Making Children Count

Output Measures for Public LibraryOutput Measures for Public Library Service to Children: A Manual of Standardized Procedures

I love me some output measures! Mary and I wrote the book on making stuff count. (Feel free to pony up $80 and buy a copy. The second edition is still available. It’ll change your life.)

But I digress.

This was a really useful book in its day! It suggests all kinds of things to count, but more importantly why you would want to count them and what kinds of decisions can be made with the data. There are blank forms in the back to set you on your way toward counting things. ┬áBe still my heart, it’s like library p0rn! Picture book fill rates? Tabulating, interpreting, and using the results? Summer reading program surveys? Yes, yes, and YES!!

And yet, it has really dated photography and not nearly enough (if any??) mention of the use of technology in gathering data and reporting statistics. (Excel, anyone?) An update is sorely needed. Oooh, maybe Mary and I should seize the opportunity and expand our data-counting empire!

Happy National Library Week everyone!



Page 2 of Contents

Boy on computer

Libraries with multiple outlets




  1. Actually, some of the definitions are still used for the annual national Public Library Statistics data collection. Those stats are collected by the state library administrative agency in each state. How do I know? I’m the one who collects them for my state!

  2. I would buy the Mary and Holly updated version! Well, I’d lobby for our library to buy it for the professional collection, anyway. I’m a librarian; I’m not made of money!

  3. This came out the year I graduated from Library School and became a children’s librarian. Great memories, but definitely time to update to something that was published this century.

Comments are closed.