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Chat 2.0: Renovating Virtual Reference
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Chat 2.0: Renovating Virtual Reference

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    Chat 2.0: Renovating Virtual Reference Chat 2.0: Renovating Virtual Reference Presentation Transcript

    • Chat 2.0: Renovating Virtual Reference Yasmin Morais Sara Sampson Cataloging Librarian Head of Reference Charles A. & Hilda H.M. Mason Law Library Georgetown Law Library University of the District of Columbia
    • Agenda • Review of content analysis – Methodology – Findings • Impact of study on chat service at Georgetown Law • Ideas for future research
    • Georgetown Law’s Chat History • Started as a pilot in January 2005 with limited hours Wednesday – Saturday • Full implementation of Live Help in Spring 2005 • Approximately 67 hours of chat service now available during academic year – 40 hours during breaks and summer • Use Timpani software (LivePerson service)
    • Methodology • Content analysis of chat transcripts from 2008 – Accessed – Analyzed – Coded – Double-checked – Data entry and analysis
    • Definition of Query Types Four query types: – Ready Reference – Extended Reference – Technical – Policy
    • Query Types By Groups
    • Combined Query Types
    • Student Question Types
    • Faculty Question Types
    • Alumni Question Types
    • Summary of Findings • Transcripts yielded a total of 2,303 reference queries • September, March, and February were top months for chats • Students led on all four query types • After students, alumni led faculty on both reference and policy queries • After students, faculty are asking more known items and technical queries than alumni
    • Anecdotal Findings • Students use chat service while in the library. • Students really like this service. • We answer really tough questions! • Never assume patrons know what services we offer (e.g., ILL) • Never assume patrons know how to find items in our collection (e.g., e-journal finder)
    • Impact of Study on Georgetown’s Chat Service • Increased Training – Software features – Reference Roundtable – Chat vs. in-person reference • Change in staffing model – Multiple back-ups – Staff chat from offices instead of reference desk – No change in who staffs reference • Collaborative Reference • Virtual Research Consultations
    • Ideas for Future Research • How do sub-groups (e.g. part-time students vs. full-time students) use chat differently? • Did we give the right answers to our patrons? • Do they repeatedly ask for things that we don’t have in our collection? • Where are the patrons when they use chat? • What subjects are they asking about? • Do questions reveal a gap in legal research instruction?
    • Questions or Comments? • The final version of this presentation will be posted on the Georgetown Law Library’s website www.ll.georgetown.edu
    • Acknowledgements • This project would not have been possible without the help of the following persons at the Georgetown Law Library: – Sara Burriesci – Electronic Services Librarian, who facilitated transcript retrieval – Barbara Monroe – Collection Development Librarian for assistance with the institutional memory of chat at Georgetown – Todd Venie, Leslie Street, Erie Taniuchi and Marina Veljanovska all worked very hard to help with the coding of the transcripts. – Georgetown Law Library’s Scholarly Writing Committee for review of the draft article – Georgetown Law Library’s generous two-week scholarly leave facilitated completion of the draft article, which resulted from the project