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Tell us your views on the Libraries' website! (new survey schedule)

The Libraries have changed the timing of our ethnographic research study of users' views of our website, to accommodate other research of student views at the university.

We now invite all graduate students to take a short online survey about our website, from Tuesday April 7th through Tuesday April 14th. The survey will be accessible through the home page of the Libraries' website (www.libraries.rutgers.edu).

We invite all undergraduate students to take a short online survey about our website, from Monday April 20th through Friday, May 1st. The survey will be accessible through the home page of the Libraries' website (www.libraries.rutgers.edu).

Each survey participant will be entered into a random drawing for the chance to win a brand new MacBook Computer or an iPod Touch. One of each prize will be awarded to one lucky graduate and one undergraduate student. Survey respondents will have the chance to volunteer for the follow-up interviews and focus groups. Interested faculty will likewise be invited to participate.

Follow-up interviews will be held with undergraduate students from April 15th-18th and with graduates from May 6-9th. All interviews will take approximately one hour and will be videotaped. Each follow-up interview participant will receive a $50 gift card for the Rutgers Bookstore as a thank you for participating.

The Libraries' Ethnographic Research Project is being led by C. Todd White, a visiting professor of anthropology at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia. Dr. White has conducted similar studies of faculty and student online research practices at the University of Rochester and at Colorado State University. The Project is highly collaborative and involves two research/design teams comprised of eighteen librarians and IT personnel.

The Rutgers University Libraries will use the results of the survey and interviews to inform a comprehensive redesign of the Libraries' website within the next two years. The results and tentative conclusions of the Research Project will be shared in an open town hall-styled meeting in the Libraries in the fall semester, later this year.

The Libraries' Ethnographic Research Project team members are maintaining a public blog, where they post updates on the process and engage in thoughtful discussion. You are invited to read our blog and contribute commentary at http://rulerp.blogspot.com.

For more information on the Ethnographic Research Project, the pending surveys, or the follow-up interviews, please contact Valeda Dent Goodman by email at vdent@rutgers.edu or by phone at 732.932.7129, ex. 173.

Image created by Ken Kuehl.

Posted April 6, 2009; April 23, 2009