Welcome to Library Research Service

We conduct research about libraries, provide statistics and analyses to library stakeholders, and work with our colleagues in the Colorado library community and beyond to use data more effectively and persuasively.
United Kingdom anticipates 9 million lonely people by 2030 and intervenes with reading
By on February 20, 2019 in The LRS Number
The British government has been prioritizing addressing loneliness, including appointing a Minister of Loneliness. A recent report on social issues and reading, titled “A Society of Readers,” was produced by the non-profit The Reading Agency and the think-tank Demos. According to the report, in 2014 there were about 5 million people over the age of 60 lonely in the U.K., and they project that number will reach 9 million by 2030. In the U.S., there are currently about 47.8 million lonely adults over the age of 45, based on an Association of Retired Persons report. Currently, the overall size of...

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Pilot to Measure Social and Emotional Learning at Denver Public Library
By on February 8, 2019 in Uncategorized
How can you measure relationship-building abilities? How can you understand which of your library’s programs best support users’ development of skills like problem-solving? How can you determine whether the youth who come to your library need help learning how to ask a question? At Denver Public Library (DPL), we wanted to answer these questions, which address a vital set of skills called social and emotional learning, or SEL. A key goal of our public library, like many libraries, is to provide experiences that positively impact participant learning and growth. Particularly with our youth participants, we hoped that library programs fostered SEL,...

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Ithaka S+R report shows that ebook spending is rising in academic libraries, while print spending declines
By on January 30, 2019 in Academic / The LRS Number
Ithaka S+R recently published the results of their Library Acquisitions Patterns project, which examined purchasing trends in U.S. academic libraries. Their analysis focuses on print books, journals, and ebooks purchased at 124 participating academic institutions. Total materials spending by the participating academic libraries rose by about 8% between 2014 and 2017 to over $313 million.  One-time resources (single books and ebooks) accounted for about 1 in 5 (16-21%) information materials purchased from 2014-2017, while ongoing materials like journals made up most of the remaining materials (70-76%). However, library spending is not rising as quickly as the prices for these materials –...

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GAO report estimates that food insecurity is on the rise among college students
By on January 16, 2019 in Academic / The LRS Number
The Government Accountability Office (GAO) recently released a report estimating the prevalence of food insecurity among college students in the United States. The report authors reviewed 31 studies to determine what is known about the extent of food insecurity on college campuses, and analyzed the most recent National Postsecondary Student Aid Study (NPSAS) data to estimate the number of college students at risk for food insecurity. The studies that the GAO reviewed estimated that food insecurity could affect a wide range of college students – from 1 in 10 (9%) to over half (50%). Twenty-two of the 31 studies reviewed estimated...

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Forty-eight percent of the next generation of American youth identify as a racial or ethnic minority
By on December 5, 2018 in The LRS Number
The Pew Research Center recently analyzed U.S. Census data to learn more about the next generation of Americans, who are currently 6 to 21 years-old. This generation, referred to as the “post-Millennial” generation, is “the most racially and ethnically diverse generation” yet, with almost half (48%) identifying as a racial or ethnic minority.  In 1986, a little less than a third (30%) of Gen Xers identified as a racial or ethnic minority. So far, post-Millennials who are 18 to 20 years-old are also graduating from high school and enrolling in secondary education at a higher rate than previous generations.  Among those...

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AFL-CIO fact sheet indicates that a quarter of American librarians are union members
Image source: AFL-CIO American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) Department for Professional Employees recently released a fact sheet exploring, among other topics, library staff in the workforce, issues of pay and pay equity, and librarian representation in unions. This fact sheet uses data from a variety of sources, but draws primarily from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and the American Community Survey. The report indicates that in 2017, there were approximately 194,000 degreed librarians, 40,000 library technicians, and 96,000 library assistants employed in libraries throughout the United States. The majority of librarians (3 in 5, or 60%)...

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LRS is part of the Colorado State Library, a unit of the Colorado Department of Education. We design and conduct library research for library and education professionals, public officials, and the media to inform practices and assessment needs.

This project is made possible by a grant from the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS).

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