ASIS&T, 75TH Annual Meeting 30 October 2012                                                       http://www.oclc.org/rese...
Where We Are Now                                      VRS                                       SQ                        ...
Current Model of Virtual Reference Services (VRS)        POSITIVES        • 20+ years                                 Ques...
Social Question & Answer (SQA)POSITIVES    •Community-based    •Collaborative    •Publicly available    •Low cost    •Quic...
Convergence of VRS & SQA  •Similar components  •Previous efforts      •Slam the Boards      •Enquire           •Rated best...
Cyber Synergy:       Seeking Sustainability through  Collaboration between Virtual Reference             & Social Q&A Site...
Research Questions• What is the effectiveness of various VRS & SQA services, quality of content  provided, & their relativ...
Project Phases          Phase I                             Phase II              Phase III        Transcript analysis    ...
Phase I: VRS & SQA Transcript Analysis•560 transcripts (296,158 total)    •350 live chat    •210 Qwidget (IM)    •11 codin...
Phase I: Transcript Analysis – Preliminary Results        • Subject - Dewey Decimal Classification                 •Broad ...
Phase II: Telephone Interviews•Librarians    •50 VRS librarians•Users    •VRS         •50 QP live chat & Qwidget users    ...
Phase II: VRS & SQA Phone Interview Demographics  •Librarians      •18 academic      • 16 other  •VRS/SQA Users      •5 VR...
Phase II: SQA FtF Interview Demographics   •36 SQA student users                     •Major themes       •24 undergraduate...
Phase II: SQA Interview Analysis• Exploratory      • Uses & experiences in physical &        digital libraries & SQAs• Pre...
Phase II: Librarian Interviews    •34 phone interviews conducted to date    •Major themes        •Draft coding scheme deve...
The TakeawayThe world’s libraries. Connected.
Goals & Impact on VRS/SQA Services  •Improve underutilized services  •Understand how to leverage librarian subject  expert...
Next Steps The world’s libraries. Connected.
Next Steps   •Further analysis of SQA questions       •Subject       •Question Type       •Questions failing to obtain ans...
Funding & Acknowledgements     Cyber Synergy: Seeking Sustainability through Collaboration            between Virtual Refe...
Selected BibliographyConnaway, L. S. & Radford, M. L. (2011). Seeking Synchronicity: Revelations and recommendationsfor vi...
Marie L. Radford: mradford@rutgers.edu                                             ??Lynn Silipigni Connaway: connawal@ocl...
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Convergence & Synergy: Social Q&A Meets Virtual Reference Services

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Convergence & Synergy: Social Q&A Meets Virtual Reference Services

