Libraries are portals to all of the world’s knowledge. And librarians make sure that knowledge continues to be recorded and saved for the future, even as information-storage devices and formats change. The school library, and the librarians that work within them are a wonderful, and sometimes overlooked resource for educational technology support, providing invaluable help and knowledge for teachers and students.
Library Resources and Their Role in Education
Educational efforts over several years have seen the positive involvement of libraries in education by offering their referral services, information and teaching resources. Individual tutoring programs and educational classes, besides their outreach to specific people’s groups with educational handicaps taken up now by libraries, alludes to their active and enhanced involvement in education. Distribution of resource materials to institutions, including hospitals, prisons, homes for the disabled and aged, rehabilitation centers and groups with education-related problems and adolescents involved in crime, unemployment and the like, makes a visible impact on their education.
The goal of information literacy is access to the right learning resources, which includes a variety of technologies; in fact, such technologies as microfilm were one of the first pieces of technology people had access to in their local library. When computers were first put in schools, the school library was often the first place they would go, and the librarian would help teach students and teachers how to actually use them. Today, libraries continue to serve as points for the public’s first exposure to new technologies. The traditional domain of a librarian—information literacy—is more closely linked to educational technology than we might imagine.
library spaces have been transformed into physical and virtual “learning commons” in order to support student inquiry and collaboration both during and outside of the school day. They included makerspaces that have been created to provide students with hands-on, interest-driven, collaborative learning opportunities that socialize learning and design.
Analyzing the role of a 21st-century library from the perspectives of its chief librarian, and its efforts in education and research with a longstanding obligation to motivate improvement and preserve records of the development is part of the evolution process. The developments of the not too recent past, after the advent of IT, have pushed the way we communicate, learn and work, into one with a revolutionary pace. New business infrastructures, healthcare, academic research, economic development and social interaction have sprung from the arrival of networking, data storage, new innovative software and microprocessors, thus providing for direct access to all information, eliminating the legendary intermediary, and thus gaining on space and time. We are fast progressing into the realm of visual learning. Digital technology is changing the way we read. Digital libraries with its perception on visualization are the need of the hour for schools, colleges, universities and even for higher education. Textbooks, audio lessons, videos and tutorials in digital formats can radically transform the educational system in both rural and suburban areas, by leaps and bounds. Advanced digital technologies throw open the door for educators to reinvent visual learning. Educators can now integrate visual education with digital learning by a useful merger of the teaching process with image technologies.
With the advent and advancement of the E-libraries, education is set to become even more accessible resourceful and quality oriented to students using computers or tablets.
Article by: Busayo Tomoh