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American Library Association

an organization founded in 1876 for libraries, librarians, library trustees, and other people interested in libraries

The ALA works closely with organizations in the fields of education, recreation, and public service to improve the quality and effectiveness of libraries, to make libraries accessible to all people, to improve professional standards of libraries and librarians, and to promote the distribution of books and other library materials without censorship.

The ALA urged passage of the Library Services Act of 1956, which was designed to aid the development of public libraries in rural areas. In 1964, the act was amended and became known as the Library Services and Construction Act. This and later amendments authorized aid to both urban and rural libraries. After a new copyright law was enacted in 1976, the association helped librarians and library users understand the law's provisions.

The ALA's official bulletin, American Libraries, is published 11 times a year. Other periodicals include Booklist, Choice, College and Research Libraries, Library Resources and Technical Serices, and School Media Quarterly.

The ALA presents several awards and citations for outstanding achievements in librarianship and related fields. Its Children's Services Division awards the Caldecott and Newbery medals for children's books.

The American Library Association is headquartered in Chicago. Its website is www.ala.org.


Caldecott Medal
Newbery Medal

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This page was last updated on 03/19/2016.

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