  1. 1. ASIS&T, 75TH Annual Meeting 30 October 2012 http://www.oclc.org/research/activities/synergy.html Convergence & Synergy: Social Q&A Meets Virtual Reference ServicesMarie L. Radford Lynn Silipigni Connaway Chirag ShahAssociate Professor Senior Research Scientist Assistant ProfessorRutgers University OCLC Rutgers Universitymradford@rutgers.edu connawal@oclc.org chirags@rutgers.edu The world’s libraries. Connected.
  2. 2. Where We Are Now VRS SQ A The world’s libraries. Connected.
  3. 3. Current Model of Virtual Reference Services (VRS) POSITIVES • 20+ years Question • High quality/accurate • Professionals • Consortium collaborations CHALLENGES • Funding cuts • Monolithic • Collaboration limited beyond consortia Answer • Underutilized The world’s libraries. Connected.
  4. 4. Social Question & Answer (SQA)POSITIVES •Community-based •Collaborative •Publicly available •Low cost •Quick turnaround •Easy build-up of social capitalCHALLENGE •No guarantee of quality of answers •Some questions receive no answers The world’s libraries. Connected.
  5. 5. Convergence of VRS & SQA •Similar components •Previous efforts •Slam the Boards •Enquire •Rated best answer 79% of time •Collaboration possibilities intriguing The world’s libraries. Connected.
  6. 6. Cyber Synergy: Seeking Sustainability through Collaboration between Virtual Reference & Social Q&A SitesPartners: OCLC & RutgersFunded by IMLS for $250K2-year project The world’s libraries. Connected.
  7. 7. Research Questions• What is the effectiveness of various VRS & SQA services, quality of content provided, & their relative merits & shortcomings?• How does accuracy compare between VRS & SQA sites?• What lessons can be learned from SQA sites that could be applied to VRS & vice-versa?• How can VRS become more collaborative, within & between libraries, & tap more effectively into librarian‟s subject expertise?• How can we design systems & services within & between VRS & SQA for better quality & sustainability? The world’s libraries. Connected.
  8. 8. Project Phases Phase I Phase II Phase III Transcript analysis Telephone Interviews Constructing Design Specifications The world’s libraries. Connected.
  9. 9. Phase I: VRS & SQA Transcript Analysis•560 transcripts (296,158 total) •350 live chat •210 Qwidget (IM) •11 coding schemes•1000 Q&A pairs from YahooAnswers! (>1 million total) The world’s libraries. Connected.
  10. 10. Phase I: Transcript Analysis – Preliminary Results • Subject - Dewey Decimal Classification •Broad range •Social sciences & technology - largest percentages • Type of Question •Procedural & Ready Reference largest percentages • Accuracy •90% accurate for Ready Reference •75% correct with citation included • Difficulty •READ Scale (Gerlich & Berard, „07) •Most questions fall 2-3 on READ scale (require some effort & time) The world’s libraries. Connected.
  11. 11. Phase II: Telephone Interviews•Librarians •50 VRS librarians•Users •VRS •50 QP live chat & Qwidget users •SQA •50 services users & expert users The world’s libraries. Connected.
  12. 12. Phase II: VRS & SQA Phone Interview Demographics •Librarians •18 academic • 16 other •VRS/SQA Users •5 VRS only •12 SQA only •56 used both Participant geographic distribution VRS/SQA User Librarian The world’s libraries. Connected.
  13. 13. Phase II: SQA FtF Interview Demographics •36 SQA student users •Major themes •24 undergraduate •Important for success •12 graduate •Topic •10 subject librarians • Length •Visibility •Timeliness •Clarity • Availability •Verifiability •Relevance, quality, & satisfaction on equal planes The world’s libraries. Connected.
  14. 14. Phase II: SQA Interview Analysis• Exploratory • Uses & experiences in physical & digital libraries & SQAs• Preliminary results • “Goodness” of answers • Synergy of SQA & VRS • Collaboration • Leverage subject knowledge The world’s libraries. Connected.
  15. 15. Phase II: Librarian Interviews •34 phone interviews conducted to date •Major themes •Draft coding scheme developed •Important •Attaining sustained user satisfaction •Teaching search strategies •Better via electronic media •Cite sources The world’s libraries. Connected.
  16. 16. The TakeawayThe world’s libraries. Connected.
  17. 17. Goals & Impact on VRS/SQA Services •Improve underutilized services •Understand how to leverage librarian subject expertise through virtual collaborations •Develop guidelines for practice •Make recommendations for evaluation of VRS & SQA •Inform systems design •Connect potential users with SQA services & VRS The world’s libraries. Connected.
  18. 18. Next Steps The world’s libraries. Connected.
  19. 19. Next Steps •Further analysis of SQA questions •Subject •Question Type •Questions failing to obtain answers Nee help with English please? •Continue interviews Answer Question •VRS/SQA users •VRS librarians ANSWERS(0) •Conduct design sessions with experts •Specifications for system design The world’s libraries. Connected.
  20. 20. Funding & Acknowledgements Cyber Synergy: Seeking Sustainability through Collaboration between Virtual Reference and Social Q&A Sites • $250,000 for 2011-2013 • Funded by IMLS, OCLC, & Rutgers University • Co-PIs Marie Radford (RU), Lynn Silipigni Connaway (OCLC), & Chirag Shah (RU) http://www.oclc.org/research/activities/synergy.html • We thank Eric Choi, Alyssa Darden, Kathy Juliano, Vanessa Kitzie, Hanna Lee, and Stephanie Mikitish for their assistance in coding, analysis, and data presentation. The world’s libraries. Connected.
  21. 21. Selected BibliographyConnaway, L. S. & Radford, M. L. (2011). Seeking Synchronicity: Revelations and recommendationsfor virtual reference. Dublin, OH: OCLC Research. Retrieved on February 26, 2012 fromhttp://www.oclc.org/reports/synchronicity/full.pdfRadford, M. L., & Connaway, L. S. (forthcoming). Not dead yet! A longitudinal study of query type andready reference accuracy in live chat and IM reference. Library & Information Science Research,35(1).Radford, M. L., & Connaway, L. S. (2005-2008). Seeking synchronicity: Evaluating virtual referenceservices from user, non-user, and librarian perspectives. Funded by National Leadership Grants forLibraries program of the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS). Retrieved fromhttp://www.oclc.org/research/activities/synchronicity/default.htmRadford, M. L., Connaway, L. S., Confer, P., Sabolsci-Boros, S., & Kwon, H. (2011). “Are we gettingwarmer?” Query clarification in live chat virtual reference. Reference & User Services Quarterly,50(3), 259-279.Radford, M. L., Connaway, L. S., & Shah, C. (2011-2013). Cyber Synergy: Seeking sustainabilitythrough collaboration between virtual reference and social Q&A sites. Retrieved fromhttp://www.oclc.org/research/activities/synergy/default.htmShah, C., & Kitzie, V. (2012). Social Q & A and virtual reference-comparing apples and oranges withthe help of experts and users. Journal of the American Society for Information Science andTechnology, 63(10), 2020-2036. The world’s libraries. Connected.
  22. 22. Marie L. Radford: mradford@rutgers.edu ??Lynn Silipigni Connaway: connawal@oclc.orgChirag Shah: chirags@rutgers.edu ? ?Questions? ? ? ?? The world’s libraries. Connected.

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