Professional Journals Reviewed: Children and Libraries and Library Journal

Children and Libraries

Intended Audiences: Children’s Librarians, School Librarians, Educators

What does it publish?

ALSC news

President’s Message and Editor’s Notes

  • Cummins, J. (2013). The Gold Rush. Children and Libraries, 11(1), 3-5.
  • Verbeten, S. (2013). My Caledcott Moment in Belize. Children and Libraries, 11(1), 2.

Controversies and issues in children’s books:

  • Campbell, C. (2013). Caledcott 2.0?: Caledcott Titles in the Digital Age. Children and Libraries, 11(1), 50-51.
  • Hood, Y. (2013). An Inconvenient Truth: The Underground Railroad and Quilts in Children’s Picture Books. Children and Libraries, 11(2), 29-34.

 Author Interviews

  • Reilly-Sanders, E. (2013). The Producer of “Fun”: A Chat with the Whimsical Sandra Boynton. Children and Libraries, 11(2), 54-56.

 Awards and acceptance speeches:

  • Glass, N. (2013). Getting “The Call”: Caldecott Winners Remember that Moment. Children and Libraries, 11(1), 29-34.
  • Klassen, J. (2013). Caldecott Medal: The Read My Book!. Children and Libraries, 11(2), 10-12.
  • Verbeten, S. (2013). Small Details, Huge Impact: A Chat with Three-Time Caldecott Winner David

 Advice on Writing:

  • Bange, S., & Banta, G. (2013). Draw and Write What You Know: Robert McCloskey’s Ohio. Children and Libraries, 11(2), 44-46.

 Collection development, event planning, literacy challenges:

  • Moreillon, J. (2013). Building Bridges for Global Understanding: Cultural Literature Collection Development and Programming. Children and Libraries, 11(2), 35-38.
  • Stoltz, D. (2013). Every Child Ready to Read: Engaging Parents, Reenergizing Librarians . Children and Libraries, 11(2), 25-26.

Peer-reviewed? Why or why not important?

Yes, Children and Libraries is peer-reviewed.  I consider this to be important for this publication because the subject matter of many of the articles presented deals with issues in children’s literature, early literacy, and digital challenges.  Each of these articles contain information that needs to be accurate and properly articulated so the librarians and educators who read them can put them into action.  For example, the article “Every Child Ready to Read: Engaging Parents, Reenergizing Librarians” by Dorothy Stoltz presents information of the Every Child Ready to Read program, including the benefits of creative play in literacy development (2013, p. 25-26).  If a librarian or teacher were to put this into practice during their storytime or in their classroom, accurate information would be of the utmost importance.

Characteristics of particular interest in light of my own professional goals:

There was a great article on the struggle to provide digital versions of Caldecott Award winners to library patrons (Campbell, 2013, p. 50-51).  Considering my ultimate goal of becoming a Digital Services Coordinator, this type of article is exactly the type of information I need to begin thinking about providing comprehensive digital services to a library and the challenges I might face in the process.

Library Journal

Intended Audiences – All LIS professionals, including public, academic, and special, and school librarians

What does it publish?

Collection development trends and news:

  • Burgess, E., & Heilbrun, M. (2013). The Great War at 100. Library Journal, 138(18), 52-55.
  • Hoffert, B. (2013). Spring Fever Firsts. Library Journal, 138(5), 72-75.

 Job Trends in the Profession:

  • Casado, M., & Wallace, A. (2013). How to Survive and Thrive in your First Library Job. Library Journal, 138(18), 49-50.
  • Maatta, S. (2013). The Emerging Databrarian. Library Journal, 138(17), 26-33.


Technology News:

  • (2013). FCC urged to accelerate E-Rate goals. Library Journal, 138(17), 22.
  • (2013). Palo Alto Shares Data. Library Journal, 138(5), 22.

 Editorials and Commentaries

  • Berry, J. (2013). A Rebel Spring. Library Journal, 138(5), 9.
  • Kelley, M. (2013). Sounds of Copyright Reform. Library Journal, 138(5), 8.
  • Miller, R. (2013). Willing To Fail. Library Journal, 138(18), 8.

LIS  News

Annual appraisals of the LIS profession

  • Lance, K., & Lyons, R. (2013). America’s Star Libraries. Library Journal, 138(18), 30-41.
  • (2013). Movers and Shakers 2013. Library Journal, 138(5), 25-67.

 Book and Media Reviews

Publishing News


Peer-reviewed? Why or why not important?

No, Library Journal is not peer reviewed in the traditional sense.  LJ asks for submissions from members of the profession to make up a lot of their journal.  Proposals on articles can be sent to them where an editor will either approve or pass on the story.  Submission guidelines can be found on their website.

Characteristics of particular interest in light of my own professional goals:

Again, the tech side of the library profession is of particular interest to me.  LJ impressed me with their comprehensive coverage of the digital realm of LIS.  From articles covering the current state of publisher lawsuits and mergers to successful technology acquisitions by other libraries, LJ covers a lot of ground and places appropriate emphasis on how important these topics are to current LIS professionals. 

Important similarities between the two?

The range of topics covered in the two journals was very similar.  Both did a great job of touching on many different topics and not merely existing to review books or interview authors (though those were also included). 

Important differences between the two?

While it may seem obvious, I think that it is worth noting that the most important difference between the two is the intended audiences of each publication.  Children and Libraries is a publication that focuses on the intersection of youth and libraries.  While they do discuss larger topics such as technology and advocacy, they only do so if the topic directly relates to children.  Library Journal is not so discriminatory.  They cover many different topics that affect many different arenas within the LIS profession.  While one is not better than the other, I did have to dig pretty far into LJ to find an article that related to children and libraries, which seems like an oversight on their part considering how large a chunk of the profession is devoted to children.  This, however, could be because of the existence of their sister publication School Library Journal.

The editorials in each of the Library Journals that I read presented a unique opinion on a major issue in the LIS world that crosses the boundaries of specific specializations.  For example, one editorial examines the copyright reform that needs to occur to preserve sound recordings from prior to 1972.  These recordings are under a different set of laws than post-1972 recordings and as a result cannot be re-recorded in new formats for their preservation (Kelley, 2013, p. 8).  Another speaks to the increase of tech-based jobs in the LIS world and what that means for the future of the profession (Miller, 2013, p.8).

In contrast, the Children and Libraries Editor’s Notes are far more focused on the specific work of children’s librarians and children’s literature, covering issues such as controversial Caldecott choices (Cummins, 2013, p. 3-5) and anecdotes about trips to schools in need of donated books (Verbeten, 2013, p.2). 

Both of these publications offer insightful and well-articulated articles that LIS professionals would find useful in their work.  There were only two small concerns that I had with the publications.  The first is that Library Journal, though quite comprehensive in the subjects their articles cover, should be including more on the children’s aspect of LIS.  Two major divisions of the library world, school and public libraries, could benefit from increased attention by this publication, particularly in light of the Common Core Standards that are being instituted in most states that are directly affecting the work of school and public librarians.  The second concern I have is in the lack of tech-related information in Children and Libraries.  There was one article (mentioned above) that dealt with the issues of providing Caldecott winner books in digital form, but nothing else.  The digital divide is not a topic that only affects adults and as such should be given appropriate weight in the scholarly resources that children’s librarians look to for input. 

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