Upcoming online learning: Usability studies, readers advisory and business reference

Labor Day is on the horizon, and we’re gearing up for three excellent online learning opportunities that happen next week: our webinar “How to Conduct Usability Studies: A Librarian Primer”, and our online courses “Readers’ Advisory 101” and “Business Reference 101”.

Group rates are available for all of these events! All of the details are at the RUSA online learning page.

Questions about these offerings should be sent to RUSA Web Manager Andrea Hill at ahill@ala.org or 312-280-4397. Questions about registration? Contact registration@ala.org or (800) 545-2433, option 5.


Webinar: How to Conduct Usability Studies: A Librarian Primer
Wednesday, September 4, 2013 – 2:00 – 3:00 Central Time
Register online now for this webinar! Register by close of business on Tuesday, September 3.
Registration starts at $40 for RUSA members.

Interested in conducting some usability test of your library website or resources, but not sure where to start? Come to this one session and hear about what things to consider when conducting usability tests for the first time. We’ll explain what librarians need to do to implement this method of gathering user feedback and explore how Purdue University has conducted usability tests; specific topics to be presented include research questions, recruitment, creating user study scripts and other best practices.

Our focus for this webinar is on reference librarians in all types of libraries who are interested in using usability tests to improve services at their libraries. This includes people who work on the libraries’ virtual presence (web sites, mobile apps or databases) but also people interested in cross channel user experience like references desks, study spaces and check out stations. We examine what worked in our library as a case study, but will also discuss the work at other libraries and in the private sector, in terms of usability tests. Read a full description of the webinar, including learning outcomes.


Online Course: Readers’ Advisory 101
September 3 - October 20, 2013. Weekly live chats 3 p.m., Chicago/Central Time on Thursdays (1-2 hours in length)
Register online now for this course! Register by close of business on Friday, August 30.
Registration starts at $130 for RUSA members.

Learn how to become more comfortable providing readers’ advisory (RA) services. Through practice sessions, learn how to use RA tools, craft annotations, read in genres, articulate appeal, and experiment with methods to offer RA services. This course is tailored for support staff, library technicians, newly hired reference librarians, and those librarians who want to brush up on their skills. The topics covered are introductory in nature. Class segments are geared to cover issues of interest to staff in all types of libraries. Review a full description of the course and learn about instructor Joyce Saricks.


Online Course: Business Reference 101
September 9 - October 6, 2013.
Register online now for this course! Register by close of business on Friday, September 6.
Registration starts at $130 for RUSA members.

This four-week, Web-based professional development course is designed for academic, special or public librarians and other researchers and library staff who have a basic understanding of some business resources but who do not work with them often enough to build expertise. The course will provide students with a framework for understanding the business reference process as well as an overview of business reference sources specific to each of the course modules. Review a full description of the course content and learn about course instructor Celia Ross.

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