California Academic and Research Libraries spacer image
California Academic and Research Libraries Banner
California Academic and Research Libraries
About Us
The Association
For Members
Southern California Instruction Librarians (SCIL)


SCIL Works 2024

Listen and Empower:
Enhancing Empathetic Communication in Library Instruction

Friday, February 2, 2024

Proposal Submission Form

Southern California Instruction Librarians (SCIL) will be hosting SCIL Works on Friday, February 2, 2024 as a remote half-day mini-conference. This annual mini-conference offers librarians the opportunity to share their best practices, innovative pedagogy, and creative solutions with colleagues. SCIL Works 2024 will focus on ways librarians have incorporated effective communication strategies such as active listening, empathetic instruction, and more, into library instruction.

Communication is key to effective library instruction. Everything from coordinating with course instructors, students, and peers, to the types of learning objects we create, depends on communication that engages all participants. Many of us do not come to library instruction with formal training in communication, education, or public speaking, and yet these and related skills are often required to effectively engage and empathize with our learners. We have had to learn, often through trial and error, how best to listen, when to say "yes, and...," how to say no, and other strategies that have helped us connect with students, staff, faculty, other library workers, and ourselves with kindness and compassion.

The SCIL Works annual mini-conference is your opportunity to share your interventions, both small and large, best practices, innovative pedagogy, creative solutions, successes, and failures in incorporating successful communication strategies into instruction and other related areas of librarianship.

Suggested topics may include but are not limited to:

  • How active listening makes you a better instructor
  • How empathy in library instruction has allowed you to connect with students
  • Successful peer collaborations in library instruction
  • Inclusive communication in libraries: How to serve diverse communities
  • Incorporating the ACRL Framework for Information Literacy into communication with students, course instructors, and colleagues.
  • Digital literacy instruction: How to communicate and engage in the digital age
  • Incorporating accessibility into instruction, including learning objectives, learning objects, and more
  • Technology tools that enhance library instruction and communication
  • Measuring the impact or effectiveness of changes in communication strategies on library instruction and student learning outcomes
  • Structures or methodologies for giving and receiving feedback related to instruction
  • Establishing spaces for empathetic instruction and/or communication
  • Adapting communication strategies to changes in modalities and mediums of instruction (such as in-person, online, hybrid, synchronous, asynchronous, and others)
  • Fostering communication and active learning through partner/group work

We are accepting proposals for presentations in one of two formats:

  • Presentation: A 20-minute presentation where the presenter shares their research or an effective program or practice with participants, with an additional 5 minutes for Q&A.
  • Lightning Round: A live, 5-minute poster session or slide deck. This presentation could briefly describe a program or initiative, highlight an online tool or tutorial, exhibit an assessment process or instrument, or describe another intervention that fits within the theme.


Please complete the Proposal Submission Form by end of day, Sunday, December 3, 2023. SCIL Works 2024 welcomes presenters who identify as a member of a minoritized group or community so we can ensure our conference has broad representation. All submissions will be blind-reviewed by a panel. Presenters will be notified that their submissions have been accepted by December 15, 2023. If you have questions about submitting, please contact Michelle Brasseur, SCIL Chair at

You will be asked to include the following information in your submission.

  • Primary contact name, institution, title, phone number, email
  • Other presenters names (if any)
  • Title of presentation
  • Short description of the presentation (no more than 250 words)
  • One paragraph describing how this presentation addresses the theme of the program
  • One learning outcome for attendees

We appreciate your consideration and look forward to hearing from you!

under construction!

SCIL Website Updates

Good news! CARL is migrating their website to a new system, which should make it easier for members to access their account information. However in the meantime, we lost the ability to make timely updates to the SCIL website (which is a sub-site of the CARL website). Please watch the SCIL Listserv for the most up to date announcements.

SCIL Works Materials

Materials for SCIL Works 2023 are available on the archived page. Access the archived page, along with any past SCIL Works information through the SCIL Works landing page.

For information about past events, visit our Events page.

About SCIL

The Southern California Instruction Librarians (SCIL -- pronounced "skill") interest group is dedicated to providing professional development and discussion opportunities focused on information literacy and instruction-related activities for library professionals from all types of institutions.

CARL is committed to providing reasonable accommodations to people with disabilities at all CARL-sponsored events. Please indicate your special needs or dietary requirements when registering or RSVPing to events. Requests for special accommodations must be received at least two weeks prior to the event.

The Southern California Instruction Librarians (SCIL) is an interest group of the California Academic and Research Libraries Association (CARL), an independent chapter of the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL). The information on this website is wholly the responsibility of CARL and implies no endorsement by ACRL.



If you would like to be added to our general listserv, please sign up here. To join our SCIL Steering Committee listserv, sign up here.

  SCIL Logo
Upcoming Meetings

Join CARL now!

Website/Listserv Help
© Copyright 2009-2023 California Academic & Research Libraries Association. All Rights Reserved.