Digital Literacy Resources for Libraries

Libraries play a vital role in Digital Literacy and the Washington State Library has compiled some of the best resources for you on the topic. You will find Washington-specific resources as well as information on national projects.

Portals & Clearinghouses

If you are looking for a place to start gathering resources and information, these portals provide a wealth of information. They are also gateways to numerous other resources.

  • Digital Learning Department. The Digital Learning Department (DLD) provides information, guidance, and technical assistance in the areas of Online Learning, Alternative Learning, and Open Educational Resources. DLD supports school districts, families, and course providers serving Washington's K-12 students.
  • Edge Benchmarks. Launched in March 2011, the Edge initiative is an effort driven by a coalition of leading library and local government organizations to develop a suite of tools that support continuous improvement and reinvestment in public technology. The Urban Libraries Council is leading this Initiative.
  • PLA Digital Literacy. Here is a sampling of some of the amazing resources available online to help you assist your patrons with digital literacy. Find training resources, service models to implement at your library, and more.
  • Communities Connect Network. A project of the EdLab Group, Communities Connect Network (CCN) is a statewide coalition of public and private organizations working to make Washington State a leader in “digital inclusion” – the movement to ensure that all individuals have access and the skills to use the Internet and information technologies.

Curriculum & Tutorials

Are you teaching patrons basic digital literacy skills? For ready-made curriculum and ideas, these websites will help you teach patrons and library staff the basics.

  • Connect Your Community. The Connect Your Community team has created and adapted community technology training materials and staff professional development training materials.
  • e-BEAT. The Extension Broadband Education and Adoption Team (e-BEAT) was created as part of a grant from the Mississippi Governor's office to help Mississippians use broadband and information technology to further community and economic development opportunities.
  • Center for Digital Literacy. The provided Acrobat .pdf document "From the Creative Minds of 21st Century Librarians" includes links to lesson plan resources, including .pdf, and Word .doc files.
  • Idaho Digital Literacy Pathfinders. Pathfinders and digital literacy resources compiled by the Idaho Commission for Libraries.
  • Resource guides. Use these guides to find useful resources compiled by the Idaho Commission for Libraries. Research assistance, subject guides, and useful resources compiled by your friendly librarians.
  • GCF LearnFree. Free online learning on technology, reading, and math. Sponsored by the Goodwill Community Foundation.

Tech Tips & Terminology

Don't understand what a CPU means? What about all of those i-doohickeys? These sites will help you to figure out the jargon used in tech circles.

  • Netlingo. NetLingo has thousands of definitions that explain the online world of business, technology, and communication including the largest collection of Internet acronyms and text messaging shorthand. Catering to students, teachers, parents, gamers, designers, techies, bloggers, journalists, and industry professionals worldwide.
  • Find a Tech Definition. Tech definitions by topic: application development, computer science, consumer technology, data center, IT management, learning tools, networking, security and storage and data management.

Accessibility

As we venture into the digital world, it is important to remember that digital resources need to be accessible for all. Here are a few resources to answer your questions about accessible technology and help you connect patrons with appropriate resources.

  • Washington Talking Book and Braille Library. The Washington Talking Book & Braille Library (WTBBL) provides a free public library service which includes easy access to the informational and recreational reading materials needed by individuals in the State of Washington who are unable to read standard print material.
  • Daisy. The DAISY Consortium is a global consortium of organizations committed to a common vision and mission, which pools and coordinates resources to deliver global change.
  • CANnect. CANnect is a consortium of schools and philanthropists with years of experience.
  • Washington Assistive Technology Act Program. Providing Assistive Technology resources and expertise to all Washingtonians with disabilities to aid in making decisions and obtaining the technology and related services needed for employment, education and independent living.
  • AccessIT. AccessIT promotes the use of electronic and information technology (E&IT) for students and employees with disabilities in educational institutions at all academic levels. This website features the AccessIT Knowledge Base, a searchable database of questions and answers regarding accessible E&IT. It is designed for educators, policy makers, librarians, technical support staff, and students and employees with disabilities and their advocates.
  • Northwest ADA Center. The Northwest ADA Center is funded by the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR), and is part of the ADA National Network.

Presentations/Webinars/Videos

In a digital world, there are more online trainings and presentations available than ever before. These are just the tip of the iceberg to get you started on your own personal learning path for digital literacy.

For current online webinars and other continuing education opportunities, visit the Washington State Library Training Calendar.

  • Personal Gadgets and the Library. Infopeople Webinar. Personal electronics such as tablet computers, ebook readers, MP3 players, and more are now a common part of our information interactions in the library world. Customers are checking gadgets out from us, asking us for content that can be loaded on them, and at times just wishing that we could help them use them more effectively.
  • Building Digital Communities through Blogs and Social Networking. Infopeople Webinar. To remain relevant in today’s world, libraries need to build an online presence. With the proliferation of technology advances, it’s not always easy to keep up with the latest trends or understand how to master the technology to use it effectively and efficiently.
  • WebJunction Archived Webinars. WebJunction offers webinars on a variety of library topics including Digital Literacy.
  • TechSoup for Libraries Webinars. Archived and live webinars for libraries from TechSoup.
  • Gadget Menagerie. The Washington State Library (WSL) partnered with local libraries across the state to provide tablet and e-Reader training for library staff and patrons. WSL staff traveled to 46 libraries (public, academic, and tribal) around the state between January and June, 2014. A total of 645 staff were trained and 416 patrons attended programs.
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