December 2015


Midwinter Meeting 2016In the Spotlight

Book & Media Awards Ceremony and Reception
Sunday, January 10, 5:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m., Boston Park Plaza, Grand Ballroom A

For the first time, the Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence in Fiction and Nonfiction will be announced during this Midwinter Meeting event by the selection committee’s inaugural chair, Nancy Pearl, reflecting the new calendar for these awards. As always, RUSA will unveil this year’s Notable Books List, Reading List, Listen List and Outstanding Reference Sources selections, the Dartmouth Medal for excellence in reference, the Sophie Brody Medal for Jewish literature, the Zora Neale Hurston Award for achievement in promoting African-American literature and the Louis Shores Award for book reviewing. Join us for this celebratory evening as we announce the best books and resources of the year and a chance to win some of this year’s best books! All MW attendees are welcome, no tickets required. The event is from 5-7pm, Boston Park Plaza, Grand Ballroom A. The event is sponsored in part by NoveList. More information about these awards can be found at Read more here.

Speed Mentoring Session
Saturday, January 9, 3:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m., Hyatt Regency Boston, Adrienne Salon

Join a group of experienced RUSA leaders to engage in a fun, interactive “speed mentoring” session. Similar in format to “speed dating”, MLS students, new librarians, and mid-career librarians are invited to participate in this session where they will have the opportunity to gain leadership advice from a number of senior librarians and RUSA leaders. Read more here.

Membership Social
Saturday, January 9, 5:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m., Hyatt Regency Boston, Grand Ballroom B

Join members of RUSA for an opportunity to eat, drink, network, win door prizes and learn more about our division and its sections. The social is open to past, current and those interested in becoming members. All attendees are welcome! Read more here.

RUSA Discussion Forums at the 2016 Midwinter Meeting
Link to them here.

RUSA Workshops: 

History Genealogy Institute –  Free, but you must register                         
Friday, January 8, 8:00 a.m – 4:00 p.m. This free workshop will help librarians of all types learn techniques to better serve the genealogists and family historians who use their collections. This can include better understanding of genealogy research methods and sources. It can also include how libraries can leverage their unique holdings to become more relevant to genealogists, who tend to be passionate in their support of libraries that have useful materials. Sponsored by ProQuest. Lunch provided and sponsored by ProQuestRegister here.

*Deep Dive Session – Brand new! 
We are all user experience librarians: Creating change from the trenches
Saturday, January 9, 1:00 p.m.- 4:15 p.m.
This Deep Dive workshop will focus on user testing and understanding your users’ experience through a mix of discussion, presentations, and interactive experiences. Our five presenters will offer design strategies and tools from throughout the life cycle of a user experience design project, and they will also join together as a panel to provide a spirited, entertaining look at pitfalls to avoid and lessons learned. Unlike other sessions about user experience design, the proposed workshop will focus on providing attendees with concrete skills and techniques they can apply at their home institutions with relatively little expense or pre-planning.
Read more here. Register here. 

RUSA Voices – Bloggers needed for Midwinter Meeting and Beyond!
Raise your Voice!  Consider blogging for RUSA Voices, the new blog for RUSA members and those who support the mission and goals of RUSA . . . Read more here.

Only 24 days until Midwinter Meeting 2016! 
Register by 11:59am CST January 4, 2016 and receive Advanced Registration rates. Register here 

Seeking Nominations 2016 RUSA Achievement Awards

RUSA is seeking nominations for its annual series of awards and grants. Nominations and supporting materials for most awards must be submitted by December. 4, 2015.

RUSA encourages members to nominate their colleagues whose work has influenced their thinking and performance and whose contributions merit recognition by the profession. With over $30,000 generously donated annually by industry sponsors, RUSA has, and will continue to, nominate, select and honor the very best in the field of reference and user services. Read more here.

Plunkett’s Research Scholarship

Congratulations to Therese F Triumph, Feraz Ashraf, Angel Vu, Carmen Cole, Lindy Gerdes! They were students in the October session of RUSA’s Business Reference 101 course and were each the lucky winners of a Plunkett’s Research Scholarship covering the cost of their registration.

Thank you to Jack Plunkett, CEO of Plunkett Research Online (, who is behind this generous scholarship program.

2016 Emerging Leader Announced

Congratulations to Catherine Damiani for being selected as RUSA’s 2016 Emerging Leader. Read the press release here.

2016 Spectrum Scholar for Internship Announced

RUSA has selected Patricia Valdovinos as the 2016 Spectrum Scholar.
Read the full press release here.

RUSA Online Learning

February 2015

Xtreme Bibliographic Searching for Interlibrary Loan & Reference
This four-week class, will take you from Mansel Pre 56 to Digital Repositories, DOAJ to Trove to HathiTrust. Don’t know those terms, then this course is for you! Register hereRead more here.

Learner-Centered Reference and Instruction: Science, Psychology, and Inclusive Pedagogy
An Introduction to empirically sound approaches to learner-centered teaching that can be applied to creating effective reference and instruction services that maximally facilitate student learning. Register hereRead more here.

Introduction to Instructional Design for Librarians
Students will learn to use the Instructional Design Process and apply it effectively to library instruction which includes: identifying instructional problems, learner analysis, task analysis, defining instructional objectives, sequencing content, identifying instructional strategies, message design, instructional delivery, and evaluation instruments. Register here. Read more here.

Reference Interview 101|
This comprehensive course covers such reference interview topics  as cultivating an approachable reference environment, successful questioning and listening techniques and appropriate follow-up methods. Staff of all levels at all types of libraries will find this content, presented in a multi-media format, helpful in their day-to-day engagement with library patrons. Register hereRead more here.

Genealogy 101
This course is designed for reference staff with little to no experience in genealogy. Using a case study to frame the coursework, participants will learn about tools and techniques they can use to confidently assist patrons with family history research.Register hereRead more here.

Reference Research Forum – Call for Submissions

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. Get all the details here.

Volunteer Opportunities

RUSA’s special interest section committees has a multitude of volunteer opportunities available for the 2016-2017 year.

Committee members have the opportunity to:

Please consider volunteering for one or more committee to help us meet our objectives and move RUSA forward in new and exciting ways. Virtual members are encouraged and welcomed.

To volunteer or for more information, please click on this link.

Please contact RUSA Vice President, Alesia M. McManus at, with any questions.

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