How Do You Know What Your Users Want?

Kristin Antelman

part of Planning for Discovery Tools for Library 2.0:2009 Midwinter Symposium

Abstract: This session will explore use of the user-centered design process to improve user satisfaction and success with library discovery tools. User research and usability testing will be approached from the perspective of defined measures of success, and discussion of appropriate tools for each. User research and usability testing conducted for the NCSU and Triangle Research Libraries Network Endeca catalogs will be discussed as a case study in the use of several user-centered design techniques. Challenges associated with study design, as well as with the interpretation and application of findings, will also be discussed. Finally, the session will conclude with an interactive usability exercise.


Kristin Antelman is Associate Director for the Digital Library at NCSU Libraries. While at NCSU, she has been involved in several projects related to “next generation” library systems, including the Endeca catalog and the E-matrix electronic resource management system. Prior to joining NCSU in 2002, she was Head of Systems and Networking at the University of Arizona Health Sciences Library and systems librarian at the University of Delaware. She received her MLS from the University of Chicago.