The Future of Libraries: The Importance of Visual Learning

By Olivia Butze, PR Associate

According to a 2016 study, 22% of individuals did not know whether or not their library offered e-books and digital audio books, while 49% were unsure if it provided online certification programs. Surprising numbers, especially considering even newer library services, such as VR, AI, and big data.

When I was little, I loved to look upwards when in a library, craning my neck as far back as it would go, to stare at the books on the top shelf. In college, I looked forward to studying in the library, choosing the table that was immersed in the shelves. My social media feeds are filled with snapshots of books in libraries; from bookshelves in Portugal, to a leave-a-book-take-a-book mini-fridge bookstand in the outskirts of Los Angeles. I love seeing how these spaces differ and relate across the globe. And some of my favorite movies (e.g. Beauty and the Beast) possess that coveted ranking because of their above-and-beyond library scenes.

Maybe a decade ago this singular correlation between libraries and books was legitimate, but as we enter 2019, libraries now contain so much more. Because of librarians, they are goldmines of knowledge, information waiting to be found on bookshelves, in online databases, and within technology platforms. Information consumption and access is a continuously modernizing field, and with the help of librarians, is constantly adapting in groundbreaking ways.

At a 2018 American Library Association meeting, SAGE hosted in-booth presentations on the future of libraries, particularly how SAGE continues to address the modernization of this field. Janet Salmons, SAGE author and recognized research methods scholar, spoke on a librarian’s need to help bridge the gap between what the student knows and where they have to go, stressing the importance of using video in these learning moments.

Michael Carmichael, senior publisher of video at SAGE, shared the results of the company’s whitepaper “Assessing the Impact of Educational Video on Student Engagement, Critical Thinking, and Learning: The Current State of Play,” featuring original research.

SAGE is devoted to help librarians help their patrons in new ways and is excited to continue this mission in 2019. And maybe if we are lucky, 100% of individuals in the coming years will be aware of the plethora of technology services their local library provides.

As the PR Associate at SAGE Publishing, Olivia Butze helps manage the creation and dissemination of research news and corporate announcements to the media and other stakeholders. With a background in writing, Olivia takes pride in communicating to others, whether through social media, press releases, or blog posts. When she isn’t busy typing away, you can find her reading, hiking, or baking with a lot of chocolate.

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