like within an organization and who measures its success? In this session, you’ll learn how to look more deeply into what your library is doing—and isn’t doing—with regards to equity work and reassess your priorities and areas of focus. You’ll learn to ask questions that go beneath the surface to the core values of your institution to reconsider your mission statement and your services, and begin to consider how you might create a revolutionary space of justice and healing through authentic human connection.
Speaker:
Andrea Blackman
, Division Manager, Special Collections & Director, Civil Rights Room, Nashville Public Library (TN) 

 

Intermission | 3:15-3:30 pm ET
 

Session 3 | 3:30-4:15 pm ET

Liberation in the Library
How does our personal identity impact collection development and programming? A truly inclusive library collection begins, first, with ourselves and considering how our blindspots can impact what our library spaces become. Creating libraries that reflect, and are safe for, BIPOC children and youth, is an active, ongoing practice requiring intent and unflagging effort. In this closing keynote, Dr. Kim Parker will help you think through how you can curate collections and create an environment that is liberatory and reflective of diverse populations.

Speaker:
Dr. Kimberly N. Parker, Teacher Developer

 

REGISTER

Andrea Blackman, Division Manager, Special Collections & Director, Civil Rights Room, Nashville Public Library (TN)

Kawanna Bright PHD, Assistant Professor, East Carolina University College of Education (NC)

Nicole A. Cooke, PhD, MEd, MLS, Augusta Baker Endowed Chair and Associate Professor, School of Library and Information Science, College of Information and Communications, University of South Carolina

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Mahnaz Dar, Reference and Professional Reading Editor, Library Journal/School Library Journal

Karen Jensen, MLS, Creator and Administrator, Teen Librarian Toolbox

 Dr. Kimberly N. Parker, Teacher Developer

Cassie Sheets, Adjunct Instructor, College of Humanities and Sciences, University of Montana (MT)

Angel Jewel Tucker, Youth Services Manager, Johnson County Library, Overland Park, KS

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

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