Three years of planning culminated in 2016 with a vision for a library-based “Knowledge Commons” that would strengthen existing services and resources at Hampshire and help guarantee a significant and sustainable future for a reimagined library that meets the needs of 21st century learners.
As we move out of that phase of the project, I’m proud to introduce a detailed Knowledge Commons Project Plan that will help us translate that vision into reality. The core of the plan is a set of desired outcomes that describes what we want to be able to say we’ve accomplished at the end of the project. Each desired outcome implies a set of concrete activities that we can undertake and a set of assessment questions that will help us measure success.
In this post, I’m proud to introduce the three core desired outcomes of the project and a sampling of the activities our project team will undertake as we move towards these goals.
1. Students will demonstrate increased awareness of campus support services & resources and will take greater advantage of those services.
- Improve and expand cooperative marketing efforts, including creating and maintaining shared social media and web presence
- Coordinate targeted outreach to groups of students most likely to benefit from academic support (e.g., first-year students through First Year Tutorials and new student orientation; DIV III students through DIV III orientations, receptions, and through promotion to faculty advisors)
- Provide consultations, workshops, and other services in a central space in the library
- Establish baseline usage numbers for existing peer learning services
2. Students will experience streamlined, seamless, and convenient access to disparate academic resources and services.
- Implement shared scheduling and calendaring system
- Build and maintain shared web and social media presence
- Standardize peer consultant/mentorship models so that students know what to expect when they take advantage of services
- Ensure cross-training of peer consultants/mentors
- Provide consultations, workshops, and other services in a central space
- Offer consistent and coordinated drop-in hours
- Provide consistent and comprehensive referrals to other services/resources
- Extend availability of services/resources by providing after-hours help when professional staff are not in the library
- Improve navigability of library building
3. Students demonstrate improved learning outcomes and retention and an increased sense of belonging.
- Build coordinated and standardized assessment tools to track and analyze students’ experiences with peer consulting/mentoring services
- Work with Hampshire Learning Project and other groups on campus to gather and correlate qualitative and quantitative data about student satisfaction and retention
- Build mechanisms and opportunities for knowledge-sharing and collaboration between Knowledge Commons Partner Programs to improve pedagogy and practice
- Coordinate targeted outreach to first-year students
Stay tuned for my next post, which will offer more details about how the project team will organize its activities to achieve these desired outcomes.