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An Ethics/Advocacy & Action Research Project

Morgan Ritchie-Baum

LIS 600 | Fall 2016

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The purpose of this research is to explore effective outreach methods for academic libraries
serving as school libraries for early/middle college high schools that are located on university
campuses. This study will look specifically at “Pop-Up Libraries” as an outreach method to
increase access to university library materials. Research and support for this endeavor is
undertaken by the Michael Family Teaching Resource Center, an affiliate of University of North
Carolina at Greensboro University Libraries, to reach students from the Middle College at
UNCG. Methods used in this research include general qualitative interviews with University
Library Staff and Middle College liaison Tim Sands, along with quantitative analysis of outreach
efforts. This research will serve as a baseline for future outreach efforts undertaken by academic
libraries serving high school populations on university campuses. The initial study concluded
that while the Pop-Up Library model does have merits as a positive way to engage with students,
educating them about available resources and providing easier access to certain library materials,
it is not an effective method to increase access to the complete University Library System or
educate students about the entire University Collection.

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I: Ethical Question .................................................................................................................. 4
II: Situational Investigation ..................................................................................................... 6
III: Advocacy Project ............................................................................................................. 10
IV: Research Methods ............................................................................................................ 13
V: Results .............................................................................................................................. 14
Table 1: PUL Event One Results- Week One of Four-Week Trial ..................................................... 14
Table 2: PUL Event Two Results- Week Three of Four-Week Trial Period ...................................... 14
Table 3: Remote Checkout Requests Over the Four-Week Trial Period ........................................... 14
Table 4: Suggestions for Collection Over the Four-Week Trial Period ............................................ 14
VI: Analysis .......................................................................................................................... 15
Figure 1: PUL On-Site Results .......................................................................................................... 16
Figure 2: # of Books Checked Out Relative to Students Checking Out Books ................................... 16
Figure 3: # of Titles Requested Remotely vs. # of Titles Checked Out During PUL Event ............... 17
Figure 4: # of Students Who Suggested Materials for Collection Development over a 4 Week Period
........................................................................................................................................................... 17
Figure 5: Student Use of the PUL and Remote Check-Out Services Over the Course of a 4-week
Trial Period ....................................................................................................................................... 19
VII: Research Limitations ...................................................................................................... 20
VIII: Conclusion .................................................................................................................... 22
References: ............................................................................................................................ 23
Appendices: ........................................................................................................................... 24
Appendix A: Example of MCUNCG “Remind App” promoting remote PUL services. ................... 24
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I: Ethical Question

What is the ethical obligation of academic and research libraries to non-traditional user

What is an academic library’s mission? The Association of College and Research Libraries
(ACRL) does not define one stated mission for academic and research libraries but, instead,
offers guidance and support in assisting individual libraries that are classified or affiliated with
academic or research institutions in crafting their own individual mission statements and
guidelines. Broadly speaking, most American libraries, including American academic and
research libraries, adhere to the broad scope of the professional mission, standard, and ethical
obligations as outlined by the American Library Association(ALA). The ALA has updated its
strategic mission to emphasize the need “…for continued work in the areas of Advocacy for
Libraries and the Profession, Diversity, Education and Lifelong Learning, Equitable Access to
Information and Library Services, Intellectual Freedom, Literacy, Organizational Excellence and
Transforming Libraries” (ALA 2008). In general, academic and research libraries will be
associated with a college or university and, as such, will craft a mission statement that is in line
with both ALA ethical standards and its university’s mission statement.

The user or patron is at the heart of their organizational goals for both the ALA and the ACRL.
One could argue that increasing access, promoting literacy, promoting diversity, and advocating
for intellectual freedom, etc. are all promoted as ethical standards due to their very real impact on
the consumption of and access to information for individuals. For academic and research
libraries, their users are typically defined as the students, faculty, and staff associated with their
university or college. As such, academic libraries will craft specific mission statements and
ethical and procedural guidelines based on that specific user group and the wider ethical
standards and institutional mission guiding the librarian profession and the academic institution.
A 1997 report looking at the language used in a selection of Californian academic libraries and
how that reflected on the future of academic libraries, found that academic libraries will “blend
traditional professional practice with an increased external response to the larger institution and
community” (Rogers Bangert 1997). The clearest consensus from this study was that 40% of
Californian academic libraries expressed the importance of providing access to their user group,
improving institutional outcomes, and supporting curriculum directly in their mission statement
(Rogers Bangert 1997).

