Internship at the Empirical Reasoning Lab (ERL) – Barnard College

erlThe Empirical Reasoning Lab (ERL) at the Barnard College Library is seeking motivated detail-oriented library school students who are interested in learning more about the current issues in the cross-section of libraries and data. Explosions of available data in the digital age are changing the landscape of library services and supporting the access and use of data related resources and digital tools is an important  way in which libraries are addressing this changing environment. Interns at the ERL will gain hands-on experience in understanding and creating systems for studying the barriers of access to quantitative and qualitative data. Some experience with empirical methods preferred, but training will also be provided. Experience with metadata standards highly preferred. The internships are unpaid and require a semester long commitment. Only currently enrolled students are eligible.

Internship Site

Empirical Reasoning Lab, The Barnard College Library (aka Barnard Library and Academic Information Services, BLAIS) – 200 Lehman, 3009 Broadway, New York, NY, 10027

Internship Assignment

Under the mentorship of the Manager of the Empirical Reasoning Lab, interns will have the opportunity to focus on different areas such as establishing the varying needs of novice and expert users,  developing and implementing the assessments of existing tools, gaining knowledge about the structure of data and data repositories from the user’s perspective, and creating online solutions designed to increase access.

Professional Development

Interns will learn about the experiences of Research and Instruction academic librarians. Depending on the tasks chosen, interns will receive training in conducting usability studies and other forms of assessment, developing online tools for increasing access to data-related resources, and working with the needs of one of the most selective undergraduate populations and the world renowned faculty at Barnard College.

Professional Interactions

Interns will have the opportunity to attend regular meetings with the Research and Instruction Services librarians at Barnard College as well as regular meetings with the staff of the ERL. Interns will also have opportunities to interact with undergraduate students and faculty to better understand the data service needs of the College. Furthermore, because of Barnard College?s unique relationship with Columbia University, interns will have opportunities to attend relevant  workshops and webinars hosted by Columbia.


The duration of this unpaid internship is one semester, either during the Summer or Fall sessions.


10-15 hours per week.


This is an unpaid internship.

To Apply

Please send a cover letter and resume to Heather Van Volkinburg, Data Librarian & Manager of the Empirical Reasoning Lab,

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