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Article

Pixey Anne Mosley and Daniel Xiao

Evans Library at Texas A&M University has developed and released a Virtual Library Tour available via the World Wide Web (WWW). The URL for the tour is …

Abstract

Evans Library at Texas A&M University has developed and released a Virtual Library Tour available via the World Wide Web (WWW). The URL for the tour is 〈http://www.tamu.edu/library/reference/ virtual/tour00.htmlhttp://www.tamu.edu/library/reference/ virtual/tour00.html〉. The tour, designed as a remotely accessible alternative to the basic library orientation tour, provides information on library departments, services, materials, and policies. Development and implementation of this new orientation tool involved technological issues and library instructional techniques. Approximately 165 hours of professional time were required to create and release the tour. To achieve an optimum combination of effective instruction and technical expertise, the development team for the Texas A&M University Evans Library's Virtual Library Tour consisted of the coordinator of instructional services, Pixey Anne Mosley, and the automated information retrieval services (AIRS) librarian, Daniel Xiao. This article discusses the process used and lessons learned through the creation of the Virtual Library Tour.

Details

Reference Services Review, vol. 24 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0090-7324

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Article

Marta Lee, Jon Ritterbush and Robert Sivigny

This paper aims to examine whether relocating the reference desk closer to the main entrance has factored into increased reference activity at Regent University Library.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to examine whether relocating the reference desk closer to the main entrance has factored into increased reference activity at Regent University Library.

Design/methodology/approach

Statistics from 1992/1993 through 2007/2008 were examined to see whether gate counts and questions asked went up, down or remained steady.

Findings

Technology changes and user expectations have affected reference service at Regent University Library. Even though the number of patrons coming to the library has declined, the number of questions being asked through e‐mail and the telephone has risen slightly. Librarians have also seen an increase in students making appointments for extended assistance.

Research limitations/implications

This case study examines the decline in gate counts and reference activity at one academic library during a period of enrollment growth. Changes to the layout and location of the reference desk resulted in an increase of in‐person reference transactions.

Practical implications

Evaluation of usage statistics documents the strong correlation between library visits and reference transactions. Both of these figures have dropped significantly during the past decade, and only recently have shown increases. Following the relocation of the reference desk, the library recorded increases in total reference questions and in‐person questions. There has been an increase in the proportion of questions received in‐person at the new location.

Originality/value

A case study covers the changing role of the reference desk at one academic library from a separate, free standing desk to a consolidated information commons model. Each stage in the development is discussed, with analysis of the impact on reference question activity and the effect of close proximity to the front door of the library.

Details

Reference Services Review, vol. 38 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0090-7324

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Library Staffing for the Future
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78560-499-7

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Innovation in Libraries and Information Services
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78560-730-1

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Project Management in the Library Workplace
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78754-837-4

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The Future of Library Space
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-270-5

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