Meeting Minutes – Oct. 22, 2015

Guest Speaker: Associate University Librarian and Library Director for Tompkins-McCaw Library for the Health Sciences, Teresa L. Knott
Topic: Possible Library Renovations

Teresa thanked group for their feedback and encouraged them to share any ideas either during this meeting or after.
Announced plan to renovate first floor.
Working on having a plan in place in case library gets funds at the end of the year.
Still not sure if funds will be available but want to have a project in place if the library does.

Teresa shared plans from architect with the group.
Same firm was used for the Multimedia Collaboration Room and for Cabell so they are familiar with academic library needs and design.

Teresa provided the following in her overview:

  1. Desire to make service desk smaller
  2. Adding more transitional space
  3. Computers around pillars remain
  4. Addition restaurant style banquette seating
  5. Moving large group seating/study booth from second floor to first
  6. Removal of security guard station
  7. High table for fly-by activities in central area
  8. Possibility of removing some computers from first floor (will not replace)

Student asked about kiosks for laptop loaning: Teresa said it is not currently something that the library was considering. Laptops can still be checked out at the service desk.
Tables added to the first floor would likely be easy to move.
Students expressed concern over the removal of computers from the library.
Students said they liked to have the larger screen and used computers in the library frequently. Students with Macs said it was easier to use a library PC to gain access to Microsoft Office programs.

Teresa and Steve assured the group that they were looking at data and trying to understand the data to help the library make a decision about removing computers, if any.

Students said they liked having ability to connect to their laptop to a large or dual screen
Steve reminded the group that there are some dongles available for checkout at the service desk so even those with Macs can connect.

Teresa asked the students if they preferred chairs with fixed legs or with wheels.

Student said it depends on what options, lumbar support, move-able arms, etc the chair can provide.
Students were surprised that previous feedback suggested fixed chairs were more popular.
Student said they like more comfortable chairs but rolling tables.
Student mentioned Hunton as a good place for comfortable chairs.

Teresa mentioned that treadmill desks were a possibility in Hunton.

Students were excited about this and asked for more information on having more standing desks on the first floor of Tompkins-McCaw Library. Student would like more standing options, not just drive by areas, more larger are to spread items out while standing. Teresa mentioned that the drive-by space would be powered. Students also expressed interested in sit/stand options.

Teresa will speak with designers about current cafe space and the space upstairs once large booth is moved to first floor.

Students shared their desire for more private spaces.
Students like the dog bone style desks already on second floor because space is separated.

Teresa mentioned that the fake plants would likely be removed as they are dated and collect a lot of dust.

Students expressed interest in:

  1. Bringing coffee/cafe back to the library
  2. Having rental lockers
  3. Making sure the exhibit spaces were still easy to see and get to/attractive
  4. Having more hand sanitizer stations in the library
  5. The possibility of bringing the Lego Exhibit to the library

Steve reminded the group about our potluck Thanksgiving event next month and will send an invite to the group. Date for event is Nov. 19.

Group was invited to the art exhibit opening tonight.


Meeting Minutes – Sept. 17, 2015

2015-16 Welcome meeting

I. Introductions – Members and librarians introduced themselves.

II. TML GAC Expectations – Steve Barkely

  • Provided an overview of the  Graduate Advisory Expectations.
  • Students were reminded that if they cannot make a session they will need to make it up the session and to let an advisor know as soon as possible if you cannot attend.

III. Communications – Emily Hurst

  • Provided an overview of how communication would work
  • Announced that Google Group would be coming soon and serve as the main form of communication.
  • Group communication can be used by the rest of the group, not limited to just Steve and Emily.
  • Reminded group about access to the website and that minutes will be posted there.
  • Watch for an email to the group linking to the website and the minutes.

IV. Introduction to VCU Libraries and the Tompkins-McCaw Library for the Health Sciences – Steve Barkley

  • Overview of spaces and floors was provided
  • Special Collections & Archives Reading Room as well as holdings were mentioned
  • Study Spaces located on second floor, can be reserved online
  • 2nd floor is quiet study space – Comfortable seating
  • Stacks (throughout building) – are also quiet area
  • Multimedia Collaboration Room (Basement) provides access to software, whiteboard walls, movable seating
  • The TML GAC helps the library make decisions about future space plans, we listen to your recommendations.
  • This group has contributed to things that impact facilities and operations which includes library hours. Example: This year opening at 9 a.m. on Sundays.
  • Other things that have come out of this group include the Writing Center, loaning Macbooks, having display adapters available, presentation clickers for check out,  coffee machine and more.

