The Research & Statistics Committee of the Reference Services Section of the Reference & User Services Association (RUSA) invites the submission of reference service research project proposals for presentation at the 22nd Reference Research Forum at the 2016 American Library Association Annual Conference in Orlando, FL. Researchers and practitioners from all types of libraries, library school faculty and students, and other interested individuals are encouraged to submit a proposal.

The Reference Research Forum is a popular and valuable ALA Annual Conference program. Attendees have the opportunity to learn about innovative research projects conducted in reference services including user behavior, electronic services, reference effectiveness and assessment, and organizational structure and personnel.

For examples of projects presented at past Forums, please see the Committee’s website:

The Committee employs a blind review process to select three projects for 20-minute presentations, followed by open discussion. Selected submissions must be presented in person at the Forum in Orlando, FL.

Criteria for selection:

1.      Originality: Potential for research to fill a gap in reference knowledge or to build on previous studies

2.      Quality: Research design and methodologies

3.      Impact: Significance of the study for improving the quality of reference service

NOTE: Research projects may be in-progress or completed. Previously published research or research accepted for publication will not be accepted.

Important Dates:

Proposals are due by December 28th, 2015. Notification of acceptance will be made by Monday, February 8th, 2016.
The submission must not exceed two pages. Please include:

Submission Details:

PAGE 1: Cover Sheet (1 page maximum)
Include your name(s), title(s), institutional affiliation(s), mailing address(es), and email address(es).

PAGE 2: Research Description (1 page maximum)
The second page must not show your name, any personal information, or the name of your institution. Instead, it must include:

1.      Title of the project

2.      Explicit statement of the research problem

3.      Description of the research design and methodologies

4.      Findings or results if available

5.      Brief discussion of the originality, unique contribution, potential impact, and significance of the research
(if you use semi colons between itemsin a list, you need to make sure the entire list is a complete sentence.)

Proposals that exceed 2 pages or that do not follow the format described above will be automatically rejected.
Please submit your proposal as a PDF document. Thank you for your cooperation in following submission rules.

Please send submissions by email to:
Elizabeth Kocevar-Weidinger
Learning Services Librarian
Howard Community College


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