Online Learning with ALA, ASCLA and RUSA

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As the month of August draws to a close, we here at the Reference and User Services Association (RUSA) and the Association of Specialized and Cooperative Library Agencies (ASCLA) are focused on your professional success.

To that end, we have prepared an excellent lineup of professional development opportunities scheduled for the coming months. I hope you’ll consider joining us for one or more of these online events—all of which you can attend from the comfort of your office or home computer.

ASCLA Virtual Convergence

For four days—January 18-21, 2011—ASCLA will host the inaugural Virtual Convergence. The Convergence will present a multitude of webinars offered at various times throughout the day on topics relevant to your job performance. We are currently seeking topics and presenters for these webinars. Whether you are an expert in a particular topic area, or you are willing to serve as a “program planner” and recruit a speaker or panel of speakers on a topic that is of importance to the library community, we welcome your submissions! More information is at the ASCLA blog.

Potential program topics include consulting and independent librarianship; collaborative digitization; accessibility of libraries and library services; services to special populations including differently-abled library users, as well as all ages of incarcerated populations; issues affecting networks and cooperatives; and topics pertinent to state libraries. Presenters will be compensated. The deadline for submissions is Wednesday, September 1, 2010. Submit a proposal now using the online proposal form.

RUSA Online Courses, Fall 2010

The schedule for RUSA’s fall online courses is in place, and registration is now open! Regardless of your job function or library type, these learning opportunities are appropriate for both seasoned professionals and those looking to expand their skill sets and build their resumes.

Register online now! All pricing and comprehensive course descriptions are available at theRUSA website.

  • Genealogy 101 Sept. 20–Oct. 22 Covering genealogy reference basics, and providing skills for confidently assisting family history researchers.
  • Reference Interview Sept. 13–Oct. 22 A comprehensive course focusing on the methods of evaluating reference service, behavioral aspects of reference service, and the different types of questions that can be used to help patrons identify what they need.
  • Business Reference 101 Oct. 4–29 Demystifies business reference while providing an overview of business reference resources and preparing you to answer basic business reference questions.
  • Readers’ Advisory 101 Oct. 4–Nov. 11 This course offers online practice sessions to increase your comfort with providing RA services.

As of Sept. 1, group discounts will only be available to organizations with current memberships with ALA. Until then, all organizations can take advantage of significant savings when two or more employees sign up for the same course. Details are in the Professional Development section of the RUSA website.

Remember, these events are open to all, but division members get the best price on registration! If your professional expertise and interests align with either ASCLA or RUSA’s areas of work, we encourage you to join! Become a member or call 1-800-545-2433, option 5.

Learn more about ASCLA at ,and RUSA at

Register Now for Online Business Research Class

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Dear Colleagues:

There is still room in the following 4-week online course on business ethics research at Simmons Graduate School of Library and Information Science:
The course begins 8/2 (still time to register!)  with about 3-4 hours of work per week. It focuses on research in business ethics and covers research in: accounting, company culture, management, and sustainability, banking, finance and investments, and business law.

Weekly activities include learning about databases and references sources, and strategies useful in doing research in business ethics, exploring links to selected free websites, doing exercises and assignments to share with other students on each topic. Students  post evaluations of sources on the discussion list and do a short research project. The course provides access to Mergent Online and Plunkett’s Research databases.

It’s a great way to delve into business research!
Examples are relevant to both academic and public libraries.
Please contact me if you have any questions.
To register click here:

Free Webinar on Interactive Reference Sources

Power to the User: Interactive Online Reference Sources

Translation tools, visual searches, mobile applications—these are just a few of the features that let the user interact with reference databases in new ways. In this program for librarians in all types of libraries, a reference expert will talk about the value and potential of interactive features, and publishers will demonstrate some of their newest interactive tools and give us a preview of what’s coming next. Don’t miss this look at some of the features that are shaping the next generation of online reference sources.

Panelists include:

  • Sue Polanka, Head, Reference and Instruction, Wright State University, Dayton, Ohio, and Chair of the Reference Books Bulletin Editorial Board
  • Michael N. Ross, Senior Vice President, Worldwide Product Development and Technology, General Manager of Education, Encyclopaedia Britannica
  • Larissa Kozij, Manager, Digital Products, World Book, Inc.
  • Vince Burns, Executive Editorial Director, ABC-CLIO
  • Eric M. Calaluca, President and CEO, Paratext

Reserve your seat today!

This webinar will be archived and e-mailed to all registrants. If you cannot attend the live presentation, you should still register for the webinar in order to be notified when the archive is available for viewing.

*As a webinar registrant, you will receive follow-up correspondence from Booklist publications and may receive other special offers from our sponsors



Tuesday, June 1


2:00 PM Eastern
1:00 PM Central
12:00 PM Mountain
11:00 AM Pacific

Webcast Alert!: Reference: The Missing Link in Discovery

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DATE: Tuesday, May 11, 2010 | TIME: 2:00–3:00 PM ET | REGISTER FREE TODAY

Reference has never been in greater demand, as witnessed by the rise in Wikipedia and the prominence of reference results in Google and other search engines. Often students don’t know that reference is what they need. The challenge to library vendors and librarians is to build reference tools and services that bridge the gap between reference librarians’ expertise, the library’s extensive information resources and today’s users.