But what about non-traditional (i.e. not university, faculty, staff, or
undergraduate/graduate/doctoral students) users? Do academic libraries have an ethical
obligation to provide resources and access to their wider community? As outlined in Bangert’s
(1997) study on Californian academic libraries, the future picture of academic libraries is “...a
picture of blended purpose: commitment to internally-focused professional practice related to the
organization of information and collections, and an externally-focused response to the larger
institution and community”. In her article on the role of academic libraries and their obligation to
their wider community, Ohio State University Reference Librarian Tina Schneider (2003, 201)
outlined three basic factors that academic libraries typically use when determining their level of
interaction with their wider community:

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1. Is there an expressed need from outside the associated academic institution?
2. Does the library’s mission statement make allowances for independent action?
3. Is there a need for “a form of outreach in response to a specific problem or crisis”?

Schneider (2003, 201) goes on to state that for all libraries and librarians, the “principles of
librarianship” endure; “issues of access to information, responsibility of the academy to the
public, and creating useful partnerships continue to play a large role in our profession”. Using
this outline, if a need is expressed by an outside community of users and the mission statement
of the academic or research library allow for and can support wider community engagement and
outreach, than an academic or research library does have an ethical obligation to assess how the
institution can support the non-traditional user group with their expressed need.

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II: Situational Investigation

The Middle College at UNCG and UNCG University Libraries.

Begun as a way to raise high school graduation rates and encourage students to seek university or
college degrees, “early colleges” or “middle colleges” are increasingly popular options in many
school systems around the country and are often incorporated into a school system’s magnet
program. In North Carolina alone, between 2004 and 2008 forty-two early colleges were opened
with the goal of opening at least thirty-three more in the following years (Hoffman, Vargas, and
Santos 2008, 23). At Guilford Co. schools, North Carolina’s third largest school district, there
are currently eight early or middle colleges included in their magnet program. Students apply for
admission and each school has several unique criteria- everything, from grades, family income,
number of college degrees in a family, personal references, test scores, personal essays- that are
considered before students are granted admission into the program.

Early and middle colleges vary in grades, some accept students in grades 9-12 while others focus
solely on high school juniors and seniors. Most early/middle colleges are “themed” meaning that
in addition to standard subjects, they will focus closely on a particular field of inquiry such as
STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math), health and medicine, or performing and
creative arts. In addition to themed education, many early/middle colleges operate in conjunction
with a two or four-year university. This relationship means many early/middle college students
have the opportunity to receive dual-credit for any college level coursework (receive both credit
for their high school degree and towards a college degree) with the added benefit of not having
to pay college tuition because of the magnet school’s public school status. Many early/middle
colleges school facilities are on university and college campuses meaning many early/middle
college students will be learning, interacting with, and utilizing university resources.

The Middle College at the University of North Carolina Greensboro (MCUNCG) is part of the
Guilford Co. School’s Magnet and Choice Schools Program. Serving Guilford Co. School
students in grades 9-12, the Middle College is modeled on a dual-credit early college program
where students are able to complete high school required courses in addition to college courses
with college credit. Beginning their freshman year, students have the ability to earn up to two
years of college credit. The school was opened in 2011 and admits 50 students a year for a
maximum student body of 200 students. Students are selected through an application process.
Current student to teacher ratio stands at 1:17. The Middle College at UNCG is primarily
focused on educating students who express an interest in health and life sciences and are strongly
encouraged to maintain a 3.0 in all academic coursework. All school facilities and classes are on
the UNCG campus and incorporate campus facilities including University Libraries. As of the
2014-15 school year, the Middle College posted a 100% graduation rate.

