Wanted: makerspaces for academic libraries…(module 9)

11Nov13

I have had this one in draft for a while as I was just stuck on makerspaces, and not sure why.

And then it came to me….I think I am caught in this space where I just can’t see academic libraries and makerspaces in the same sentence…and that is bad!

There is no reason why academic libraries can’t be in makerspaces – shouldn’t creation space be hand in hand with learning spaces, as Michael said in his lecture?

I think I am suffering from trying to think of something new and differences in the whole makerspaces…maybe I just need to relax a bit and think things through a little.

I do like what Bond Uni and UTS are doing with Instagram – and that’s all about creating and engaging – so perhaps I need to look more at these types of spaces?

Bond Library http://instagram.com/bondlibrary#

UTS Library http://instagram.com/utslibrary#

AND…look further afield…and not just at Australian libraries?

I can’t help reading about makerspaces and thinking about 23Things – as I think they are related…PLAY! Wherever and however that is…but giving opportunity for play. I think some of the examples of makerspaces, such as the Digital Media Lab in Skokie Public Library are just amazing!

Academic libraries seem to be doing the learning spaces really well these days…but I think we are a little passive in the playing, making spaces – and would love to see more examples shared in this area.

I took the photo below in Canberra earlier this year at the 2013 Enlighten Festival. This is a great nightly festival where architectural projections are beamed onto some of Canberra’s (and Australia) iconic buildings. This photo is called – “quiet. don’t you know this is a library?”

"quiet - don't you know this is a library?"

“quiet – don’t you know this is a library?”

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9 Responses to “Wanted: makerspaces for academic libraries…(module 9)”

  1. 1 Cath Sheard

    I struggled with makerspaces too and my initial post was a grumpy “I don’t like this” — then I got myself together and realised I needed to slow down and think things through, just as you have. For me, I think it’s not so much about creating a makerspace in our very small community, as about collaborating with others to create opportunities.
    Good luck with incorporating more play into your workspace.

    • 2 Kate Bunker

      Cath- thanks you for your sense and insight! (also secretly glad that otheres struggled wiht this one)

  2. 3 Sally Pewhairangi

    Yesterday I read this article (pdf) from Brian Mathews on rethinking the model of academic libraries and he flipped my thinking of academic libraries and makerspaces (or production centres at least).

    “reflect on totality: the lifecycle of assignments. Printing is just one part of a much larger process. What other supplemental artifacts might students need to produce? One faculty member shared a compelling vision with me in which his students would develop a short film and design the associated promotional materials including print and digital art.11 He took it a step further and expressed interest in their access to a 3D printer to create action figures or similar objects as part of the publicity package. This isn’t a service that we currently provide, but perhaps we should.
    As the curriculum evolves, students and faculty will
    have new demands and look for services to hire in
    order to accomplish related tasks. We could end up in
    a marginalized role as a printer/scanner/copier service
    provider, or we could seek additional opportunities to
    embed the library as a solutions provider and knowledge
    production partner…”

  3. 6 Oregon Librarian

    Kate,
    I so agree! Academic libraries do traditional learning very well. The idea of adding play to academia is not always an easy sell, but the aspect of creativity is central to learning, especially in this, the “screen age” where there is so much accessible to play with. I like the idea of a tech tools play day or a create graphics day or…?

    • 7 Kate Bunker

      thanks Jessie for your comments – it should be a better fit, especially when you think of the great research that comes out of unis!! I love your suggestions!! thanks

  4. 8 Gayle Jessop

    I don’t know much about maker spaces and academic libraries, but I remembered something about a Canadian university, humanities, and a maker “space”. I think this is the one that I read about a few months ago. Interesting intersection of disciplines: http://maker.uvic.ca/about/


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