How Libraries Help Students Evaluate Information in the Era of “Fake News”
By on January 22, 2020 in School / The LRS Number
In the digital age, algorithms based on personal data allow information to find us as opposed to the other way around. Have we adequately prepared the next generation, who are predominantly accessing the world through social media platforms and search engines, to filter through the noise? In a 2019 survey of US secondary school librarians, 96 percent said they teach some form of information literacy. These research skills allow students to “discover and evaluate credible information effectively and ethically by thinking critically.” In other words, students learn to identify biased reporting and suspicious sources, which can be applied to everything from...

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International survey shows large adult literacy gap between the more and less educated in the United States
By on January 8, 2020 in The LRS Number
The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) assesses adult competency on an international scale, using the Survey of Adult Skills. The survey assesses adults aged 16-65 on literacy, numeracy, and problem-solving in technology-rich environments. The OECD focuses on these three skills because they are necessary for full participation in society, relevant to a variety of contexts, and learnable. The United States as well as Ecuador, Hungary, Kazakhstan, Mexico, and Peru participated in the most recent round of data collection in 2017, and the United States also administered the assessment in 2012-2014. The results of the survey allow researchers to calculate...

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Are you ready for a data adventure?
By on October 30, 2019 in Public
We’re excited to announce that the next Research Institute for Public Libraries (RIPL) national event will occur July 12-15, 2020, at the Eaglewood Resort in the Chicago suburb of Itasca, Illinois. RIPL began in 2015 as an immersive, bootcamp-style event for public library staff to learn practical methods for gathering, analyzing, and using data for planning, management, and communicating impact. Now, after 3 national events and more than 25 regional events, it’s time for the next wave. At the 2020 national event, we will debut a new curriculum and format, tailored to meeting the needs of those just getting started with data and...

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2019 Colorado Health Survey finds that one in seven Coloradans needed mental health treatment but didn’t get it
By on October 13, 2019 in Public / The LRS Number
The 2019 Colorado Health Access Survey, administered by the Colorado Health Institute, found that “one in seven Coloradans (13.5%) say they have needed mental health treatment but didn’t get it.” This survey randomly samples 10,000 Colorado households every two years. In 2017, the percentage of Coloradans reporting they did not receive needed mental health treatment was 8%. The percentage of Coloradans who report having experienced prolonged poor mental health (8 or more days in the past month) also increased from 12% in 2017 to 15% in 2019. The latest State Demography Office’s estimate of Colorado’s 2019 population is a little...

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The number of challenges reported in Colorado’s public libraries remains steady in 2018
By on September 11, 2019 in The LRS Number
LRS’s latest Fast Facts report summarizes the results of our annual investigation into the materials and resources challenged in Colorado’s public libraries. This report details the number, type, and reasons for the challenges reported in the 2018 Public Library Annual Report. The information that public libraries provided about these challenges helps us track the attitude towards intellectual freedom in Colorado now and over time. Public libraries reported 43 challenges to materials or resources in 2018, nearly the same as the number reported last year (41). The number of reported challenges has dropped since 2008, although the numbers of challenges...

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National Endowment of the Arts survey finds that 53% of American adults read a book for pleasure in 2017
By on August 21, 2019 in The LRS Number
The American Academy of Arts and Sciences recently updated their Humanities Indicators with information gathered during the National Endowment of the Arts’ Survey of Public Participation in the Arts. These updates focused on capturing book-reading behaviors of American adults in 2017. The survey found that a little over half (53%) of American adults had read at least one book for pleasure in the past 12 months, the lowest level since the survey began in 1982. Reading rates declined the most among adults aged 55 and younger. However, respondents’ participation in book clubs and reading groups increased to 1 in 20 (5%, up from 3.5% in...

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