New Olin Library research system now in session

January 27, 2016 Local, News

19104980593_3c3ef4d86f_oThe students have spoken, and Olin has answered. Since some students need a more intensive approach for research help that better adheres to their schedules, the librarians of Olin Library have instated a consultation model that parallels appointments from TJ’s Tutoring Consultation.

Though the format and purpose of both consultation networks seem similar now, they are not to be confused with one another. TJ’s Tutoring Consultation provides students with assistance on specific tasks and material related to courses that the peer tutors have previously completed.

As Dorothy Mays, Head of Public Services at Olin Library, explained, “The librarians can help you in a broader capacity for when you are researching a topic, compiling data to support a thesis, or need help strengthening an assignment.”

Since this new system has only been in place since the start of the Spring 2016 semester, it has yet to prove itself. After each appointment, students will be given the opportunity to submit anonymous feedback about the experience. This feedback is crucial to the program’s success. Mays stated, “We are really looking forward to those comments! I want to assure students these evaluations are totally anonymous, and we read each submission carefully in an effort to improve our service.”

Students will find that the process in which appointments are reserved is the most helpful change of the newer model; there is no need to be timid about reserving an appointment. Librarian Consultation has become an even more accessible option for academic help.

According to Mays, the previous model was not effective. She explained that there was a huge discrepancy between what the librarians “were supposed to be doing at the Research Help Desk,” and what they were actually doing, which was “fixing printers and refilling staplers.”

This new model hopes to ensure that students are taking full advantage of the academic help that librarians are here to provide.

The system also aims to make the difference between staff at the Circulation Desk and the faculty librarians at the Research Help Desk more apparent, so that students will be able to utilize both sources to maximum efficiency. The librarians work closely with Rollins professors and are trained to find meaningful data, identify alternative sources of information, and often know techniques students may not have considered to help complete their assignments.

Olin Library does continue to offer drop-in hours in the librarian offices—just be sure to ask to be directed to the librarian on duty.

Appointments can be booked in advance online.

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