Once Upon a Time in the Academic Library: Storytelling Skills for Librarians

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It could be argued that to tell stories is to be human. Storytelling evolved alongside us to provide entertainment via literature, plays, and visual arts. It helps shape society through parables, moral tales, and religion. Storytelling plays a role in business, law, medicine, and education in modern society.
Academic librarians can apply storytelling in the same way that teachers, entertainers, lawyers, and businesspeople have done for centuries, as education within information literacy instruction and as communication in the areas of reference, outreach, management, assessment, and more. Once Upon a Time in the Academic Library explores applications of storytelling across academic librarianship in three sections:

  • The Information Literacy Classroom
  • The Stacks
  • Physical and Virtual Library Spaces

A thorough introduction discusses the historical and theoretical roots of storytelling, as well as the mechanics and social justice applications. Chapter authors demonstrate using storytelling to share diverse viewpoints that connect with their users, and each chapter contains practical examples of how storytelling can be used within the library and cultural considerations for the audience. The first section focuses on storytelling as a pedagogical tool; the others include examples of how storytelling has been used as a communication method in sharing and developing collections, at service points, and in online spaces. Once Upon a Time in the Academic Library can provide ideas and inspiration for incorporating storytelling into your teaching and communication, and inspire you to invent new ways of using it in your work.

Published: 2022
Publisher: ACRL
Pages: 166
Sku: 9780838938607

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