It’s that time of year again – time for a round-up of what we learned during our semiannual affiliation survey! As you may recall, Hirsh staff walked around with clipboards this October trying not to interrupt your studying too much to ask what school you were from (thanks again for that). Even if you don’t, let’s go over our interesting results!

Total Numbers

It is no surprise that the library feels busy, but do the numbers bear that out? Well, over the course of seven days and 96 rounds, we talked to 2,214 people, nearly 500 more than in March. Of those we captured, 868 were from the Dental School – almost 40% – and 835 were from the Medical School, including PA students – about 38%. There were a lot of MBS students using Hirsh this fall; the 350 we counted represent a 95% increase from our March count! We also counted 67 Nutrition students, 55 MPH students, 3 PT students, 18 GSBS students, 11 folks from Tufts Medical Center and a few affiliate members. Remember, Hirsh warmly welcomes everyone from the Tufts community, so we love seeing so many groups represented! The total breakdown is below.

Vertical bar chart showing total patrons organized by program type

Total Patrons by Program

Okay, so we have a sense of who was using the library, let’s look at where and when the library was being used.


In a statistic that I’m sure will shock exactly no one, the 7th floor remained our most popular space with almost 1100 visitors. This time around, the popularity of the 7th floor grew; it was almost two and a half times more popular than the next closest floor, the 5th, which had 464 visitors. The 4th floor at 365, saw 99 fewer folks than the 5th, and the 6th floor had the fewest visitors with just under 300.

Vertical bar chart showing total patrons organized by floor

Patrons by Floor


Hirsh starts out strong on Monday, with patronage dropping off as we move into the weekend. Our most popular day was Monday, followed very closely by Wednesday. Tuesdays and Thursdays were the next popular. Not surprisingly, Saturday was our least busy day with Sunday close behind.


Vertical bar chart showing total patrons organized by days of the week

Patrons by Day


In another unsurprising statistic, 3pm remains the busiest time of day at Hirsh. 11am is the second busiest time. 11am and 6pm have nearly the same amount of traffic, but it drops off a cliff in the evening; 9pm is our least busy time by far at nearly 4x less busy than 3pm!

Vertical bar chart showing total patrons organized by time of day

Patrons by Time of Day

Total Floor Usage by Time of Day

While I can’t fully answer how the library is being used, we can glean some insight from looking at floor use by time. For example, not only is the 7th floor the most popular floor considering total visitors across the survey, it’s also the most popular floor at any given time of day. My guess is the 7th floor’s popularity comes from having the most study space; we know the study rooms are a hot commodity! Again, the full breakdown is below. Maybe you have some insights of your own? I’d love to hear them!

Horizontal bar chart showing total number of people organized by floor, with each bar divided by time of day

Total Floor Count by Time


So, on behalf of everyone at the Hirsh Health Sciences Library, thank you for your assistance! Getting an understanding of where and when the library is used helps us serve you best! And speaking of, if you have any feedback on what Hirsh could be doing for you, please reach out! The Library Service Desk is open 7 days a week and you can email us at Otherwise, we’ll be back at it again in the spring. Until then…



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