Washington and Lee Law professor Alex Zhang has published an article in the latest issue of Law Library Journal. Zhang co-authored the work, “The Gaps Model and Faculty Services: Quality Analysis Through a “New” Lens,” with Sherry Xin Chen, a librarian and lecturer at Boston College Law School.
Zhang and Chen apply a model often used by businesses for evaluating service quality in assessing one of a law school library’s most important functions: supporting faculty research and reference needs.
Motivated by evolving ABA standards for evaluating library services in the law school accreditation process, the authors propose a new approach that focuses on users’ perceptions of quality and actual library performance in four areas: knowledge, policy, delivery, and service. They also identify law librarians’ specialized knowledge and adaptability as fundamental in delivering high-quality services to faculty.
“When designing a valuable and sustainable faculty services model, we need to focus on our profession’s comparative advantages,” Zhang and Chen conclude. “In the era in which both the legal research and legal information landscapes are constantly changing and subject to disruptive technologies and innovative services, it is paramount for law library leaders to design a service framework driven by these innovative changes.”
Zhang’s article can be downloaded free of charge in the W&L Law Scholarly Commons digital scholarship repository.
Alex Zhang is the Assistant Dean for Legal Information Services and Professor of Practice at W&L, where she directs the law library and teaches courses in legal research. Her areas of expertise include public access to legal information, legal research methods and methodology, and Chinese law and research.