ARCHIVES 2015 has ended
Tuesday, August 18 • 3:00pm - 3:30pm
Research Forum Session 7: Digital Dilemmas - Visual Archive Prototype

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In an environment in which the cognitive processing of visual information is ever-more important and visualization of data, concepts, and worlds is on the rise, there is great interest in visual interfaces with library collections. Archives are particularly challenging from this perspective because each one is unique; without visual interfaces equivalent in intuitiveness, efficiency, effectiveness, and user pleasures to those used with other types of databases, archival information will be even more obscure, difficult to access, and underused in the future than they have been in the past. This experimental research project explored how individuals search when they are using a visual information retrieval system in an archival setting. Six individuals from different academic backgrounds were studied as they search using a prototype of a visually oriented interface to a subset of archival collections from the American Geographical Society Library at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Libraries, which was developed by the PI for the purposes of this test project. Participants carried out a number of interactive tasks, and were interviewed to more deeply understand insights into the visual retrieval process. The findings suggest that the visual display of the archival images enabled participants to discover information more quickly, and was more enjoyable to use. The discoveries from this small pilot study will be expanded to a larger scope to learn more about the performance of the visual system and user engagement.

About the Author:

Jennifer Stevenson is a PhD Candidate at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Jennifer has a MLIS with a concentration in Archives and a Certificate of Advanced Study in Digital Libraries from the University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee. She is also an Archivist at the Archdiocese of Milwaukee. Her research interests include archivists’ use of social media, interface design, and the social impacts of information and communication technology amongst different user groups. Professionally, she has been working in the world of digital archives. Over the past several years she has worked at several institutions as a digital archivist consultant 

avatar for Jennifer Stevenson

Jennifer Stevenson

Research Assistant, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
Jenny Stevenson recently finished her second year of doctoral work at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Jenny graduated with a MLIS and concentration in Archival Studies in December 2010. She then went on to receive her Certificate of Advanced Study in Digital Libraries. Her research... Read More →

Tuesday August 18, 2015 3:00pm - 3:30pm EDT
Room 26A Cleveland Convention Center, 300 Lakeside Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44114

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