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Library Advisory Group

Your way to shape library services

What is the Library Advisory Group (LAG)?

The Library Advisory Group is your way of helping to shape the future direction of Library Services across all three campuses (Colchester, Loughton and Southend). It is a participatory forum to explore what our Library users want and how the Library can best provide it. All members of the University are welcome and encouraged to participate. Feedback received is used to guide our service delivery and priorities.

When and where does LAG meet?

LAG activities, whether that be an in person meeting or drop in activities across a particular week, usually takes place twice a year, once in the Autumn term and once in the Spring term.

We aim to run in person LAG activities in each of our three libraries, but we also encourage online participation for those users who are unable to come to campus, as we are just as interested in feedback on our virtual services as our physical spaces. 

When a LAG event is happening, we will contact our LAG mailing list to invite participation, as well as sharing more widely on our social media channels, our library website and posters within our library spaces. 

What are LAG activities like?

There are a number of ways we run LAG activities. 

We may choose to hold a one off meeting/event, usually in the Albert Sloman Library, where we invite LAG members to participate in informal discussion and encourage feedback on particular themes or questions we may have. There is also an opportunity to share with us any thoughts or feedback on any of our services. Our Director of Library & Cultural Services may also provide an update on latest developments. We will often as part of this event have workshop activities, such as building your ideal study space in LEGO, drawing a mind map of your research life, or commenting on some case study videos. We usually provide refreshments and an opportunity to talk to Library staff and other attendees: You bring the ideas, we bring the cake (drinks/snacks/etc.).

Alternatively we may over the course of a week, run drop in activities at each of our libraries with something different each day, for example answering a question on our graffiti board, writing us a love/break up letter, speaking with one of our friendly staff about your visit or looking at case study photos and voting on your favourite furniture or study environment. 

We aim to replicate these activities in an online version so that everyone has a chance to participate and respond, from wherever you are. This might be in the form of an Instagram story or online survey, which can be found on our website. 

What happens to ideas generated at LAG?

The outcomes of LAG activities are considered by the Library’s management team, and fed into future service developments. Some examples of the impact of LAG are:

  • The design of the Library Reading Room refurbishment (using evidence from the LEGO models LAGgers built) and the refurbishment of floor 2 in the south wing.
  • Work in partnership with academic staff to ensure that all essential readings are available online
  • Changes to the Library website to make it more accessible and more intuitive, based on your feedback

More formally, LAG reports to Education Committee and Student Experience Committee, so that there is a wider University context for what we do.

How do I get involved?

You can contact us to request to be added to our LAG mailing list and we will invite you to participate in any planned LAG activities. Just let us know your name and email address and that you would like to be added to LAG and we can do the rest!

Also look out for opportunities to get involved via our social media channels, website and in person events. 

We encourage members of academic staff to help represent the interests of their departments, so if you’d like to act in that capacity please let us know. One academic rep has commented that: "I was impressed by how receptive to feedback the library staff were and how genuinely interested you all are in improving the overall library experience for everyone."