Reference

  • Wikipedia + Libraries: Health and Medical Information

    WebJunction and the National Network of Libraries of Medicine will present a free, online course for public library staff about health and medical information on Wikipedia.

    When public library staff assist patrons seeking information ...

  • Crowdsourcing Alternatives to "There Are No Stupid Questions"

    Libraries are a place for finding answers, but first come the questions. Whether working at the reference desk or teaching a class, you've likely had more than a handful of patrons approach you to say, "I have a stupid question." My respons...

  • Just Another Day at the Desk: squirrels, professional ethics and consumer health information

    Variety is the name of the game when it comes to the types of reference requests fielded in public libraries every day. Many of you may be aware of the #letmelibrarianthatforyou declaration on social media, based on a wonderful assortment of referenc...

  • Librarians Leave "Fort Ref" and Reach Out with Reference

    The role of reference is changing, and librarians at Douglas County Libraries in Colorado, United States, took an active approach to examining what reference could look like for their community. Through a series of small projects and collaborative ef...

  • Making Connections: Libraries and Essential Human Services

    There are times when the needs of a patron goes beyond our immediate services or an individual's comfort zone. You can probably think of a recent example right now. Knowing where to refer a customer or who to call in your community can really help. W...

  • Financial Education Tools for Libraries from CFPB

    As you may know, we've been participating in an OpenIDEO challenge related to libraries and financial literacy. We've been learning about a variety of approaches to financial education, and also wanted to be sure libraries are aware of all the fantas...

  • The Reference Interaction

    Each reference interaction between a librarian and patron is an opportunity for mutual learning within a shared space. The patron communicates their information needs while the librarian, using probing questions, seeks to provide the appropriate reso...

  • Beyond the Desk: Resources for Innovative Reference Services

    Library services often begin with a question. Do you have this book? Can you help me find information for my report? Which country is the largest producer of coffee beans? As we grow up and learn, we are taught to ask questions to help us learn new i...

  • The Future of Reference is Outside the Library

    Over the last decade, the fortress-like walls of the library reference desk have been breached in favor of more inviting structures and roving librarians. However, that's not going far enough, according to Jamie LaRue, director of Douglas County (CO)...

  • There's a library in my Wikipedia!

    Wikipedian in Residence at OCLC Research, Max Klein, presents compelling ways for libraries and librarians to integrate with Wikipedia.