INLS 501: Information Resources and Services
"The answer is inconsequential. It's how we go about finding the answer." -- Allen Smith
- 1 Course description
- 2 Course objectives
- 3 Instructor
- 4 Course management
- 5 Textbook & reading
- 6 Assignments
- 7 Grading rubric & other policies
- 8 Schedule
This course will address sources, services, and systems for providing reference and information service in libraries and information centers. We will examine, create, and evaluate reference sources in a variety of formats. You will gain experience with using, providing, and evaluating reference services in a variety of media.
The course will address the following areas, in varying depth:
- Overview of the reference function and the role of libraries;
- The history and future of reference service;
- Structure, access, and evaluation of information tools;
- Question negotiation;
- Search skills and search strategy; and
- Evaluation of reference services.
INLS 501 is an introduction to reference sources and services, broadly construed. If you are interested in reference work in specific environments, SILS offers a variety of courses: INLS 703, 704, & 705, 708, 709, and others.
By the end of the course, students will:
- Be able to identify appropriate information sources and search tools for various types of information needs, and
- Use these sources and tools effectively,
- Evaluate information sources and search tools for quality,
- Evaluate information sources and search tools for relevance to their own information needs,
- Understand the steps of the reference transaction, including question negotiation and search strategy development,
- Be able to create documents for indirect reference.
| Jeffrey Pomerantz, Ph.D.
CB 3360, 100 Manning Hall
Chapel Hill, NC 27599-3360
| v: 919-962-8064
pomerantz at unc dot edu
|A note about office hours: I live in Seattle, WA & will therefore not be holding in person office hours in Chapel Hill. I will hold virtual office hours using Google Hangouts. And I am reachable by all of the fine media listed above. Contact me via any means you prefer. I'm happy to schedule a phonecall if you require a longer conversation.|
Course LibGuides site (I will provide you with login info in class)
Course Piazza site
Textbook & reading
There is one required text for this course:
Bopp, Richard E. and Linda C. Smith. (2001). Reference and Information Services: An Introduction, 3rd ed. Englewood, CO: Libraries Unlimited.
Reference is a central function of libraries, and as a result a lot gets written about it. Bopp & Smith is the textbook that we use in this course, but another good text is the two-volume work by Katz:
Katz, William A. (2002). Introduction to Reference Work, Volume I: Basic Information Sources. 8th Ed. New York: McGraw‑Hill.
Katz, William A. (2002). Introduction to Reference Work, Volume II: Reference Services and Reference Processes. 8th Ed. New York: McGraw‑Hill.
There are several journals dedicated to reference, including:
- Reference & User Services Quarterly (RUSA's journal, formerly titled RQ (Reference Quarterly))
- Reference Services Review
- The Reference Librarian
And pretty much every journal in the field of ILS publishes articles on reference from time to time.
Grading rubric & other policies
See my course grading rubric.
See my course policies.
See the web.unc.edu Online Class Statement.
Assignments constitute the following percentage of your final grade:
- Information Service Evaluation: 20%
- Internet Public Library: 15%
- Social Q&A: 15%
- Course Page: 20%
- Liaison Librarianship: 20%
- Participation: 10%
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