Research Visits

The ISU Library welcomes scheduled visits from area high school classes as an important component of our institution's Land Grant mission. In order to make the most of your class visit, please note the following guidelines and policies.

Scheduling your visit

Requests for high school visits should be made at least two weeks in advance of the desired date, in order to allow us to make necessary arrangements. Every effort will be made to accommodate your visiting class, but the ISU Library reserves the right to decline requests if there are scheduling conflicts, or insufficient notification time for necessary arrangements. Scheduling conflicts do arise, so please consider alternate dates and times prior to calling. To schedule your visit or for more information, please contact Emily Simmons, at 515-294-6117.

In addition, please note that ISU students, faculty and staff have priority in the use of Parks Library resources, services, and facilities; some resources may be restricted to use by ISU students, faculty and staff only.  Certain times of the year - such as the beginning of the semester - are particularly busy.  For this reason, the ideal time to schedule a visit may be during intersession when fewer ISU students, faculty, and staff are using the Library, but we realize this may not always be possible.

Teaching & Intended purpose of visit

If you would like ISU librarians to teach or meet with your students during their visit, whether this is to orient the class to research methods, provide an introduction to accessing and using specific online or print resources, or to help orient them to the organization of the Library itself, it is particularly important for arrangements to be made well in advance.  We will also need to know the specific research purpose or intended student learning outcomes of your class visit.  Class teachers will need to provide us with a list of students' expected research topics so that the librarian(s) working with your class can review appropriate sources and search strategies prior to your visit.  It is often helpful for students to do some searching of the ISU Quick Search prior to the visit.

Additional notes

Supervision of visiting high school students is the responsibility of your high school staff, and we recommend that you plan for an 8:1 ratio of students to adults for your visit.  While this is not normally a problem, please let your students know in advance of your visit that noisy or unruly behavior is inappropriate in an academic research library. Please note also that the ISU Library does not provide staff to assist in supervising visiting students.

Students should plan to bring money for photocopying and printing. The ISU Library has networked printing at a charge of five cents per page. Class instructors may also arrange for borrowing privileges to check out library books for students if you wish. Inquire about this possibility in advance of your visit with staff at the Main Desk.

Students' personal belongings should not be left unattended in the Library, even if your class is working within one of the Library's computer labs or classrooms. The Library's Lost and Found service is located at the Circulation Desk.

Reserving a Library classroom or computer labs for your visit may be possible but only when an ISU librarian is assigned to work with your class visit. Please be aware that due to scheduling demands, we cannot guarantee a private workspace or computer workstations will be available for your students. This is another reason why requests and arrangements for visits should be made well in advance of the desired date(s).

Please do not eat in the Library. Drinks are allowed in covered, spill-proof containers, except in the following restricted areas: Special Collections, Reserve & Media Services, the Microforms Room, computer labs, and near any computer workstation.

Thank you for helping us observe these policies. We look forward to meeting and working with you and your students!