The University of North Carolina Greensboro (UNCG) is part of the wider University of North
Carolina system and is based in the Piedmont Triad area of North Carolina. As of the 2014-15
school year, UNCG has 17,200 on-campus students with an additional 2,200 in extension
programs. There are currently 79 undergraduate programs, 65 master’s programs, and 30
doctoral programs. The University Library system includes Walter Clinton Jackson Library and
the Harold Schiffman Music Library. In addition to the University Library system is the Michael
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Family Teaching Resource Center (TRC) and S.E.L.F. Design Studio, which is a model school
media center, makerspace, and professional K-12 educational resource center. The TRC is an
affiliate of University Libraries. University Libraries and the TRC also make all of their
collections and services available to K-12 educators in the Piedmont Triad area. University
Libraries current holdings are approximately 1.2 million books and other assorted published
materials. The TRC currently holds over 22,000 books and other assorted published materials.

Qualitative Interviews

To better understand the current state of use, needs, and access of MCUNCG students to
University Libraries, qualitative interviews were conducted with MCUNCG University Liaison,
Tim Sands and Head of Research, Outreach, and Instruction at Jackson Library, Amy Harris

On Access

Tim Sands (2016) reported that currently, only seniors at MCUNCG have the ability to regularly
visit University Libraries outside of regular class visits. This permission to visit is new this year
and students are required to use a check-in/check-out system via a web app. Mr. Sands (2016)
commented that the senior students seem to really enjoy and take advantage of this ability, citing
the Digital Media Commons at Jackson Library as a favorite “go-to” spot. Freshman through
juniors are not allowed to independently visit campus areas, including University Libraries
outside of their regularly assigned classes. They may only use Campus Libraries if they are
visiting as a class or in very rare instances where a pass is given. Both the Middle College and
University Libraries allow Middle College students access to the full host of University Library
materials and resources available to UNCG students through the UNCG Library system.

On Access to Guilford Co. School’s Media Centers

As Guilford Co. students, most UNCG Middle College students will have “home” schools- that
is, schools Middle College students would be required to go to if they were not accepted into a
Guilford Co. Magnet School like the Middle College. When questioned whether MCUNCG
students have access to their “home” school’s Media Centers, Tim Sands (2016) remarked that
students may use their “home” libraries but as most, if not all, Middle College students come
directly from their residence to MCUNCG, they have very few instances where they will
physically visit the “home” school libraries during school/for school purposes. Mr. Sand’s (2016)
also remarked that in their day-to-day, MCUNCG students will use UNCG libraries as their
“home” library over GCS Media Centers and resources.

On University Library Programs for MCUNCG Students, Faculty, and Staff

Ms. Harris Houk (2016) outlined several programs and services University Libraries provide
MCUNCG students. “The libraries do classes for the Middle College. We always do an
orientation with the freshmen, and we also offer research instruction sessions for when classes
have research assignments” (Harris Houk 2016). Mr. Sands (2016) also emphasized that one of
the more common uses of the Library by MCUNCG Students was visiting as classes for various
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projects or lesson plans as assigned by their teachers. In terms of professional development, Ms.
Harris Houk (2016) described how the University Library provided a presentation to the
MCUNCG faculty and staff on what services the Library offers. She also provides handouts to
MCUNCG faculty and staff and other Guildford Co. Schools’ Media Coordinators on what
resources are available from University Libraries (Harris Houk 2016). Mr. Sands (2016)
commented in his interview that the professional development session was very well received by
MCUNCG faculty and staff. In addition to library orientation with Jackson Library, Mr. Sands
(2016) discussed that this was the first year MCUNCG freshman orientation has been expanded
to include trips to various student resource areas on campus such as Weatherspoon Art Museum,
SELF Design studio, TRC, etc. and shown the various resources available to them as students.

On Perceived Use and Boundaries to Access

When asked to give her personal opinion on how well utilized Jackson Library Services are by
UNCG Middle College, Ms. Harris Houk (2016) responded that “...we've definitely been
underutilized by the MC. Students rarely come in individually to check out books and we didn't
see them again after their orientation. I am hopeful because of some recent changes that we will
be more integrated into courses that do research and that students will be able to visit outside
class time.” When Mr. Sands (2016) was asked about how Middle College Faculty and Staff
perceive the ability to use and access University Libraries, he reported that many staff want to
use and incorporate Library resources and services into their lessons but feel restrained due to
logistical issues (time it takes to walk to libraries and back to classes) and the structured teaching
required in High School education (adhere to lesson plans and state standards/timelines). Mr.
Sands (2016) went onto to report that most UNCG Middle College faculty, students, and staff
enjoy and would like more instances of UNCG library resources and staff coming to them in the
form of on-site material check out or guest lecturer in class.

