Wayne State College

Conn Library Services

Faculty - Embedded Librarian Program

What are they?

Embedded librarians are librarians who work closely with faculty in their online courses. They field questions and provide time-appropriate tips about research and library usage via Canvas throughout the course of an entire semester.

What does the librarian do?

Embedded librarians facilitate student research and use of library resources during the entire course. We can work with you a little or a lot, whatever way best meets your needs, but here are some possibilities:

  • Offer individual attention to students during any stage of their research process.
  • Serve as a contact regarding library or research questions.
  • Work with students to quickly resolve access basic issues and/or refer to the WSC Service Center for additional support.
  • Provide specially designed content for the course, including suggested resources, tutorials, search strategies and research guides.
  • Provide tips on
    - narrowing paper topics and brainstorming ideas for research.
    - identifying the best keywords and search terms for a topic.
    - finding books in the library catalog.
    - searching for magazine and journal articles.
    - selecting appropriate web-based sources for college-level work.
    - accessing materials that the library does not own.
    - using citations correctly.

Should I embed a librarian?

  • Do any of your assignments require research? Are you tired of students citing websites as their only sources? A librarian can guide students to more authoritative information.  
  • Do you wish your students would use citations better? A librarian can work with your students to provide correct references and in-text citations.
  • Any class that has a Canvas component can take advantage of working with an embedded librarian. We work with any discipline or subject areas and are happy to discuss embedding a librarian in your class.

How does it work?

  • A librarian is assigned to your class, reviews your syllabus, and speaks with you about the research goals and library resource needs of your class.
  • You give the librarian access as a teaching assistant so that he or she can view your class materials and discussions (but not your gradebook).
  • Students are also given contact information for the librarian (phone, email, etc) so that they can contact the librarian directly for personal assistance.
  • The key to the program is the designated "Class Librarian" discussion board forum maintained by the librarian in Canvas. This is where they work with students throughout the semester on various assignments and projects, posting tips at time-appropriate moments and answering questions. The librarian tailors tips and suggestions for YOUR students so that they can be successful in YOUR class. This discussion board is kept independent of your course discussion board and materials so that there is no extra work for you.

What do the librarians need from the instructors?

Primarily, librarians would need access to your Canvas course. However, the most important thing that we need from instructors is promotion of the library and its resources. Announcing that a librarian will be a part of the class and be available for questions is a great first step. If you see students struggling with research, remind them that a librarian is available to help. The more importance that is placed on library resources, the more students are likely to use them!


To request an embedded librarian for your course, contact Valerie Knight at [email protected] or at 402-375-7443.