Peishan Bartley: Through a new lens

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With a B.A. in business administration from Taipei's National Cheng Chi University and an MBA from University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, Peishan Bartley began her career in software marketing before coming to GSLIS to pursue first, her master's degree in library and information science, and now, her Ph.D.

Focusing her research on information retrieval, Bartley initially saw the move as a radical change. Since then, she's come to regard her library science work as a continuation of her interests in the business world. Just as a marketer analyzes product positioning, Bartley is leading people to the information they need to improve their lives.

Eye-opening coursework: Bartley credits the master's-level course Information Retrieval for introducing her to her newfound expertise. "Every detail and decision that the system designer makes hugely affects how results are found and presented," she says. "It's crucial for us to understand how this works in order to create more user-friendly and practical systems."

Bartley's areas of inquiry include user-tagging behavior, usability evaluation methods, and cross- lingual information retrieval. Fluent in Mandarin and Taiwanese, she is conducting her dissertation research on how users approach information retrieval when a search involves multiple languages.

From M.S. to Ph.D.: Much of what Bartley loved about the GSLIS master's program carried over to the Ph.D. "The faculty provide great structure and are so easy to approach," she says. "For students who want to expand their experience in any way, all you have to do is speak up and the opportunities will arise."

Bartley praises the Doctoral Studies program's formal emphases on research, teaching, and service. Of the distinct focus on service, she says: "It ensures that we're involved in the information science academic community through conferences, associations, and collaborations. We become part of the bigger picture."

Inspired to teach: Following her practicum as a teaching assistant for Information Retrieval, Bartley aims to pursue a career in academia. As both student and teacher at GSLIS, she offers a unique perspective. "The classroom atmosphere here is very interactive," she says. "We inspire, ask questions, and explore together."

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