LIBR 210-03
Reference and Information Services
Spring 2010 Greensheet

Dr. Paul M. Christensen
E-mail 
Phone: 360-297-2965
Office location: Virtual-Indianola, WA 
Office Hours: Via email or Elluminate (to be scheduled). Phone contact can be arranged.


Greensheet Links
Textbooks and Readings
Course Requirements
Resources
ANGEL
ANGEL Tutorials
iSchool eBookstore
 

Students must self-enroll for this course on ANGEL NLT than January 25th. You will be required to use a password access code which I will provide using the MYSJSU Messaging system

Course Description

This course is designed to introduce you to the world of reference and information services. We will explore various methods and models of information service delivery, examine and evaluate key information sources of various types and formats, and discuss vital issues and emerging trends in reference and information delivery.

Topics will include:

  • The history of reference service
  • Information seeking behavior
  • The reference process (including the reference interview)
  • Evaluation of reference interactions
  • Information sources and their use (including effective search strategies)
  • Collection and evaluation of reference sources (both paper and electronic)
  • Reference service to diverse populations
  • The role of instruction in reference service
  • Reference ethics and reference policies
  • Trends in reference and information services

Catalog Description
A process-oriented examination of how information professionals answer reference questions. The interpersonal skills required for effective question negotiation and the sources with which questions are answered are stressed.

Prerequisite: LIBR 202

Course Objectives

Student Learning Outcomes
At the end of this course, students will:

  • Have an understanding of the reference process
  • Understand the impact of cultural diversity in library reference work
  • Be able to meet the information needs of patrons in a variety of library settings
  • Acquaint themselves with core reference sources in multiple disciplines
  • Know where to find peer support
  • Be competent in the evaluation and usage of multiple information sources
  • Have an understanding of the impact of technology on reference interactions
  • Be familiar with issues and trends in reference services

LIBR 210 supports the following SLIS Core Competencies:

  • use service concepts, principles and techniques that facilitate information access, relevance, and accuracy for individuals or groups of users.
  • demonstrate proficiency in the use of current information and communication technologies, and other related technologies, as they affect the resources and uses of libraries and other types of information providing entities. 

Course Requirements

Course Format
This class is taught online via ANGEL. Elluminate will be used for some scheduled mandatory and optional office hours. The ANGEL site for this class will open for self-enrollment several days before the first day of class in the Spring semester. I will provide all enrolled students with a password access code using the MySJSU messaging system. Class discussions and activities will take place via ANGEL. It is crucial that you log in every few days during the semester to check the announcements.

Home Computing Environment 
Please see the School’s “Home Computing Requirements” at
http://ischool.sjsu.edu/ecommunication/homecomputing.htm  It is your responsibility to work with SJSU/SLIS in solving any problems related to uploading assignments and/or participating as a functioning class member.

Course Outline 
We will cover topics in four broad areas, interspersed throughout the semester:

  1. Fundamental Concepts.
  2. Introduction to Major Reference Sources.
  3. Special topics in Reference and Information Work.
  4. Developing and Managing Reference Collections and Services.

Student Expectations
You are expected to read and carefully consider all the readings, participate fully in all activities and discussions during the class, as well as turning in assignments by the due dates.

It is important to pay attention to time management in order to complete an online course successfully. Although you can access the course materials online at any time, plan to set aside time each week to complete the readings and assignments. It is easy to get behind, so be organized, disciplined and self-motivated. Although the course is conducted online, not all reference sources are readily available online. It is essential that each student identify a local academic library, with a sizable reference colleciton and plan to visit that library frequently throughout the semester.

All assignments must be submitted by the due date. Assignment instructions should be followed exactly; points will be deducted for failure to follow directions. Students are expected to submit assignments that are free of spelling and grammatical errors. All sources must be correctly cited using the APA style manual. Due dates for assignments are not negotiable.  Procrastination should be avoided.  Please check the site regularly for announcements, assignments, discussion forum questions, etc. Assignments and course schedule are subject to change. If that happens, you will be notified as soon as possible.  If you forsee any difficulty in completing your assignment on time, you need to contact me at least 36 hours in advance before the due date to request an extension.

In addition, students turning in late assignments may receive their assessment much later that the rest of the class.  If you do not understand assignments, readings, etc., it is your responsibility to inform me. If you are having difficulty, please contact me early so that we can resolve problems. You may ask your classmates for help. You must complete all assignments to pass the course.

