Karen E Downing

kdown's picture


734 764 0259

209 Hatcher North
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1205
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Education Librarian



Education Liaison Librarian - I coordinate the Library's collections, outreach and instruction in the area of education. This includes working with the School of Education, CRLT, and other researchers and students working on education topics.


My expertise includes forging connections and building relationships between the library and external stakeholders. I am deeply engaged with diversity, inclusion and equity issues and their implications for education research and research libraries. I have a strong understanding of research methodologies in the social sciences and of the student experience from my time as a PhD student. I have special expertise in critical theory as it applies to education and library science research and practice. A few of the things I can assist with include:

  • Contextualizing library services and relate them to different stages within the research lifecycle to help researchers understand how the library can help address their needs
  • Helping people locate data sets that pertain to education.
  • Working with research teams to help them devise means of organizing and managing their data.
  • Helping researchers with social science data understand what repositories have to offer for sharing and preserving their data, and help them identify a repository that is right for their needs.  
  • Refering researchers to others in the Library who can help address their needs as necessary.


Ph.D., 2009 University of Michigan, School of Education, Center for the Study of Higher and Postsecondary Education

M.L.I.S., 1989 University of Michigan, School of Information

B.A., 1982 University of Michigan, History of Art


  • Insure access to an array of research data, articles, books, and other resources on education.
  • Provide research support to those studying education.
  • Encourage collaborations between the University Library and the School of Education, CRLT, and other units researching education.
  • Assist with educational research throughout the research life-cycle.