On the Importance of the University Library and Information Literacy for Teens

Mr. Sands (2016) expressed that, along with learning about research methodology and resources,
he viewed the University Libraries as a vital partner in encouraging the Middle College to
incorporate more SSR (Sustained Silent Reading) into the current teaching model. Without a
Media Center specifically for Middle College student use and the logistical hurdle of getting the
students to University Libraries, SSR is not currently an actively supported standard across all
Middle College classrooms (i.e. students are not sent to University Libraries during school hours
with the express purpose of finding SSR materials). Mr. Sands (2016) sees this as an important
part of Middle College student’s overall information literacy skills. On teen use of academic
libraries Ms. Harris Houk (2016) reported:

I think early exposure to an academic library can be beneficial to
students under the right circumstances, if students are doing
college-level research. As long as the students can have a session
with a librarian and librarian support while researching, I think it's
helpful for students to have a positive experience at an academic
library while they're in high school. We have had situations in the
past where a high school teacher sends students to the library to
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use a print resource we no longer have or a database we no longer
subscribe to. That just leads to frustration for everyone.

Finally, Mr. Sands (2016) concluded that he viewed collaboration between campus student
resource departments (like the library) and the Middle College as a way to foster a better, more
welcoming relationship between the university and the Middle College.

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III: Advocacy Project

Greater Access through Accommodation via Outreach

From these qualitative interviews, it is clear there has been some attempt by University Libraries
to reach out to Middle College students, faculty, and staff but, from the view of the Middle
College, there is still more that needs to happen in order to support literacy and access to
materials. Does the UNCG Libraries’ Mission Statement and goals support further outreach
opportunities in line with the ethical obligation of American libraries (via ALA Professional
Standards) to increase access and support lifelong literacy? The UNCG Library Mission
Statement is:

Through expertise in information services, the University Libraries
foster the success and impact of the UNC Greensboro community
by promoting learning, inspiring creativity and enhancing research
and collaboration in a diverse and innovative environment
(University Libraries 2015).

On Access, UNCG Libraries underscore that they will “...strive to offer on site and remote
services for the convenience of our customers” (University Libraries 2015).

On serving the wider community, UNCG Libraries state that “[w]hile the faculty, staff and
students of the University are our first priority, everyone will receive courteous and friendly
service, regardless of location and University affiliation” (University Libraries 2015).

UNCG Libraries also list a number of goals in their Mission Statement. Two goals of note:

● “Serve as the information and learning hub for the campus by
providing quality information services, technology, resources and
learning environments” (University Libraries 2015).
● “Engage with community partners to provide programs and
resources that enhance the life of the University and community
and build long-term support for the Libraries” (University
Libraries 2015).

While broad and flexible in nature these statements and goals, combined with the expressed need
from the UNCG Middle College, advocates for new models of accommodation for MCUNCG
students. While not UNCG students per se, the University, by allowing the MCUNCG on
campus and full access to University facilities including the Library and its affiliates, has an
obligation to experiment with new modes of outreach and access that not only support student
research and instructional literacy, but also access to materials, especially books, that support a
lifelong commitment to literacy. In doing so, there is the opportunity to foster better engagement
with community partners, including the Middle College and its students and parents living and
working in the Greensboro area.

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A 2004 report by the U.S. National Endowment for the Arts found that “[a]s children move
through their teenage years, they become less and less likely to pick up a book” (cited in
Mahaffy 2009, 165). And, while educating students on research methodology and how to
effectively access research materials and construct accurate citations and bibliographic
references, is critical both to students and the academic library mission, academic libraries
benefit not only students but also the general institution when they support generalized reading
initiatives in their community. Humanities Librarian Mardi Mahaffy (2009, 165) from New
Mexico State University underscores this importance in her article “In Support of Reading:
Reading Outreach Programs at Academic Libraries”. She states that “[f]or the college student,
the practice of book length reading can encourage the development of skills necessary to a
successful academic experience, such as comprehension, critical thinking, and navigating
through large amounts of text” (Mahaffy 2009, 165). By actively striving to encourage literacy
for high school users, UNCG University Libraries further their mission to “...foster the success
and impact of the UNC Greensboro community by promoting learning, inspiring creativity and
enhancing research and collaboration in a diverse and innovative environment” (University
Libraries 2015). As a response to the expressed needs of MCUNCG for easier access to library
materials and services, especially to SSR materials, a new advocacy project undertaken by the
University Curriculum Materials and Model School Media Center affiliate, the Michael Family
Teaching Resource Center (TRC) at UNCG, will explore outreach response from Middle College
students, faculty, and staff.

