LibQUAL+ comments 2007: Library: Regenstein

Library: Regenstein

COMPLIMENTS
1. I use the Regenstein, Harper, and Crerar libraries. I find all three excellent under all respects.
2. library is very good, as is the Regenstein
3. Overal, I am pretty satisfied with the services provided by university libraries I often use, i.e, Reg and SSA
4. In general the Regenstein is the best thing about the University of Chicago, at that is no small compliment. On the whole, the concentration on building and maintaining a library for professional researchers is, to my mind, right and proper and I greatly appreciate the efforts that the Reg makes to put its limited resources into objects that are crucial to the accomplishment of serious scholarly aims and not into cosmetics.
5. I've been using the Regenstein for almost five years and I love it. The library staff has been incredibly kind and helpful to me over the years, and the collection of materials is astonishing.
6. The Regenstein is comfortable, but not too inviting from the outside. But that is okay, I love it anyway.
7. I have no complaints at all about Regenstein. I only feel guilty that I don't use it as much as I could--I've never been in to special collections, for instance, because the library provides a searchable online database of eighteenth-century sources. It's amazing!
8. I am still awed to find almost any book I want is in the Reg. It is still the best library in the country, if not the world (in my humble opinion).
9. The Reg is great. Thank you for all your work.
10. i kept going to the reg and being told to go to crear, but when i was there in the evenings, there didn't seem to be reference personnel available; we couldnt find good group space to work.
11. Thank you very much for this great library anyway.
12. Regenstein library is a fantastic place to conduct research,
13. I am continuously amazed at the collection, and am ALWAYS quite pleased with the polite and courteous service I receive from the people who work in the library. I always have a wonderful experience at the Reg.!
14. I think Regenstein is a good library, both in terms of its collections and the usability of those collections.
15. Love the Reg!
COMPLAINTS
16. I never find books I am looking for on their shelves. I have resorted to automatically asking for a book to be held for me, so that I can come in and pick it up. Re-shelving of books seems to be below par at the Reg.
17. One of the most annoying things about the Regenstein is that items are not shelved correctly. On quite a few occasions I have gone to pull a book that is supposed to be on the shelf and not found it. If I take the time to search the shelves around the shelf on which it should be, I often find it (among books on different subjects). I do not know whether this is due to staff shelving the books incorrectly or users re-shelving books.
18. It is always weird walking into Regestein and not being able to find a map anywhere
19. Reg is OK though I am disappointed they did away with displaying new acquisitions on a special bookshelf. Browsing is an important part of a library's function and this has been taken away at the Reg
20. i wish the reg stayed open later
21. Crerar is fantastic. So much easier to study there than at the Reg.
STAFF
22. Since arriving at Chicago in 2005, I have been consistently impressed and delighted by te service I've received at the Regenstein (and Harper. Crerar, Eckhart, and Law when I've used them)
23. Desk staff at Crerar and Reg very helpful and pleasant.
24. I have always found William Alspaugh in the East Asian Library and Lyonette Louis Jacques in the Law library to be very kind, knowledgable and helpful.
25. The folks that work in the Reg. are great!
26. One of the employees at the Reg is overly-friendly to students all the times, and it's kind of disturbing.
27. Librarians at Crerar are much more friendly and helpful than librarians at the Reg, as a general rule. I look forward to asking librarians questions at Crerar, but dread doing so (and avoid doing so) at the Reg. Many of the students staffing the circ desks at Crerar and the Reg are sullen at least, and sometimes openly rude. They often act as if helping patrons is a waste of their valuable web surfing time.
28. front desk staff at the reg tend to accomplish tasks reticently and with almost no concern for patrons. they are willing to help but provide a very minimal level of service.
29. Some of the people who operate the circulation desk have poor attitudes. I don't want to accuse them all but I have had various rude encounters. There are those who do their job quite well though. The maintainance of this library is atrocious. The fouth floor has been a disaster area for a year now. The repairs are going at a snails pace and right in the middle of prime study time. Also, problems like missing doorknobs should be dealt with immediately and not months after the problem has been identified. It is really disappointing to see an institution of this caliber to be run in such a poor fashion.
30. I love Dan at the customer service desk of the Reg! He is the sweetest man.
PHOTOCOPYING/PRINTING
31. The charges for photocopying are unnecessarily high in the Regenstein Library. The price is considerably lower in Crerar, but we are left with no option when photocopying reference materials marked Library Use Only in the Regenstein. The Copico customer service representative in the office on the first floor is unfriendly and often unavailable. (The people who load the paper in the machines are, however, very friendly and helpful).
