Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Mobile Reference Service: A Case Study Of An Onsite Reference Service Program ...

The Mobile Reference Service: A case study of an onsite reference service program at the school of public health / Donghua Tao, PhD MALIS MS, ; Patrick G. McCarthy, MLIS MA, ; Mary M. Krieger, MLIS RN, and Annie B. Webb,

J Med Libr Assoc / 2009 January / 97(1): 34–40 / doi: 10.3163/1536-5050.97.1.006 / PMCID: PMC2605033

The School of Public Health at Saint Louis University is located at a greater distance from the library than other programs on the main medical center campus. Physical distance diminishes the ease of access to direct reference services for public health users. To bridge the gap, the library developed the Mobile Reference Service to deliver onsite information assistance with regular office hours each week.

Between September 2006 and April 2007, a total of 57 in-depth reference transactions took place over 25 weeks, averaging 2 transactions per week in a 2-hour period. Overall reference transactions from public health users went up 28%, while liaison contacts with public health users doubled compared to the same period the year before.

The Mobile Reference Service program has improved library support for research and scholarship, cultivated and strengthened liaison relationships, and enhanced marketing and delivery of library resources and services to the Saint Louis University School of Public Health.

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