Advanced Virtual Reference Training


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Revised training PowerPoint, September 2013

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  • Good afternoon. I’d like to thank Susanne for the opportunity to come and talk to you today about KnowItNow24x7, and how we can work together to provide service to students (and non-students) throughout the Buckeye state.
  • To provide you with just a little background on who I am: My name is Don Boozer. In 2008, I was hired as the first full-time statewide coordinator of KnowItNow24x7. Prior to that I was a reference librarian in the Literature Department of Cleveland Public Library and a reference and teen services librarian at Barberton Public Library. My very first library job was as a library assistant at the Hershey Public Library in Hershey, PA, right across the road from the chocolate factory.
  • To provide you with just a little background on who I am: My name is Don Boozer. In 2008, I was hired as the first full-time statewide coordinator of KnowItNow24x7. Prior to that I was a reference librarian in the Literature Department of Cleveland Public Library and a reference and teen services librarian at Barberton Public Library. My very first library job was as a library assistant at the Hershey Public Library in Hershey, PA, right across the road from the chocolate factory.
  • Welcome to “Googling, Tweeting, and Wikifying: Utilizing (and Participating in) the Internet’s Most Popular Sites.”
  • First, let’s understand who we’re dealing with. Although Google, Twitter, and Wikipedia are three of the most popular sites on the Internet, there are three very different organizations that make these sites available.
  • First: Google is a multi-national, for-profit corporation with more than 70 offices spread out all over the world…
  • And finally, the non-profit Wikimedia Foundation, which is responsible for making Wikipedia available, touts the fact that they take up the ENTIRE third floor of an office building also in San Francisco with plenty of space for its 28 local employees.
  • To get another idea of the scale that we’re talking about, let’s take a look at the operating revenue for each of these entities. Google took in over $50 billion in revenue last year. That’s over **4-1/2 TIMES** the total operating revenue of all the public libraries in the US combined… Finally, the non-profit Wikimedia Foundation responsible for Wikipedia and other projects has about the same operating revenue as the Toledo-Lucas County Public Library’s budget.
  • Google was founded in 1998, went public in 2004, and is the #1 most visited site on the Internet according to Alexa. The company now has well-over 50,000 employees world-wide and even figures prominently in the novel “Mr. Penumbra’s 24-hour Bookstore”. It is truly a business and cultural force to be reckoned with.
  • Many times, when we think of using Google, people think “Let me google that.” In fact, “google” as a verb was officially entered into the Oxford English Dictionary, Third Edition, inMarch 2006. But what we have to remember is when we want to “google it”…
  • We **really** have a range of possible searches we can do in a number of different interfaces or with a number of different delimiters. We’re going to talk about a few of these in detail, in a moment, but almost more importantly,…
  • We have to remember that Google is a constant work-in-progress. If you know how to do something on Google today, you might have to re-learn next month or next year. Case in point,…
  • Here was a screenshot I was using for a presentation last year. Notice all those delimiters nicely arrayed along the left side.
  • Okay, now forget them. They’re not there anymore!
  • This is what the current search results screen looks like. All those delimiters have either been moved along the top or hidden away, and the frame to the right is Google’s new Knowledge Graph.
  • Plus it’s important to remember that Google KNOWS from where you do your searches now!
  • So, I’d like to take you through a search utilizing some of the various tools in Google’s toolbox, beginning with Image search. As some of you may know, if you click on the little camera icon in the Google Image search…
  • …and get a window asking for a URL or for you to upload an image. I wanted to try this out, so…
  • I chose this picture of a dramatic monument that I snapped a few years ago in Lakeview Cemetery in Cleveland. I had no idea who the monument was for or anything else, I just thought it looked cool. So, I wanted to see if Google Image could answer whose monument it was for me…
  • Here’s what the basic search results looked like after uploading the image. I also typed in [Lakeview Cemetery Cleveland] since I knew that was the general location. I then looked at the second row of images and found…
  • This.Hey, that looks like my photo. So, I clicked on the image and found…
  • This… It turns out that it’s the monument to Charles Brush, who was evidently “a Cleveland inventor whose original arc street light still stands at Public Square.” So, I wondered…
  • What else can we find out about Charles Brush utilizing Google? We have some keywords now: charles brush arc lamp cleveland
  • And here we find an image of the replica of Brush’s arc lamp in Cleveland.
  • I also wanted to try Google News. Searching for [charles brush cleveland] and clicking News…
  • If we go again to “More>” and choose Books, we can choose the “Search Tools” and limit by only those books from the 19th Century. Each of Google’s tools will have a different set of “Search tools” associated with it. Here we find a report published by the Census in 1890 talking about Brush’s invention and that in 1879 the “first central electric lighting station using arc lamps” in San Francisco used the Brush system.While there has been some controversy over Google’s digitization of books, my perspective is that they are available to us to use as a tool, so we might as well make use of them. Some answers you will find online *only* in digitized books.