32. You need new microfilm scanners that are NOT owned by a cheap lazy private company who wants to make money. You need four brand new scanners that will work with new software. I often take my microfilms (or order them through ILL) to a second rate state university instead of reading them at the Reg because they have much better scanners and I never have to wait. The status of your microfilm scanners is a shame to the university's committment to research.
ELECTRICAL OUTLETS, WIRELESS CONNECTIVITY, TECHNOLOGY
33. SSA library and regenstein need more electric plugs for laptops in work areas.
34. The science library and Regenstein both need to have more outlets available for laptop usage. Ideally, they should be attached to the tables and carols so the cords are not across isles.
35. the reg and harder both need more easily accessed electrical AC plugs for laptops in the private study areas as well as on the main study floors.
36. Lack of outlets discourages me from using the library. It is IMPOSSIBLE to find an outlet in Crerar, and I am forced to walk around the Reg looking underneath desks to hopefully find an outlet to plug in my laptop.
37. It would be helpful if the libraries (Crerar & Regeinstein) have more outlets available for laptops.
38. You should have a contest for people to report areas in the library (generally in the Reg) where there is a bad wireless signal and then fix those areas. It's a huge hassel to set up a laptop, get all of your papers out and then find that the wireless has a low/slow signal in your area.
ALL-NIGHT STUDY SPACE
39. However, I am so dissappointed that the A-level was ruined. 24 hour study there was SO much better than crerar. crerar is dark and depressing and not near any eateries. It is also physically less safe there in terms of muggings in the nearby area (you have to wait for the drunk van in dark, isolated places). Before someone gets mugged, I would reccomend moving all night study back to the reg. Also, Please reconfigure the a-level for social studying again and an atmosphere the finally made the u of c cool.
40. Make the Reg open 24 hours. Crerar isn't bad, but access to the Reg's stacks at night would be nice.
41. I am looking forward to the A-level being open all night again.
42. I was abroad autumn quarter of this year and returned to find the all-night study space moved from the Regenstein to Crerar. This is possibly the most useless and frustrating thing the library could have done. The Regenstein is used by the majority of ndergraduate students (who are the ones to use the all-night study space), and it's fairly ridiculous and, more importantly, extremely unsafe to leave the Reg at 1am to go over to Crerar, which has a horrible atmosphere completely inconducive to studying. Furthermore, leaving the all-night study space at Crerar is made even more unsafe because there are no street lights on Ellis. As for the A-level in the Reg, I don't think I've once seen a single person even attempt to find a book in the shelves that have been placed there. A productive resource was taken away. It was the best space to work on group projects and to meet for exam review with other classmates. The move was just ludicrous. It would be sincerely appreciated if the A-level were converted back to the productive space it used to be, rather than a place to shelve dusty volumes that are never touched. As for adhering to the needs of the graduate students over those of the undergrads (which were the terms in which a member of the library staff explained the moveto me), I selected to come to the University of Chicago because of the focus that was purportedly placed on undergraduates. Other than the all-night study space move,I would rank the overall quality of the library as 9. The change, however, brings it down to a 5 for my needs and for the majority of the undergraduate regular users of the library.
43. I wish the Regenstein were open later.
44. However, I strongly appreciate the 24 hours of operation at the Crerar library. If the Regenstein were open for longer hours, or some nights for 24 hours, I would take much more advantage of it
STUDY AND WORK SPACES
45. This issue is not only more important, but URGENT. In six years the shrinking space has become a problem for me. Not only there is a lot more of undergrads, but they are increasingly coming to the Reg rather than Harper. I do not find this problematic in itself, but there should have been a parallel concern to expand the available space which is now hosting a higher amount of people.In addition to lack of space, entire parts of the library seem to be chronically under construction, i.e. the fourth floor - especially classics and its sorroundings- and the A level. In the A level it is even worse, because there is a lot of space that could be used and is actually wasted because there are piles of objects that have been there for a long time.To add another problem, the previously spacious A level has now been shrinking too, not only because they have left things as if it were a storage for garbage, but also because half the space where tables were is now occupied with stacks.The idea of constructing an extension to the Reg sounds exciting, but more immediate solutions are required. THIS IS A UNIVERSITY WHERE GRADUATE STUDENTS HAVE NO OFFICE SPACE, THE LIBRARY IS OUR ONLY SPACE FOR WORK OUTSIDE OF OUR HOMES. It is true that this situation has been the result of an institution with a disproportionate amount of graduates. This has given the university a lot of advantages, but the cost has been the impossibility to offer office space for all graduate students. In addition, as the Reg used to be an almost all-graduate research library, it was a welcoming space to work. However, this situation has been changed dramatically. Undergraduates are increasing their numbers significantly, and they are at the library all the time. They are understandably more noisy, but it makes graduate work more difficult. So in a way we are going in the direction of the worst of the possible worlds about this. Chicago is becoming just another major institution where the uniqueness of the disproportionate amount of graduate students is dissapearing but at the same time the benefits of a bigger undergrad population is not present. Most universities with a number of undergrads grant more private spaces to graduate students. Not only my office hours are in public spaces that are sometimes noisy, but in addition there are problems about being a TA and grading. I am afraid of leaving my stuff around when I am grading, as any student could just flip a paper and see it when I go for a coffee.The privacy required for graduate students who teach undergrads is not available at the library. I THINK IT IS REALLY UNFAIR THAT THE ISSUE OF SPACE IS NOT EVEN MENTIONED IN THIS SURVEY.
