IR 410, October 28, 2008

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IR 410, October 28, 2008

  1. 1. IR 410 October 28, 2008 The Reference Interview Reference and Outreach Cynthia Akers Information Literacy/Outreach Coordinator ESU Libraries and Archives [email_address]
  2. 2. What is a “Reference Interview”? <ul><li>Not to be confused with the “job interview”! </li></ul><ul><li>Transaction between client/patron/customer and librarian/information professional </li></ul><ul><li>Way to “get at” the actual “question within the question” </li></ul>
  3. 3. Open/Closed/Neutral Questioning <ul><li>Open questioning: Good as an opening </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ What would you like to know about the topic?” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Can you tell me a little more about your information need? That will help me do a better job for you.” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Closed questioning: Good for clarification </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ What sources have you already checked?” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Did you use (catalog; name of database, name of Web site)?” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Is this topic for a paper, project, assignment?” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Neutral questioning: Understanding the information need from the patron’s perspective </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Tell me more about the topic.” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ What might the ideal book/article/source have that would help you?” </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. Tactics of a Good Reference Interview <ul><li>Open body language (in person!) </li></ul><ul><li>Friendly appearance (smiling and looking approachable in person; voice inflections when speaking on the phone; open/neutral language in IM, chat, or E-mail correspondence) </li></ul><ul><li>Eye contact </li></ul><ul><li>Follow-up (regardless of format): </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ How did this information help you?” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ What additional information do you need?” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Contact information (if the patron should need more complex data, etc.) </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. Discussion Questions <ul><li>How has technology in general affected the nature of reference/public services? </li></ul><ul><li>Has technology “eliminated” the need for reference/information service? </li></ul><ul><li>How do we as information professionals stay current and up to date with digital media, information “streaming” in from a variety of formats, etc.? </li></ul>
  6. 6. Additional Sites <ul><li>American Library Association Reference and User Services Association (RUSA) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.ala.org/ala/mgrps/divs/rusa/index.cfm </li></ul></ul><ul><li>ALA RUSA“Definitions of Reference” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.ala.org/ala/mgrps/divs/rusa/resources/guidelines/definitionsreference.cfm </li></ul></ul><ul><li>ALA RUSA “Guidelines for Behavioral Performance of Reference and Information Service Providers” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.ala.org/ala/mgrps/divs/rusa/resources/guidelines/guidelinesbehavioral.cfm </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. Reference/Outreach <ul><li>Question: How do you know if you are indeed reaching all the patrons who truly need information/reference assistance? </li></ul>
  8. 8. New “Paradigms” of Information Service <ul><li>IM/Chat Reference </li></ul><ul><li>Social Networking (Facebook; Twitter; YouTube) </li></ul><ul><li>Roving Reference </li></ul><ul><li>Other Thoughts? </li></ul>

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