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Chat Reference : A Guide to Live Virtual Reference Services

Ronan, Jana Smith

Libraries Unlimited
Published:July 30, 2003

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Description: From Booklist
Designed as a guide for individuals thinking about setting up virtual reference services, this book offers much practical advice and information. The first few chapters introduce readers to online chat and real-time software, ways to gauge whether an audience exists for such services, and a framework to use to select the right software to get started. Subsequent chapters focus on human and organizational issues: staffing, training, everyday administration routines and duties, guidelines and policies, reference interviewing online, and promoting virtual reference services. Case studies comprise the final five chapters, each profiling successful real-time reference services at academic libraries. The case studies are enlightening and greatly beneficial, providing readers with different approaches to consider and concrete examples to follow. One disappointment is that only academic libraries are featured. This shortcoming aside, the book is distinguishable by its readability, clarity, and usefulness. Highly recommended for all libraries, especially academic ones. RBB
Copyright # American Library Association. All rights reserved

Product Description:
Functioning as a blueprint, this guide leads the reader through the many decisions and considerations involved in setting up a real-time reference service. Ronan introduces both basic and advanced real-time reference software, offers practical information about features, advantages, and disadvantages, and discusses human and organizational issues.

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