TRC Pop-Up Library

The outreach model that will be investigated in this study is a “Pop-Up Library (PUL)”. A 2015
Australian paper investigating the concept of pop-up libraries, defines a pop-up as “...established
when businesses, governments, universities, community groups, individuals or brands
temporarily activate places and spaces for promotion, trials, or the sharing of resources. The key
element for pop-ups is discovery” (Davis et al. 2015, 94). Looking at this definition, a pop-up for
a library could involve any number of different features including remote material check-out,
service education, and promotion of the physical library space through brochures, activities, etc.
Davis et al. (2015, 103) conclude in their paper on pop-up libraries in Australia that this outreach
model allows “...libraries to promote literacy beyond the physical space of the library, providing
an opportunity to remind and inform the community of its services.”

For the purpose of this advocacy project, the Pop-Up Library will constitute a single traditional
shelving cart on wheels that will be stocked with a collection of selected books from the
collection of the TRC. The TRC was chosen as the “home” of the Pop-Up Library for several

● TRC director, Lori Sands previously expressed interest and support for promoting
outreach of books and materials to MCUNCG students and staff.
● In addition to being the center of and housing many of the curriculum materials
for UNCG Libraries and the UNCG School of Education, the TRC also serves as
a model school media center for School of Education Students. As such, its
collection, in addition to curriculum materials, contains a large selection of award
winning and popular young adult fiction and nonfiction titles.
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● The TRC traditionally serves mostly School of Education students and does not
have as robust a circulation as main campus library, Jackson Library. As such, it
has the flexibility in materials and staff to accommodate the necessary time and
materials commitment required by a pop-up library.
● When asked about her goal for a TRC Pop-Up Library, TRC director Lori Sands

It is my hope that students will read more due to the ready
availability of good material. I hope to generate excitement by
bringing different and new books and by being available to provide
readers advisory. I also hope to encourage them to visit the TRC
when they are able. This is a good opportunity to connect with
teachers as well, to remind them of the resources the TRC can
offer (L. Sands 2016).

Statement of Goals

Results from this project will be used to answer the following questions:

1. Relative to the present student population how many students check out materials from
the Pop-Up Library over the course of a 4-week trial period?
2. Are students more interested in discovering titles through a small curated collection or
requesting titles from the wider collection over the course of a 4-week trial period?
3. Are students interested in being active participants of collection development over the
course of a 4-week trial period?
4. How does student use of the Pop-Up Library and remote check-out services vary over the
course of a 4-week trial period?

Ultimately, the answers to these questions will be used, more generally, to provide a baseline for
future research of MCUNCG student’s reception to outreach methods by University Libraries,
and, more specifically, if the Pop-Up model is an effective community outreach and access
method for University Libraries.

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IV: Research Methods

For this initial phase of the Pop-Up Library(PUL), the materials available to MCUNCG students
will be books selected by TRC staff. Fiction, nonfiction, biography, and graphic novels from the
TRC collection will be selected based on staff knowledge of award winning and popular titles for
9th-12th grade interest. There will also be an attempt to provide materials appropriate for readers
both above and below high school reading levels. Approximately 150 books will be available to
students to check out during each PUL event. Currently, MCUNCG students are split between
two campus buildings for lunch. Their lunch runs from 11:20-12:20P.M. Monday-Friday. The
Pop-Up Library will visit each group bi-weekly over the course of four consecutive weeks.
Group A is the smaller group with approximately 20-25 students present at lunch and Group B is
the larger group with approximately 50-55 students present at lunch.

