Wednesday, May 19, 2021

Teacher librarians' activities during COVID-19 report

 The American Association of School Librarians released its final survey in a series of snapshot surveys measuring the state of school libraries during the COVID-19 pandemic. Responses to the latest survey indicate that a majority of school librarians have seen an increase in responsibilities during the 2020–2021 school year, with 75% of respondents reporting they are doing more technology troubleshooting and nearly 86% reporting they are doing more ebook promotion in their districts.

AASL. (2021). Final school library snapshot survey results. KnowledgeQuest.

Sunday, May 16, 2021

Post-COVID action for public education report

The International Commission on Education Futures developed nine ideas for public action, knowing that the pandemic will forever transform education. These ideas for action are the commission’s attempt to actively shape the future of education and help strengthen and enhance its power for all students, including those in developing nations.

  • Commit to strengthen education as a common good.
  • Value the teaching profession and teacher collaboration. 
  • Promote youth participation and rights.
  • Address the importance of connectivity and access to knowledge and information.
  • Make free and open-source technologies available to teachers and students. 
  • Ensure scientific literacy within the curriculum.
  • Protect domestic and international financing of public education.
  • Advance global solidarity to end current levels of inequality.
  • Protect school's social spaces.

Education in a post-COVID world. (2021). UNESCO.

Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Student device quality research

   Broadband access and speed aren’t the only technological concerns for students engaged in remote and hybrid learning. The quality of the student device itself also plays a key role, according to a new study, specifically,the age of the device and device specifications. Researchers looked at data from students using the same internet service provider and noted that throughput was actually lower in the case of students who had inferior devices even though they were on the same network.
   According to the report: “… [U]pload and download speeds during online classes/meetings can vary significantly by the age, type, and quality of device used. Students that were provided with older and less powerful equipment had an inferior experience than students with newer devices. Students that received newer devices with limited specifications (e.g., memory and processor) also had more challenges than students that were provided with devices with better specifications.”
   Some of the factors that impact the quality of the learning experience include, according to the report (all bullets quoted verbatim from the report):
  • Type and speed of processor
  • Amount of memory
  • Central Processing Unit (CPU) utilization
  • Number of applications running at one time
  • Quality of WiFi antenna and signal strength received
  • WiFi standard used and access frequency
   Beyond replacing devices or purchasing upgrades, there are steps IT departments can take to improve device performance, such as whitelisting the sites and services that deliver students’ at-home learning materials and online class sessions so that performance isn’t hindered by a network filtering product. The report also noted that data analytics are critical for assessing student device performance. 

Digital equity initiative. (2021) Student home internet connectivity study. CoSN.

Monday, May 3, 2021

AASL studies

 AASL’s final snapshot survey results found changes have occurred over the past year that will impact school librarian practice for years to come. Respondents noted that their role in their school district or building increased during the current school year. When asked how their practices have changed, technology troubleshooting, e-book promotion, virtual professional development, and step-by-step instructional material for use of online tools and databases received the most “doing more” responses.

AASL. (2021). Final school library snapshot survey results. Knowledge Quest


New research published in AASL’s peer-reviewed online journal, School Library Research (SLR), explores three topics. SLR articles can be accessed for free at

1) Kammer et al. examined successfully completed collaborative projects at the elementary, middle, and high school levels. Each project used integrated instruction or curriculum and were analyzed within the context of “what strategies make collaboration successful? 

2) Burns and Dawkins explored the alignment of the Standards Framework for School Librarians from AASL’s National School Library Standards with the ALA/AASL/CAEP Preparation Standards. The research team’s goal was to identify overlap between expectations school librarians are presented with during their preparation for practice and the Competencies they are asked to demonstrate in practice.

3) Thpmpson et al. examined the difference in school librarians’ teacher self-efficacy among those who worked in elementary, middle, and high schools. The research team attempted to determine if elementary school librarians’ self-efficacy could be a predictor of reading scores for the schools’ overall average rates on the Virginia Standards of Learning assessment.