Ask A Librarian

The new campus-specific views of IUCAT give us the opportunity to offer our patrons quick, easy access to the website for their campus library and to route their questions directly to library staff at each campus. These are improvements that we have all wanted to see for some time, and we are excited to improve service to catalog users in this way.

HOW IT WORKS

There will be an Ask-A-Librarian link in the top navigation banner of the new IUCAT.

new iucat: ask a librarian

Ask A Librarian: options within campus views

Within the campus views, users will be presented with 4 options:

  • IUCAT Help (links to UITS Knowledge Base IUCAT information – we will continue to add to this info)
  • Ask A Librarian (links to your campus library’s ask a librarian page; in the case where a campus has multiple libraries [ie Bloomington], queries will need to be forwarded as appropriate from the linked reference point)
  • Report error/Submit feedback (leads to a web form that submits to the implementation team)
  • Library website (links to your campus library’s website, or in the case of IUPUI, to a splash page: http://www.iupui.edu/about/libraries.html)
Ask A Librarian: options within all-IUCAT (union catalog)

Ask A Librarian: options within all-IUCAT (union catalog)

Within the all-IUCAT (union catalog) view, users will be presented with 3 options:

  • IUCAT Help (see above)
  • Report error/Ask a Research Question (more below)
  • Campus information (links to campus splash page)

Users will be able to use this single form, below, to report errors, share comments, or ask research questions.

Feedback form within all-IUCAT

Feedback form within all-IUCAT

For responses in which the category Ask A Research Question is selected, the form data will route directly as an email to the selected campus library’s reference email address (as previously, in the case where a campus has multiple libraries [ie Bloomington], queries will need to be forwarded as appropriate.) Error reports and general comments will route to a Jira project site where they can easily be transformed into bug reports and enhancement requests for developers.

Example: feedback forwarded to Jira project site

Example: feedback forwarded to Jira project site

WHAT THIS MEANS FOR YOU AND YOUR PATRONS

When possible, patrons will be directed to a virtual reference presence where they may obtain assistance through the fullest array of venues available for their campus (ie IM, email, telephone), as well as easy access to additional information about hours, location, etc. Within the all-IUCAT interface, patrons will be asked to designate a campus affiliation so that their questions may be directed to their home campus where staff are best equipped to provide help.

About Courtney Greene McDonald

Head, Discovery & Research Services department
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