  • And then the “Search Tools” and “Archives”…
  • After all that you need a cookie… Searching for “chocolate chip cookie” and choosing *Recipes* under “More” you can even limit to specific ingredients or even calorie counts.
  • So, that’s just a small sample of what you can do to get information *out* of Google. If you’re interested in becoming a better Google searcher, I recommend their Power Searching Courses (a basic and an advanced). You can also share these with patrons and in information literacy classes at your library.
  • Launched in January of 2001 by the Wikimedia Foundation, Wikipedia is today the 6th most visited site on the Internet. There are almost 300 different language versions and over 4 million articles in the English language version alone.Wikipedia’s use as a reference tool, for good or for ill, is well-known. I’d like to quickly list some of the best uses, in my opinion, of the online encyclopedia before turning our attention to participating in the project…
  • Here is three of my edits for Wikipedia.
  • Wikipedia’s references, further reading, and external links can be a real time-saver! While we may not share the Wikipedia article itself with a patron, the article can be an extremely useful pre-vetting tool in some cases. This image shows just a small portion of the bottom of the article on maglev (or magnetic levitation) technology. In fact, I’ve used these particular ones for a KnowItNow patron.
  • Wikipedia is *great* for popular culture including movies, music, and books. Here, for example, is the discography for the band “fun” and includes the chart positions for albums and songs in the US and 7 other countries.
  • And this is a good article (see the green circle in the upper right) on AMC’s The Walking Dead tv series. This particular article runs for 19 pages if you wanted to print it out. This article has 76 references to news articles, reviews, and more.
  • The various language version of Wikipedia are great for language study… especially for languages for which a lot of libraries may not have a lot of language learning materials. They can provide extended texts in language for which it might be hard to find those kind of materials.Each language version is a “unique cultural product” written by speakers of that language or in the case of this Old English Wikipedia, those who study the language.This Old English Wikipedia with 2,522 articles.
  • Wikipedia makes this as painless as possible with lots of helpful tips and cheat sheets like this…
  • I want to thank you for the opportunity to share information about Ohio’s statewide online reference service. If you’d like to set up a demo, feel free to contact me at or through my personal email on my card. Additionally, if you *every* have anything to share about your or your students’ experience with the service, positive or negative, I would love to hear from you. I do my best to provide feedback to the librarians staffing the service and like to share kudos as well as constructive criticism to improve customer and reference service through KnowItNow24x7.Thank you again! Questions?
  • Advanced Virtual Reference Training

    1. 1. Advanced Virtual Reference Training
    2. 2. Don Boozer KnowItNow24x7 Coordinator
    3. 3. Today’s Agenda • Efficient use of Google and Wikipedia • Refresher on statewide databases • Dealing with pranks and problems • Customer service skills for virtual reference
    4. 4. You're part of a posse.... not a Lone Ranger!
    5. 5. Benchmarks & Best Practices • RUSA Professional Competencies for Reference and User Services Librarians (2003) • RUSA Guidelines for Behavioral Performance of Reference and Information Service Providers (2004; being revised) • RUSA New Definition of Reference (2008) • RUSA Guidelines for Implementing and Maintaining Virtual Reference Services (2010) • OLC Ohio Public Library Core Competencies • Seeking Synchronicity (2011)
    6. 6. Getting the Most out of Two of the Internet’s Most Popular Sites Googling & Wiki’ing
    7. 7. Who are we dealing with?
    8. 8. 70 offices… 40+ countries For-profit company Who are we dealing with?
    9. 9. Who are we dealing with? 70 offices… 40+ countries For-profit company 1 floor… Non-profit
    10. 10. ALL public libraries in the United States Operating Revenue$ $11 billion
    11. 11. GOOGLE IT I’ll just…
    12. 12. GOOGLE IT Search Books Scholar Patents Even More… YouTube ImagesMaps News
    13. 13. Early 2012 Google Reader Translated Foreign Pages iGoogle
    14. 14. Early 2012 Google Reader Translated Foreign Pages iGoogle
    15. 15. 2013
    16. 16. What else can we find out about James Clair Flood and the mansion utilizing Google?
    17. 17. Ruins of Flood Mansion, Nob Hill, San Francisco, Calif ornia (after 1906 earthquake) from
    18. 18. After that, w e need a cookie
    19. 19.
