The YALSA Update: One Last Chance to Register for Teen Read Week

Teen Read Week Registration Winding Down Teen Read Week registration ends next week! If you haven’t already, sign up today and take a stand for the importance of teen reading. After you register, check out the Teen Read Week website for activity ideas and publicity tools (including PSAs featuring Nancy Cartwright) to get attention for your celebration. TRW registration ends Sept. 18.

Make Sure Your Teens Voice Their Choice Teens’ Top Ten voting is in the final stretch, too! Teens can vote online at www.ala.org/teenstopten for their favorite books from the last year through Sept. 18. Then, tune in during Teen Read Week for a webcast announcing the winners, featuring Superstars and Divas from World Wrestling Entertainment.

Tech Poster Proposals Now Open YALSA will sponsor a poster session at ALA Annual Conference 2010 on Teen Tech Week! Show off your work in DC this summer. Proposals accepted through Oct. 16. Read our Tech Poster Session page for details.

After the jump, learn more about YALSA’s latest book, how to get your program or poster into the 2010 YA Lit Symposium, and how you can win an online course from YALSA!

Continue reading

Library School Students & YALSA Go Together

When I went to library school, some professors encouraged students to join professional organizations. Whenever the profs. would talk about this I tended to tune things out. I didn’t really get why something like ALA or YALSA or even a local/regional organization would make a difference in my work as a librarian. It wasn’t clear at all how student membership would benefit a lowly student such as me.

Now, I get it. And, I get it even more now that I’ve read through the results of YALSA’s recent survey of library school students. The results are available for anyone to peruse, findings include:

  • A majority of students state that YALSA does a very good job with selected lists and promotion of young adult literature via awards.
  • While not at the very good level, a majority of the students who completed the survey state that YALSA does a good job at placing national importance on teen reading and on teen technological literacies.
  • Similarly, a majority of student respondents state that YALSA does a good job with its online and print information dissemination – for example YALS and YAttitudes.
  • 75% of the respondents said they joined YALSA for the professional development opportunities. The survey data also shows that both face-to-face and virtual professional development opportunities are important to library school students.
  • YALSA as an information source for best practices and research in the field is also important to respondents. 96% of those who answered the survey said that identification and support of implementation of best practices was important for YALSA to focus on. 95% said the same about identification and support of research in the area of library service to teens.

There is a lot of data to think about in the survey. What’s as compelling as the specific numbers are some of the ideas for YALSA that come through in the feedback sections of the responses. These include interest from students in:

  • Projects and programs from YALSA that are geared directly to library school students
  • Improved opportunities for students to network with their peers and with those already working in the field with teens.
  • Expanded online course offerings
  • Materials that provide direct connections/ideas/information between research and practice.

The YALSA Executive Committee is already working on ideas generated by survey responses in order for the Division to support library students more successfully. New, innovative, and creative ideas are up for discussion. Ideas from library school students are welcome and can be submitted and discussed on the YALSA Ning for LIS students.

Virtual Reality Worlds = Serious Addiction Problems?

If you’re involved in any way with teens using the Internet, you probably will want to take a look at this new survey conducted by Pew Internet & American Life Project on the future of the Internet in 2020. 742 respondents were asked to agree or disagree with a set of eight scenarios. Top leaders, activists and commentators were chosen to participate in this web-based survey.

While each of the eight scenarios could impact the next generation, the one about virtual reality peeked my interest. Participants were asked to respond to whether vr will lead to more productivity or serious addiction problems.

The respondents reactions were interesting-especially on p.55 about concerns toward youth culture and vr:

“take a close look at finding ways to provide guidance to young
people as they create their alternate, online personalities.”

or

“Addiction to chat rooms and online gaming worlds is already emerging as an issue. Recent research has highlighted for example, how teenagers’ ability to learn during school hours is being impacted by a lack of sleep – caused by late-night SMS/chat sessions. There is a real risk that some people will become ‘lost’ to virtual worlds.”

Discussions of what vr even is, and comparisons to books, television, and film are also made. A KidZone/Teachers guide regarding the future and history of information sharing can be found here.

What do we think of these predictions? Should we be concerned?

Here are two other recent articles on the addiction of video games. From Business Week Online: It’s Addictive! Or is It? and a preview from the New Scientist; Hooked, Why Your Brain is Primed for Addiction.

Posted by Kelly Czarnecki