Staff members of the University of Arkansas at Little Rock’s Collections and Archives division plan to create a service to improve students’ research capabilities.
The UALR Collections and Archives division recently was awarded a $4,000 grant to develop Geographic Information System (GIS) support for student research at Ottenheimer Library in Little Rock.
With the funds from Amigos Library Services — one of the largest library service networks in the nation — the division will implement a system that will have librarians leverage available datasets and assist students in the use of GIS research techniques.
The grant makes it possible for the library to install a GIS workstation, train librarians and staff on GIS theory and methodology, and support the development of an interdisciplinary GIS project in collaboration with faculty.
GIS is particularly applicable to the social science community-engaged research that the university promotes. UALR currently offers a certificate in geospatial technology and incorporates GIS methods and theory in a wide range of disciplines, including geography, earth sciences, anthropology, business, criminal justice, engineering, health studies, history, sociology, and interdisciplinary studies.
“We are excited about the opportunity the Amigos grant presents to us,” said Associate Provost Deborah Baldwin.
“The UALR Collections and Archives division has a new vision for a technology-rich library and archives organization where it will be a hub for students to use information and technology resources for collaboration and scholarship,” Baldwin said.
Amigos grant funding will provide seed money for one of the first steps in supporting that vision.
The University of Arkansas at Little Rock was one of two universities to receive a 2015 Amigos Fellowship and Opportunity grant.
Amigos Library Services is a not-for-profit, membership-based organization dedicated to serving libraries. Founded in 1990, the Amigos grant program has awarded over $120,000 to foster resource-sharing and development.