We need you… Part 2

Graduate PlusLLR

We need students to take part in some focus groups to help us understand your perspective on navigating around our systems to access library resources.

You would be required to attend two sessions, one in May this academic year, and one next academic year in the Spring term.

Each session lasts 2 hours and involves

  1. Scenario based activities to enable us to detail your experiences of accessing library resources. We will assess your customer journey in terms of ease, quality and emotional response.
  2. Focus group discussion

We value your input because understanding your perspectives and hearing ‘your’ voice are essential to the development of our processes and services.

The dates for Session 1 are:

Tuesday 2nd May 1.30pm – 2.30pm

Thursday 4th May 10am – 12noon

Tuesday 9th May 1pm – 3pm

If you are interested in participating please email llrservicedevelopment@bcu.ac.uk 

Participation counts towards your Silver award.

^This was posted on behalf of BCU Graduate+ and Library and Learning Resources.

LIKE event – April 2016

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On Friday 29th April 2016 Library and Learning Resources staff held their second LIKE event at Mary Seacole Library. The purpose of the event is to bring staff together from all areas of the service to report back on conferences and courses, and discuss topics related to the profession as a whole.  The event is very informal and relaxed, with no agenda and plenty of coffee and cakes!

In brief, we talked about the following topics:

  • Ethnography and the world of libraries
  • Spacefinder software and how we can better serve our students
  • An Erasmus trip to University College Ghent
  • The impact of the Teaching Excellence Framework
  • The International Librarians Network
  • Provision of core texts for students

As you can see, we discussed a huge variety of topics! Each of these inspired discussions within the group, and it was great that a number of our new(er) staff participated because it meant they could bring in some outside perspective.

Thinking internationally

Liaison Librarian Carol went on an Erasmus trip organised by the Business School to Ghent in Belgium, where she visited a couple of their libraries.  We were fascinated to hear how the staff there are diversifying the service; 3D printers, green screens, and wood sample collections were just a few of the ways in which their library service has grown and changed with the times! It just goes to show that university libraries extend far beyond the traditional remit of ‘books and journals’.  It certainly got me thinking about how in an age when more and more resources are available electronically, our physical space could (and should) grow and change to incorporate new technology and curation of non-traditional resources.  Carol highly recommended the Erasmus programme and it sounded like a really useful and enlightening experience.

Assistant Liaison Librarian Laura recommended the International Librarians Network as another way of learning about the experiences of others. This is an online peer mentoring scheme which matches participants up with somebody from elsewhere in the world, and invites them to share their experiences on given topics each week.

Engaging with the library

Two different types of engagement were discussed. The first was using ethnographic research methodologies in libraries, as reported by Research Fellow Jo from a session she attended at the UKSG 2016 conference.  This involves observing students in their use of the library, which the group related back to our own experiences of working with students on the iCity redesign and other projects.  The conclusions are seemingly that students have very differing needs from one another, however this helps us understand the wide-ranging scope of service we need to offer.  We talked about the current issues with study space and how some students prefer a traditional quiet space, yet others enjoy social learning.  Encouraging students to explore the library in unfamiliar ways is a technique to help them to learn; we thought the idea of students creating their own A-Z of the library in order to engage with us was a fantastic idea!

The second discussion came from a session that Head of E-Library team Paul had attended at the Talis Insight 2016 conference, regarding the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF). By changing the institutional approach from learning to teaching as part of the TEF, academic libraries need to prove their value within the teaching agenda, moving from a service delivery model to one of engaged/independent learning – all this whilst also raising their profile and getting academic staff to buy into libraries further.  Liaison Librarian Janice reported that the Learning and Teaching team are participating in a scheme to engage with local Year 12 pupils to familiarise them with independent learning.  It was mentioned that many university libraries have similar ongoing schemes with local schools for developing links with future learners, and all agreed that this would be a positive move should something be developed in our area.

Watch this space!

We’ve really enjoyed running the LIKE events, and judging by the comments we received after this session the attendees found it worthwhile as well.  BCU Library and Learning Resources staff should keep an eye on What’s Happening for upcoming events, and blog readers should watch this space for reviews and information regarding all events that we participate in!