46. We should pack Regenstein with books rather than undergraduate students. Alternatively, let's turn Harper into a research library since it's already abandoned by undergraduates.
47. I am not being humorous here but I would suggest that you hire a former high school librarian to police the ground floor of the Reg. The amount of food eaten, cell phone calls taken, computer spots littered is truly egregious.
48. The Reg seems to be harder for me to work in because people tend to be louder and more distracting there.
49. The layout of the Regenstein study space makes it look like an institution--in my experience people prefer open desk areas to those horrendous cubicles. The lighting is awful (and creates a awfully irritating buzzing sound), the temperature is never consistent, there's a complete lack of power outlets, and wireless connectivity is unreliable. It's a place I dread going to work at.
50. I wish both Eckhart and Regenstein had more inviting/enjoyable study spaces (New furniture, more comfortable chairs, etc.)
51. I also never study in the Reg because it is not only depressing but also makes me sleepy, so I have never been able to get work done on the few occassions I tried doing it in the library
52. Please know that I've quite studying at the Reg because of both patron and construction noise. Not that it was that pleasant to study in to begin with, but at least it was manageable. Now it's just not.
53. I think there should be a nice reading space available. Regenstein is ugly, the lighting is too bright, the heat is often not warm enough or too warm,
54. I find Regenstein too noisy for studying.
55. Please provide more group study spaces in A-level of Reg. Currently groups are moving to study in other levels creating a lot of disruption.
56. I really like the group study space in the A level of the Reg because of the white boards, tables and quick access to computers if needed
57. the premises (specifically at the Regenstein) often seem a bit dark and dirty/grungy.
58. Devote more space to group study? Crerar and The Reg are punishingly quiet at times...
59. For the most part, the Reg satisfies my needs. The staff is always courteous and well-trained, and able to answer my questions. I would prefer more spaces to study where there are not so many people in one room--like where the tables are broken up by bookshelves or lockers, like on the north side of the 4th floor reading room, as opposed to the south side. It's less distracting, but also less claustrophobic than the carrels. There are only two negatives that I experience on a regular basis at the Reg: 1) TALKERS, especially the undergrad crowd after about 4 pm, and 2) bad bad bad wireless, which also happens about 3 or 4 pm, when there are a lot of users. I seem to lose my address and get dropped like a bad cell call--not cool at all.
60. More group study space is needed in general, especially in the Crerar, but also in the Regenstein.
61. the reg is ideal for working, though it sometimes becomes a little too noisy on the upper floors for my taste
62. There is NO quiet study space in the Reg. Lack of quiet study space is my biggest current problem with the Library, and it often keeps me from using the Library.
63. The Reg. is OK. But it would be nice if the administration would do more to keep the place quite, either though repeated reminders or through a change to the physical arrangement (i.e. sound-proof the group rooms). As it is now, almost every floor on every occasion is sullied by groups talking loudly. It really is an ongoing problem. It would also be nice if you could get more comfortable lounge chairs. The desk chairs are fine, but the loungers set out near the windows are horribly uncomfortable
64. I find there is a lack of study rooms, where one can go and study in the privacy of a separate room. I often find giant study rooms, which potentially can fit ten people, are monopolized by a single person, especially in the Regenstein. It would be wonderful and greatly appreciated if there were more single/double occupancy individual study rooms, and the larger study rooms were actually reserved for large study groups.
65. but I do wish there was more comfortable study space. It would be nice if graduate students had carrels or some kind of assigned study space, because I do find that things can get fairly loud up on the fourth floor....
