Archive for June, 2012

ALA Conference Session: What’s Next for Virtual Reference?

Wednesday, June 6th, 2012

Hi folks,

If you are attending the following session at the ALA Conference and would be willing to report back to the AskAway Administrative Centre, we’d be happy to pass on information to the AskAway community. Please contact Sunni Nishimura ( or Leah Hopton (

Discussion Topic: What’s Next for Virtual Reference
4-5:30 pm, Saturday, June 23, 2012
Anaheim Convention Center, Rm. 201B
Entry in ALAConnect’s Conference Scheduler:

Reference services are about connecting library users to the information they need. Traditionally, there have been conversational exchanges between a librarian and a patron in a library building. The tradition of librarian and patron has remained, but the exchange location has not only changed but continues to be a moving target. What technologies will increasingly have an effect on the way we design and deliver virtual reference services? How do the internet and mobile web allow librarians to provide services, anticipate needs and embed information resources in the landscape beyond library walls? What does this mean for the future of reference services?

Courtney Young, Head Librarian at Penn State Greater Allegheny and member of the Penn State University Libraries Virtual Reference Services Team, will begin the discussion by forecasting how virtual reference services will collide and increasing impact traditional reference services. After Courtney’s presentation we will discuss her ideas and share thoughts about other emerging technologies for virtual reference. If there are any topics you are particularly interested in discussing at the forum, please share by commenting to the ALA Connect Event page ( ) or to the Facebook Event page ( )

See you in Anaheim!

Jason Coleman

Chair, RUSA/MARS Virtual Reference Discussion Planning Committee