IOPN to Launch Textbook Series with Titles by Melissa Wong, Laura Saunders, and Martin Wolske

The Illinois Open Publishing Network is excited to announce the upcoming release of two open access textbooks, Instruction in Libraries and Information Centers: An Introduction by Laura Saunders and Melissa A. Wong and A Person-Centered Guide to Demystifying Technology by Martin Wolske. These textbooks represent the first in the Windsor & Downs Press series OPN Textbooks, which seeks to publish high-quality open access textbooks for higher education across the disciplines.  

Saunders and Wong’s Instruction in Libraries and Information Centers offers a comprehensive introduction to instruction in all types of library and information settings. Designed to support library instruction courses, the book offers selected resources and best practices which serve professionals both new and experienced. 

“Libraries can provide people with access to vital information through carefully selected and organized collections, but access is only a first step. People also need the knowledge and skills to find, evaluate, and use that information, a set of competencies commonly referred to as information literacy.”—Instruction in Libraries and Information Centers, “Introduction”

With an emphasis on critical pedagogy and inclusive instruction, the textbook offers an accessible introduction to learning theories and approaches, grounded in practical strategies. Each chapter includes practical examples, activities, and templates to aid readers in developing their own practice and materials, and appendices include sample lesson plans on a variety of topics and situated in different settings. 

Laura Saunders is an Associate Professor at Simmons University School of Library and Information Science where she teaches courses in reference and information services, user instruction, services to diverse users, intellectual freedom and censorship and academic Libraries. Melissa Wong is an instructor at the School of Information Sciences at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign where she teaches courses in instruction, e-learning, higher education, and reference.

Instruction in Libraries and Information Centers will be published open access in online and PDF options. A print-on-demand version will also be available for purchase.

book coverWolske’s A Person-Centered Guide to Demystifying Technology considers how [re]design and use of digital technologies can be used in support of people’s valued “beings and doings.” The text is a complement to the sociotechnical information systems course for information professionals with the goals that students gain a working understanding of physical and software layers of computers and networks alongside more nuanced and critical approaches to the sociotechnical artifacts used in our professional lives. 

“Digital technologies old and new are not objects that can be packed inside a box. They are a seamless, indivisible combination of people, organizations, policies, economies, histories, cultures, knowledge, and material things that are continuously shaped and reshaped. Every one of us innovates-in-use our everyday technologies, we just don’t always know it.” —A Person-Centered Guide to Demystifying Technology, “Preface”

The textbook strives to make use of a dialogical, problem-posing educational framework, combining active hands-on innovation with reflection as a means to advance community agency in appropriating technology to best serve diverse communities. 

Martin Wolske is an Assistant Professor at the iSchool at UIUC and teaches courses on community informatics, community engagement, and network information systems. 

A Person-Centered Guide to Demystifying Technology will be published open access in online and PDF options.

Both of these titles will be published by Windsor & Downs Press in early August 2020.