66. I often also use the pcs for writing on the first floor of the reg. I would prefer it if this was a space where silence was encouraged.
67. The undergrads and others are too loud in the Reg. Difficult to work there for long hours
68. More availability for quiet group study areas in the Reg would be fantastic.
69. too few places to work as a group (not enough classrooms in Crerar or in the Reg),
CONSTRUCTION, FACILITIES, ENVIRONMENT AND ATMOSPHERE
70. somehow improving the miserably depressing study spaces on the stack floors in the regenstein (what matters above all to me is improving air circulation.)
71. The one great flaw in the University's library system is the Regenstein; it is dark, cold, uncomfortable, and a poor environment for study; moreover, the materials in my field are inconveniently spread out over three different floors (DT, PJ, elephant folios), the result of a bad set of decisions made about five years ago. In my opinion, the University needs to construct an entirely new central library facility to replace the Reg.
72. Construction/repairs are proceeding at a painfully slow pace. It is very disruptive to have heaps of unused equipment lying around the Regenstein library.
73. A few of the elevators in Crerar and the Reg seem to be groaning and making death rattles. Their inspection certs are pretty out of date. Might be time to call the elevator inspector, or at least get out the WD-40.
74. My main complaint, as always, is with the feel of the space: Regenstein is not a beautiful or inspiring place to work
75. atmostphere in the Regenstein Library to be dismal and depressing
76. The atmosphere at the Regenstein is very oppressive and not very conducive to studying.
77. My main concern with the libraries is that they are quite disinviting for study. There is nothing comforable about them. I find them sterile. And I am refering only to Crerar and The Reg. I can't speak for the others because I do not use them.
78. Also, I think there can be a more comfortable atmosphere that fosters a sense of look around, pick something, and READ. As it stands, the Reg is a very unwelcoming place and not a very comfortable one at that.
79. Overall, Regenstein has made dramatic improvements since 1993 (new computer system, signage, reconfiguring lobby with ID & Privileges Office and circulation desk, much, more helpful and friendly circulation, reference, and ILL staff, fixing heating & air, automatically flushing toilets, on-line journals, electronically transmitted articles), however, all of this was just catching up to the 20th century. (In 1993 my small, local Jesuit college library was far more advanced, especially in terms of technology, than the Regenstein.) The U of C libraries now need to anticipate the needs of the 21st century and become a leading institutions in every way.
80. I never, NEVER study in the library b/c it is so, extraordinarily unpleasant.
81. The biggest problem at the Reg. is that the building is sick. I think the HVAC system, despite being under renovation is hopeless! There isn't enough air circulation and not enough natural light. I think it would be best to open up an atrium in the center of the building (where the stairs are between the third and second level reading rooms. I wouldn't be surprised if the mold spores and other markers of indoor air quality are quite high. I feel sick if I'm in the library for longer than one hour and I iknow that that is true many patrons, and staff members.
82. Although I think Regenstein is basically an architectural abomination, far from a space that inspires study and learning, as the survey puts it,
83. I'm sure the atmosphere on the fourth floor of the Regenstein Library, where I work, will improve when the extensive repair work is complete.
84. The Regenstein is a depressing building in which I hate spending time.
85. We need better air circulation and more plugs in Harper and the reg.
86. The bookstacks at the Reg are well-organized, but some of the lights do not work, so it is difficult to find the call numbers (since the whole row is out most of the time).
87. The upkeep and cleaning of the bathrooms over Memorial Day weekend in 2006 was absolutely abhorrent. Students really utilize the library that weekend, and it is absolutely necessary for trash to be taken out (in the reading rooms AND bathrooms) and for broken restroom facilities to be serviced, which they were NOT last Memorial Day weekend. For such a great and well utilized facility, students expect more. Basic cleanliness shouldn't be too much to ask.
88. We need a better cafeteria service (longer hours and easier access as we used to have)
89. The Reg is not a very attractive or comfortable place to study, particularly when compared with the libraries of peer institutions. Hence the popularity of the Harold Washington Librarary, Newberry Library, and northside cafes. I use the library's electronic resource quite a lot; print holdings are very good (aside from the refusal, too often, to re-order recent popular titles that go missing); ILL is an excellent service. I just don't like spending a lot of time studying there because of the ugly, corporate office-like interior.
90. Everything is pretty great-- I wish the Reg were more attractive though, at least on the inside. The open ceilings make it a depressing place to work, but Harper closes so early that you're forced to go there.
