Full Record – Author

Ref Type: Journal Article

Authors: King, Valery, Christensen-Lee, Sara

Title: Full-Time reference with Part-time Librarians

Publication Full: Reference & User Services Quarterly

Year: 2014 Volume: 54 Issue: 1

Start Page: 34 Other Pages: 43



Shifting priorities in academic libraries have led to experimentation in methods of keeping a reference desk open for the users who still need in-person, immediate help while at the same time freeing up faculty librarians to pursue other pressing priorities. The Valley Library at Oregon State University has relied entirely on part-time professional librarians to cover reference desk shifts since fall 2009, relieving faculty librarians of this task. Faculty continue to provide desk backup, chat reference, and research consultation. In 2012, the authors invited both the part-time and faculty librarians to participate in a study, using a separate survey for each group, to elicit their experiences and impressions of the model. The goal was to determine the model’s effectiveness and to identify changes that might be needed to improve it. Participants concluded that the model works well, although faculty feel they may be underinformed on important research and instruction issues brought up by students in their departments. They believe that some improvements to the referral process should be investigated. A follow-up assessment of patron satisfaction is indicated before a full picture can be developed on the success of this model.




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