Locating Learning development in a University Library: Promoting effective academic help seeking

  • Pillai M
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Abstract

The Centre for Learning and Study Support at De Montfort University relocated to the Department of Library Services in September 2006. During that academic year student use of study support tutorials increased by over 100%. This article considers the factors that led to this increase, using as a starting point, the experiences and opinions of students who have needed help for academic study. It analyzes student responses to a short survey. Many students do not ask for help and the survey findings suggest that this is more a response to ambivalence about the acceptability of needing help in higher education (HE) and less a pos- itive decision about an individual’s learning. The article goes on to identify the conditions that encourage appropriate help-seeking behavior and to suggest that these can be successfully created in the academic environment of a library. The article acknowledges the potential impact of social learning spaces on students’ approaches to learning and suggests that the integration of learning development activities facilitates an overtly positive learning environment.

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Authors

  • Mary Pillai

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