Thanks to everyone who came out to the Summon 2.0 feedback sessions over the past month, and to those who send their thoughts via email. Here are some of the findings from the sessions, and a proposal for moving forward:
We need to switch to the new interface before August 15th. We’d like to schedule the switchover to Summon 2.0 to be at the end of this semester (April 28). This:
- Gives us a month to start telling patrons it’s coming (I’ll put a banner in our existing Summon telling folks they can try out the new interface before it goes live on April 28th)
- Gives instruction folks a month to prepare any changes to materials they need before summer session, and gives those whose instruction loads are light in the summer even more time to prepare. (Feedback from the sessions indicated that this was enough time.)
- Gives us more time before Fall semester to customize and tweak based on user feedback than we would have if we wait to go live until August.
If that schedule doesn’t work for you, please let us know as soon as possible, since we need to schedule the switchover with Serials Solutions.
Things we Liked
- Despite our initial reservations from last spring, folks responded positively to the right-hand sidebar that shows detailed information about results. A lot of folks like it better than the pop-ups, and students tended to see the new placement more than when it was a pop-up dialog.
- Librarians now show up in the right side bar if you have the metadata set correctly in your LibGuide (here’s an example of Emily). (Let me know if you need help doing this).
- The Newspaper displays don’t take up as much room as on the 1.0 site, and yet still offer easy access to news items. A few folks noted that this was a nice compromise between overwhelming users with newspapers while still including them. (Here’s an example - newspapers start at around the 6th result)
- Lots of thumbs-ups for “dynamic loading,” or “infinite scroll.” Basically, results aren’t paginated anymore, they just keep loading as you scroll.
- LibGuides show up much higher in the results than they did before.
Questions and Concerns
- Unlike Summon 1.0, which often got rid of search refinements when you wanted to keep them, Summon 2.0 makes it hard to get rid of your filters. At the final meeting, we discussed some design changes to the “Clear Filters” link at the top of the facet column, since it’s virtually invisible now.
- Zotero doesn’t seem to work on the new export citations page. I’m looking into this. UPDATE: Barbara sent along this clarifiication on the Zotero problem:
“My experience with Summon2.0 was that Zotero didn’t work at all, not just at the “export citations” page. In fact, the best thing about Zotero is that citations don’t need to be exported, it should be a 1-click operation from the results page.
Considering that several of us just spent weeks investigating and offering workshops on alternatives to Refwoks (none of which were RefWorks Flow), I see this a a big negative.”
- The new Summon saved records system will be integrated into RefWorks Flow, which is something we’ve just decided to cancel. I’m looking into how this will work for folks who do not have a Flow account.
- Disciplines are now a facet in the sidebar, and are prioritized over Subject terms. While the majority favored the discipline facet, a few folks felt strongly that subject terms were more useful. We can switch the order of these, but Jeff and I feel that this decision should be made by the instruction librarians. (It’s an item on the next R&I meeting.)
Anything I missed, let me know! We’ll continue running usability tests on Summon 2.0, and I’ll continue to post progress on the switchover here.