The proposed program “Are Virtual Reference Services Worth the Effort?” sponsored by the RSS/MARS Virtual Reference Services Committee has been accepted for ALA Annual 2012. A panel of experts will discuss ways to look at return-on-investment and evaluation of virtual reference (VR) services and various methods used to assess their effectiveness. Real-life examples of ways this has already been done will be presented as well. Scheduled panelists represent a cross-section of different libraries and each will share their unique perspective. The committee will be holding a virtual meeting in late December or early January at which it plans to discuss the possibility of conducting an annual online survey to assess the distribution and logistics of virtual reference services in libraries, as well as the logistics behind enhancing the accuracy and visibility of existing virtual reference-related content within online resources like LISWiki and Wikipedia.
Don Boozer, Chair 2011-2012