September/October 2009 issue

Library Conducts Law Clerk Exit Survey


The library recently conducted a short online survey of exiting law clerks. The intent of the survey was to identify any underused or unknown library services as well as any problems we need to address. Sixty-one surveys were sent and 28 responses were received - that’s a 46% response rate. Not bad! The majority of responses (54%) came from appellate clerks.

The survey revealed that library services such as research services, interlibrary loan, eAlerts, the online catalog and the library web site were used by the respondents but in varying degrees. A few of these services were unknown to some of the respondents.

75% reported using items from the library’s print collection, such as books, periodicals, and newspapers. 71% reported they were not aware that the library’s online catalog existed. 82% of the respondents said they used the library’s web site to access PACER, and 46% used the site to access HeinOnline. All respondents were aware of our interlibrary loan service, but only 32% made use of it. 14% were unaware of news publications such as Newswatch and the 8th Circuit Library newsletter. Most respondents chose to skip the questions regarding chambers responsibility or training needs.

We appreciate the feedback provided in the survey, particularly the additional comments such as this one: “Every question I had was quickly and thoroughly addressed. Also, I found library research to be an important supplement to electronic research.”

We are always working to refine our services and resources in order to better serve court staff. If you have any comments or suggestions, you don’t need to wait for our next survey - Please share them with your branch librarian or email them to us at library8th@ca8.uscourts.gov !