^Laura

LIKE event – 4th December 2015

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On Friday 4th December Library and Learning Resources held the inaugural LIKE event, a place for staff to share knowledge and discuss events they had been to.

Some of the topics we discussed were as follows:

Events

  • PPRG Marketing excellence awards – particularly notable was the University of Huddersfield’s promotion of their online reading lists.
  • ARLIS RDA implementation workshop – a discussion about the implementation of RDA (Resource Description and Access – cataloguing standard)
  • Northumbria Conference on performance management – consumer behaviour research, the idea of “browser’s neck” (tilting your head to read the spines of books!).
  • UX Lib conference – possible research methods for the user experience i.e. cognitive mapping, user diaries.

Social media

  • Development of the Library and Learning Resources blog
  • BCU cataloguers Twitter @BCU_cataloguers
  • Using Sumall for Twitter analytics i.e. thank you tweets

Updates

  • Clustering editions on the OPAC – trialling in the BCU sandbox
  • BCU Graduate Plus scheme

Misc.

  • Use of Tableu for logging enquiries and getting rich data
  • Screenagers – increasing use of the virtual reference library for the new generation

 

The information shared generated a lot of discussion.  For example, how consumer behaviour research can impact library services, i.e. the layout of items on the shelf, the use of book bags and strategically placed sofas. Looking outside of libraries might lead to some innovative ideas being introduced, and is worth considering for the future.

Overall this was a really useful exercise in sharing knowledge and learning from others’ experiences.  It was interesting to have people in attendance that work in other areas of the library to me – I know nothing about cataloguing, for example, so it was fun to learn about what the cataloguers are up to and the developments in the general field.

Hopefully we will run this again – all Library and Learning Resources staff would be welcome to attend, either to share or just listen!

 

Laura (Assistant Liaison Librarian)

More coffee and cake!

Following the success of our coffee and cake morning in Curzon Building on 13th November, we held more events across our campus libraries.

20th November – Kenrick Library, City North Campus

25th November – Mary Seacole Library, City South Campus

27th November- Conservatoire Library, City Centre Campus

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We spoke to around 200 students in total about where they could get help across the University, including the Library, Centre for Academic Success and the ASK student advisory service.

We asked students for their study tips for the chance to be entered in a prize draw for an Amazon voucher worth £20.

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We will compile and post all of your study tips soon.  Keep an eye out on Twitter for these!

It was great to see so many students (and staff!) engaging with us – special thanks to the lecturer who brought their class over as a group for a tour of Kenrick Library, and thanks to many others who directed their students towards the events.  We hope you all enjoyed them as much as we did, and we certainly hope to run them again soon.

 

Do you have any feedback about the coffee and cake events? Do you have any suggestions for future events? Please contact us using the comments form here.

 

^Laura

Fancy a free lunch?

Are you a first year student at BCU?

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Then come down to one of our focus groups and have your say about the library!

We are interested in you sharing your experience, opinions and understanding of library inductions and information literacy sessions.

As a thanks you will get:

  • FREE food vouchers worth up to £5 to spend in the University cafe
  • FREE refreshments
  • Automatically entered into a £50 Amazon voucher draw for members of the focus groups

 

We have morning and afternoon sessions, lasting up to an hour and a half, located at both City South and City Centre campuses.

Pick any session that works best for you from the following:

Wednesday 2nd December 11am -12:30pm: Anstey Room, Ravensbury House, City South Campus

Wednesday 2nd December 2:30pm – 4pm: Anstey Room, Ravensbury House, City South Campus
Thursday 10th December: 11am – 12:30pm: Curzon C175, City Centre Campus
Friday 11th December: 11am – 12:30pm: Curzon C183, City Centre Campus

To book go to: http://www.eventbrite.co.uk/o/birmingham-city-university-8617530389 

 

 

 

Image reproduced with kind permission of Getty Images UK under the terms of an exclusive license agreement between BCU and Getty Images.

Post edited 4.12.15 to update link to eventbrite