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Karen Brown is a professor at Dominican University (River Forest, Illinois) in the School of Information Studies and teaches in the areas of assessment, collection management, foundations of the profession, and literacy and learning. She is the recipient of the University's 2002 Follett Excellence in Teaching Award and the 2005 Library Administration and Management Association's Outstanding Researchers Award (with Kate Marek). She has held positions focusing on library administration, collection development, reference, and instruction at the University of Wisconsin, University of Maryland, Columbia University, and Bard College. She holds a PhD in media studies from New York University and master's degrees in library science and adult education from the University of Wisconsin.

Ph.D. Communication Arts (Media Ecology), New York University, 1992
M.S. Continuing, Adult, and Vocational Education, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1981
M.A. Library Science, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1977
B.A. Communication Arts, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1976
Research Interests

Assessment and evidence-based planning, Professional development practices
Media ecology

Selected Publications

Brown., K. (2021). Count on Libraries: Promoting a Fair, Accurate, and Complete 2020 Census Count. Library and Book Trade Almanac. Information Today.

Ackerman, E. & Brown, K. (1996-2023). Keeping Up With . . . 2020 Census. Association of College and Research Libraries (American Library Association). Retrieved from

Verbeke, M., Falk, J., Brown, K., Meier, D. (2019). A Study of Rural Librarian’s Self-Efficacy in Facilitating and Developing Adult Science Programs. The Library Quarterly, 89(2). The University of Chicago Press Journals. Retrieved from

Brown, K., Gareis, K., Maloney, M., & Rockmore, D. (2019). From Science Program Conveners to Science Program Developers: An Online Professional Development Program for Rural Librarians. International Journal of Innovations in Online Education, 3(1). 

Johnson, K. (2019). Shaping the Campus Conversation on Student Learning and Experience: Activating the Results of Assessment in Action. Karen Brown, Debra Gilchrist, Sara Goek, Lisa Janicke Hinchliffe, Karen Malenfant, Chase Ollis, and Allison Payne, eds. Chicago: American Library Association, 2018. (ISBN 978-0-8389-8994-4). College & Research Libraries, 80(2), doi:  

Selected Presentations
Documenting and Communicating Library Impact with Campus Assessment Projects, keynote presentation, Annual Meeting of the Council of Chief Librarians, California Community Colleges, Sacramento, California, 2017
Team-based Assessment: Collaborating for a Campus Message about Student Learning, presentation with Lisa Janicke Hinchliffe, American Association of State Colleges and Universities, Leading Change, Academic Affairs Summer Meeting, Denver, Colorado, 2016
Building Library Leadership with Team-Based Campus Assessment Projects, keynote presentation, Annual Meeting of the Academic Libraries of Indiana, Greencastle, 2016
Update on ACRL’s Value of Academic Libraries Initiative, joint presentation with Mary Ellen Davis, Lisa Hinchliffe, and Megan Oakleaf, American Library Association Midwinter Meeting, Dallas. 2012.
Transforming Human Resources for the E-ssential Library, Library Administration and Management Association 2nd National Institute, The E-ssential Library: Creating and Sustaining the Leading Edge, institute speaker, Naples, Florida, 2002
Selected Conferences
Building Collective Capacity for Assessment and Advocacy: A Model for Academic Library Consortia (co-author with Anne Craig and Lisa Janicke Hinchliffe), Library Assessment Conference Proceedings, 2022
The Collective: Assessing a Statewide Training Program on Library Impact (co-author with Lisa Janicke Hinchcliffe), Library Assessment Conference Proceedings, 2021
Strengthening Community Engagement and Resilience Efforts in Climate Change: Public Library Program and Crisis Informatics Strategies (co-author with Christine Hagar), Conference of the International Society for Integrated Disaster Risk Management, 2017
Team-based Assessment: Collaborating for a Campus Message about Student Learning, presentation with Kara Malenfant, Association for the Assessment of Learning in Higher Education Annual Conference, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, 2016
Collaborating Across Campus Toward Cross-Cultural Communication, joint presentation with Kate Marek, Living the Future: Transforming Libraries Through Collaboration Conference, Tucson, Arizona, 2008
Awards and Grants
Library Administration and Management Association Outstanding Researchers for 2005 Award
American Library Association (received with Kate Marek), Chicago, Illinois, 2005
Follett Excellence in Teaching Award. Dominican University, River Forest, Illinois, 2002.


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