ALA Annual 2016 GameRT Conference Program

How Design Thinking is helping the library better understand the needs of gamers by Mariella Colon and Kristen Edson, both Librarians at Chicago Public Library.

Using the Design Thinking process, staff at the Chicago Public Library have been studying the gamer community of Chicago to better understand their unique needs. This had led to more customized programs and services that are proving to be popular with a millennial audience. Spending more time understanding the target audience saves staff from investing time and energy in a program that might not resonate with gamers.

NYPLarcade: Teaching Games at New York Public Library by Thomas Knowlton, Outreach Librarian at New York Public Library

Created in 2012, NYPLarcade started as a forum for adult patrons to play and discuss independent, experimental, and thought-provoking games at the New York Public Library. It has since expanded to include game discussions for teens and tweens, as well as Twine coding workshops for all ages. The project was the recent recipient of a 2015 NYPL Innovation Award grant and has been featured on Polygon, Gamasutra, ALA’s, and NPR. This presentation will highlight concrete examples of games used in past library programs, suggest best practices for presenting video games in a library setting, and provide a brief introduction to the free, open-source tool Twine.

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