The new second floor layout is awesome! So awesome that it seems as if nobody cares to study anywhere else in the library. Which means at peak hours it's loud -- like obnoxiously loud. So my suggestion is that part of the second floor become quiet study; maybe just the back corner, leaving the rest of the floor for collaborative work? It's so nice to lounge in those comfy chairs, reading a book and researching with plenty of electrical outlets to go around, that is until some "study" group decides to join and start chatting about anything and everything completely unrelated to school. Please allow some of us to study comfortably AND in peace!
From: an undergraduate student
Jeanne Hammer, Assistant University Librarian for Administration and Policy Development replies...
Thank you for endoring the new 2nd floor Learning Commons as a desirable place to study. The Learning Commons is intended for collaborative study, which creates quite a buzz when many voices are going at once. For this reason, the design took into account ways to dampen sound. It includes sound insulation in the walls of the group study rooms and the multipurpose room. Also, there is a sound masking system in the ceiling that creates a white noise to make individual spoken words less distinct, so two adjacent groups will less likely disturb each other. Unfortunately, it's not sufficient for instances such as what you described. We hope students will take a role in self-policing when others are disruptive and seek assistance from the security officer on duty or staff at the Circulation desk. The VCU Libraries' goals, as funding permits, are to improve the quality of study space on the other floors of Cabell Library and the overall quantity of space by constructing a new library building on the Monroe Park Campus. Thank you for taking the time to post your comments to the Suggestion Blog.