embedded librarianship

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So, apparently I can’t turn the librarianing switch off in my head. Tonight while relishing in the blueberry pancakes I have been craving for three months I overheard a young woman asking her friend if she had to put a page number for a source if she used a quote from it. Inside my head I’m yelling “Yes! Yes you do! mmmmmm pancakes! Author page number and year!” This general discussion went on through my pancakes, the last foamy remnant of whipped cream, the last bite of pleasingly salty bacon, and the last cantaloupe chunk. I paid my bill, finished my water, tucked Sense and Sensibility and my newly-complete grocery list back into my bag. I looked at the table again, where the two were packing up computers and notebooks as their food was just arriving. I thought, well it’s now or never and went over to their table where I explained that you do have to have a page number for a direct quote. She said she thought so, but wasn’t sure how to handle an online non-paginated article. I explained about paragraph numbers and threw in a little tidbit about the “chat with a librarian” feature available through our university library. She seemed a bit confused by the initial information ambush, but overall pleased with obtaining the correct answer.

This has made me think about different ways to do embedded librarianship. If people are studying in IHOP, can I sit at a little table with an “ask a librarian” sign? I don’t think this would really be a great use of my time on a day to day basis, but I must say, this brief encounter has made me think of some fun, gimmicky, potential outreach projects for finals time.

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