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WHU Information Science Library: leading in innovation
Author:Zhou Qianying  Date:2017-01-17  Clicks:

After two year’s rebuilding, the Information Science Library of WHU opened on June 20th, 2016. Though it was a rainy day, quite a few students waited in long queues for its opening. Within several months, this new library has impressed students with its special layout and a series of new services.

Located on the central axis of the WHU Information Science Division, the library covers a total building area of 14,896. During the reconstruction, in addition to the enlargement of the library’s collection, the designer also built areas with special functions to facilitate library services, such as Makerspace and the Innovative Learning Room. “We hope for the library to be a place where students discuss with each other and get inspired”, said the director of library.

With constant improvement on facilities and services, the director’s wish is coming true.

Makerspace, the cradle of makers

To inspire the creativity of students, the Information Science Library sets a makerspace on the first floor. A makerspace is a public area equipped with tools for individuals to do collaborative learning and work. It enables students to do group work with the help of the most-advanced devices.

Walking into the area, students can feel a perfect combination of science, technology and leisure. The designer used white, orange, green and grey to make the space feel high-tech. Various types of seating arrangement, like sofas and computer booths, can meet the different requirements of students. Most importantly, it is equipped with 20 dual screen desktop PCs, 20 touch screen computers, 3D printers and a U-Edit System, which not only attracts many students, but also provides them with awesome learning experiences..

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               Touch screen computers for students to use

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                       A leisure area with sofas

On November 26th, the 7th Information Technology in Education (ITIE) International Conference themed “MAKERSPACE” was held in the WHU Information Science Library. During the two-day conference, 22 speeches on makerspace were delivered by leaders and experts from various universities including Keith Webster, director of libraries at Carnegie Mellon University, and Zhu Qiang, director of libraries at Beijing University. The conference provided a platform for library professionals from both home and abroad to share their best practices and designs of library makerspaces. .

In addition to its devices, the library also tried to motivate students’ creativity by carrying out events such as the first WHU 3D Print Competition. Before the competition, more than 300 students attended the library-held training on 3D printing. They learned about 3D modeling and acquired a basic command of 3D software, and gained invaluable insights on both the theoretical and practical aspects of 3D technique through this event.

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Students’ designs in 3D Print Competition

More digital, more automated

Speaking of library services, the Information and Science Library is also going towards an automated, electronic, and digital direction.

On November 28th, an exciting news spread among students: the Library Seat Reservation System has launched at the Information Science Library. Download a mobile application, choose your seat, and the reservation is completed. The trouble of walking into the library and not finding a seat will no longer exist. “Before the reservation system, students would let their books ‘study’ for them in order to keep their seats”, said jokingly by Xiaofeng, a student from the School of Computer Science. Now a student will leave a bad record if he leaves his seat for more than half an hour without cancelling his reservation.

The Library Seat Reservation System has been greatly praised by students. Some of them even gave constructive feedback and the technicians are trying to improve the system accordingly. Many other services are also under construction, such as an area for overnight study.

Moreover, the library has not missed any detail. From the e-book readers to the self-service hold shelf, various kinds of amenities bring students convenience. “Every time when I finish a day’s study and leave the library, I feel so fortunate that the Information Science Library can be completed before I graduate”, said Su Yue, a student from the School of Computer Science. “I hope other libraries of WHU can also make such progress”, a subscriber of the WHU Library WeChat Public Account wrote.

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The hold shelf is a temporary holding space for reserved books

Just like what Professor Wang Xincai said at the ITIE conference, “A library should be a user-centered place. It not only gathers and spreads knowledge, but also creates it.” WHU will always keep this goal in mind.

(Photo by Guo Yutong)

(Edited by Tang Yedan, Zheng Xingnian, Edmund & Hu Sijia

 

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