In addition to books, the TRC will support remote check-out for students including assisting
students with renewing items, returning items, and addressing overdue materials. TRC staff
(typically two staff members) will be on hand to assist students with looking up materials in the
catalog and providing reader’s advisory services. Two iPads will be made available to students
so that they may suggest items for collection development and/or look up items currently in our
catalogue that can then be checked out to and sent to the student at the Middle College via
Campus Courier or via the PUL’s next visit (Remote Check-Out). Google forms are used to
capture both of these responses. The Google request forms will be made available to students in
the interim weeks using the MCUNCG “Remind App”, in addition to being available during the
PUL event, so that they may request or suggest materials if interested (See Appendix A).

Data will be collected on:
● Number of students present (approximate)
● Number of students who approach and peruse the PUL
● Number of students who check out materials
● Number of books checked out at each PUL event
● Number of students who participate in collection development efforts
● Number of students who request titles for remote check out and delivery

Data collected during the PUL event will be done by one of the PUL supporting TRC staff
members. Observed behaviors will be transcribed and then input into a supporting Google Form.
Observed data for this four-week trial period will be collected twice a week over the course of
two alternating weeks. Data on remote services will be collected during PUL events as students
input requests and over the course of the four-week trial period as students receive periodic PUL
remote service “Remind App” updates at the discretion of the Middle College. Students answers
will flow directly into a Google Form which can then be analyzed by TRC staff members.

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V: Results

This section shows the results from the data collected over the initial four-week PUL trial period.

Table 1: PUL Event One Results- Week One of Four-Week Trial

Group # of MCUNCG
Students Present
Students Who
Students Who
# of Books Checked
(approximate) Approached PUL Checked Out Books Students
Group A 25 10 5 8
Group B 55 18 12 19

Table 2: PUL Event Two Results- Week Three of Four-Week Trial Period
Group # of MCUNCG
Students Present
Students Who
Students Who
# of Books Checked
(approximate) Approached PUL Checked Out Books Students
Group A 25 5 1 1
Group B 55 11 3 8

Table 3: Remote Checkout Requests Over the Four-Week Trial Period

Week One Week Two Week Three Week Four
# of Requests 0 0 1 1

Table 4: Suggestions for Collection Over the Four-Week Trial Period

Week One Week Two Week Three Week Four
# of Suggestions 3 1 5 5

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VI: Analysis

Relative to the present student population how many students check out materials from the
Pop-Up Library over the course of a 4-week trial period?

Data collected during the two PUL events indicated that approximately 20% of students in both
Group A and Group B checked out materials during the first PUL event. These percentages
dropped dramatically during the second event for Group A, only 4% of students checked out
materials, and by 7% for Group B, only 15% of students checked out materials (Figure 1).
Surprising to researchers however, was the high number of books checked out to each individual
who elected to check out books from the PUL (Figure 2). During the first PUL event, both
Group A and Group B checked out roughly two books per individual. During the second week,
Group A dropped to one book per individual but Group B increased to approximately three
books per individual. The collection of books brought during each event remained relatively
consistent, with a few titles changing as books were returned or checked out. This “stagnant”
collection of titles could have impacted what students were interested in checking out but
considering that fewer students approached the PUL during the second event (Table 1 & Table
2) this result could also be associated with different student populations being present over the
course of the two PUL events. Overall, more data will need to be collected to understand if the
length of time between each PUL event impacts the number of students checking out materials
and the amount of materials checked out. Once it is established what the “ideal time gap” is
between each event, then more emphasis can be placed on how the present collection may impact
student’s checkout habits. Part of the appeal of the “Pop-Up” Model is the “newness” or
“surprise” element of the event occurring in different spaces. It is hypothesized that the longer
the “time gap” between each PUL event, the greater student interest will be based on this
“novelty” factor. Subsequent data will need to be collected to evaluate and gage whether
“novelty” impacts student engagement in PUL events. In terms of outreach for University
Libraries, because MCUNCG students are not tracked separately from other UNCG students in
the Universities circulation system, it is hard to gauge immediately how these events impact
MCUNCG use of University Libraries. Further PUL collection data will be useful in supporting
conclusions on this issue. It is however, worth noting, that during the PUL there was general
excitement and interest by both student and faculty at the presence of books available for
immediate check-out and use.

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Figure 1: PUL On-Site Results

Figure 2: # of Books Checked Out Relative to Students Checking Out Books

Are students more interested in discovering titles through a small curated collection or
requesting titles from the wider collection over the course of a 4-week trial period?

