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Redesign of Library Spaces: A Collaborative Project with Engineering Students

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2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Columbus, Ohio

Publication Date

June 24, 2017

Start Date

June 24, 2017

End Date

June 28, 2017

Conference Session

Technical Session 1: Collaborating with Engineering Students and Faculty

Tagged Division

Engineering Libraries

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Paper Authors


Aleshia Huber Binghamton University

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Aleshia Huber is the Engineering Librarian at Binghamton University. She has a B.S. in Chemistry and an M.S. in Library and Information Science, both from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Her interests include information literacy instruction and usability studies.

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Jill Dixon Binghamton University

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Associate Librarian Jill Dixon serves as the Director of Public Services at Binghamton University Libraries. She oversees the development and implementation of innovative services and programs for Reader Services, Research and Instructional Services and three branch libraries. Her interest include library management, space design, information literacy and public services. She formerly served as the Engineering Librarian at Binghamton.

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Sandy Card Binghamton University

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Sandy Card is an Associate Librarian at the Binghamton University Libraries where she is currently the Director of Technical Services. Her interests include information organization and retrieval and the effective use of library management systems to provide easy and accurate discovery.

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This paper describes [University] Libraries’ (Libraries) relationship with an industrial engineering senior design course by serving as a client in two different capstone projects. The Librarians involved were the Director of Public Services, the Director of Technical Services, and the Engineering Librarian. Each project involved a group of engineering students who were tasked with redesigning a library space to meet the needs of its users, one a public service space and the other a technical services space. The two groups of students used their engineering skills to evaluate the current space and study its users to then craft and model a redesign. Additionally, they had the opportunity to receive assistance concerning each project from a professional project design engineer employed by the university. The students attended weekly meetings with the Librarians and staff involved to update and receive feedback on their progress. The Libraries were able to provide the students with valuable experience in what it is like to work as a professional engineer in the field and helped them to understand the high level of communication necessary to do so. The students learned how a library functions and the necessity of understanding the organization’s operations in order to be able to fulfill the client’s needs. By serving as a client, Librarians involved in the process learned first-hand how to support engineering education and information needs. The Librarians were involved with the student’s workflow and understood when and why information was needed. The projects concluded with well thought out and extensive proposals for the redesign which have the potential to be a basis for future renovations.

Huber, A., & Dixon, J., & Card, S. (2017, June), Redesign of Library Spaces: A Collaborative Project with Engineering Students Paper presented at 2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Columbus, Ohio. 10.18260/1-2--27423

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2017 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015