Betsy Williams and Andrea Hebert, DLS Bibliography Committee
Summer is here, and dreams of exotic destinations abound. Just in time for summer vacation, the DLS Research and Publications Committee offers you a sampling of articles focused on library services for those lucky students and faculty in far flung destinations.
Chan, K. P., Colvin, J. B., Vinyard, M., Leach, C., Naumann, M. A., & Stenis, P. (2015). Libraries across the sea: Using a virtual presence and skilled student assistants to serve students abroad. Journal of Library Administration, 55(4), 278–301. https://doi.org/10.1080/01930826.2015.1038921
The authors, all from Pepperdine University, describe their challenges and successes in supporting students studying at international campuses in Buenos Aires, Shanghai, Florence, Heidelberg, and Lausanne. Pepperdine’s international campuses each include a small library; however, the limited number of students (40-75 per semester) do not make it practical to staff the libraries with a full-time librarian. Instead, one study abroad student is hired at each campus to staff the library for five hours per week. The librarians developed a two-pronged approach to support their study abroad students: creating LibGuides specifically designed for the international programs and beefing up the training provided to the student workers.
The new LibGuides include only information that is relevant to the international programs and courses. Students can easily find cultural and academic information, and custom-built search boxes ensure students retrieve only what they can access, such as e-books. Partnering with Pepperdine’s International Programs office was key in creating accurate and tailored course guides.
The new training program for the student workers includes time devoted to customer service. Ongoing training and feedback from the student workers has helped them feel they are valued members of the library community and motivated them to exceed expectations. (more…)