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QR Your Mobile Resources – A Brief How To

mobile phone scanning a QR code
1. find QR code by cocreatr

Do you have a mobile-optimized website or other mobile resources to feature at an open house or similar event?

Here is a step by step guide about how we created a quick response (QR) code flyer and introduced students to National Library of Medicine (NLM) Mobile resources at a recent open house for the University of Washington Health Sciences Library.

Review & create QR codes – for a refresher on what these are, check out QR Codes: They’re Everywhere. Create QR codes only for mobile-optimized websites and resources – test to see if your regular website looks good on a mobile device as some do detect access and resize accordingly. To create QR codes, use the URL tab at (or a similar free QR code generator) and select the size you need for your flyer.

Practice the process – if it’s been a while since you have used a QR code scanner or you do not already have one on your mobile device, go ahead and install one then start scanning. To locate a QR code scanner, search the app store on your device for QR and a number of free scanners will pop up or show that one is already installed. I currently use QR Droid on my Android phone and Qrafter on my iPad.

Reach one, teach one – notice the steps of the QR scanner search, installation & actual scan process: what seems intuitive to you often is not to our users! Teach a few colleagues or family members these steps their mobile devices, preferably on both Apple and Android devices.

Encourage with enthusiasm –  After asking students  ‘Are you familiar with mobile resources from the National Library of Medicine?’, we learned that a number of them either didn’t know what a QR code was or had forgotten how to scan them with their mobile devices.  Offering your users assistance by using the same techniques as teaching your colleagues is invaluable, and they will be more likely to ask you about your mobile resources now that they can access them!

Have additional questions or tips to share about the use of QR codes to promote your resources and website? Please feel free to share them in the comments below.


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