V. Emily provided an overview of Research and Education services including search consultations and in-class sessions. Emily also mentioned library workshops and other upcoming events including:

  • Oct. 9 – Edith Cavell Exhibit Welcome Reception
  • Oct. 22 – New art exhibit opening reception

VI. Other business

  • Steve announced Cabell construction tour opportunity. Students expressed interest in this. Email will be sent to students for sign up.

Meeting Minutes – April 30, 2015

  1. Teresa L. Knott, Director of TML and Associate University Librarian, led a discussion on the 2015-2016 Student Technology Fee (STF) Proposals
    • Discussed TML-related requests, including:
      >>> Updating the TML Distance Education Classroom’s videoconferencing equipment
      >>> Replacing public computers that will be going off warranty
      >>> Purchasing GoPro cameras
      >>> Purchasing solid state drives for TML mobile classroom
    • Some student comments on our STF requests:
      >>> Strong support for dual monitors at the public computers on TML’s 2nd floor
      >>> GoPro cameras
      ——->>> Need to be well advertised.
      ——->>> Suggestion to advertise for its use in labs, where graduate students or PIs record a certain procedure for junior students to review when needed.
      ——->>> Suggestion to rent for 48 hours at a time.
      ——->>> Make sure we purchase associated accessories — head mount, helmet, etc.
      ——->>> Target instructors — good potential teaching tool. Especially for simulations.
      ——->>> Ask liaisons to advertise that GoPro cameras are available at TML.
  2. What did you enjoy doing as part of TMLGAC this year? What would you like to see us do next year?
    • Enjoyed learning about the variety of services the library offers; suggestion to include database searching/liaison services for one TMLGAC session
    • We recruit a diverse group of students from different schools so we could ask them to advertise (e.g. forward emails) for us; you’re more likely to read an email from someone you know than from someone you don’t.
    • Filling out surveys prior to meetings made one student feel more engaged with TMLGAC.
    • Assign TMLGAC members mini-assignments. Eg) “Ask 5 people you know in your school at different levels….”
    • Work more closely with SGA (or GSA).
      >>> SGA may be able to cover the cost of therapy dog donations.
      >>> Table at SGA stress free zone in Larrick.
    • Request from Teresa: Share the names of faculty who you think would be receptive to library services or instruction in the classroom!
  3. TML Hours during Bike Race in September (
    • TMLGAC students didn’t feel that having limited hours (8am-5pm) at TML during the bike race would negatively impact them.

Please contact Karen at if you do not receive your $100 honorarium within the next couple of weeks.

Thank you for your contributions to TMLGAC. We appreciate the feedback you’ve provided us and hope that the experience has been informative and enjoyable for you as well. Have a wonderful summer!

Meeting Minutes – March 26, 2015

There was no meeting in February due to inclement weather. A survey was completed by TMLGAC members to count toward their February attendance.

  1. Emily Hurst, Head of TML’s Research and Education department, led a discussion on our survey results
    • There are library liaisons for each school on the MCV campus:
    • VCU Libraries is on social media. TML has its own accounts on Twitter and Facebook — students are invited to like and follow us!
    • Some student comments:
      >>> Publicize news in our bathroom stalls (via The Well or our own newsletter)
      >>> Assignments are helpful for retaining information.
      >>> Online, asynchronous webinars would be useful.
      >>> Some interest in scientific writing workshops — reports, grant writing, how to start a proposal (formatting), how to prepare for publication — although one student said that he defers to his PI for that information.
      >>> Use social media for changes in our hours, etc.
      >>> Social media contests are interesting to students.
      ——->>> VCU paraphernalia make good prizes.

      ——->>> Free printed posters are also good incentives for student participation.
  2. Request for Certificates indicating TMLGAC participation
  3. Introduction to Margaret Henderson, Director of Research Data Management
    • Research data management support
    • Discussed Scholars Compass, VCU’s Institutional Repository
      >>> Read your publishing agreement and negotiate with your publisher if you want to retain certain rights. SPARC’s author rights.
      >>> Add posters to Scholars Compass.
      >>> Add pre-print/post-print/publisher’s version of your article (if your publishing agreement permits you to do so).

