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Cowles Library launches new website

March 20, 2012
News PhotoWhile students are away on Spring Break this week, Cowles Library launched a new website at library.drake.edu.

The site was carefully designed and tested during a one-year process.

It provides better access to the library's extensive array of electronic collections and academic services."The new site is a significant improvement on the older site, with a focus on navigation and usability that will serve Drake well," says Rod Henshaw, dean of Cowles Library. "We've learned a tremendous amount over the last several years about digital navigation; our faculty and staff designed the site to ensure that instruction, research and scholarship would be easier."

Under the direction of Bruce Gilbert, director of library operations and technology and professor of librarianship, and Marc Davis, library technology coordinator, site design began in February 2011 with a faculty team composed of Karl Schaefer, professor of librarianship; and Associate Professors of Librarianship Marcia Keyser, Liga Briedis, and Bart Schmidt.

The committee worked with the library's web developer, Chris Purcell, to design a site based on library pedagogy and best practices used in academic library websites across the country. After the design and initial build, Andrew Welch, systems and discovery librarian, conducted extensive usability testing during the fall semester 2011. The site went into beta mode in January 2012.

The old site has been archived and will remain accessible until fall semester 2012.

The new site will undergo continuous review, and affords the end user the opportunity to provide real-time feedback and recommendations for improvement.

For additional information, please contact Bruce Gilbert at 515-271-4821 or at bruce.gilbert@drake.edu