The 'Student as Researcher' programme is being developed by the Library in partnership with academic colleagues and other stakeholders to help to enhance the undergraduate student experience at Warwick. It covers the student's journey from initial information finding, via academic skills to more in-depth research skills, and focuses specifically on the development of information fluency across the whole of the undergraduate course. It supports the University strategy to 'sustain a Warwick student experience of distinction' by offering 'all students the opportunity to work on an extended project or piece of research'. A key element of this experiential programme is the opportunity for the 'student as researcher' to discover and use primary sources and special collections unique to Warwick, and then for the 'student as producer' to enter the wider academic world of their subject by publishing in a departmental journal or repository, or alternatively presenting at a student conference.
In 2011/12, the Library obtained support from IATL for a Student as Researcher Project Officer and, as a result, was able to work with seven academic departments - WBS, Law, Psychology, French, Film and Television Studies, German, and Education – to develop the programme. Lessons leanrt from these seven pilots have informed our thinking for the future enhancement of the Student as Researcher programme. The pilots were also used for advocacy which allowed the Library to move beyond them to extend into new areas of engagement.
As a result of outreach activities, the Library uncovered opportunities to build on the pilots and grow the programme in additional subject modules, as well as specifically:
- extend the programme in the sciences;
- enhance the Student as Researcher e-learning tools;
- work more closely with other service providers to enhance the student experience.
IATL has provided funding to help the Library now move into phase two, which will focus specifically on these areas.
For more information visit the Student as Researcher website.
Ant Brewerton is Head of Academic Services in the Library. He is responsible for the strategic leadership of academic support services across the Library, including the work of the Academic Support Librarians and the services delivered by the Teaching Grid, Learning Grids, Postgraduate Hub and the Wolfson Research Exchange.