Meeting Review – January 22, 2015

  1. Introduction to Emily Hurst, Head, Research and Education department at TML
  2. Introduction to VCU Libraries’ web team
    • Erin White, Web Systems Librarian at VCU Libraries
    • Shariq Torres, Web Application Analyst
    • Alison Tinker, Web Designer
  3. Task run-throughs
    • TMLGAC members broke up into small groups (with 1+ observer/group)
    • Talk-aloud protocol explained
    • TMLGAC members completed tasks using the talk-aloud protocol
      — Task 1: Make a study room reservation using VCU Libraries’ website
      — Task 2: Cancel the reservation
      — Task 3: Switch to mobile and repeat
  4. Group discussion
  5. Clarification on TMLGAC email list policy
    • For now, TMLGAC emails will remain limited to library-related posts
    • We highly encourage TMLGAC members to publicize events that others might be interested in by bringing that information to one of our meetings

In November, TMLGAC members were invited to join TML for its Thanksgiving celebration. The December meeting was canceled due to a scheduling conflict.

Meeting Minutes – October 30, 2014

  1. Student Discussion: PhD Posters vs. VCU Libraries’ poster service
  2. Guest: John Ulmschneider, University Librarian
    • A student library fee ($50/year) was recently implemented.
      • This fee will be used for things relevant to students on both campuses, but will not go towards costs related to collections, research services, and automated services.
        • At Cabell Library, the student fees are being used to:
          • support the new Innovative Media Lab, which will include a makerspace with 3D printing, data visualization tools, a gaming room, among other things.
          • staff and sustain 24-hour service in the expanded library space.
        • At Tompkins-McCaw Library (TML), the student fees are being used to:
          • staff our new, extended hours.
          • conduct a consultancy and design survey for TML.
        • When Cabell Library’s construction is complete, there will be a dedicated facility on the 4th floor for all VCU graduate students and faculty.
      • VCU leadership is interested in ensuring student success for graduate and professional students, not just undergraduates.
  3. Open Discussion
    • Has providing 24-hour service at Cabell been a strain on library finances?
      • There are nontrivial costs (e.g. security costs) involved in keeping Cabell open around the clock, but heavy library use during the overnight hours makes it worthwhile.
      • Usage rates during extended TML hours are being closely monitored.
    •  Late night transportation is an issue.
      • There are different telephone numbers for escort services on each campus.
      • Escort services on the MCV campus are slow to respond.
      • Limited bus service during the summertime is inconvenient and unfair since the MCV campus doesn’t go on break during the summer.
      • Security is key to longer hours at TML.
    •  Access to library resources.
      • Why are students who are affiliated with the MCV campus being directed to pick up their library books at Cabell? (Steve B. will investigate.)
      • Interlibrary Loan is fantastic for articles!
      • For articles and book chapters that are physically available at TML/Cabell, are we scanning and sending them to students electronically, free of charge? (Karen G. will investigate.)
    •  Suggestions for additional services/resources that TML could offer:
      • 24-hour service (including weekends) when final exams are taking place.
      • Statistics consulting services through graduate assistantships.
      • Workshops on how to use specialized software for presenting data.
        (John U. is currently in discussions on how to support extensive data visualization/modeling capabilities at Cabell and will extend some of those conversations to include TML as well. He also commented that there are many useful services offered within programs/departments that are not widely available to the VCU community; he would like to see this change.)
      • Online, on-demand recordings of regularly held workshops, like ones for PubMed and RefWorks. Suggestion to use Echo360. (Karen G. will follow up on this.)
    •  VCU Libraries needs to make a stronger effort to educate the VCU community on:
      • the advantages of publishing in open access journals.
      • using metrics other than impact factors (e.g. altmetrics) to determine where to publish and/or to measure the impact of a scholarly work.

Meeting Minutes – September 25, 2014

  1. Welcome to TMLGAC
  2. Guest: Teresa Knott, Director, TML and Associate University Librarian
    • Student Technology Fee. Goes toward technologies for student use:
      – Update computers in public areas
      – Perform upgrades to study rooms, etc.
    • Higher Education Equipment Trust Fund (HEETF). Still awaiting information on which TML requests were approved
      • Student Library Fee (new)
        – Extended TML hours started on September 2, 2014
        – What do students want to see improved in our physical library facility?
        – Some suggested uses for the Student Library Fee at TML include:
        —-> Replacing the chairs and soft seating on the 1st floor
        —-> Replacing our current tables with ones that can move around easily
        —-> Adding electrical outlets with USB plugs to every carrel in the stacks
        —-> Adding more liaison librarians
  3. Open discussion
    • Study space
      – Some students prefer to quietly study with others (vs. in isolation)
      – A white noise machine in the stacks might be helpful
    • Research poster support
      – Suggestion for TML to hold research poster workshops once a semester
      – Printing posters
      —-> TML has a large format printer
      —-> PhD Posters was also recommended
  4. Scholars Compass is a publishing platform for the intellectual output of VCU’s academic, research, and administrative communities.  It includes research posters, theses and dissertations, published and unpublished faculty research, and more.
  5. Request for statistics consulting services at the library
    – Suggestion to inquire with SoP or other schools on whether their Statistics TAs would be interested in offering their services at TML
    – Graduate students can receive 5 hours of free consulting at the Statistics and Analytics Consulting Lab
  6. Upcoming Sanger Series lecture: Science and the World’s Future with Bruce Alberts. Tuesday, 10/21/14 at 12:00 pm, starting with a light lunch at 11:15am. RSVP required.

