|Is there anywhere on campus – either in the library, or elsewhere -that could function as a space to privately practice presentations? Most places are only available to groups, which means it’s hard if you need some privacy to rehearse an individual presentation. I have tried using the library group rooms when they are unoccupied, but the walls are very thin; the people outside the room could hear me, and I could hear them! Do you have any recommendations? I am a commuter so I unfortunately can’t practice in a dorm.
One of the reasons Temple University is planning for a new library building is to equip students with the type of learning spaces that best meet their needs. As you discovered, the study rooms in Paley Library were never intended to be presentation practice spaces.
While you could practice a presentation in our study rooms, as you point out, they hardly offer the soundproofing this type of room needs – nor are the rooms equipped with the right type of technology. What if you wanted to record yourself making the presentation for later analysis?
The good news is that you can find presentation practice rooms in the TECH Center. There are breakout rooms specialized for presentation practice. It is true that the rooms are usually available to groups but you can go to the consultant’s desk in the TECH Center to inquire about personal use of the room. If the consultant is able to make the room available it can be used for one hour.
Good luck with your presentation.
The chalkboards in the breakout rooms in the Paley Stacks are horrible. They seem to repel chalk unless the chalk is very soft. Even then, anything written is very hard to read. Could dry erase boards be installed? The inability to use the chalkboards takes away most of the purpose in using the private breakout rooms.
Thank you for bringing this to our attention. We know that all the Paley Library study rooms get great use, and we certainly want them to facilitate student learning. In responding to your suggestion it seemed logical to examine the chalkboards. We found that most are actively used, and it appears that they work well. Students appeared to be writing away on them with no particular challenges. That said, we discovered that at least two study rooms out of eleven have questionable chalkboards that could benefit from replacement. We did not include the three Media Services viewing rooms; all of them have whiteboards.
Since it looks like most of the rooms have space for whiteboards we will certainly look into having one added to each study room. We will also look into adding a mobile whiteboard or two (there is already one mobile whiteboard in room 207 that can be taken into any study room). Whiteboards do present some challenges. They require dry erase markers. Currently we do not provide chalk; students must bring their own. We’d likely do the same with markers, but we will examine the options. Whiteboards also need regular cleaning, so they require more care and attention than chalkboards.
Thanks again for your suggestion. We will seriously consider adding whiteboards to our study rooms. If other students have thoughts about this or like the idea, please use the comments feature to let us know. Students who would like to speak with a library staff member about the study rooms may contact Steven Bell, Associate University Librarian.