The Off-Campus Library Services Conference began in 1982 as an opportunity for those librarians engaged in what was then a niche area in the profession to get together and share experiences and best practices. Now in its 14th incarnation, the conference continues to attract many librarians who have been regular attendees over the years, although it has, in recent years, seen significant increases in the number of first-time attendees.<br> <br>This last fact should not, perhaps, be surprising as many practices once considered the domain of distance librarians have recently become incorporated into the daily work of traditional, on-campus librarians. Changes in the library use preferences and information-gathering strategies of our users now mean that an on-campus patron will not necessarily be an “in-building” patron. Because students and faculty are not spending as much time physically in the building (and within easy reach of the librarians), the traditional library has been compelled to take a page from the distance librarianship playbook by proactively pushing the library's resources and services to patrons wherever they may be. No longer able to rely upon the physical reference desk as the library's primary point of service for users, all librarians are actively exploring such things as text messaging and chat reference services, online library instruction, the creation and dissemination of video tutorials, and the integration of a library presence into the institution's course management system.<br> <br>The papers presented at this year's conference represent the efforts of those librarians who have become, through their ongoing efforts, leaders in the field of distance librarianship as well as the work of individuals new to our profession. But despite variations in author experience and levels of expertise, all the papers collected here reflect the experiences of librarians going about the daily business of providing resources and services to library users in a present that is experiencing ongoing change. And distance librarianship, with its long history of adaptability, innovation, and patron-focused practices, can serve as a sound service model as we move into a future that promises even more changes and challenges.
|Title of host publication||The Fourteenth Off-Campus Library Services Conference Proceedings, Part 1|
|Publisher||Journal of Library Administration|
|State||Published - Aug 16 2010|