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Library Learning Objects UX Study

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8am - 10pm

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In April 2017, the UX Team set out to discover students’ perceptions of digital learning objects and how they integrate them into their studies

Research Questions

  • What perceptions of digital learning objects do student hold?
  • How do students integrate digital learning objects into their study practices?


  • We interviewed 18 students in self-selected groups of 2-4 students
  • Students were recruited from CHEM 1050, a difficult required course which draws students from several different majors

What did we Learn?

  • Participants rarely used library learning objects (e.g. LibGuides, handouts and YouTube videos) to support their work and instead detailed the use of TAs, mentors, and other online resources (e.g. Khan Academy), which they spoke about in detail
  • Most participants had never come across any of the library’s digital learning objects
  • The majority of participants preferred videos to print and online handouts
  • Participants want resources and services that are directly related to their course material

Our Recommendations

  • Market resources and services in a way which students see a direct link with the core content of their courses, rather than as ancillary learning strategies
  • Focus on creating videos, rather than handouts. If handouts, make them very short. Continue to provide both print and online versions
  • Follow up with students who have met with learning peers or staff to check in with how their study strategies are working
  • Strive to integrate materials into Courselink, especially as news items
  • Encourage library staff who are currently collecting quantitative data to try some in-depth interviews. This study study produced a rich description of how students describe their own studying habits and how they interact with the supports and services on campus

Year of Study


The library is committed to ensuring that members of our user community with disabilities have equal access to our services and resources and that their dignity and independence is always respected. If you encounter a barrier and/or need an alternate format, please fill out our Library Print and Multimedia Alternate-Format Request Form. Contact us if you’d like to provide feedback: lib.a11y@uoguelph.ca