TSLAC Releases New Survey, Texas Public Libraries: Serving Communities to Enhance Digital Literacy

Hands typing on laptop keyboard with the text, TSLAC Releases New Survey Texas Public Libraries: Serving Communities to Enhance Digital Literacy. Logos for the IC2 Institute and TSLAC are positioned on the right.

We are pleased to announce the release of a new report, “Texas Public Libraries: Serving Communities to Enhance Digital Literacy.”

Expanding the ability of individuals to access and use information and communication technologies is increasingly crucial for Texas citizens, communities, and economic success. This digital capacity is achieved through building digital literacy skills; providing access to affordable, robust Internet services; having quality technical support, as well as access to hardware and software; and making available services that augment digital connectivity.

The report documents the many ways Texas public libraries are providing both formal and informal digital literacy training to their communities. According to the findings, these efforts account for approximately $70 to $90 million in statewide investment by the state’s libraries.

Researchers conducted in-depth interviews with more than 300 librarians representing communities of all sizes. The full findings of the survey reflect policy and administrative actions that may be beneficial in addressing critical issues confronting Texas library staff who want to improve their patrons’ digital literacy knowledge and skills. Data from interviews and surveys identified gaps and challenges that exist, and those findings are the foundation for the recommendations of the survey.

The following are some of the recommendations included in the report that focus on potential action areas at the state and local level:

  • Establish a grant program related to digital literacy in Texas libraries
  • Foster mentoring and peer support for small libraries
  • Provide more programmatic attention to older adults/seniors
  • Create local public library partnerships

Read more and access the full report: https://www.tsl.texas.gov/digitalsurvey2023

Created through a partnership with IC2 Institute at The University of Texas at Austin and made possible by support of the Institute of Museum and Library Services, with funds from the American Rescue Plan Act to support digital access and literacy in communities throughout the state.

Attending the Texas Library Association’s Annual Conference? Join us on Friday, April 21st at our session entitled Digital Literacy and Texas Public Libraries to learn about the study’s findings and case studies. This discussion will also cover funding opportunities, new initiatives, and give partners and librarians the chance to share ideas.

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