Library Research Center

Have a research question?

What We Do

Research consultants are highly-trained students ready to help you improve your library research skills. Research consultants can help you:

  • Brainstorm topics
  • Find information using library databases, government websites, and Google
  • Read and evaluate research
  • Understand terms like "peer-reviewed" and "scholarly"
  • Differentiate between primary and secondary sources
  • Integrate research into your writing and projects
  • Create annotated bibliographies
  • Cite sources 

Make an Appointment


Hours and Locations

Mary Idema Pew Library (Allendale)

 

Sundays

10:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.

Mondays

10:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.

Tuesdays

10:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.

Wednesdays

10:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.

Thursdays

10:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.

Online                                                     

 

Sundays

10:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.

Mondays

10:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.

Tuesdays

10:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.

Wednesdays

10:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.

Thursdays

10:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.

Steelcase Library (Downtown)        

 

Mondays

1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Tuesdays

closed

Wednesdays

1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.


Meet with Us

What to Expect in a Consultation

Research consultants are available to work with you online or in-person at our Knowledge Market locations at the Mary Idema Pew Library in Allendale and the Steelcase Library downtown. With both mediums, a consultant will meet with you one-on-one for 30 minutes to discuss your research project. The content of every session is different because consultants are focused on your individual needs. 

Consultations are most productive if you:

  • Have your assignment sheet
  • Come prepared with specific questions
  • Leave plenty of time to work on your project before it's due

Expect a friendly conversation with a highly-trained peer that will end with a plan for improving your project. Feel free to come back with new drafts of your project or more questions!

Click the link below to make an appointment or join our virtual drop-in queue. We look forward to working with you!

Meet with a Consultant

student working on a computer
meet the research consultants

How Consultants are Trained

Research consultants are students who have been selected through a rigorous hiring process, demonstrating strong interpersonal and research skills. Once hired, they participate in a comprehensive training program that includes a two-day orientation, biweekly mentor group meetings, and ongoing professional workshops. They receive training in library research, including:

  • Brainstorming strategies
  • Finding information using library databases, government websites, and Google
  • Reading and evaluating research
  • Understanding terms like "peer-reviewed" and "scholarly"
  • Differentiating between primary and secondary sources
  • Creating annotated bibliographies
  • Citing sources and avoiding plagiarism

Consultants also learn peer consulting strategies. They are trained to offer options and guidance while giving you full control of the consultation. We're here to help, but the decisions are yours.

If you have any questions about our hiring or training methods, please contact Jennifer Torreano, Knowledge Market Manager for the University Libraries.


Looking for resources?

We've got you covered! You can find guide sheets, topic ideas, and helpful links in our Resource Market.

Resource Market


Frequently Asked Questions

We have a variety of options for you to choose from to have a consultation that meets your needs. We'll meet you in person or online, and you can schedule an appointment in advance or drop by during open hours. If you need additional accommodations or have questions, please use the button below to contact Jennifer Torreano, Knowledge Market Manager for the University Libraries. We look forward to working with you!

Contact Us

Appointments are 30- or 50-minute consultations that are reserved for you. To create an appointment:

  1. Log into Book It using your Blackboard username and password
  2. Click on "New Appointment" at the top
  3. Select the service you would like 
  4. Use the form to choose the details for your appointment and click "Confirm & Schedule" in the pop-up box

Make an Appointment

Drop-ins are 30-minute consultations that take place in the order in which students arrive for them. Everything is the same as an appointment except you may need to wait for a consultant to become available.

For an in-person drop-in: tell the receptionist you'd like a drop-in consultation.

For an online drop-in:

  1. Log into Book It
  2. Click on "Virtual Drop-in" at the top of the page
  3. Select the service you'd like
  4. Accept the privacy policy
  5. Click "Enter Drop-in Queue"

Refresh the My Appointments page periodically so you'll see the "Enter Appointment" button pop up when your consultant is ready to begin. That button will take you to a Google Meet room for your consultation.

Join the Drop-in Queue

Yes, the Library Research Center provides online consultations so you can access our services from wherever you are! We use Google Meet, which is a video chat platform in the Google Suite. This is a free service to you as a Grand Valley student; just be sure to use your student Gmail account. The features available include: 

  • Video
  • Audio
  • Screen sharing
  • Chat
  • Document sharing
  • Closed captioning

To have a virtual consultation, make an appointment or join the drop-in queue using Book It. Refresh the My Appointments page periodically so you'll see the "Enter Appointment" button pop up when your consultant is ready to begin. That button will take you to a Google Meet room for your consultation.

Start a Virtual Consultation

Yes! At the end of your session, your consultant will ask if you'd like a copy of your session notes sent to your professor. A copy will automatically be emailed to you as well, so you can forward it if you choose to share later.

For questions about how your session notes are stored and can be shared, please read our privacy policy.

When the Library Research Center is hiring, our application will be posted on this webpage. Applications typically go live for the following year in January.



Page last modified September 7, 2022