From start to finish and everything in between
Knowledge Market helps students succeed in new ways
It’s no secret that the Mary Idema Pew Library is one of the best places to be on Grand Valley State
University’s Allendale Campus, but it isn’t just the fresh, new-building smell drawing students in.
At the Knowledge Market, which officially opened yesterday, students find tutors in a designated
tutoring center whether by appointment or during drop-in hours. There are also consultants from
the Writing Center, Speech Lab and Peer Research Center available to help with any and all aspects
of conducting academic research.
“The Knowledge Market is unique, however, because there, our writing consultants join with other
peer consultants on campus—peer research consultants from the libraries and speech lab
consultants,” said Kay Losey, director of the Writing Center. “These three partner groups share
space at the Knowledge Market, a collaboration which will allow students to move easily from one
type of support to another, depending on their needs and goals for the evening.”
The Knowledge Market is the biggest study area on campus, outfitted with new seats, tables and
moveable whiteboards for taking notes, problem-solving or even, as one student did, writing
“At the Knowledge Market, the writing consultants will offer the same services as our other
locations,” Losey said. “Our goal is to help students improve as writers. Consultants work with
students on any aspect of their writing that the students would like—from brainstorming ideas,
organizing content and integrating research to final editing strategies and methods of correctly
The Knowledge Market is more than just a new location for the Writing Center. Consultants from
both the Peer Research Center and the Speech Lab will be available to assist students looking for
help, guidance or feedback.
“It’s a triple combination,” said Mary O’Kelly, one of the librarians overseeing the new market.
“Soon we will have someone dedicated to the Knowledge Market to help students find appropriate
Not only does the Knowledge Market make academic research easier by providing services to
students, it also provides reasonable times for students to access those services.
“We’ve discovered that students tend to study later in the day,” O’Kelly said. “That’s why the
Knowledge Market will be open from 6 p.m. to midnight Sunday through Thursday.”
The Mary Idema Pew Library has embraced technology, using state-of-the-art computers and other
features to give a real-world experience to students. One such item is the new presentation
practice rooms, which are designed to simulate classrooms.
Within these rooms are desks with a desktop computer, a doc-cam and a control board where
students can flip from the computer screen to VCR or DVD, just like in the classroom. There they
can practice presenting a paper to friends, by themselves or via webcam with another person.
Speech Lab consultants will also meet students at the Knowledge Market after they’ve made an
appointment and will bring a video camera so a student can record and later watch their
presentation to study their performance. They can also put their presentations on a flash drive and
email it to their professors for feedback, O’Kelly said.
“We help students from start to finish,” she said. “Whether it is doing research, finding the materials
to do the research, writing the paper or practicing for a presentation, the Knowledge Market is here