UX Projects History (at Rice/Fondren Library)

1) Sakai, multi-institutional project (Spring 2009-Spring 2010)

  • Conducted two interview and observation sessions with instructors at Rice (December 2009), in order to understand why and how they use scholarly resources to prepare and conduct their courses.
  • Interviews were not transcribed, nor coded, but rather blended into personas for the project.
  • Rice participants filled out a confidentiality & consent form.

Project Website: https://confluence.sakaiproject.org/pages/viewpage.action?pageId=9895999 Consists of the process timeline, interview protocol, interviewee summary, and final report.

Download the report: Why and How do Instructors Use Scholarly Resources in Preparing and Conducting Their Courses? Multi-Institutional Research Findings Library and Sakai 3 Integration Project

2) Mobile Devices as a Research Tool study (April 2010- July 2010)(Fondren Mobile CREL group)

3) Establishing fondren@brc: Insights from a User Study (June 2010-August 2010)

  • Interviewed 3 faculty members, 4 graduate students, and a library liaison to inform service decisions at a new library location.
  • Report available online.
  • This was also included in the recently published ARL Spec Kit on Library User Experience.
  • A great deal of citation analysis was also done as a part of the study, analyzing if Fondren owned the journals that faculty publish in at the BRC. Additionally, some cost/benefit analysis was done to determine if it was better to ILL journals not owned by Fondren, or to purchase the journals. At the time of the report, ILL services were determined to be cheaper, but did have some research slow-down implications.

4) Usability testing on the new Fondren website (April 2011)

  • Semi-structured testing was conducted  on two undergraduates, two graduate students, one postdoc, and three library staff members.
  • Problems were identified most especially with the ejournal portal.
  • Interviews were transcribed, and a new innovation, color-coding, was incorporated in the coding process. The color codes were: Pink (Good kudos), Red (Tabbed Searching), Green (Service implications), Yellow (Problems), and Light Blue (User Suggestions).

5) Discovering Discovery: How Researchers Find the Sources They Need (April-May 2011)

  • Research Team: Debra Kolah, Marcel LaFlamme, Jane Segal, and Leah Krevit.
  • Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 2 faculty members, 4 members of a nondepartmental academic team, 1 postdoc, and 5 research analysts.
  • This project was conducted on a tight time constraint: the research instrument was approved on April 5th, the interviews were from April 18-28, transcription and coding took place from May 2-13, and the final report was submitted to the Fondren Library Resource Discovery Tools Working Group on May 18th. This led to the term “Bootstrap UX.”
  • A brief summary report was generated before the report was completed to help the research team start to group findings. The broad categories were: One interface to search for everything, Interdisciplinarity, andSpecific/Targeted Searching.

6) Research Flow (July-September 2011)

  • Guided research team consists of 10 librarians, all of whom had participated in Nancy Foster’s training session at Rice in January of 2011.
  • More videotaping of interviewees was achieved.
  • IRB Protocol approved on 6/9/2011. Research project currently in progress. 14 interviews have been conducted.
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About effervescentlibrarian

UX Librarian at Rice University, Houston, Texas.
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