The value of chat reference services: A pilot study

Joann Jacoby, David Ward, Susan Avery, Emilia Marcyk

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article explores student, instructor, and librarian perceptions of chat reference in the context of an introductory composition course. Participants in a mixed-method study responded to an anonymized chat transcript. While student respondents valued speed and efficiency, they were willing to receive instruction and open to questions that demonstrated interest or moved the research forward. Librarian and instructor comments focused on how these chats supported or could better support student learning, as well as on the interplay between classroom teaching, library instruction, and reference. The authors also identify implications that these findings have for the development of best practices in chat reference.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)109-129
Number of pages21
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Library and Information Sciences


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