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Journal/Book Title/Conference

Journal of Web Librarianship


Taylor & Francis

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In 2016, Utah State University (USU) Libraries redesigned the library website’s main menu and underlying information architecture (IA) in response to a number of known usability problems and limitations. Card sorting studies were conducted with a group of USU undergraduate students and a mixed group of faculty and graduate students to help develop a better understanding of users’ mental models of library-related research and service tasks. Participants worked in teams to sort, rank and label cards pertaining to the content and feature of the library’s website. Afterwards, participants discussed and performed usability tasks on each other’s categories. Results were used to inform the design of a new IA and menu structure, while best practices from usability studies and trends in academic library website design were used to help with menu and link labeling. The final design was validated through follow-up discussions with staff, usability tests, and category/reverse category tests.


This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in the Journal of Web Librarianship on 1/23/2019, available online:



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