Course Calendar

Classes Begin January 26, 2010
Spring Recess March 29-April 2, 2010
Cesar Chavez Day March 31, 2010
Classes end May 17, 2010

Assignments

  1. Readings/Online Discussions
    Each week you will be assigned
    • an online ‘lecture or discussion notes’ provided via Angel
    • readings from the textbook
    • other readings as assigned.
    Each week students will submit a posting to the discussion forum based on the lecture, the textbook reading assignment, and/or the other readings. Each student is expected to participate in the discussion. There will be a grade based upon the content (value or quality) and frequency of postings to the online discussions. Frequent postings of "Yeah" and "Way to go" will not earn many, if any, points. Conversely, a few substantiating contributions regarding bibliographic and other resources or help resolving a problem or other contributions will be well received by all and credited accordingly. Discussion Forums are opportunities for students to show an understanding of the week's readings,themes and weekly topics. It is expected that students will establish their own thread to accomplish this. Commenting on another student's thread, while important in a discussion forum, is not sufficient. Each student needs to provide evidence of original work. Students should be prepared to provide original thread discussions.  All other comments are considered secondary posts.
    Postings that always occur at the weekly deadline tend to be repetitions of classmates’ thoughts and ideas. Do not wait until the semester is winding down to make your mark in the online discussions.

    Student online discussion responses are:

    Due: Sunday 11:59 pm of each week.
     
  2. Service Learning Project-Chat Reference Service
    You will be participating in a service learning project to answer actual reference questions and reflect upon your experience. Service learning is defined as a form of education in which students engage in activities that address community needs together with structured opportunities intentionally designed to promote student learning and development.  Completion of tutorials in chat reference are part of the assgnment. The final details of the assignment are pending.   In preparation for this assignment please read chapters 2 and 13 of the textbook.

    Due: TBD (Approximately April 25, 2010)
     
  3. Reference Service Evaluation Assignment
    This assignment will give you the opportunity to evaluate reference and information services from the user's perspective. You will participate as a user in three reference transactions each via different media (face-to-face, email and chat) and submit a report evaluating your experiences.

    Due: February  21, 2010
      
  4. Reference Resource Exercises-Group Assignment
    Throughout the semester and before we discuss a category of resources (bibliographic, biographical, etc.), I will give you a list of a few good resources and perhaps a bad source for variety. I want you to become familiar with them by looking at them, using them to answer some questions, and so on. In addition, I'll ask you to identify other resources in that category. You will have seven sets of resources to become familiar with and answer some questions. This will be a group activity. You may form a group of no more than five students to complete the exercises. These exercises may take place simultaneously while the weekly discussion topics may cover other areas. You will need to have access to a print reference collection (a large public or an academic library) in order to complete these exercises. Online sources may be used, but they will not be sufficient for all questions. 

    Due: Various dates-Weeks 5, 6, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 by Sunday @ 11:59 of the indicated weeks.
     
  5. Instruction-Pathfinder/Webliography
    You will need to prepare an instructional unit. For this assignment there are several components. They should include many of the following: identify group/purpose with essential question(s), presenter notes or guides, formal outline of the presentation, supporting materials for participants, references, information literacy skills and pathfinder/webliography on the specific subject and any user guides. This is meant as a final culminating project for the course. It should include a variety of new information and skills you have acquired to be used in a real life or simulated  instructional format. See Angel for assignment details.

    Due: May 17, 2010

 Assignment Points/Total

1. Readings/Online Discussions 3x15weeks 45pts
2. Service Learning Project-Chat Reference 70 pts
3. Reference Service Evaluation Assignment  70 pts
4. Reference Resource Exercises 7 sets x 20 140 pts
5. Instruction-Pathfinder/Webliography 150 pts
TOTAL 475 Points 

In this class, exceptional work is defined as work that clearly displays one or more of the following criteria:

  • Originality in the approach to the assignment;
  • Greater depth of analysis than the written assignment calls for (particularly in comparing articles or viewpoints across the literature);
  • Critical evaluation of readings and discussions by comparing them to other authors or sources;
  • Overall treatment of the assignment above and beyond what the written assignment calls for; or
  • Superior organizational and/or written skills in the presentation of the material.

Grading
Your work will be evaluated according to four criteria; it should:

  • Be clearly written or presented
  • Display familiarity with the appropriate literature and/or bibliographic tools
  • Show insight into the concepts and/or issues in question
  • Demonstrate a degree of originality

Extra Credit
Extra credit options will not be available.

Late Assignments
Late assignments will not be accepted unless specific arrangements are made with the instructor at least 36 hours prior to their deadline and with the understanding that a lower grade may be given for late assignments.

Incompletes
Incompletes will be assigned ONLY in cases of medical or family emergency, where evidence of the emergency is provided. 

