Amber N. Welch
Head of Technology Enhanced Learning, Libraries
University of Texas
The Foundry, a makerspace at the University of Texas Libraries, opened in September 2016. The space provides access to a large visualization wall, 3D printers, virtual reality, mills, sewing machines, 3D scanners, and a laser cutter. The Foundry is currently focused on fostering interdisciplinary, curriculum-integrated use of the equipment. It also prioritizes attracting a diverse patron constituency that represents the demographics of the campus at large. This presentation will address the role of the library in monitoring demographic use of makerspaces through strategic, mission-driven assessment practices. Topics will include, barriers to makerspace access, The Foundry assessment plan and associated data gathering practices, and current usage trends. IT system and organizational challenges associated with assessment practices will also be addressed.