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Registration Now Open for Gaming Symposium

Submitted by Tom Peters on April 11, 2007 - 9:05pm

Librarians got game.  ALA TechSource, in collaboration with the Association of College & Research Libraries (ACRL), is proud to annouce that the first annual Gaming, Learning, and Libraries Symposium will be held on July 22-24, 2007 at the Chicago Marriott O'Hare, which is very accessible by planes, CTA trains, and automobiles.  Registration opened this week. 

Dutch board gameGaming and literacy experts James Paul Gee and Henry Jenkins will keynote the event by exploring how libraries fit into the intersection of gaming and the digital learning landscape, while guest speakers Eli Neiburger (author of the 2007 book "Gamers…in the Library?! The Why, What, and How of Videogame Tournaments for All Ages") and Syracuse Game Lab Director Scott Nicholson will kick off the discussions about why libraries do this. Gregory Trefry, a game designer from GameLab, will explore libraries and the concept of "big games," while social computing expert and gamer Liz Lawley will provide context and a broad view for the topics discussed. 

More than 25 sessions in three tracks will cover such wide-ranging topics as creating games for information literacy, implementing gaming programs, teaching kids how to make their own games, gaming for adults, digital downloads for gamers, online fiction games, and more. In addition, a track dedicated to Second Life will highlight how libraries are creating a presence in this virtual world and what they are gaining from it.

Antique game of draughtsWhether you're an experienced gamer who wants to start a program at your library or a newbie who is intrigued but has no idea where to start, this symposium is for you.  Programs for academic, public, and school librarians will make you think about gaming, learning, and libraries in new and different ways.  But of course, there will be open play time, scores of experts and implementers who can answer your questions, colleagues implementing innovative services, and at least a few topics that will most likely be new to you.

Comments (2)

Jimmy, I would counter that

Jimmy, I would counter that libraries are about much more than just books. Libraries aren't about movies, but some show them. Libraries aren't about crafts projects, but they host them, especially for children. Libraries aren't about tax forms, adult programming, computer classes, meeting rooms, and other things, but they still offer them. In fact, libraries offer a very wide range of services, many of which are based on the recreational and intellectual interests of our patrons, and gaming is one piece of that. If you're interested in learning more about this, I wrote the September/October 2006 issue of 'Library Technology Reports' on this subject, and ALA Editions is publishing a book by Eli Neiburger this summer called the Library?! Or, you can attend the conference or follow the blogging that will surely come out of it. It's a fascinating topic, and I hope you'll engage in the discussion.

Designer: I hope and trust

Designer: I hope and trust this conference will address (if not answer) this fundamental question, which I paraphrase thus: Why should libraries become involved in games, gaming, and gamers? What does gaming have to do with literacy?