ALL-SIS Discussion of Student Services (March 18-22, 2013)

The ALL-SIS Student Services Committee hosted an online discussion of student services on the discussion forum of the Academic Law Libraries SIS community on AALL’s My Communities.  For the week of March 18 – March 22, 2013, the community posted a daily question on student services in order to foster discussion and share ideas of how best to meet the research and instructional needs of student library patrons.  The discussion was coordinated by committee members Rob Beharriell, Heather Casey, and Morgan Stoddard.  The questions appear below and a compilation of responses is available here.  Names, titles, and schools of participants  were included to enable others to contact them individually for more  information.

Thank you to everyone who participated in the discussion!


  1. Orientation: What does your library do during orientation to introduce the student services that you offer? Have you made changes to your orientation procedures within the past few years and if so, why? Does your library hold any events for students near the beginning of the fall semester apart from orientation?
  2. Outreach:  Are there any new or unique services that your library offers to reach out to students?   For example,
    1. Has your school ever offered a librarian/student liaison program?  Was it successful?  If so, what made it successful, and if not, what were the problems you encountered?
    2. Is your library doing anything to recognize student scholarship (i.e., hosting a reception, creating a display honoring student publications, et cetera)?
    3. Does your library host any sort of educational outreach programs or events with speakers other than legal research instruction? If so, on what topics, how was the turnout, and how did you promote the events?
  3. Instruction:  We’re looking forward to hearing about what libraries have been doing recently in terms of research instruction for your students.  For example,
    1. Do librarians work with student organizations other than law reviews and journals to offer specialized research instruction to its members (e.g., offer an immigration law research workshop to your school’s immigration law society)?
    2. Are you offering any classes or instruction on using legal applications on mobile devices?
    3. Are you using mobile devices and applications for legal research instruction?
    4. What supplemental instruction does your library provide to students, such as research workshops for students writing a seminar paper?
  4. Personal Information Management:  Is your library doing anything to assist students with their personal information management and research organization?  For example,
    1. Do you offer classes for students on citation management software (e.g., Zotero, RefWorks) or have you created research guides or other publications on these tools?
    2. Do you offer any classes or resources for students on organizing and managing their research generally (e.g., not only citation management software, but also tips for organizing and keeping track of research and other tools like folders in WestlawNext and Lexis Advance)? If you have offered classes, what has the attendance been like?
  5. Non-traditional Materials:  What non-traditional items does your library circulate (i.e., items other than books, periodicals, or CDs/DVDS, such as computer chargers or computers)?  What’s the most popular?  Is there anything you don’t currently offer, but wish you did?

[See  Responses (PDF)]