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Understanding Virtual Reference Service Guidelines: A Roadmap for Successful Implementation

International Journal of Information Library and Society

Volume 8 Issue 2

Published: 2019
Author(s) Name: Atasi Sinhababu, Shiv Kumar | Author(s) Affiliation: Research Scholar, Department of Library & Information Science, Panjab University, Chandigarh, India
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Abstract

Any service being offered by the libraries should have well-defined and documented service policy with clearly articulated guidelines. The requirement of such a comprehensive service guidelines become more crucial in case the service is comparatively newer and the professionals as-well-as the users are not accustomed with such kind of information service. Virtual Reference Service/ Digital Reference Service (VRS/DRS) is one such innovative service which calls for framing of such guidelines for providing effective VRS. This paper does the content analysis of the two very significant VRS guidelines stipulated by The International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA) and Reference & User Services Association (RUSA) respectively. The paper attempts to analyse, synthesise and consolidate the major outcomes of these two guidelines and presents the lucid explanation of the same in coherent and cohesive manner. The discussion is structured aptly under 15 sections for easy adoption by the Indian libraries that are planning to launch VRS in future. A brief snapshot of growth of literature pertaining to the VRS/DRS guidelines has also been incorporated.

Keywords: Virtual Reference Service, Digital Reference Service, VRS, DRS, IFLA, RUSA

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