91. The construction in Regenstein is very distracting, and I think I am allergic to Regenstein
92. Some of the pairs of headphones that one can check out at the circulation desk at Regenstein are broken. Otherwise the library is doing a great job. My only complaint is the extreme heat in the stacks. I also think that I would be nicer to add more computers to the first floor reading room, but I think that the library is doing a great job.
93. i prefer law to regenstein in terms of atmosphere and service. my regenstein experiences have been just ok, but i think i would not want to spend the resources to improve.
94. Group study space in Regenstein, and in general, insufficient. Rooms on the 4th and 5th floor are unnecessarily large nad there are too few. The Regenstain is too noisy. Ongoing work during the last 2 years makes it feel like a construction site with noisy ventilation systems, closed off areas, torn down ceilings and walls. Very annoying.
95. Finally, although I am happy in principle with the Regenstein Library (i.e. open stacks, substantial collection under one roof), there are some things that are appalling. The length of time it has taken to complete the renovation work, for example, is inexcusable. It sounds like the inside of an airplane engine on the third floor. This leaves a terrible impression with prospective students, and makes it (and other floors which are similarly noisy) unbearable to study on. Ray, the microfilm man on the third floor,is an amazing help, tremendously knowledgeable and willing to aid with all manner of questions.
96. Please, oh, please turn up the heat in Crerar! I've been asking for years, and the people behind the desk say either we're working on it, or we can't. I have been bringing extra clothes and blankets to the library for 3years now, and now I just don't want to go anymore because it's so cold to study there. Regenstein and my home are now much more preferable.
97. the atmosphere is terrible. Like a clinic. Sterile, but uninviting, cold. I hate being there (regenstein). I try my hardest never to go there. It depresses me to be there.
98. The biggest problem with the library (Regenstein) is its atmosphere. I hate the individual study carrels, which probably make up a majority of the study space. The ceilings with exposed piping make it worse. The tables and sofa chairs are too few, but it was definitely the right decision to put sofa chairs by the windows. It's really sad that the architecture eliminates so much of the natural light that we could have in the library. I hope the addition to the library will not repeat this terrible mistake. If the stacks are shifted into the addition, I hope the designers will have the foresight to build large windows and create comfortable, welcoming study spaces along the windows.I would also like to see the library make more of an effort to reduce its environmental impact. Most important is to design the new addition as a green building. The availability of double-sided printing at cheaper prices than single-sided throughout the library would be one improvement. More publicity for the one double-sided printer in the library and for the option of double-sided copying (which should also be cheaper) would also be nice. More recycling bins, lights in the stacks set on timers, and making sure that heating/cooling systems are as efficient as possible are other ideas. And to make the library friendlier to bicyclists,the 10-20 abandoned bicycles forever taking up some of the best spots in the bike racks should be removed.
99. But the physical building of Regenstein (where most graduate students are condemned to spend most of their UC lives) and the environment it creates internally is far and above the single worst thing about the University of Chicago. The massive concrete slabs seemingly suspended in the air but braced of course by steel, etc., creates an utterly depressing, soul-destroying (not to mention disgustingly ugly) space, which combines with the 9 months of pale, biting winter to make any graduate student seriously consider transferring to comparable programs, but with more humanly-compatible central campus libraries, on an almost weekly basis. Seriously. I know that it would cost millions of dollars and many years, but demolishing the architectural monstrosity would be the single greatest improvement to the U. of C. possible.
100. The current construction makes a large part of the regenstein library space unihabitable and the rest of it unuseful due to noise.
101. It would be really nice if the renovation work at the Reg can be done soon, it has been ridiculously hot in the stacks.
102. The clocks in the reading areas are often off--especially the one in the southern part of the reading area on the third floor. I would change it, and not bother you about it, but above the cubicles so I cannot reach it.
103. The building (Regenstein) is not particularly warm or inviting, but it has grown on me; I look forward to the HVAC work's completion.
SUGGESTIONS
104. I really think you should post stack maps (the poster that indicates which floor which call number can be found on) in all the elevators and by the elevators. Sometimes I have to get books from very different parts of the library and sometimes have to walk way out of my way and waste time trying to find a map to tell me which floor P vs PE is on.
105. Little things like making sure that there are coat hooks on the back of the all the doors in the bathrooms make a big difference. I'm sometimes embarassed that such simple things are in poor repair (both in Harper and the Reg) since visiting scholars experience the U of C largely through our libraries.
106. Better instructions on where the lights are in the B level stacks in the Reg would be great, as well as more maps to the exits in the bookstacks on the other floors.
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