Reference Services

Reference Service is assistance given to a library patron to facilitate access to information in response to the patron’s inquiry. Reference services are twofold: (a) to facilitate access to information in response to an inquiry and (b) to provide instruction in order that patrons may become self-sufficient in their use of the library resources.

Clientele

Reference services will be provided to any library patron regardless of whether he/she is affiliated with the college.

Appointments for Assistance

Research questions, which require extensive time, should be handled by appointment with appropriate library staff. Students are expected to perform their own research and prepare their own bibliographies.

Staffing

All members of the library staff will answer or refer patron inquiries as appropriate to their level of training and experience.

Materials

  • Reference Collection – will be reviewed, expanded and maintained. All staff members are expected to be knowledgeable in the use of the reference collection and able to assist patrons in the use of these materials.
  • Subject Guides – will be developed and updated.
  • Library Catalog – All staff members, including student workers, are expected to be knowledgeable in the use of the library catalog and able to assist patrons in the use of the catalog.
  • Databases – All staff members, including student workers, are expected to be knowledgeable in the use of all databases and able to assist patrons in the use of these resources.

Electronic Resources

The library will provide access to information in electronic form, where feasible, to facilitate greater community access.

Information Literacy/Library Instruction

The library staff offers the following instruction services:

  • Customized course-integrated instruction for classes
  • Classroom sessions
  • Advanced catalog searching
  • Database searching
  • Internet searching
  • Finding periodical articles in print or electronic indexes
  • Instruction in use of major print resources
  • Evaluation skills

Full and part-time faculty members may request librarians to provide instruction under the following policies:

  • Requests for instruction should be made at least two weeks in advance of the session.
  • Instruction is on a “first-scheduled, first-served basis.”
  • Faculty members should attend the complete session with their students. Interaction enriches the learning process, and stresses the importance of information literacy to their students.
  • Faculty are strongly encouraged to link the instruction to a specific assignment, and to time the instruction so that it coincides with a due date.
  • The librarian will arrange use of classrooms, labs and other electronic resources for the instruction session.

The Library has developed a guide of expected Student Competencies in Finding and Using Information by educational level.

Addendum: Revisions to the policies may be made at any time with the agreement of the Library staff.