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VALA2004 Session 5 Fletcher


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Online librarian – real time / real talk: an innovative collaboration between two university libraries

VALA 2004 CONCURRENT SESSION 5: Virtual Reference
Tuesday 3 February 2004, 14:35 - 15:05

Janet Fletcher

Manager, Reference and Research Advisory Services, Macquarie University Library

Philippa Hair

Reference Librarian, Macquarie University Library

Jean McKay

Manager Liaison Services, Murdoch University Library

VALA Peer Reviewed Paper

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Collaboration has been a catchword within the library community for many years and now technological developments have made it possible to share staff and resources across time and distance. This paper describes how Macquarie University Library, NSW, and Murdoch University Library, WA, collaborated to produce an innovative online reference service for the academic year of 2003. It outlines the process of implementation between the libraries and outlines how the service uses Microsoft’s NetMeeting to enable real-time conversations via voice-over IP (VoIP).

VALA2000 Session 14 Woodcroft


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Establishing guidelines for the effective evaluation of web-based periodical bibliographic and full-text databases search interfaces.

VALA 2000 CONCURRENT SESSION 14: Information Delivery
Friday 18 February 2000, 14:00 - 14:30

Michelle Woodcroft

University Liaison Librarian, Southern Cross University, Coffs Harbour Education Campus

Janet Fletcher

Network Services Librarian, Southern Cross University

VALA Peer Reviewed Paper

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With the web fast becoming the common platform for access to periodical bibliographic and full-text databases, it is vital that librarians recommending the purchase of these databases evaluate not only their content, but also the search interface and search functionality. This paper describes a set of evaluation criteria for librarians to apply when reviewing the web interfaces of periodical databases. Criteria considered include; logon and logoff procedures, search functionality, flexibility and usability, advanced and novice search modes, on-screen help usefulness, error messages, record marking management, print, saving and e-mail capabilities, truncation and boolean operators, SDI facilities, command language capabilities, visual design and icon function recognition, library holdings features, and the availability and versatility of customisable front ends.

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