Came across this interesting case study of using personas in D-LIB Magazine: “Using Personas to Understand the Needs and Goals of Institutional Repository Users,” by Jack M. Maness, Tomasz Miaskiewicz, and Tamara Sumner from the University of Colorado at Boulder.
This study shares the results of an effort to understand the needs and goals of future institutional repository (IR) users at the University of Colorado at Boulder (UCB). Due to underutilization of IRs at other institutions, the University Libraries at UCB decided it was imperative that insight into users’ goals and needs of an IR be gained before design of the repository began. The libraries partnered with faculty and students with expertise in human-computer interaction to study user needs. The results of this study yielded “personas” describing different classes of potential IR users on university campuses, which can be used to guide IR architects in designing repositories that facilitate increased participation.
The article includes the final personas they created as well. While I’m a fan of personas and have used them successfully in my own work, I stil feel there needs to be more rigor to the methodology of creating them. I was missing that in this article, which surprised me because this was done in an academic setting.