Meeting Minutes – April 24, 2014

Thanks to everyone for your participation in TMLGAC this year!   Please contact Karen ( if you did not receive your honorarium in April.  We will be in touch about participating in the 2014-2015 committee in the coming months.

The minutes for our April meeting are below.

  1. Guest: Teresa Knott
  2. Upcoming Events
    • Coffee Breaks in TML’s foyer from 3-5pm:
      Free coffee, tea and snacks!Monday, May 5 – Thursday, May 8
    • Exam Break: Pet a Pooch with Dogs on Call on Monday, May 5th, from 12-1pm
    • Exam Break: Massage on Tuesday, May 6th, from 12-1pm
    • See for more upcoming events
  3. Student Technology Fee (STF) Fund discussion

    • Review of proposal for expending VCU Libraries’ portion of funds from the Student Technology Fee
    • Feedback from committee members
      • Equipment that TML should consider purchasing
        • Dual monitors
        • GoPro cam
        • Really nice cameras — not flip video cameras — so that campus organizations can check them out to take pictures
      • Technology/equipment probably can’t be shuttled between libraries, but we could rotate when each library has equipment
  4. Proposed Student Library Fee: $25/semester
    • TML would use these funds toward:
      • Extending library hours
      • Hiring more library liaisons
      • Updating furniture
    • Funds would also be used to maintain the new library facility on the Monroe Park campus
  5. Miscellaneous
    • Alumni access to library databases
      • Database access through the university’s Alumni Association is very limited, but the Alumni Association does offer a discount for Friends of the Library membership
      • Joining Friends of the Library allows members to fully access library databases while in a library facility
    • A committee member recommended obtaining a RALC pass to access nearby facilities for studying

Meeting Minutes – March 26, 2014

  1. MCV Student Government Association Survey:
    Review of TML’s results
  2. Questions from TML’s Research and Education Department
    –  Do you think there’s student interest in a basic, 1-hour literature review workshop?  Yes, especially if it’s available online for asynchronous viewing.  Online tutorials for different levels (basic vs. advanced) would be useful.
    –  Are you aware that librarians can help you develop search strategies for a literature review or grant proposal?  Based on the feedback received, the department needs to improve marketing this service.  Suggestion: Portable posters advertising these services in TML.  Posters can compare user vs. librarian searches, or they can feature liaisons.  Additional suggestion was made that being on the 2nd floor of the Hunton Student Center from 1-3pm instead of 11-1pm might help librarians reach their intended audience.
  3. Next meeting: Thursday, April 24, 2014

Note: The meeting scheduled for Thursday, February 27 was canceled due to numerous scheduling conflicts.

Meeting Minutes – January 23, 2014

  1. Guest: Jodi Koste, University Archivist and Head, TML Special Collections and Archives
  2. Presentation: Tompkins-McCaw Library’s Special Collections and Archives — Collection Overview
  3. Agenda items
    –  Possible change in meeting dates. Steve will send out an email to see if meeting on Mondays or Tuesdays would work better than Thursdays for Committee members.
    –  New VCU Libraries website. There has been some difficulty with finding things on the new library website — seeing a list of TML classes/events was cited as one example.  There was also an inquiry on how to find out about the Bridging Campus Networks (i.e. free pizza) events at TML.  Karen followed up on this inquiry and was told that TML would advertise this event through its FaceBook page in the future.
    –  Upcoming classes/events at VCU Libraries: See
  4. Next meeting: Thursday, February 27, 2014 at 12pm in the 1st floor Conference Room at Tompkins-McCaw Library

Margaret Henderson, Director of Research Data Management, was unable to attend this meeting due to illness.  We will see if we can coordinate a meeting with her later this semester.  Big thanks to Jodi Koste for her fascinating presentation on TML’s Special Collections and Archives, especially given such short notice!