First-language reading and wellbeing

Group member: Jane Garner

In this project, Dr Jane Garner developed an understanding of the experience of own-language reading for linguistically isolated library users. She identified the reading practices of linguistically isolated readers, their awareness of non-English language collections in public libraries, and barriers to accessing these collections. This knowledge has the potential to improve practice in public libraries and has been funded by the State Library of New South Wales who are partners in this research.

The final report for this project can be accessed via the State Library of New South Wales website at:

I was able to present this research project in collaboration with the State Library of New South Wales at the ALIA National Conference in May, 2022, and will have an article published in the Journal of Intercultural Communication later in 2022.

Research Aim:

To understand the experiences of ‘first-language reading’ in non-English speaking background communities, and the contributions made by public libraries to these experiences.

Research Questions:

RQ1: What is the experience of first-language reading for non-English speaking background communities?

RQ2: From where are non-English speaking background communities accessing reading in their first languages?

RQ3: To what extent are non-English speaking background communities aware of public library resources in their first languages?

RQ4: What barriers exist that limit the use of first-language public library resources