Course Syllabus
Practicum Project Research Methods Resources & Research Contact      
LIS 698 - Practicum/Seminar
  • Design a project based on your practicum work site which uses elements of research from observation, quantitative and qualitative analysis, evaluation and interpretation of evidence (documentation).  The project can be either based in the social sciences such as user services, information technology or management study, or in the humanities based on archives and special collections.
  • Use the resources presented here to help define your project methodology; sample studies will help you define elements of your project.  
  • Use secondary sources to explore what has been done in your areas of study (literature review).
  • *Most importantly, your project should present original work and add value to your work environment.

The Practicum Project

Thinking about the project-
The project is based on your practicum site - it should be specific to your work.  For example, it might concern a collection, service and what you observe and experience about it.  It should speak to issues and emerging needs and trends.

Projects can be focused in the Social Sciences or Humanities:
User Studies
Collection-based studies
Electronic (virtual) services and collections studies

Discuss project ideas with your site supervisor to explore  feasibility and applicability.

Some project elements: observation, discussion, data collection, analysis,
proposed solutions - outcomes, conclusions - recommendations.

Collections-based projects will provide or improve access to a collection,
illustrate and communicate its content and meaning, establish collection contexts and perspectives.


Research Methods

The Scientific Method 
Note the role of observation.

Questionnaires and Surveys

Usability Testing

Journal of Usability Studies
Read:  Usability Testing of Travel Websites
Authors: Deborah S. Carstens and Pauline Patterson

What words and where? Applying usability testing techniques to name a new live reference service by
Vicky Duncan, BA, MLS, Information Services Librarian and Darlene M. Fichter, BA, MLS, Data Library Coordinator.

Interaction Design - Details of a usability study

Thinking about project design-


Resources and Research:

Social Sciences
and Research
Search this database with the search terms, "surveys and users"
Read several of the studies.
  Note chart , Appendix E, linking to info. science e-journals on the Web.
Bibliometrics of electronic journals in information science by Donald T. Hawkins
Editor-in-Chief, Information Science Abstracts Information Today, Inc. Medford, NJ, USA

Information seeking research needs extension towards tasks and technology by Kalervo Järvelin
Department of Information StudiesTampere University, Tampere, Finland, and Peter Ingwersen
The Royal School of Librarianship and Information ScienceCopenhagen, Denmark


Leadership & Management:

Digital Journals - full text
D-Lib Magzine
Issues in Science & Technology Librarianship