Research consultant

New from ACRL – “How to be a Peer Research Consultant”

CHICAGO – The Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) announces the publication of “How to Be a Peer Research Consultant: A Guide for Librarians and Students” by Maglen Epstein and Bridget Draxler, a concise guide for librarians and students on developing and teaching research skills and fostering these peer relationships.

Each student brings their own unique set of educational and personal experiences to a research project, and peer research consultants are the only ones who can reveal this “hidden agenda” to the researchers they assist. In seven highly readable chapters, “How to Be a Peer Research Consultant” provides targeted support for anyone preparing undergraduates to serve as peer research consultants, whether you refer to these working students as as research tutors, reference assistants or research assistants.

Inside you will find valuable training materials to help student researchers develop metacognitive and transferable research skills and habits, as well as fundamental topics like what research looks like in different disciplines, professionalism and confidentiality. , ethics, research process, inclusive research consultations and joint research assignments. It concludes with an appendix containing 30 activities, discussion questions, and written reflection prompts to supplement the content covered in each chapter, designed to be easily printed or copied from the book.

“How to Become a Peer Research Consultant” can be read in its entirety for ideas and activities, or it can be distributed to each student as a training manual. It pays particular attention to the consultant-student relationship in peer research and offers advice on flexible approaches to meet a wide range of research needs. The book is intended to be useful in a variety of higher education settings and is designed to be applicable to each institution’s unique library resources and holdings. Through mentoring and coaching, undergraduate students can feel confident in their ability to help their peers with their research and can be inspired to continue this work as professional librarians in the future.

“How to Be a Peer Research Consultant: A Guide for Librarians and Students” is available for purchase in print and as an e-book through the ALA online store; in print via; and by phone order at (866) 746-7252 in the United States or (770) 442-8633 for international customers.


The Association of College & Research Libraries (ACRL) is the higher education association for college libraries and librarians. Representing nearly 9,000 people and libraries, ACRL (a division of the American Library Association) develops programs, products and services to help those who work in academic and research libraries learn, innovate and lead within the university community. Founded in 1940, ACRL is committed to advancing learning, transforming scholarship, and building diverse and inclusive communities. Find ACRL on the web, Facebook, TwitterInstagram and YouTube.