• Example Interview Questions: Faculty

    Based on interviews with faculty at North Carolina State University. The study was undertaken as part of planning for the James B. Hunt Library. The main research questions were:

    • What are faculty members’ work lives like?
    • What library resources/services are most important to faculty?
    • How can the libraries support faculty research and teaching?


    Ask if it is ok to record the conversation. All information will only be used internally within the
    Libraries. Begin recording saying:

    “I am ________________ and today is __________ . Joining me today as note taker is _________________
    and we are interviewing __________________.”


    • Hometown/country:
    • Previous Research or Education Institution:
    • Interview Date:
    • How close do you live to Centennial Campus? Or Which parts of campus do you work on mostly?
    • Department or degree program at NCSU and subject of teaching/research:


    • What is the focus of your research?
    • What “problems” do you want to work on?
    • What “gets in the way” or makes it harder to get your work done?
    • What is the breakdown of teaching vs. research vs. other (e.g. administrative) activity?


    • What kind of places do you typically go to do your work? What do you like about this space?
    • Do you meet with and/or advise students? In what capacity? (How many graduate/
      undergraduate students do you advise?)
    • Where do you typically go to meet with students? How about with colleagues? What do you like about
      this space? Describe anything you dislike about this space.
    • At what time(s) of the day do you normally go to these spaces?
    • What are some of the factors that determine when you go to these spaces?
    • How often do you meet with others, and what kinds of places/spaces are best for this?
    • Do you use the library spaces now? If so, how do you use those spaces? If not, why not?

    Hunt Library Specific Questions

    • Do you envision yourself using Hunt? Why or why not? (What would be an incentive to use this
    • Now that you’ve seen the spaces dedicated to faculty in the Hunt Library, [OR: if D. H. Hill had spaces
      for faculty similar to those you’ve seen in Hunt Library] what would make those spaces most
      useful for you? (what types of spaces, what kinds of furniture, how many computers would you
      like to see?)
    • Thinking about the group meeting rooms in the Research Commons, what kind of display
      technologies would you need in these rooms, keeping in mind that the teaching and visualization
      lab and creativity zone spaces will be nearby and bookable? (would you need projectors?
      Flat screens? Other? What percentage of rooms in the commons would need to have these

    Library Collection

    • What parts of the library collection have you used (or are most familiar with)? Are you finding
      what you need? If no, what do you need? (e.g., Do you remember times when you needed something but couldn’t
      access it or make use of it effectively?’ And what did you end up doing?)


    • Describe any technological tools that would be useful to you in your work. (Which ones would you
      prefer to use in the library vs. out of the library?)


    • Is there anything else you would like to tell us?