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Qualitative Research and Analysis. Strategic Planning Feedback at UT Tyler’s Robert R. Muntz Library Terra Bianchi, MLIS, CA Margo Duncan, MLS. Introduction. UT Tyler: 7,519 students 47 Undergraduate bachelor’s degrees 43 Graduate master’s degrees 2 Doctoral degrees

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Qualitative research and analysis

Qualitative Research and Analysis

Strategic Planning Feedback at UT Tyler’s Robert R. Muntz Library

Terra Bianchi, MLIS, CA

Margo Duncan, MLS


  • UT Tyler:

  • 7,519 students

  • 47 Undergraduate bachelor’s degrees

  • 43 Graduate master’s degrees

  • 2 Doctoral degrees

  • Robert R. Muntz Library:

  • 180,000+ books

  • 140,000+ periodicals in print and online

  • 60,000+ eBooks

  • 160+ electronic databases with access to more than 125,000 journals

Table of contents
Table of Contents

  • Qualitative Analysis: what is it?

  • Qualitative Analysis for Library Assessment

  • Our Research and Analysis

  • Qualitative Analysis Workshop

What is qualitative analysis
What is Qualitative Analysis?

Qualitative Research and Analysis, defined:

“Qualitative researchers are interested in understanding the meaning people have constructed, that is, how people make sense of their world and the experiences that they have in the world” (Merriam, 2009)

Qualitative analysis is the way you interpret results to come up with a succinct summary of data

What is qualitative analysis1

Quantitative vs. Qualitative

What is Qualitative Analysis?



Deep meaning

Enhances awareness Aims not pre-determined

Follow-up research


Energy consuming

A lot of data

Hard to analyze


Qualitative research and analysis

Quantitative Data

Qualitative Data

  • Extended hours Fri and Sat and late night access

  • 24 hours!

  • Open Sunday morning

  • Open later, or possibly 24/7

  • longer weekend hours

  • till 2am. open earlier on Sundays.

  • I would prefer late night hours on the weekend

  • On the weekends

  • open 24 hours would be nice

  • open later on weekends

  • Stay open until 2 A.M

  • Midnight till dawn and weekend short duration open hours are really de-motivator

  • 24 hours on occasion would be helpful

What is qualitative analysis2
What is Qualitative Analysis?

Defending your analysis summary

  • Rigor

  • Multiple methods

  • Triangulation

  • Adequate engagement

  • Member check

Qualitative analysis in libraries
Qualitative Analysis in Libraries

Q: How do you use the library now?

A: “Well my experience recently was that I needed some articles for some research I’m doing on fair trade. I needed about 10 articles and I accessed them from that search right on the front page [he brought up the website and pointed to SwoopSearch]. Yeah – that thing right there! It says “Start Your Search Here.” I just thought that was great. I just had my references and typed them in and you had about 7 out of 10 of them. The others I had to create an ILL account but that wasn’t too hard because I did it. I got the articles in about 3 days. I think it was a Friday and I got them on Monday. It was a really great service. Normally I have trouble with the online databases but this thing [pointing at SwoopSearch] was just super. Now sometimes I don’t know what I want and then I have to go into the databases and that can be more complicated. I don’t like those searches with all the Ands and Ors. I hate those. I never do them right.”

Qualitative analysis in libraries1
Qualitative Analysis in Libraries

How is the data used?

  • Assess individual outcomes

  • Evaluate programs and services

  • Personalize assessment

  • Discover effectiveness

  • Add meaning to statistical data

Robert r muntz library strategic planning
Robert R. Muntz Library Strategic Planning

Strategic Planning Committee

  • Who do we talk to?

  • What do we want to know?

  • How will we gather information?

  • How will we analyze our data?

Robert r muntz library strategic planning1
Robert R. Muntz Library Strategic Planning

Data Gathering

  • Survey

  • Focus groups

  • Office Visits

Robert r muntz library strategic planning2
Robert R. Muntz Library Strategic Planning


Q: If you could change something about the Library to improve it, what would it be?

A: More print books, not fewer; Upgraded infrastructure, e.g. complete library renovation. I think the library is and should be the heart of campus, and it consequently should be a state-of-the art, updated facility, e.g. full infrastructure upgrade, expansion, remodel, etc. But it should always have at its heart a large selection of print/hard-copy books indicative of any good graduate university library.

Robert r muntz library strategic planning3
Robert R. Muntz Library Strategic Planning

Focus Group

Q: Describe how you use the library, both physically and virtually.

A: I use ILL, about 100 books per semester, send in acquisition requests, use the general stacks collections, study on the third floor silent areas, use JSTOR and other English related databases and the library catalog to search for new books.

Robert r muntz library strategic planning4
Robert R. Muntz Library Strategic Planning

Faculty Office Visits

Q: What are one or two changes the Library could make to increase your usage of the Library?

A: A recommendation could be to have more of the criminal justice related journals available. I find myself having to borrow them through other libraries. With that said, ILL is outstanding. I generally obtain my requests within a day or two. However, the students are not as patient (probably because they wait until the last minute to complete their papers) and are unable to obtain or do not request the journals, but then complain the articles are not available. Maybe a recommendation could be for the librarians to offer sessions on "how to research". I do not know if students would attend, but the offer could help students have more "tools" for better papers. Lastly, having access to videos that can be uploaded to blackboard that are topic specific. I find myself taking an extraordinary amount of time trying to locate these through the internet. The publishers are not very helpful, but it would be great if the library had the funds to maintain various resources for instructors.

Qualitative analysis workshop
Qualitative Analysis Workshop

Making sense of all those words

~370 survey responses

11 focus group participants

168 individual faculty interviews

Qualitative research and analysis

Coding Example

Q: How do you see your information needs changing in the next five years?

I think more textbooks will be in the library for students.

reserves, collection-textbooks

I guess I would just say more. More online option.

more online

Electronic access will remain important. He likes ILLIAD.

more online, ILL-more

Qualitative analysis workshop1
Qualitative Analysis Workshop

  • How we coded responses

Goal: Provide an environment that promotes research, reflection, and collaboration

Space-group; space-individual



Labaree, Robert V. “Qualitative Research Methods for Assessing Services and Programs in Academic Libraries.” University of Southern California, 2008. http://goo.gl/Rz9u3S

Merriam, S. B. (2014). Qualitative Research : A Guide to Design and Implementation. Hoboken : Wiley, 2014.

Hahn, Christopher. (2008). Qualitative Coding Techniques and Terminology - Doing Qualitative Research Using Your Computer, http://qrtips.com/coding.htmQuantitative Question cartoon found at: http://goo.gl/wsKC1X

Bryan, Alvin. (2013). Government Snooping and VPN Privacy cartoon,


Xavier University Library, Qualitative vs. Quantitative cheat-sheet found at: http://www.xavier.edu/library/students/documents/qualitative_quantitative.pdf


Terra Bianchi, MLIS, CA

Head of University Archives and Special Collections



Margo Duncan, MLS

Head of Library Systems


(903) 566-7174