Textbooks and Readings

Recommended Textbook:

  • Radford, M.L. & Nelsen, K. & Ross, C.S. (2009). Conducting the Reference Interview: A How-to-do-it Manual for Librarians (2nd ed.). NY: Neal-Schuman. Available through Amazon: 155570655X. arrow gif indicating link outside sjsu domain


Grading Scale

The standard SJSU School of Information Grading Scale is utilized for all iSchool courses:

97 to 100 A
94 to 96 A minus
91 to 93 B plus
88 to 90 B
85 to 87 B minus
82 to 84 C plus
79 to 81 C
76 to 78 C minus
73 to 75 D plus
70 to 72 D
67 to 69 D minus
Below 67 F

 

In order to provide consistent guidelines for assessment for graduate level work in the School, these terms are applied to letter grades:

  • C represents Adequate work; a grade of "C" counts for credit for the course;
  • B represents Good work; a grade of "B" clearly meets the standards for graduate level work;
    For core courses in the MLIS program (not MARA) — INFO 200, INFO 202, INFO 204 — the iSchool requires that students earn a B in the course. If the grade is less than B (B- or lower) after the first attempt you will be placed on administrative probation.  You must repeat the class the following semester. If -on the second attempt- you do not pass the class with a grade of B or better (not B- but B) you will be disqualified.
  • A represents Exceptional work; a grade of "A" will be assigned for outstanding work only.

Students are advised that it is their responsibility to maintain a 3.0 Grade Point Average (GPA).

University Policies

General Expectations, Rights and Responsibilities of the Student

As members of the academic community, students accept both the rights and responsibilities incumbent upon all members of the institution. Students are encouraged to familiarize themselves with SJSU's policies and practices pertaining to the procedures to follow if and when questions or concerns about a class arises. See University Policy S90-5 at http://www.sjsu.edu/senate/docs/S90-5.pdf. More detailed information on a variety of related topics is available in the SJSU catalog at http://info.sjsu.edu/web-dbgen/catalog/departments/LIS.html. In general, it is recommended that students begin by seeking clarification or discussing concerns with their instructor. If such conversation is not possible, or if it does not serve to address the issue, it is recommended that the student contact the Department Chair as a next step.

Dropping and Adding

Students are responsible for understanding the policies and procedures about add/drop, grade forgiveness, etc. Refer to the current semester's Catalog Policies section at http://info.sjsu.edu/static/catalog/policies.html. Add/drop deadlines can be found on the current academic year calendars document on the Academic Calendars webpage at http://www.sjsu.edu/provost/services/academic_calendars/. The Late Drop Policy is available at http://www.sjsu.edu/aars/policies/latedrops/policy/. Students should be aware of the current deadlines and penalties for dropping classes.

Information about the latest changes and news is available at the Advising Hub at http://www.sjsu.edu/advising/.

Consent for Recording of Class and Public Sharing of Instructor Material

University Policy S12-7, http://www.sjsu.edu/senate/docs/S12-7.pdf, requires students to obtain instructor's permission to record the course and the following items to be included in the syllabus:

  • "Common courtesy and professional behavior dictate that you notify someone when you are recording him/her. You must obtain the instructor's permission to make audio or video recordings in this class. Such permission allows the recordings to be used for your private, study purposes only. The recordings are the intellectual property of the instructor; you have not been given any rights to reproduce or distribute the material."
    • It is suggested that the syllabus include the instructor's process for granting permission, whether in writing or orally and whether for the whole semester or on a class by class basis.
    • In classes where active participation of students or guests may be on the recording, permission of those students or guests should be obtained as well.
  • "Course material developed by the instructor is the intellectual property of the instructor and cannot be shared publicly without his/her approval. You may not publicly share or upload instructor generated material for this course such as exam questions, lecture notes, or homework solutions without instructor consent."

Academic integrity

Your commitment, as a student, to learning is evidenced by your enrollment at San Jose State University. The University Academic Integrity Policy F15-7 at http://www.sjsu.edu/senate/docs/F15-7.pdf requires you to be honest in all your academic course work. Faculty members are required to report all infractions to the office of Student Conduct and Ethical Development. The Student Conduct and Ethical Development website is available at http://www.sjsu.edu/studentconduct/.

Campus Policy in Compliance with the American Disabilities Act

If you need course adaptations or accommodations because of a disability, or if you need to make special arrangements in case the building must be evacuated, please make an appointment with me as soon as possible, or see me during office hours. Presidential Directive 97-03 at http://www.sjsu.edu/president/docs/directives/PD_1997-03.pdf requires that students with disabilities requesting accommodations must register with the Accessible Education Center (AEC) at http://www.sjsu.edu/aec to establish a record of their disability.

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