In person vs. digital reference

I just realized that it’s been a while since I’ve written anything here.  I kind of miss it.  I guess there’s just not enough time in the day to work, study, and write…  but maybe there’s enough time in the week, right?  So I’ll see if I can make it here about once a week to add to my blog.  Maybe I’ll come up with something worthy of publishing (LOL).

I’m currently working on a paper about reference interactions.  The Professor wants us to observe in-person reference interactions and then test digital reference interactions to see what (if any) differences we come across.  One student mentioned being sorely disappointed in her digital reference experience, and another chimed in that he felt the same way.  I’m hoping mine will be a good one.

One of the things we’re supposed to look for is the “reference interview.”  It’s a way for the reference folk to find out what the patrons really want as opposed to what they say they want.  My in-person observation didn’t include any of this, so I’m wondering if it’s really used any more.  Do reference people use the interview any more?  Why or why not?

How does it function in an online environment?  Is it handled with a questionnaire at the beginning? Or is it ignored completely?   I suppose I’ll find out when I ask a digital reference question, right?

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