29 11 / 2012
Here at Brock, we’re in the midst of redesigning our library homepage and hoping to learn more about what elements/tools/links are valuable and what’s not so valuable on the homepage. What’s hot, what’s not! ;) Using the Card Sort activity, we asked students (and faculty) to “give the library homepage a makeover” and offered a free coffee ticket for their time. Over all the activity went well! We were set up for about 3hrs and many people participated (approx 20) and many staff from different university departments are thinking about using the same approach for their own website redesigns!
Here are a couple pics from the day!
- Colleen M
09 11 / 2012
On Monday I begin a two week online course offered by the Library Juice Academy. It looks like it will be a useful course that will explain the processes of organizing, implementing and analyzing usability tests and other user research methods. I’ll keep you posted!
- Colleen M.
04 10 / 2012
04 10 / 2012
The User Experience Team at the U of Guelph investigated how faculty research groups work together online. Many UG faculty have colleagues at other universities or in the field with whom they are unable to meet face to face. We were asked to find out which online tools they use, and whether or not these tools are meeting their needs. The purpose was to discover if a Virtual Research Environment (a platform that helps researchers keep track of communications, documents, and data and stores and preserves information in a secure space) was desirable to UG research teams.
The User Experience team draws on the research methods and philosophical approach used in design research and ethnography which puts the user at the centre of the research. In this study we were interested in the qualitative experience researchers have when they collaborate in the virtual environment. We could have simply sent out a survey asking researchers what they need from a Virtual Research Environment. Instead, we took a more exploratory approach to learn how they work online and get a more in depth and realistic answer to the question whether there is a general need for a library-supported VRE. As one of our interviewees noted, “we don‘t know what we don‘t know” so asking researchers what tools would make life easier can be a difficult question to answer.
We met with them in their offices so that they would be most comfortable, and so they could directly refer to the tools they were using, demonstrate them, if necessary, and so we could ask about anything we saw in their office that might be useful for the study. We knew that observing what people actually do is often more revealing than what they say they do. We were unable to watch researchers‘ collaboration in action, so the next best thing was to at least talk to them in their natural environment.
- Robin B.
04 10 / 2012
We made a lot of changes to our library over the summer and wanted to find out what students thought of the changes. We hemmed and hawed about how to do this, then decided to just wheel out a white board, provide some markers and sticky notes, and get quick responses to the question: “We’ve made some changes around here…what do you think?” The board was quickly filled with sticky notes and we got some useful responses.
24 9 / 2012
07 9 / 2012