2013 ALA Annual Conference: Programs hosted by the Reference and User Services Association

Check out the slate of programs RUSA is hosting at the upcoming ALA Annual Conference in Chicago! Register for the conference now in order to attend these programs, which will be held Saturday, June 29 through Monday, July 1, 2013.

More conference information is available at the conference website. Keep an eye on the RUSA website, Facebook page and Twitter feed for conference event updates!

2013 RUSA Programs:

The Myth and the Reality of the Evolving Patron: The RUSA President’s Program
Saturday, 4:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Just how well do you know the people who use your library? Lee Rainie, Director of the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project and co-author of Networked: The New Social Operating System, shares the latest data about how our clientele are interacting with information technology. Learn about patron preferences and behaviors during this program. Then, join Mr. Rainie and library leaders on Sunday, 10:30-11:30 am, to discuss how the data may influence your library’s future.

Literary Tastes: Celebrating the Best Reading of the Year
Sunday, 8-10 a.m.
Hear from award-winning authors from among RUSA’s 2013 literary awards! Authors will be announced throughout the spring. Track the #literarytastes hashtag on Twitter for breaking news.

Collection Development & Community Expectations: Managing collections and balancing resources in an era of budgetary constraints
Saturday, 8:30 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.

The challenges of the current economy are a common adversity faced by librarians in all types of institutions. With declining budgets and fewer resources librarians must make difficult decisions to meet their library’s overall mission. Join us to hear a panel of experienced librarians share examples of how they have met the challenges of managing various types of library collections, and how they continue to manage the expectations of their diverse customer groups.

Beyond Genre: Exploring the Perception, Uses, and Misuses of Genre by Readers, Writers, and Librarians
Saturday, 10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
Librarians have traditionally relied on genre classifications to create smaller, browsable collections, but as genre boundaries increasingly overlap, this becomes more difficult. Join us at the Readers’ Advisory Research and Trends Forum where we question authors and librarians about the ways genre is used to sell books, the limitations of reading within a genre box, and the challenges “genre” poses for readers’ advisors. Speakers to be announced.

Smart investing@your library®: Community Connector
Saturday, 10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
Learn how librarians are making new connections with new audiences and expanding their own financial education frontier with outreach programs to seniors, teens and children. With locally designed technologies and clever approaches, they are using tablet computers to reach seniors in assisted living facilities; broadcasting radio programs and creating viral video vignettes to capture the attention of teens ;and integrating music with the Lunch Money song in elementary school curriculums.

19th Annual Reference Research Forum
Saturday, 1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.
The Reference Research Forum continues to be one of the most popular and valuable programs during the ALA Annual Conference, where attendees can learn about notable projects conducted in the broad area of reference services such as user behavior, electronic services, reference effectiveness and assessment, and organizational structure and personnel.  This year’s topics are: Research Guides Usability Study, Two Birds, One Stone: Using a Mixed Methods Approach to Measure Service Process and Identify Usability Pain Points in Virtual Reference, and Query Clarification in Chat Reference: A Visual Transcript Analysis.

Enhancing Services Through Integration of Interlibrary Loan and Acquisitions
Saturday, 1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

This panel will explore the opportunities and challenges that arise from merging interlibrary loan and acquisitions departments, as well as the administrative aspects of such a partnership. Through examining the reasons why ILL/Acquisitions mergers may be beneficial, and hearing from peers engaged in the process, attendees will gain an understanding of how to weigh the merits of such an arrangement and determine if it is appropriate for their institution, as well as hear insights on how to move forward. This session is appropriate for all library types.

Library Engagement in National History Day Activities
Sunday, 8:30 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.
National History Day (NHD) is a highly regarded academic program focused on history for 6th to 12th grade students. For librarians it’s an opportunity to engage students in the challenge and thrill of discovery through historical research as well as promote the use of their institutional resources. Panelists will share their experiences in working with students on the regional, state, and national levels of the competition.

Does Your Data Deliver for Decision Making? New Directions for Resource Sharing Assessment
Sunday, 10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

How do you gather statistics via a focus group?  How do you interpret statistics specifically in Excel?  What do you do with all the qualitative data that you gather and how do you share the work and workload with colleagues? Three different speakers with different approaches will talk about how their information delivers for decision making.  Use this time to learn new approaches to statistics gathering and what worked best for these colleagues (and maybe even what didn’t!).

MARS Chair’s Program: Usability, the User Experience & Interface Design: The Role of Reference
Sunday, 1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.
With the advent of new discovery tools and new technology, the habits of our researchers and users have certainly changed. How are we collecting data and observing behavior to improve these interfaces to better meet our user’s needs? How can we learn from what other researchers are studying and use that data to implement change? What is the new relationship between the virtual space, the physical space, and the user experience?

Different Strokes: Serving the Health Information Needs of a Diverse Community
Sunday, 1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.
Medical and health questions at the reference desk can be loaded with unspoken meanings, especially when the patron has different cultural or physical attributes than the librarians.  Panelists in this program will include librarians with expertise in providing medical information to patrons who are from different cultures, speak different languages, are disabled or have literacy issues.  Attendees will learn about health issues facing diverse populations, and resources to assist them in providing reference services.

Digital History: New Methodologies Facilitated by New Technologies
Sunday, 1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.
Digital History is providing new pathways to traditional historical research methodologies.  Helping students and faculty members utilize the myriad of historical research options is becoming a major task for reference and instructional librarians. Panelists will address the opportunities in researching with digital history and the problems they have encountered in using these sources.

Leveraging Open Source Software to Create Library Websites
Sunday, 3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Is your library considering using open source software such as Drupal, WordPress or Omeka to revamp your library’s web site, create a digital archive or a staff intranet? Our speakers will provide an overview of open source software and discuss some of their features and capabilities. They will also discuss implementations of the software at their institution including the development process, challenges, lessons learned and practical advice for developing web sites using open source software.

Investment Success! Building & Managing Your Retirement Portfolio
Monday, 8:30 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.
Good personal investment education is important for librarians and library staff. We are an occupational group that is rarely able to access top financial advice. In this program, investment professionals will demystify the process and help us understand essential principles and how to apply them to make better decisions to meet our retirement goals. The presentation will include a discussion of the common mistakes investors make, why we make them, and how to avoid them.

Preserving Labor’s History
Monday, 10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
Labor has had a long rich history. For decades, librarians and archivists have worked to collect, organize, preserve and make accessible the important documents that record the history of the labor movement: its progress and triumphs as well as its set-backs. This program aims to highlight the ways in which librarians, archivists and others have endeavored to preserve labor’s history, and have worked to educate generations on the important role of labor in American life.

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