Library Committee Handbook

Reference Services Committee

Virtual Reference Service Use Policy

Library Virtual Reference Service Use Policy

Final Version 11/29/2011

Background and Scope

This policy addresses the establishment of chat reference services points (e.g. Instant Messaging Widgets) on individual library websites, including pages on the library server (e.g. unit homepages) as well as pages on external servers (e.g. libguides, EBSCO).  This policy specifies best practices for presenting library research assistance services through chat reference.

In this document, “Library-wide Chat Reference Service” refers to the service monitored by the IM Collaborator software, which currently uses the “askillinois” AIM widget as an access point on the back-end.  Training for IM Collaborator is provided by the Reference Service Committee in collaboration with the chat service managers, Kathleen Kern and David Ward.

Goals of Library-wide Chat Reference Service

Implementation and Use Guidelines