Indiana Roundtable Discussion Groups for Library Staff
Library roundtables have been going on for many years throughout Indiana. Traditionally, library roundtables are discussion groups that meet in person. Members of these groups are comprised of library staff with similar jobs. If you have a question about roundtables, you can contact your regional coordinator or children’s coordinator and they can connect you with a group.
Library Education Units (LEUs) may be earned by attending roundtable discussions (roundtable LEU certificates do not count for those applying for temporary certification). If your library job is classified to earn LEUs, page 12 of the Indiana State Library Certification Manual for Public Library Professionals spells out the parameters:
- 1 LEU per roundtable attended
- CAPPED: Earn up to 10 LEUs per 5-year certificate period attending professional roundtable meetings.
- Professional roundtables do not require prior LEU approval from the Indiana State Library.
- The host library shall create and award LEU certificates for all attending library professionals
- Note: Only individuals holding a 5-year certificate are eligible to count LEUs from professional roundtable meetings.
Benefits of library roundtables
- Great way to network with your professional peers
- Effective for discussing ideas, problems, plans, and brainstorming
- An extra bonus of library roundtables are visiting other libraries. This is a wonderful opportunity to see how other libraries are organized – you can get awesome ideas to take back to your library.
Who can attend a library roundtable?
Pretty much anyone working in a library can attend a library roundtable. Just be sure to check with your department head or director first to make sure that your current job could benefit from attending and it works with staffing considerations. There are established roundtable groups all over the state of Indiana.
What if I’m not able to leave my library to attend a roundtable?
Many library roundtable groups have been meeting virtually using networking software such as Zoom, GoTo Meeting, Google Meeting or Microsoft Teams. Some networking software is free (with time restrictions) and others are subscription based. Equipment recommended for these are a device with a camera, microphone, keyboard, and speaker. The camera and microphone are not entirely necessary. But essentials are a keyboard, to be able to participate in chat and a speaker, to hear what others are saying. Whatever virtual networking software you have access to, you should be able to use them on a tablet, laptop, or smartphone. Along with your discussion, maybe think about adding a virtual tour of your library.
Interested in hosting a round table?
If you’d like to start or join a roundtable that doesn’t already exist, you can contact your regional coordinator or children’s coordinator from ISL’s Professional Development Office. They will assist you with getting a roundtable started.
- Being a meeting leader does not require a lot of time, and ISL staff are here to assist with organizing and publicizing the first meeting. Roundtables are usually a collective effort with everyone contributing. Often, attendees take turns hosting.
- Your primary responsibilities would include:
- Setting the first meeting date
- Setting up the meeting in your meeting software
- Setting a general topic of discussion for the first meeting
Articles about Roundtables
- How to Run a Successful Roundtable Discussion
- The Roundtable discussion: What, When Why
- 13 Tips for Planning and Hosting Successful Roundtables
Updated 6-9-2020 PDOby