Guiding principles for research help

Research help is provided by librarians and archivists at UVic Libraries to students, faculty, staff, and members of the community. For the purposes of these guiding principles, we use the term “researchers” to describe members of all of these groups.

Our guiding principles are not directives; we recognize that using them requires judgment. Some guiding principles serve as counterpoints or balances to others. Not every guiding principle will be appropriate to every research help interaction.

UVic Libraries supports librarians and archivists in providing research help according to these principles.


The Guiding Principles

  1. We strive to ensure that researchers learn from the research help interaction.
  2. We are attentive to the diversity of researchers’ backgrounds, abilities, experiences, expectations, and goals, and we strive to provide research help in an inclusive, equitable, decolonizing way.
  3. We are alert and responsive to the diversity of project formats, scope, and characteristics that researchers are pursuing.
  4. We provide research help in an accessible and visible way.
  5. We strive to embody best practices in research help.
  6. We make space for experimentation, creativity, and risk-taking in providing research help.
  7. We continually assess our research help services to understand their effectiveness.
  8. We leverage the full range of expertise in UVic Libraries to meet researchers’ needs, including referrals to colleagues, workshops, and other resources.
  9. We educate users about open practices in scholarly publishing, research, and educational contexts as part of research help interactions.
  10. We embrace our own continuous learning, skill-building, and improvement in the changing research environment.