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Design, Impact and Best Practices for a Graduate Research and Innovation Center

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2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Tampa, Florida

Publication Date

June 15, 2019

Start Date

June 15, 2019

End Date

June 19, 2019

Conference Session

Making an Impact: Building Support with Data and Design

Tagged Division

Engineering Libraries

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Paper Authors


Hilda Teresa Ayala-Gonzalez University of Puerto Rico, Mayagüez Orcid 16x16

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Hilda Teresa Ayala-González has a Master's degree in Archival Studies from the University of British Columbia (UBC), Vancouver Canada, and a Master's degree in Information Science from the University of Puerto Rico. Currently, she is the Research Services Librarian at the Graduate Research and Innovation Center (GRIC) at the University of Puerto Rico, Mayaguez Campus, where she offers workshops in digital scholarship, scholarly communications, research data and documentation management. She is also part of the Institutional Digital Repository Committee and teaches courses in information literacy.

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Cristina D. Pomales-Garcia University of Puerto Rico, Mayaguez Orcid 16x16

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Dr. Cristina Pomales is Professor of Industrial Engineering at the University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez. She holds a Bachelors in Psychology from the University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez and a Ph.D. in Industrial and Operations Engineering from the University of Michigan. Her research areas of interest are the study of Work Systems Design in Agriculture, Engineering Education, and Project Assessment and Evaluation. She is currently internal evaluator and assessment coordinator for the Nanotechnology Center and the Transformational Initiative for Graduate Education and Research at UPRM.

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Jaquelina Ester Alvarez University of Puerto Rico, Mayaguez Orcid 16x16

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Prof. Jaquelina Alvarez is the Graduate Research and Innovation Center (GRIC) Coordinator and Co-Director of the Transformational Initiative for Graduate Education and Research (TIGER) at UPR-Mayaguez. As part of the General Library team, she is the College of Engineering Liaison Librarian and serves as the Data Manager of the Center for Research and Excellence in Science and Technology (UPRM-CREST). Additionally, she co-leads the Center of Professional Enrichment (CEP) and member of the Research Academy for Faculty & Postdoctoral Fellows. She organizes and offers workshops and training on information literacy skills, scholarly communication, copyright and data management. She is a graduate of the ACRL Information Literacy Immersion Program (2010) and the DuraSpace e-Science Institute (2014). She obtained a Master's Degree in Library Science and Information Science in 1997 and a post-master's degree in 1999 from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

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Since 2009, the University of Puerto Rico-Mayagüez (UPRM) implemented several assessment strategies to identify services and infrastructure to meet the needs of graduate students and faculty researchers. In general, results revealed the need for developing information literacy skills, technological infrastructure and physical facilities for collaboration. More specifically, assessment findings showed that researchers: (1) identified a need for assistance with technical writing, communication skills, search strategies, and ethical use of information; (2) expected new services encompassing data management, authorship, copyright, and organizing, sharing, and preserving information in the digital environment; and (3) needed a collaborative space where teaching and research services coincided. A grant, awarded by the U.S. Department of Education, has enabled the UPRM to facilitate research services across campus, broadening graduate offering in engineering programs and sustaining the research and innovation ecosystem across the entire research lifecycle. This award allowed the design and inauguration of the Graduate Research and Innovation Center (GRIC) in 2016, transforming the way the Library intervenes in our institution's research ecosystem. Overall, the GRIC provides (1) a holistic suite of services in which students can be referred to specialists, knowledgeable in the proper technology or content development expertise; (2) a robust technological infrastructure to support interdisciplinary and interactive collaborations; and (3) support to graduate students’ needs as both information consumers and information producers. By design, the GRIC has become a testbed for activities that facilitate the implementation of the Association of College & Research Libraries’ Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education. The paper will describe the design process for the GRIC, its impact in a two-year period, and the services offered at the Center with best practices and lessons learned in the process, that directly impact the research lifecycle.

Ayala-Gonzalez, H. T., & Pomales-Garcia, C. D., & Alvarez, J. E. (2019, June), Design, Impact and Best Practices for a Graduate Research and Innovation Center Paper presented at 2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Tampa, Florida. 10.18260/1-2--32610

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