There are many ways to record and analyze what is happening in the University of Michigan libraries over time. The more we understand how users are engaging with our spaces, the more we can do to meet their needs. But how do you get a handle on such a big question (library space use)? What data do you collect and how do you break it down?
The U-M Shapiro Undergraduate Library (UGL) collection serves the course-related and extracurricular information needs of U-M undergraduate students. This collection encourages students to explore new ideas, gain research skills, and become lifelong learners. How can we tailor this small collection (approximately 175,000 volumes) to meet their current needs?
Maybe you’ve heard of or lived with a roommate who never washed the dishes, who talked loudly on the phone late into the night or who stiffed you on rent. Not fun. Bias in our research isn’t fun either. It distorts the nature of the data we collect, analyze and share.
It’s not uncommon for academic research libraries, especially large ones, to have multiple renovations that add a wing, a floor, or even a new building. The University of Michigan Library buildings on our central campus are no exception. Our undergraduate and graduate libraries form a complex whose structure is just that. Many times a day, staff members direct visitors, patrons, or even a colleague to their intended destination.
The words we choose matter and having a shared vocabulary around user experience research is an important component of the work. This post presents definitions of user experience, user research, and usability testing, while examining how they intersect and why determining the frame of your research is good practice. Plus the one phrase we try not to use...
Tiny Studies will feature informal notes and insights from research projects in progress throughout the University Library. This will be a focused place to consider how our individual inquiries contribute to the conceptualization of our organization as a whole. Posts by diverse authors will explore the connections in our work, especially during those ephemeral moments of growth or reflection, when whole new constellations emerge in our understanding of the library.
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