From this initial four-week trial, it appears that students are currently more interested or more
driven to select books when presented with a physical collection as opposed to searching an
online catalogue and filling out a request form (see Figure 3). This result could have been
impacted by student comfort with both the available Google Form (although students did
regularly use a similar Google Form to suggest materials for collection addition see Figure 4)
and the University’s online catalogue. Another factor that could have limited student use of this
on-line request form was their use of and comfort with the “Remind App” which was used by the
Middle College to alert students to this resource. Due to privacy issues, the ability to send out
these notices (for an example of these notices see Appendix A) and how often they went out to
students was at the sole discretion of Middle College staff. It is possible that as students become
more familiar with this process, they may begin to use this feature more. Until more data is
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collected, current data supports making the physical collection more accessible in order
encourage material use by MCUNCG students.

Figure 3: # of Titles Requested Remotely vs. # of Titles Checked Out During PUL Event

Are students interested in being active participants of collection development over the
course of a 4-week trial period?

One of the more surprising results was student engagement in collection development. Like
Remote Checkout Requests, students were able to fill out a Google Form indicating books they
would like to see added to our collection. This form was available during PUL events and in the
interim weeks through links sent out through the “Remind App”. Students engaged more with
this form during weeks when the PUL was present but still registered responses during the
interim weeks (see Figure 4). Further data collection on MCUNCG student’s material selection
habits and subsequent rotation of these selected titles into the PUL Event collection may shed
further light onto whether active involvement in collection development encourages MCUNCG
students to interact more with PUL events specifically and University Libraries more generally.

Figure 4: # of Students Who Suggested Materials for Collection Development over a 4 Week Period

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How does student use of the Pop-Up Library and remote check-out services vary over the
course of a 4-week trial period?

Data collected over the 4-week trial period indicated a downward trend for student use of PUL
and minimal use of the Remote Checkout service (see Figure 5). As noted previously, further
data will need to be collected in order to ascertain if this downtrend is due to disinterest by
MCUNCG students or, as discussed previously, if the “novelty” or “unique experience” factor of
the PUL is directly related to student interest in utilizing PUL services. The next planned trial
phase of the PUL is planned with three-weeks between visits. This next trial phase will occur
over the course of approximately nine weeks. If student use increases during this phase,
researchers will assess whether an increase of four-weeks between visits is viable and/or
beneficial. If student use decreases during this secondary trial phase, then researchers may
evaluate the effectiveness of such a strategy for outreach and access initiatives for University
Libraries. The effectiveness and use of the Remote Checkout Services is questionable. This
service was promoted in the same capacity and frequency as the Collection Development Service
which was used more consistently over the course of the four-week trial period. As stated
previously, it is possible that more frequent or consistent promotion of these services by the
Middle College to their students may increase use of the Remote Checkout Service. Students
apparent disinterest in this method of obtaining materials may indicate that physical proximity to
books and library collections is directly related to use of and interest in library materials for this
specific user group. Furthermore, continuing to offer the Remote Checkout Service in addition to
PUL events during the second trial phase may support further data analysis of how best to reach
out and serve this specific user group.

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Figure 5: Student Use of the PUL and Remote Check-Out Services Over the Course of a 4-week Trial

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VII: Research Limitations

A number of limitations or possible influencing factors have already been indicated previously in
this report. Because UNCG Libraries do not classify MCUNCG students separately from the
undergraduate population, it is difficult to provide a statistical figure on MCUNCG use of
University Libraries prior to and after the PUL trial. This research also did not survey MCUNCG
students themselves due to the time commitment required by the IRB process required to
interview or survey children under the age of 18. Overall, these two factors make it difficult to
study how University Libraries can best reach and provide access to collections for MCUNCG

The same can be said about MCUNCG faculty and staff. No formal survey was conducted with
MCUNCG faculty and staff and, while qualitative interviews were conducted with persons
associated with MCUNCG, these interviews by no means form a complete picture of the current
state of relations between the Middle College and University Libraries- what is working and
what more there is do. Again, as stated previously in this report, four weeks is clearly not long
enough to form a complete picture of how effective PUL events are for increasing access and
outreach for this population but, as a starting point, the model still offers some benefit in
showing that there is, in general, interest among the MCUNCG student population for greater
access to the University's physical book collection and engagement with outreach efforts.

