Indiana’s Library Makers

PDO is in the process of creating a comprehensive map of library makers throughout the state of Indiana. It is no secret that many libraries in the state have already embraced maker culture. Unfortunately, there is currently no comprehensive list of these libraries in the state. Our goal for the map is to create a resource that will highlight libraries that have embraced maker culture, and to facilitate communication and resource sharing among libraries. The map will allow users to select specific institutions and learn about the resources and programs that they offer.

Map Key: Libraries with designated maker spaces are in red. Libraries with maker equipment are in dark grey

What is a makerspace?
A makerspace is a physical location where people gather to share resources and knowledge, work on projects, network, and build. Within libraries this can be anything from a digital creativity studio to an area that is designated for patrons to bring in their own projects to work on.

Who is a maker?
A maker can be anyone who demonstrates an interest in DIY culture. Although a lot of attention is given to makers who work with science, technology, engineering, or math; a maker can be anyone who embraces DIY culture as a hobby or a full-time job.

Why should libraries embrace maker culture?

  1. Heightened motivation and new forms of engagement through meaningful play and experimentation.
  2. Learning that feels relevant to patrons’ identities and interests.
  3. Opportunities for creating using a variety of media, tools, and practices.
  4. Co-configured expertise where educators and students pool their skills and knowledge and share in tasks of teaching and learning.
  5. An integrated system of learning where connections between home, school, community and world are enabled and encouraged.

In the future…
Later in the summer, PDO will open a survey to learn how libraries are embracing maker culture within their own organization. This survey will also help us to identify libraries with designated maker spaces as well as those libraries who are currently embracing maker culture and technologies. As we collect information on libraries who have embraced maker culture, we will add their location and offerings to the Maker map. The results of the survey and final version of the maker map will be released at the ILF annual in November.

This blog post was written by Amber Painter, Professional Development Librarian. For more information, contact the Professional Development Office at (317) 232-3697 or email

Professional Development at Your Fingertips

Looking to brush up customer service skills? Wondering about current trends in the library world? There are lots of professional development and continuing education opportunities around that are available to Indiana users online.

  1. Lyrasis – Using Lyrasis is easy and allows access to many quality trainings. Trainings are already paid for by the Indiana State Library (ISL) so library staff can be assured that they are free. Simply browse their offerings, choose a training, apply for a Promo Code if needed (classes that do not list a cost do not require a Promo Code) register, and attend the class. Pro Tip: If you don’t have time to take the class when it’s offered, register anyway. After the class is offered you will be emailed an access link and you can take the class at your leisure.
  2. – With tutorials for dozens of topics, can help library staff learn to take better pictures for their FaceBook page, discover better ways to lead, and learn tips on how to use WordPress. To gain access, just fill out the Course Application Form. You will receive your username and password in your email. Pro Tip: If you’ve forgotten whether or not you have already logged in, try to log in with your email address. Forgot your password? It’s easy to reset through the prompts on the page.
  3. Free Webinars – The Indiana State Library keeps an ongoing and updated spreadsheet of pre-approved webinar courses. In a simple excel format, these are arranged by date and cover a variety of topics. Pro Tip: Don’t forget, someone in your own organization can create your LEU Certificate in-house. Check out our policy on LEUs for Live and Archived Webinars.
  4. Pre Approved Providers – The ISL also keeps a list of organizations who present webinars that are pre-approved for LEUs. This is so great because staff can be assured that any webinar offered by these providers is a go for LEUs. The only stipulation is that courses must be at least 30 minutes in length to count for 1 LEU.
    Pro Tip: Courses that are 30-90 minutes of content are equivalent to 1 LEU.
  5. ISL’s Calendar of Events – The ISL also hosts our own webinars as well as other face-to-face trainings. The are listed on our calendar and are open to all library staff. Pro Tip: Registration for webinars is usually done through an internal link on the calendar. Just click on the training title and then click on the Event Registration Page in order to register.