This lively panel discussion will look at the importance of helping users develop big picture and vocabulary contexts for their research. Without these as a starting point, students are overwhelmed by too much stuff and don’t have the vocabulary to query the professional literature and collections in their library. Addressing this problem is just what reference content, reference librarians and reference service have always been about.

A group of library and reference experts will envision ways to raise the profile of reference as the missing link in information discovery and overall research effectiveness:

  • How can reference content be put under students’ noses so it can be discovered without looking?
  • How can Google’s examples of “personalized search” be replicated by something Credo calls “librarianized search”?
  • What are the essential elements of context that students need so they can make best use of the power of discovery systems?

At Credo we continue to believe that the best things in online reference are yet to be invented and that, in many ways, the right questions have not been asked. Over the past several years we’ve been asking these questions, and what we’ve learned can fill the gap between where users are and the discovery tools and search systems that libraries provide. Credo will demonstrate some of the latest innovations we have developed to address the challenges facing librarians and users today. You just might find it to be the librarian’s answer to Wikipedia!


Can’t make it on May 11? No problem! LJ webcasts are archived for 12 months after the live event. With your webcast registration, enjoy the ability to access this event on-demand as often as you’d like.

Registration Now Open for Reference Renaissance 2010


April 19, 2010 – *Reference Renaissance 2010: Inventing the Future *is now open for registration. The conference will be held August 9-10 in Denver, Colorado and is presented by BCR and LYRASIS. *Reference Renaissance 2010: Inventing the Future *will explore all aspects of reference service and will bring together reference practitioners and scholars to explore the evolving nature of reference.

The event is co-chaired by Marie Radford and Rivkah Sass, and will feature presentations and a plenary panel by leading reference innovators. This year’s keynote speaker is Andrew Walsh, Academic Librarian at the University of Huddersfield, UK, who will discuss using QR codes to deliver reference help to mobile phone users at their point of need. Plenary panelists will be Stephen J. Bell of Temple University, Wayne Bivens-Tatum of Princeton University, Jean Costello (the Radical Patron), and Rivkah Sass (Library Journal’s 2006 Librarian of the Year).

Early bird registration is now available through 7/1/2010 for $250. Standard registration (after 7/1/2010) is $275. Registration includes all sessions on both days (including the keynote and plenaries), access to exhibits, as well as breakfast and lunch on both days. A special hotel rate of $89 (+tax) per night is available for reservations made before July 16. For more information about the hotel and travel, visit the website.

Marie Radford, co-editor of the recently published proceedings from the 2008 conference, *Reference Renaissance: Current and Future Trends*, will edit the 2010 conference proceedings. Anyone who presents a paper or a report from the field at the 2010 conference may submit their material to her for possible inclusion in the 2010 proceedings. The proposal deadline has recently been extended to April 22 for workshops, reports from the field, papers, panels, and Pecha Kuchas.

About BCR

BCR brings libraries together for greater success by expanding their knowledge, reach and power. They offer a broad range of solutions and their hands-on, personal attention to each member enables them to deliver effective and timely solutions that help libraries keep pace with new developments in technology and services. BCR is the nation’s oldest and most established multistate library cooperative. Since 1935, the BCR team has helped libraries learn new skills, reach patrons, increase productivity and save money. BCR (Bibliographical Center for Research) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit headquartered in Aurora, Colorado. For more information, visit or email .


Created in April, 2009 by the merger of PALINET and SOLINET and joined shortly thereafter by NELINET, LYRASIS is the nation’s largest regional membership organization serving libraries and information professionals. Though large in scale, LYRASIS is known for its local touch – fostering collaboration and cooperation among members and facilitating their success through networking and programming, innovative solutions, and significant cost savings through group purchasing for products and services. For more information, please visit

Webinar–April 14th, 1 pm Central


Collections Webinar  :    The Rise and Fall of Reference Collections: Strategies for Managing Change

Presented by David Tyckoson
This webinar will provide an analysis of the current state of reference collections, usage of traditional resources, and strategies for the future.  Reference, collection development, and acquisitions librarians should find the session very useful.

David Tyckoson is Associate Dean of the Henry Madden Library at the University of California Fresno.  He is past President of the Reference and User Services Association of the American Library Association and won the Isadore Gilbert Mudge Award in 2005 for his contributions to reference librarianship.

To register, complete the online form.


Individual Rates – ALCTS Members: $39; Non-Members: $49
Group Rate – ALCTS Members & Non-Members: $99

*The one-time fee includes unlimited access to the webinar recording and materials.


For questions about registration, contact Tom Ferren, ALA Senior Registration Coordinator at 1-800-545-2433, ext. 4293 or
For all other questions or comments related to the webinars, contact Julie Reese, ALCTS Events Manager at 1-800-545-2433, ext. 5034 or