Help Western Libraries improve our online services

Published on January 22, 2018

Written by:  David Fiander

Invitation to participate

You are being invited to participate in this research project to determine how the library’s online presence fits into campus users’ work when researching, learning, and teaching because you are a student, instructor, or researcher at Western.

Why is this study being done?

The aim of our study is to learn how people on campus search for information to support their learning, teaching, and research. We will be using our findings to develop idealized “personas” that capture archetypical work and behaviour patterns of various segments of Western’s community. We will be using the personas to help guide Western Libraries staff when they are revising the Western Libraries website or developing new online services.

How long will you be in this study?

We expect that you will be in the study for one visit, lasting approximately one hour.

What are the study procedures?

If you agree to participate in this study, you will be interviewed about how you search for information that supports your learning, teaching, and research. During the interview, you will demonstrate, on your own computer, where you go to search for information and how you organize the information that you gather. If you have an office on campus, the interview will take place in your office; if you do not have an office, the interview will take place in a meeting room in one of the libraries, or via telephone or video chat, depending on your availability. If the interview is taking place in the library, then we will request that you bring your laptop, or other devices that you use to do research and writing, to the interview, if feasible.

Interviews will be conducted in English, will be audio recorded, and the researchers will be taking notes. Audio recording the session is optional, and may be stopped at any time. If the session is being conducted via video chat, only the audio will be recorded.

What are the risks and harms of participating in this study?

There are no known or anticipated risks or discomforts associated with participating in this study.

What are the benefits?

You may not directly benefit from participation in the study but information gathered may provide benefits to the broader community of students, faculty and staff at Western and beyond. Possible benefits include: improved access to research, teaching and learning materials made available through Western Libraries.

For more information, including the full Letter of Information and to volunteer, please contact

David J. Fiander, Web Services Librarian

Document version: 2.0
Document date: 31 October 2017