About the Fellowship

The University of Michigan School of Information (UMSI) and the University of Michigan Library are collaborating on a project to increase the engagement of UMSI students in critical research questions facing the library. The Library as Research Lab Program offers a two semester research fellowship for currently enrolled MSI students. The fellowship runs from September 1, 2019 through April 30, 2020.

You can find out more information about this program: https://liblab.labs.si.umich.edu/

Twelve (12) students will have the opportunity to work with three faculty members and six U-M librarians on research projects in one of the following research labs:

Library Assessment in Student Learning: Librarian-Faculty-Student teams will utilize existing data or collect empirical data to assess how well library resources, services, and spaces contribute to student learning.

Library Assessment for Research and Scholarship: Librarian-Faculty-Student teams will investigate how to support research and scholarship throughout the research lifecycle.

Design Thinking for Services: Librarian-Faculty-Student teams will apply the processes of problem definition, brainstorming, researching, prototyping, and feedback to current and future challenges of redesigning library services.

Program Components

Twelve (12) students be selected for the 2019-2020 academic year who will:

  • engage in learning and practice around evidence-based approaches to complex library problems through real research projects
  • be assigned to one of the research labs
  • conduct research for 10 hours a week
  • participate in regularly scheduled research lab meetings
  • engage in monthly research all-hands seminars
  • present at the Annual Symposium
  • receive a $10,000 stipend

Participation Benefits

  • Learning how to apply research skills in a library setting
  • Improving critical thinking skills
  • Opportunity to publish or present research in a journal or professional conference
  • Mentoring by faculty and librarians
  • Option to receive internship credit, if students meet criteria
  • Option to enroll in the Master’s Thesis Option Program (MTOP)

Eligibility and Required Qualifications

  • U.S. citizen
  • Currently enrolled in the U-M Master of Science in Information (MSI) Program 
  • Demonstrated academic writing skills
  • Demonstrated organizational skills
  • Demonstrated leadership skills
  • Research experience
  • SI 501 Contextual Inquiry and Consulting Foundations or equivalent experience

Desired Qualifications

  • SI 623 Research Methods for Information Professionals or SI 544 Introduction to Statistics and Data Analysis

Application Deadline (EXTENDED): May 15 (Wednesday) 2019 March 1 (Friday) 2019

The application requires:

  • An interest statement including information about prior research, prior work experiences, courses pertaining to this opportunity, and career goals (1000 words).
  • A personal statement that conveys how your personal background and life experiences, including social, cultural, familial, educational, or other opportunities or challenges, motivated you to pursue this program (500 words).
  • Your preferences of research labs in ranked order.
  • A curriculum vitae or resume.
  • A copy of your MSI program transcript (unofficial acceptable).
  • One faculty letter of recommendation. This should be from a faculty member who can evaluate your ability. The letter should be submitted directly by the faculty member.

Send your application materials to Prof. Soo Young Rieh: rieh@umich.edu

The Library as Research Lab Fellowship Program values a diverse and inclusive community and encourages applications from individuals who may come from educational, cultural or geographic backgrounds that are underrepresented in graduate study.

This project is funded by a grant from the Institute for Museum and Library Services #RE-95-17-0104-17.