LibParlor Online Learning: An Open and Interactive Curriculum for LIS researchers

LibParlor Online Learning (LPOL)  will be a free, open-source online curriculum of learning modules with readings and activities that will build capacity for academic Library and Information Science (LIS) professionals to conduct and publish rigorous original research. New LIS professionals face challenges equally accessing knowledge, community, and finances when attempting to conduct the research necessary to inform their work or earn tenure. These barriers can lead to unpursued research questions, poorly designed research projects, or unpublished results.

With funding from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, LPOL aims to develop an open-source curriculum that will teach the foundational knowledge and specialized skills necessary for LIS professionals to conduct research within the field. We hope this work will democratize the often privileged information around research and publishing in an effort towards diversifying and improving LIS literature.

The Goals

  • Complete a needs assessment of academic librarians to identify their key areas of difficulty in conducting research.
  • Collaborate with LIS researcher-practitioners and MLIS instructors with specialized research experience to build a curriculum of open resources.
  • Create modules that include open access readings, reflective activities, and planning exercises that build to a fully developed research project proposal.
  • Seek feedback on completeness and efficacy of curriculum from stakeholders at conferences and through online platforms while intentionally soliciting perspectives from underrepresented communities.
  • Educate and empower interested LIS workers by democratizing privileged knowledge about LIS research in order to improve and diversify LIS literature.

Contact us!

Have ideas? Follow LibParlor for updates and opportunities to give feedback on the curriculum as it develops or email us directly at

The Team

Advisory Board

  • Erin Ackerman | Interim Assistant Director for Public Services/Social Sciences Librarian, College of New Jersey
  • Jason Clark | Lead for Research Informatics, Digital Initiatives Librarian, Montana State University
  • Dr. Rachel Fleming-May | Director of Graduate Studies, School of Information Sciences, University of Tennessee, Knoxville
  • Zara T. Wilkinson | Reference and Instruction Librarian, Rutgers University

Project Phases & Timeline

Phase 1 : September 2021 – December 2022 – Needs planning & assessment

  • Working with our community to identify the needs, challenges, and current gaps. We will be seeking feedback in a variety of ways and through various channels.

Phase 2 : January 2023 – January 2024 – Curriculum creation & assessment

  • Based on the needs identified in phase 1, we will work with experts to help build LPOL. Throughout this process, there will be opportunity to provide feedback and insight as it all comes together.

Phase 3 : January 2024 – October 2024 – Implementation, piloting, and outreach of curriculum 

  • Our time to put LPOL into the world. We’ll be seeking members of our community to pilot the curriculum and provide feedback we’ll use before launching LPOL to the field. 

Code of Conduct

All virtual and in-person work on this grant will also adhere to LibParlor’s existing Code of Conduct & Comment Policy.

LPOL Updates

This effort is funded by the Institute of Museum and Library Services, RE-250054-21