    20. 20. Some Recommended Uses of
    21. 21. Referral tool…
    22. 22. Popular culture… 12 printed pages
    23. 23. Popular culture… 14 printed pages
    24. 24. Language study… Old English Ænglisc
    25. 25. Language study… Finnish Suomi
    26. 26. Language study… Arabic
    27. 27. Local perspective… 20 printed pages
    28. 28. Local perspective… Farsi - 37 printed pages
    29. 29. Local perspective…
    30. 30.
    31. 31. 1 – English Wikipedia “can i have a quote from the inventor [of the car, Karl Benz]”
    32. 32. 1 2 – German Wikipedia
    33. 33. 2 3 – German Wikipedia Weblinks
    34. 34. 2 3 5 – Benz’s autobiography
    35. 35. 5 3 6
    36. 36. 3 6 7 – Google Translate “can i have a quote from the inventor [of the car, Karl Benz]”
    37. 37. Questions?
    38. 38. Ohio Web Library Databases A Refresher
    39. 39.
    40. 40. ONLY for KnowItNow24x7 Librarians
    41. 41. Let’s look at some specific databases…
    42. 42. • MasterFILE Premier – 1,700 full-text periodicals! – 500 full-text reference books – 164,000+ primary source documents – Some resources from as far back as 1975!
    43. 43. • Academic Search Premier – 4,600 full-text journals! • Including 3,900 peer-reviewed titles! – Some resources from as far back as 1975!
    44. 44. Biography Reference Bank
    46. 46. Always right-click & copy the persistent link in all databases where it is available NOT the browser URL
    47. 47. Questions?
    48. 48. Handling Tricky Questions Dealing with "Problem" Patrons and Patrons with Problems
    49. 49. Resolution Codes: 2013 to date
    50. 50. What isn't a Prank? What is a Prank?
    51. 51. What isn't a Prank? What is a Prank?
    52. 52. What is X ? See also… Teens & Sex Information Pathfinder What isn't a Prank? What is a Prank?
    53. 53. Where do babies come from ? What isn't a Prank? What is a Prank?
    54. 54. I NEED HELP WITH A QUESTION CAN YOU HELP ME? What isn't a Prank? What is a Prank?
    55. 55. “Give me the answer” “Tell me the answer” “I just want the answer” What isn't a Prank? What is a Prank?
    56. 56. Usernames from One Random Day •?????? •Oh well if you want I guess Ill tell you its zuz •momo •Ujskjkdjhslasndekandsmsleslkjhbdlijhbd •Tashawfawndownda •Da FROG •Boogiebear •Person who wants answer •Manbearpig •Guy with an ipad •I’m to awesome for a name •yup
    57. 57. A prank deftly handled…
    58. 58. Additional Resources on KIN24x7 Provider Site • “Tips & Tactics” in KnowItNow24x7 Newsletter • December 2012 • May 2012 • April 2012 • Expanded Crisis Call Guidelines • Teens & Sex Information Pathfinder • KIN CORE Reference Competencies, Section IV “What to do if you have nothing to do” • “Bored” Links: ........
    59. 59. Questions?
    60. 60. Enhancing Customer Service Skills Through Transcript Evaluation
    61. 61. and the Quality Assurance Committee for KnowItNow’s Transcripts of the Month
    62. 62. It's all about customer service...
    63. 63. You can never really tell who is on the other side of a reference transaction...
    64. 64. Guidelines for Behavioral Performance of Reference and Information Service Providers
    65. 65. Approachability “The librarian's first step in initiating the reference transaction is to make the patron feel comfortable in a situation that can be perceived as intimidating, confusing, or overwhelming.”
    66. 66. Transcript & Discussion
    67. 67. Interest “While not every query will be of interest to the librarian, the librarian should embrace each patron's informational need and should be committed to providing the most effective assistance.”
    68. 68. Transcript & Discussion
    69. 69. Listening/Inquiring “The reference interview is the heart of the reference transaction and is crucial to the success of the process.”
    70. 70. Transcript & Discussion
    71. 71. Searching The search process is the portion of the transaction in which behavior and accuracy intersect…Many aspects of searching that lead to accurate results are dependent on the behavior of the librarian.”
    72. 72. Follow-up
    73. 73. Transcript & Discussion
    74. 74. Conclusion & Follow-up “Supplying information is not the end of the reference transaction. The librarian is responsible for determining if the patron is satisfied with the results of the search, and referring the patron to other sources including those not available through the local library.”
    75. 75. Transcript & Discussion
    76. 76. Be approachable. Be interested and curious. Listen and ask questions. Conduct searches together with patrons. Follow-up (if necessary) and always encourage patrons to return.
    77. 77. Questions? Comments? Slides Email
    78. 78. Thank you! Questions? KnowItNow24x7 is made available free-of-charge to all citizens and residents of Ohio through a Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grant from the federal Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) awarded by the State Library of Ohio.