This blog post was written by Suzanne Walker, Professional Development Office Supervisor. For more information, contact the Professional Development Office at (317) 232-3697 or email

Top Ten Things to know about Interlibrary Loan

  1. It’s accessible! You do not have to have an Indiana State Library card or be a member of an Evergreen library to request items from the Indiana State Library.  Interlibrary loan allows sharing of resources among libraries.
  2. It’s easy! You simply make the request through your local public, academic, or special library. Your library will send us the request for you!
  3. It’s convenient! Once interlibrary loan requests are approved, the items are sent directly to your local public, academic, or special library for you!
  4. It’s affordable! If your library is in Indiana and uses InfoExpress, delivery is free!  If your library does not use InfoExpress or is located out of state, the cost of postage is all you will be charged.
  5. It’s flexible! Up to two renewals may be requested for interlibrary loan materials not on microfilm. As long as the item is not on hold, we’ll extend your loan period.
  6. It’s unique! The Indiana State Library has the largest collection of Indiana newspapers on microfilm and they are accessible through interlibrary loan. Our materials focus on Indiana history and may not be found many other places.
  7. It’s fast! Interlibrary loan requests are processed every weekday the library is open. Indiana State Library staff work hard to respond to requests in a timely manner in order to get materials to you quickly.
  8. It’s LARGE! Print, that is. Items from our vast large print collection may be requested through interlibrary loan by Indiana libraries.
  9. It’s adaptable! If an item cannot be loaned out, the material, or a portion of the material, may be copied for a fee in order to fill the request.
  10. It’s for work! Indiana state employees may request work-related items from other libraries through the Indiana State Library. Contact the Reference division for more information.

This blog post was written by Christy Franzman, Circulation & Support Supervisor, Indiana State Library. For more information, contact the Indiana State Library at (317) 232-3675  or “Ask-A-Librarian” at

Child Development and You: Resources available for Tracking Developmental Milestones

Healthy growth and development is important at all stages and ages of life. For children, however, the early years are especially important. Development is considered healthy when children of all abilities, including those with special health care needs, are able to grow up in an environment where their physical, social, emotional, and academic needs are met. As a child grows, he/she begins to develop a number of skills. These skills are referred to as developmental milestones. Children reach milestones in the way they behave, speak, learn, move, and place (e.g. crawling and walking or babbling and talking).

As a child grows, his/her development should be monitored in collaborative partnership by parents, caregivers, and professionals. In doing so, parents identifying delays can discuss their concerns with providers and learn about programs that may be helpful in addressing these concerns through early intervention.

You may be wondering: how does one learn about healthy child development and corresponding milestones? In October 2004, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) unveiled its national Learn the Signs. Act Early. campaign, focusing on raising awareness about healthy early childhood developmental milestones and underscores the importance of both tracking a child’s development and engaging in conversations with healthcare providers to discuss possible intervention strategies if there are concerns.

Through the use of complimentary, user-friendly tools and materials, parents, caregivers, and professionals (including librarians!) have the ability to form creative partnerships ensuring that children who demonstrate developmental delays can be identified early and begin accessing services and supports they might need.

To learn more about the CDC’s Learn the Signs. Act Early. National Campaign, please follow this link:

#GID15 is Government Information Day

By now you’ve seen GID15; wonder what it means? GID15 is Government Information Day 2015!

Government Information Day (GID15) is a FREE, one day conference for librarians, library professionals, attorneys, legal professionals, and the general public to learn more about Government Information, access, and current trends about information dissemination, collection, and preservation. This year’s theme is E-access: The Changing Face of Government Information. GID15 is a collaborative planning effort with the Indiana State Library, Indiana University-Kokomo, Indiana University Bloomington, Indiana University Bloomington, Maurer School of Law, and the Indianapolis Public Library. We are pleased to have Davita Vance-Cooks, Director, of the Government Publishing Office (GPO) as this year’s keynote speaker. Government Information Day is filled with informative, engaging speakers and a variety of topics:

  • Connie Rendfeld, Indiana State Library:   Indiana Memory: Your Gateway to the History and Culture of Indiana
  • Mellisica Flippen, Marion County Superior Court and Dana L. Luetzelschwab, Heartland Pro Bono Council: E-Access for the Unrepresented Civil Litigant
  • Davita Vance Cooks, U.S. Government Publishing Office: Transformation of GPO as a 21st Century Publisher
  • Perry Hammock, Indiana Bicentennial Commission: Indiana’s 2016 Bicentennial:   How you and your Library can be Part of the Excitement
  • Jennifer Morgan and Michelle Trumbo, Law Library. Indiana University Maurer School of Law: Gov Docs 101: The Judicial Branch (finding case opinions, dockets, court records, and briefs)
  • Jane Kirtley, Silha Center for the Study of Media Ethics and Law, School of Journalism and Mass Communication, University of Minnesota Law School: The Digital Paradox: Practical Obscurity, the Right to be Forgotten, and Other Threats to Access to Government Information
  • Andrew Weber, Law Library of Congress:   Exploring
  • Carol Rogers, Indiana Business Research Center: A Working Update on Indiana Data.

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For more information and to register for GID15, please visit the Government Information Day page. We look forward to seeing you!

GID15 is Thursday, May 7th 9:00a.m.-5:00p.m

This blog post was written by Kimberly Brown-Harden, Federal Documents Coordinator, Indiana State Library. For more information, contact the Reference & Government Services desk at 317-232-3678, or go to


Why Are We Doing This Anyway?! – The Public Library Annual Report

Every January, Indiana public library directors (or their unlucky designees!) let out a collective sigh as they complete the Indiana public libraries annual report. The survey is lengthy, containing between 600-800 questions (depending on the size of the library), and takes a great deal of time and preparation to complete. However, once the answers are submitted, little is thought about it until it rolls around again the following year. We’d like to share several examples of how the information collected through the report is used the following year and beyond:

Statistics – The resulting Public Library statistics (including the new 2014 statistics) provide data that staff, trustees, and researchers can use to evaluate libraries and make informed decisions. The stats can be used for local or statewide comparisons, or even to compare libraries of similar size/populations (e.g. What’s the average Director salary at Class B libraries? How much are the other libraries in my county circulating?). Our website contains data for the past 20 years.

National Public Libraries Survey – One hundred questions on the survey feed directly to the Public Libraries in the United States Survey. This annual survey gleans information from 9,000 library systems nationwide about their staffing, collections, circulation, revenue and expenditures. The resulting data is used by researchers, journalists, the public, and policymakers at the federal, state, and local levels.

Standards – One of the primary uses for the survey in Indiana is to evaluate Indiana Public Library Standards For example, does the library have enough computers available for the public? Is the library open for a sufficient number of hours? Are they hosting enough programs throughout the year? After this review, Statewide Services staff follow up with the ‘out of standards’ libraries and offer assistance, with the goal of ensuring Hoosiers have sufficient access to library services wherever they live in the state.

Planning – The statistics can be helpful for projections and planning, for example, in budgeting, technology planning, strategic planning, grant writing, or planned expansions. Statistics can help determine the costs of operating per capita, and help libraries to establish their non-resident fees. The statistics are also a great way of finding out what other libraries are up to. For example, in 2014, we asked libraries to report if they have adopted any non-traditional classification systems, or if they have a makerspace.

Directories – The Annual Reports are used to compile and maintain the Public Library Directory, trustee directories, branch directories, Friends and Foundation directories, and interlibrary loan staff directories.

Historical research – Since the Annual Report has been collected for a century, there are decades of data and stories to be told by the old surveys. They list former library locations, expenditures, collection sizes, librarian and trustee names, and more. Through the old reports, you can follow a library as it evolves from its inception, to their Carnegie building, and possibly on to an entire municipal system.

 Indy PL 1914 AR preview1914 Indianapolis Public Library Annual Report

If you have an idea for a question that should be included in next year’s Annual Report, or if you are interested in serving on the advisory committee, please contact me at I’d also love to hear stories of how you were able to put the stats to use!

This blog post was written by Jen Clifton, Public Library and LSTA Consultant, Indiana State Library. For more information, contact the Library Development Office at (800) 451-6028 or visit our webpage at