Summary: Here is the first practical how-to for librarians packed with solid advice, exercises, and strategies for mastering the art of efficiently discovering exactly what users want to know. For fifteen years, Ross, Nilsen, and Dewdney have been collecting and assessing true accounts from public and academic libraries on what works and what doesn't in reference interviews. Now, drawing from these specific examples, they clearly illustrate the most effective approaches and t ...show moreroubleshooting techniques. This how-to features models of human communication such as sense-making and microtraining, exercises for avoiding common pitfalls, and dozens of examples of both successful and problematic reference interviews printed next to constructive critiques and suggestions from the authors. The authors have demonstrated that complex communication behaviors can be broken down into constituent parts that can be taught, one at a time, and that successful reference interviewing skills can be acquired and mastered. They show how these techniques can be applied in traditional and electronic contexts and for a variety of users, from children to researchers.
There is a great wealth of experience and practical advice in this How-To-Do-It Manual--perfect both for working librarians and any student doing coursework on reference. ...show less