Undergraduate Library

Undergraduate Library Computing Lab To Be Upgraded During Fall Break

The computer lab in the R.B. House Undergraduate Library will close Wednesday, Oct. 19, at noon, for a significant redesign over fall break.

When the Information Technology Services (ITS) lab reopens on Oct. 24, students will find:

  • Ten new 27” Macintosh computers with design and media software;
  • Viewing stations with laptop hookup for enlarged display;
  • Comfortable new furniture;
  • Collaborative study and work space.

ITS is funding the renovation by reducing the number of computers to replace each year and eliminating the need for the student assistant position associated with the lab.

Although the number of desktop computers will be reduced from 70 to 30, ITS and Library officials believe that the new configuration will better meet actual student needs.

Surveys, focus groups, and data analysis conducted by the Library and ITS in spring 2011, revealed heavy usage of the lab only between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. Students also complained about lack of study space in the Undergrad.

With the Carolina Computing Initiative (CCI) now offering Macintosh models, officials further anticipated that more students would bring laptops to campus and would need workspace and hookups to use them.

“The time seemed right to focus on the ways students are using computing now,” said Jeremiah Joyner, manager of ITS labs and systems, “not the way the labs were set up ten years ago.”

Pam Sessoms, director of the Undergraduate Library, is eager to have students try out the new furniture and equipment. “We know students need more space, and we think they’re going to love what they find here.”

Library and ITS staff will monitor the new set-up and will make adjustments if they become necessary. The experience in the Undergraduate Library will also inform similar redesigns under consideration for the computer labs in the Health Sciences Library and Davis Library.

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