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Chat reference: evaluating customer service and IL instruction

Chat reference: evaluating customer service and IL instruction Reflecting on the new ACRL Framework, a deficiency was observed in literature on the assessment of information literacy instruction in chat reference. An evaluation of recent chat transactions was undertaken and the purpose of the study was twofold. The purpose of this study is to discover if and how librarians were teaching information literacy skills in chat reference transactions and identify best practices to develop training and resources.Design/methodology/approachTo start, a literature review was performed to identify current industry standards. A rubric, influenced by the ACRL Framework, was developed to evaluate chat transactions from one semester. Results from the assessment were compiled and interpreted to determine current practices.FindingsThis study identified the necessity of balancing customer service and instruction to manage student expectations and encourage successful chats. Best practices and strategies that librarians can use to provide a well-rounded service were culled for the development of training and resources.Originality/valueReference assumes a large portion of the services that academic librarians provide to students. As technology advances, librarians are relying on virtual platforms, including chat reference, as convenient and useful tools to provide reference services to the academic community. While face-to-face reference encourages information literacy instruction, it is challenging to perform the same instruction in a virtual setting where expectations are based on retail models. With the growing use of virtual services, evaluating the success of chat reference based on industry standards is imperative. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Reference Services Review Emerald Publishing

Chat reference: evaluating customer service and IL instruction

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
© Emerald Publishing Limited
ISSN
0090-7324
DOI
10.1108/rsr-02-2019-0006
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Reflecting on the new ACRL Framework, a deficiency was observed in literature on the assessment of information literacy instruction in chat reference. An evaluation of recent chat transactions was undertaken and the purpose of the study was twofold. The purpose of this study is to discover if and how librarians were teaching information literacy skills in chat reference transactions and identify best practices to develop training and resources.Design/methodology/approachTo start, a literature review was performed to identify current industry standards. A rubric, influenced by the ACRL Framework, was developed to evaluate chat transactions from one semester. Results from the assessment were compiled and interpreted to determine current practices.FindingsThis study identified the necessity of balancing customer service and instruction to manage student expectations and encourage successful chats. Best practices and strategies that librarians can use to provide a well-rounded service were culled for the development of training and resources.Originality/valueReference assumes a large portion of the services that academic librarians provide to students. As technology advances, librarians are relying on virtual platforms, including chat reference, as convenient and useful tools to provide reference services to the academic community. While face-to-face reference encourages information literacy instruction, it is challenging to perform the same instruction in a virtual setting where expectations are based on retail models. With the growing use of virtual services, evaluating the success of chat reference based on industry standards is imperative.

Journal

Reference Services ReviewEmerald Publishing

Published: Jun 12, 2019

Keywords: Information literacy; Training; Customer service; ACRL framework; Virtual reference; Instruction

References