The conference session on March 14 featured two presentations:
- Check This Out: Loaning Laptops and Other Technology with Ashley Koebel from University of Michigan
- Revamping a Neglected Technology Space for Success: A Team-Based Approach to Developing Training, Documentation, and Communication for a Virtual Reality Space with Doralyn Rossmann from Montana State University
Check This Out: Loaning Laptops and Other Technology
LSA (College of Literature, Science and Arts) Technology Services Loan was created as a merge from different organizations across University of Michigan campus. They provide equipment to students and faculty within the college. They use WebCheckout to handle reservations and checkout. Most equipment has a maximum checkout limit of 72 hours, although some equipment has shorter or longer periods and exceptions are made as needed. Equipment has a 3 hour turnaround time upon return. During this time, equipment must be tested and cleaned.
Decisions about what to circulate are made based on past checkout data, partnerships with Learning and Teaching Consulting and during the COVID–era, reaching out to departments to determine what was needed. New equipment is purchased based on portability, durability and usability criteria. Equipment is reviewed on a life-cycle, usually 4 years, to determine if it needs replacing and if it can be replaced with the same make/model.
During COVID, the collection has grown and more exceptions have been made.
Revamping a Neglected Technology Space for Success: A Team-Based Approach to Developing Training, Documentation, and Communication for a Virtual Reality Space
Montana State University began their Virtual Reality collaboration space journey by installing a large visualization wall, running Sage software, modeled after an installation at another university. The quickly discovered that the wall was not easy to use after installation, and the space went unused except as study space.
During the summer of 2019, Montana created a task force to determine how to best promote and support the space. This was a very efficient group of 12 people that met weekly to quickly re-launch the space with its new mission and service. This group also developed use cases to market the space more effectively.
The revised space includes partitions to isolate the space somewhat so that people using the space feel more private. They transitioned the operating system from Sage to Windows OS to support ease of use. The VR equipment was added to their checkout system. They also added a reservation system and hired a student to hold office hours in the space, was available by appointment and do training.
Visit their website for more information: https://www.lib.montana.edu/spaces/virtualdiscovery/index.html