Assessing the Needs of Patrons with Disabilities

Collaborators: Emily Daly, Ira King, Candice Wang, Ciara Healy, Meg Brown, Abby Wickes

July 2021 to present

A large canvas with regions defined by large boxes, covered with a series of small squares in various sizes and colors.

In 2021 and 2022, members of the Assessment Core Team (ACT) at Duke University Libraries (DUL) led a study of users with apparent and non-apparent disabilities to better understand their experiences in the Libraries and on campus, and identify things the Libraries can change to increase the positive experiences that users with disabilities have with library services, facilities, and materials. We designed a multi-faceted study that included a literature review and environmental scan, informational interviews with campus stakeholders, a user survey distributed to the target population, and follow-up user interviews. This study is an extension of the Libraries’ 2020 user satisfaction survey, where we received some critical feedback from users with disabilities. We designed this study to more fully understand the experiences and needs of users with disabilities, as well as users who identify as allies or caregivers to disabled individuals.


  • Compiled recommendations for changes to public-facing websites
  • Served as project manager for survey and interview phases of project
  • Coordinated scheduling of team meetings, project timeline
  • Collaborated on survey and interview design, distribution, and analysis
  • Collaborated on writing papers and presenting results

Project Outputs:

Conference Papers

Presentations at Conferences, Professional Gatherings