LIB 5020 Reference in Action Reflection

I found this assignment to be somewhat challenging.  It wasn’t that it was too hard but it was tricky trying to meet all the requirements without having to go back and make several changes.  As odd as it seems, I actually enjoyed creating the pathfinder.  I like researching and compiling information; even though I still have a bit of trouble categorizing some of the resources I found.  However, I would have preferred to work on the pathfinder independently.  I don’t think it would have been too much work for one person.  Of course, with respect to the number of people in the class and the time we have to interview, I can understand why we worked in pairs.

Playing the librarian was a bit stressful.  I was very worried about being able to answer the patron’s questions without stumbling over what I wanted to say.  I tried to remember conversations I had before with the librarians at the public library and how I wanted those conversations to go.  I wanted to be able to help even if I was asked about a subject I was unfamiliar with.  I was glad I had the pathfinders to help me answer their questions.  I think it’s imperative that librarians have access to reference tools like pathfinders, Novelist, and other search resources. 

I was glad I encountered pleasant patrons during the interviews, too.   They definitely made the interviews much better.  I know that they were “created” patrons but it was nice to know we weren’t going to have extremely difficult situations to work with.   One thing if for certain, I have never given a librarian the complete credit they deserve.  I had no idea what all went into helping patrons.  The librarians I have talked with always seemed to have all the right answers just when I needed them. I didn’t realize what all it took for them to have those answers.  Being able to find resources and references is great but it’s amazing the information they need to just “know”.  Pointing people in the right direction can be a hard task but most librarians I have worked with make it look so easy.

Playing the patron was great.  I wasn’t worried about that at all.  My biggest issue with this part of the assignment was creating the profile.  It seemed to be awfully detailed and had a lot of information it really didn’t need.  I suppose I can understand the need for all the details since you really don’t know how the interview is going to go until you get into it.  And I can also see why having two profiles might be beneficial.  Listening to the first librarian help a certain patron makes it a little easier for the second librarian.  Having a second profile so that both librarians have different interviews makes sense.  I just think creating the second might be a bit difficult if numerous changes have to be made in order for the profile to be exactly what is looked for.  I believe it would be more manageable if the requirements for the profiles were not so specific and detailed.  Making a brief profile with questions that can be answered from the pathfinder would be easier to handle.

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