Reference Services in an Age of Metamorphosis
As new and innovative methods of conducting research arise with the rapidity of technological change, academic libraries have stepped up the pace of repurposing, reorganising, and rebranding in the attempt to provide services aimed at newly identified needs. This has had varying impact on traditional (and often expected) library services, perhaps nowhere more so than in reference services, which has moved far beyond the reference desk and transformed in ways as diverse as the institutions they serve.
This panel will survey reference services as they are currently configured at their own varied libraries, as well as plans to change or enhance reference services to meet and anticipate the evolving needs of students and researchers. Whether face-to-face or virtual; on the desk, on call, or on-line; staffed by librarians, library staff, or students, the pros and cons for both libraries and their users will be described and discussed, along with implications for the future of the library as we know it.