The Library and My Learning Community

Tammy J. Eschedor Voelker


During the 2002–03 academic year a team of reference librarians at the Kent State University main library began working with two freshman learning communities as part of an initiative to learn more about the needs of first-year students. This article reports on the outreach to one of those, the Science Learning Community, and on the results of a focus group undertaken with members of that group. The study found that the students valued the library instruction offered and were even inclined to request that more library-related instruction be incorporated in the future. Students revealed apprehensions about using the library and also offered suggestions for new services, including the idea that all freshmen should have the same learning opportunity. The community program director was very pleased with the library’s contributions to the students’ learning experience. The initial outreach was considered a success by all involved and it was decided that the Main Library continue to develop the services and to further integrate library components into the students’ curriculum for future semesters.

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