Data was collected via observation. Students often engaged with both TRC staff members,
including staff collecting observational data, during PUL events. Recorded responses may be
flawed due to the observational staff member's attention being engaged elsewhere. PUL events
were planned independently of the MCUNCG student event schedule meaning the student body
was never typical- students that could be at PUL Event One may not have been at PUL Event
Two due to a MCUNCG event or other function requiring student involvement. Likewise, the
Senior population at MCUNCG are not required to be on campus during their lunch hour so there
was an entire MCUNCG population segment not exposed to the PUL Event. Additionally, PUL
Events always occurred during the lunch hour. Further studies or research on this topic may find
that time and place affect these results.

The TRC was the only University collection that participated in this research. Although the
TRC’s collection is tailored to this age-group, it also represents one of the smallest collections
available to MCUNCG students. It is possible that MCUNCG students may have preferred titles
or materials from other University collections that were not made available by the PUL or the
Remote Service options. Additionally, although every effort was made by this researcher to
conduct this research in a scientific, ethical, and unbiased manner, being employed by and
invested in the work that is done in the TRC could have unintentionally biased any results or

Anyone interested in this research method would do well to plan accordingly so both student and
faculty from the subject population can be surveyed or interviewed prior to and after the Pop-Up
Event. Having an involved staff or faculty partner from the subject population would also allow
better coordination for PUL Events and a better understanding of the makeup of the present
student population and their current library access status. Additionally, having a dedicated
Ritchie-Baum 21
observer collecting data would ensure more reliable observational data. If the participating
university has several libraries on campus that early or middle college students have access to,
having a dedicated partner from these collections for both material and research purposes would
increase the viability of the results representing how outreach and access opportunities affect
university libraries as a whole, not just one library or one collection. Lastly, separating early or
middle college students in the library's circulation system will yield more accurate data when
determining early or middle college student use of university library services and materials and
how outreach and access efforts affect this data.

Ritchie-Baum 22
VIII: Conclusion

Is the Pop-Up model an effective community outreach and access method for UNCG
University Libraries to reach students and faculty at the Middle College at University of North
Carolina Greensboro?

Even with the limited time frame and scope of this research and the lack of available data on
MCUNCG use of University Libraries, it was found that the Pop-Up Model does have some
merit to increasing outreach and access to University Libraries by Middle College at UNCG
students. Perhaps the most important result of this study was the huge disparity between students
wanting to check out books in person vs checking out books online and having them delivered to
them. Future research and systems analysis may design a remote access checkout system that
works more efficiently than the one used in this study but, for this population in this study,
relative proximity to physical materials appeared to influence the use of library materials. The
study did not last long enough to determine if the “novelty” or “pop up” element of the PUL had
any effect on student’s desire to check out materials or visit University Libraries, but in general
students were excited and eager to check out materials once they approached the cart and wanted
to know where they could find more materials or return materials.

While this research shows that this model does inform, provide access to, and encourage
MCUNCG students to use TRC materials and services (one part of the University Library
System) it remains unclear how it affects outreach and access for the wider University Library
System. In this capacity, the PUL model may not be effective unless the entire University
Library System has a hand in selecting materials and promoting all of the services and
collections available to MCUNCG from University Libraries.

This model should not be used as the sole community outreach method of University Libraries or
as the sole model for increasing access to University materials for MCUNCG students but, when
used in conjunction with other outreach methods undertaken by University Libraries like tours,
professional development, and first-year research instruction, will further engage with and
encourage MCUNCG students to visit and use University Libraries. Additionally, as the PUL
trials continue, if students continue to prefer accessing materials in person rather than requesting
materials remotely, University Libraries may consider more robust efforts in bringing the
University collection to Middle College students. Due to the restraints placed on students by the
Middle College due to the age of students and the structured nature of their school day,
accommodating MCUNCG by assessing their needs for access to materials and library services
and working to fulfill those needs in every way possible, whether through library tours or Pop-
Up Events, University Libraries will be fulfilling their stated mission and ethical standards of the
University and the library profession.

Ritchie-Baum 23

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Appendix A: Example of MCUNCG “Remind App” promoting remote PUL services.