Library and Information Science Research
Luo, Jiebei, "Habitual Wayfinding in Academic Libraries: Evidence from a Liberal Arts College" (2018). Library. 23.
Habitual wayfinding is a revised wayfinding model for academic libraries, where there is a high percentage of repeat users. Using the unique spatial characteristics of a specific academic library, this study explores the wayfinding patterns of repeat users and evaluates the impact of patrons' travel habits on their library space usage. The GIS tool ArcMap is employed to visualize library traffic and detect potential patterns of habitual wayfinding. The impact of habitual wayfinding behaviors on library space usage is analyzed. Findings suggest that travel habits formed through past frequent actions can lead to consistent navigation preferences toward certain function units and significant usage differences even within the same function unit in a library. In addition to proposing this modified wayfinding framework and studying its relevance in explaining library space usage patterns, this study also makes a methodological contribution through a novel approach of detecting potential traffic patterns by visualizing routing data and quantifying its details at the route segment level. The framework, methodology, and findings have important implications for understanding space use in academic libraries and can be valuable to libraries considering conducting space evaluation and space rearrangement projects.