Presentation on theme: "ARE WE GETTING WARMER? QUERY CLARIFICATION IN VIRTUAL REFERENCE Marie L. Radford Lynn Silipigni Connaway Library Research Round Table ALA Annual Conference."— Presentation transcript:
ARE WE GETTING WARMER? QUERY CLARIFICATION IN VIRTUAL REFERENCE Marie L. Radford Lynn Silipigni Connaway Library Research Round Table ALA Annual Conference Washington, DC June 23, 2007
2 Seeking Synchronicity: Evaluating Virtual Reference Services from User, Non-User, & Librarian Perspectives Funded by Institute of Museum & Library Services Rutgers University & OCLC (10/05-9/07) Four phases: I.Focus group interviews II.Analysis of 850 QuestionPoint live chat transcripts III.600 online surveys IV.300 telephone interviews
28 Types of clarifying questions… Open or closed? Percentage of all questions asked by librarians: 66% (554) Closed Questions 34% (284) Open Questions n=838
29 Closed or open: Is it clear? Can you tell me more about what you are looking for? An invitation to talk, but still a closed question? Can I ask what grade level this is for so I dont give you something that is too technical or too easy? Ok An unhelpful, closed response to an ostensibly open question.
30 Imposed Query Imposed queries emanate from both formal and informal relationships between people (Gross, 1999, p. 501). For a history project, I must do a poster diagram of the evolution of pyramids from masatbas to step pyramids to straight-sided pyramids.
31 User identifies an information need and asks a question (Gross, 1995, p. 237). I want to plan a camping and rock climbing trip to Pilot Mountain. Do you have any recommendations? Self-Generated Query
33 What makes a difference for accuracy? Analysis of Accuracy of Ready Reference questions (n=180) Does question clarification make a difference? Does asking a follow-up question make a difference? YOU BE THE JUDGE…
35 Future Directions Continue to collect & analyze data Online surveys Librarian survey completed Non-user and User surveys in progress Telephone interviews 100 with Librarians completed 100 Users in progress 100 Non-users in progress
36 END NOTES This is one of the outcomes from the project Seeking Synchronicity: Evaluating Virtual Reference Services from User, Non-User, and Librarian Perspectives. Funded by IMLS, Rutgers University, & OCLC Online Computer Library Center, Inc. Special thanks to Jocelyn DeAngelis Williams, Patrick Confer, Timothy Dickey, David M. Dragos, Mary Anne Reilly, Susanna Sabolcsi-Boros, Julie Strange. Slides available at project web site: http://www.oclc.org/research/projects/synchronicity/ http://www.oclc.org/research/projects/synchronicity/
37 Questions & Comments Lynn Silipigni Connaway, Ph.D. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.oclc.org/research/staff/connaway.htm Marie L. Radford, Ph.D. Email: email@example.com@scils.rutgers.edu www.scils.rutgers.edu/~mradfordscils.rutgers.edu/
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