The student experience and the future of the library

Libraries have moved from being the location for search, access and advice to playing a much smaller role within a much larger information landscape, writes a researcher of JISC, the UK charity that champion the use of digital technologies in UK education and research.

The intimacy between the student or researcher and library has eroded over the last decade as students no longer view the library as the starting point for access to information and content.

While this relationship between student and library has become more distant, the expectations students have for accessing information and library services have increased dramatically. The library now finds itself needing to understand the behaviours and expectations of its students in a way it has never had to.

The author argues for a greater role for longitudinal anthropological (human-driven) research as well as a more data-driven approach to understanding the behaviours of students and library users.