Social Library Issues,  work in progress

Build a Community for Learning

According to “What is a Community of Practice and How Can We Support It?” technology adoption, knowledge management, and learning have shifted from a cognitive view of learning to a more relational, situated view. The cognitive view of learning focuses on the individual and the representations in their head, assuming that learning is a property of the individual. The situated view, on the other hand, emphasizes the importance of place and the interaction that creates opportunties for learning.

Situated in our libraries, learning is a social process that occurs through interaction and collaboration among individuals. We reject the notion that learning is a one-way process in which knowledge is transmitted only in the classroom, and instead we view the library as a dynamic and ongoing place of knowledge creation and sharing.

Learning Spaces

Aaron Cohen Asssociates, LTD library consutlant research has shown that learning is not just about what goes on inside an individual’s head, but also about how individuals interact with one another in the library. It is a successful library environment that increases sharing in the community – digitally and physically. See Special Library Collections Return on Investment Discussion.

Over the years, our work emphasized the importance of understanding how learning takes place in libraries (academic, corporate, public, research, medical, law, archives, etc.). We studied the library spaces – we developed programs that define the net assignable square footage. These are calcuations that define the interior space requirements of the library. We studied how students and faculty use technology to support learning and how it affects library facility planning.

Social and Cultural Factors

Today, we need to consider the importance of social and cultural factors that influence library design, technology adoption, knowledge management, and learning. The idea that innovation and learning can occur through a traditional approach, where experts or researchers lecture and transmit it to learners, is being contradicted by recent library facility planning. Our programming and design work is focused on learning and innovation through the provision of meeting rooms, collaboration hubs and small spaces to work on projects.

Libraries and Collaboration

Our library programming emphasizes the importance of understanding the social and cultural factors that influence the creation and dissemination of knowledge, such as the norms and practices of each community or organization we study. Our work highlights the importance of libraries in the social context. It is a place in which knowledge is created and shared. This approach helps us understand the social dynamics that allow for the emergence of innovative knowledge, and how it can be sustained and spread.

Communities of Practice CoP

Our library programming approach increases space allocations for shared learning and collaboration. These are spaces to engage in problem-solving and experimentation. Additionally, students are not passive recipients of knowledge but active participants in the process of creating and applying. Our programing is more in line with the changing needs and expectations of workforce development, and the increasing importance of innovation and creativity in today’s economy.

What is a CoP

Communities of practice are produced and sustained through a number of key processes. Some of the most important of these include:

Joint enterprise: Communities of practice are formed around a shared goal or purpose. Members come together to achieve something that is important to them.

Mutual engagement: Members of a community of practice engage in regular interactions with one another. They share information, ideas, and perspectives, and collaborate on projects and activities.

Shared repertoire: Communities of practice develop a shared set of tools, practices, and resources that they use to achieve their joint enterprise.

Identity: Communities of practice create a sense of belonging and identity for its members. Members identify themselves as part of the group and develop a sense of belonging.

Leadership: Communities of practice often have leaders who help to guide and shape the group. They may be formal leaders, or they may be respected members who informally take on leadership roles.

Evolution: Communities of practice are dynamic, and as the context and needs of the members change, the community evolves to reflect these changes.

Boundaries: Communities of practice have boundaries that define who is included and who is not. These boundaries help to create a sense of cohesiveness and shared identity among members.

Need to Improve Your Library – Aaron Cohen Asssociates, LTD library consutlant research