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.
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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8 in 10 School Library Journal survey respondents think it is “very important” to have diverse children’s and young adult collections
By on October 31, 2018 in Public / School / The LRS Number
School Library Journal recently published the results of a survey asking librarians about diversity in their children’s and young adult book collections. The survey administrators defined a diverse collection as one with books that feature “protagonists and experiences involving under-represented ethnicities, disabilities, cultural or religious backgrounds, gender nonconformity, or LGBTQIA+ orientations.” Out of the 1,156 school and public librarians who responded to the survey, 8 in 10 say that it is “very important” to develop a diverse book collection for children and teens. Nearly three-quarters (72%) consider it a personal mission to create a diverse collection for their patrons. Many librarians...

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Study of academic librarians finds that less than 1 in 5 respondents felt that their MLIS program adequately prepared them to conduct original research
By on October 17, 2018 in Academic / The LRS Number
College & Research Libraries recently published the results of a 2015 survey of academic librarians measuring their attitudes, involvement, and perceived ability to conduct academic research. This report provides an update to a similar study completed in 2010. The survey questions covered four topics: reading and conducting research, confidence in conducting research, training in research methods, and institutional support. Over 4 in 5 (84%) of the academic librarians surveyed say that they are expected to read academic research on librarianship as part of their jobs, and about the same portion (80%) say that they are given time on the job to...

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Brookings Institution analysis shows that about 8 in 10 U.S. households now have a subscription to broadband internet
By on October 3, 2018 in Technology / The LRS Number
The Metropolitan Policy Center at the Brookings Institution recently published an analysis of data gathered by the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey concerning national broadband internet adoption, including cable, fiber optic, or DSL internet service. They found that while broadband subscriptions are rising, there are still gaps in this essential service. Brookings’ analysis found that, overall, people in the U.S. are rapidly adopting broadband technology. In 2013, about 7 in 10 (73%) households across the U.S. had a broadband subscription. By 2017, broadband subscription had jumped to about 8 in 10 (83%) U.S. households. The national picture matches that seen in...

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Common Sense Media study finds that high percentages of teens have smartphones, use them a lot, and have trouble disconnecting – even to sleep
By on September 19, 2018 in Technology / The LRS Number
Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization that studies youth and media, recently released the 2018 “Social Media, Social Life” report on teens and social media. The report summarizes the results of “a nationally representative survey of 1,141 13 to 17 year olds in the United States.” Since the survey was last administered in 2012, there were several key shifts. In 2018, 70% of respondents reported using social media multiple times a day, as opposed to only 34% in 2012. More teens also have a smartphone; 89% have one today, compared to only 41% in 2012. The study also found that...

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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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