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Show and Tell: Library signage and wayfinding design

Show and Tell

Library signage and wayfinding design

Show and Tell


Principles of wayfinding

“The International Health Facility Guidelines (2016) establish the following wayshowing principles—or rather, means of guiding users’ own wayfinding:

  • Create a unique identity of shapes and colors at each location.
  • Give each region a unique visual character.
  • Make use of sightlines.
  • Create simple, intuitive paths that are easy to navigate.
  • Make use of landmarks.
  • Avoid information overload.
  • Provide signs at decision points.
  • Provide wall maps and printed material for users to take.”

“Designing effective wayfinding signage can be broken down into five steps you can use to see where your existing signage may need updating:

  1. Research your audience.
  2. Analyze the data.
  3. Develop a wayfinding document that maps out your users’ pathways.
  4. Select decision points.
  5. Select sign types.”

Practical matters

The best practices of signage design, synthesized from the body of previous work on library signage and on effective signage more broadly, are detailed: [headings]

Make signs succinct and legible.

Keep user experience (UX) design principles in mind.

Make text and vRevisit your signs often.isuals consistent.

Design for ADA compliance.

Place signage with purpose.

Other considerations

The number of signs matters.

Revisit your signs often.

Create a signage policy.

This article is excerpted from Library Signage and Wayfinding Design: Communicating Effectively with Your Users by Mark Aaron Polger (ALA Editions, 2021).


Posted on: September 22, 2022, 6:54 am Category: Uncategorized

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