Posts tagged "User Research"

Lost in Translation: An Exploratory Study on Non-English Catalog Searching

Screen shot of Library Catalog Search results, and interview participant and interviewer.

The University of Michigan Library is home to a vast collection of materials representing dozens of languages. U-M Library Catalog Search, however, can cause difficulties for users searching for materials in languages other than English. In Summer 2021 we conducted an exploratory study on the experience of searching for non-English materials within U-M Library Catalog Search in order to better understand challenges users face, how they overcome them, and what we can do to mitigate the problem.

Exploratory Research After Launch: Interviewing Users About Library Search

Word cloud of interview themes, such as results relevance, filtering, record display, call number, course reserves, advanced search, Boolean queries, etc.

U-M Library’s Library Search launched in 2018 as a unified search engine application containing five previously distinct interfaces: Catalog, Articles, Databases, Online Journals, and Library Websites. Library Search was a big change for users, and an increase in user support requests suggested that further exploration was needed to pinpoint user pain points. The authors began an exploratory study that helped understand users’ experiences and identified areas for continued work.

Strategies to Improve Participation in User Research and Assessment Activities

Photo taken above a busy crowd. Some figures are actively walking and their figure is blurred from their movement. Others figures are clear and sharp and they are standing, talking to or watching other people in the crowd.

How can we improve the familiarity and credibility between Library experts, resources and services we offer and the students, faculty and staff who use them? Whether we’re building new relationships or reconnecting with patrons/colleagues during assessment or user research activities, we have the opportunity to use certain marketing and communication best practices and tools during our user research to align clear and targeted communication with our key audiences.

The Role of the IRB in U-M Library Assessment and Research

Text: Keep Calm and Don't Forget About IRB Review

When planning an assessment project in the Library, one important step is to consider whether your project should be vetted by the Institutional Review Board (IRB) at U-M, a committee that ensures studies with human subjects are ethical, that subjects are protected from unnecessary psychological or physical risks, and that subjects are participating in a fully informed, voluntary manner. This post details when your data collection may be subject to a full IRB application and review process.

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