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Library Student Resource Group

Notes May 30 2008

Present: Katie Jones, Dan Kimerling, Bridget Madden, Monica Mercado, Fran Spaltro
Judi Nadler, Meghan Hammond, Rachel Rosenberg, Sem Sutter, Jim Vaughan, John Kimbrough

Library Orientation and Workshops

Rebecca provided an overview of the Library workshops and orientation programs. Most such programs happen at the beginning of Fall quarter. At Regenstein, College orientation programs (e.g., "Surviving the Reg") focus on library basics For graduate students, a bibliographer usually meets with students in a particular department for a deeper look at Library resources in that subject.

LSRG members thought graduate students were fairly well served by orientation, although orientations for some interdisciplinary programs (e.g. MAPSS or CIR) were too general to be extremely helpful.

Undergrads, however, seem very reluctant to ask for help from a librarian. College students often find physical searching (bookstacks work) difficult, because they are used to everything being easily online and downloadable, and their Core classes generally don't require much research. Meanwhile, faculty and instructors don't realize that undergraduates struggle with basic library tasks.

Instructors also don't know about workshops, or that librarians are willing to give presentations to classes. Is there some way to let teaching staff know about upcoming workshops? Perhaps notices to CAPS, CTL, Deans, etc. or a flyer sent to secretaries/departmental admins that they can post in their departments? Send emails to department listservs?

The categories on the website don't often reflect how students do research. It's not intuitive what's under Collections. Maybe next year do a "Library feature/service of the month" -- I didn't know students could schedule an appointment with a librarian.

Being able to IM a reference librarian is helpful. Can we publicize this service more? Put it on the front page? Put Ask a Librarian on top? The way it is now, Ask a Librarian appears as an option of last resort)

College students have changed how they want information. Students may need assistance at late hours or on Sunday, when special collections or other service points aren't open.

Facebook is probably the best way to reach undergraduates. Build a fan page for the Library?

Bringing classes into the library is very important. Art history courses often have Nancy Spiegel come in, or take a "field trip" to SCRC or the library. It makes it much easier to visit the library later or ask a librarian questions.
(The Library is repurposing spaces so they are appropriate for instruction - see JRL 207, JRL 523, and the Kathleen Zar Room in Crerar)

Communication about Library matters

How can the Library publicize services and changes?

Many LSRG members do email info out to departmental listservs or student liaisons. But it would be good to have more formal communication from the Library, although not another newsletter.

Could Library publications, such as LIBRA, be delivered electronically? Rachel replied that ideally we would like to deliver Library publications via both avenues.

Mansueto Library Communication

The Library would like to communicate questions and answers regarding the new Mansueto Library: everything from design questions to construction issues. How can we get the word out?

Provisionally, the Library is thinking of a "This month's work" link on the Mansueto website. We'll also have a "Mansueto News" link on the main page, probably under New Acquisitions. There will also be physical signage in Regenstein. The LSRG suggested that the physical signs have pointers to the website, so people know to check the website in future. Also include the areas affected, so people know which areas to avoid.

Other topics

Some of the Sustainability Council members are interested in knowing more about recycling in the Library. (Does the material in the recycling bins really gets recycled?)