Dr. Drew's Infrequent Blog

25 January 2007

Encyclopedia of Reference Services

I just received an interesting e-mail from Professor John Richardson at UCLA. Check it out:

During the Fall 2006, my UCLA DIS 245 “Information Access” class created an Encyclopedia of Reference Services at http://ucla245.pbwiki.com/

Our overarching mission was to establish generally accepted reference principles (GARP). Ideally, these pages provide a sense of evidence and show a critical spirit of inquiry. Our audience extends to anyone interested in reference services in the United States and includes practitioners as well as researchers, but especially beginning graduate students in information studies programs who are interested in the research front in this field.

In terms of scope, reference service should be understood to include traditional reference work in libraries (of all types) as well as state of the art efforts such as live, virtual (aka digital) reference. Most of the biographical names and concepts have been drawn from “The Current State of Research on Reference Transactions,” In Advances in Librarianship, vol. 26, pages 175-230, edited by Frederick C. Lynden (New York: Academic Press, 2002).

Treatment is not necessarily in depth, but the nearly 200 entries contain a minimum of 500 words. Basic concepts are defined and biographical information on major contributors to this field are provided. Entries for deceased individuals strive to be evaluative, while entries for living individuals are more factual.

Each page concludes with full bibliographic citations in APA style to articles, books and other websites which will lead the reader to further, more detailed information about this topic in reference service. Special features include images, as appropriate, and cross references, as needed.

John V. Richardson Jr., Editor in Chief and Professor of Information Studies at UCLA
Debbie Weissmann, Co-Editor and Doctoral Student, UCLA Department of Information Studies

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