Policies for Chat & Email Reference
Who can use Ask A Librarian?
Ask a Librarian services are provided primarily for University of Arizona students, faculty, and staff; and for anyone who is connecting to the service from a computer on the University of Arizona campus. Other users are welcome to use Ask a Librarian for questions dealing specifically with information about the University of Arizona, as well as about the Library and its collections.
What kind of help is available from Ask A Librarian?
IM/Chat and E-mail reference services are designed to handle questions typically asked at the reference desk, such as questions about finding information on a particular topic, journal citations, phone numbers, and definitions. We will provide up to three book titles or article citations about a topic and tell you how to find similar resources.
Questions requiring in-depth knowledge of a subject or resource may be referred to an appropriate subject specialist, who will contact you directly. A referral may cause a slight delay in the response time.
IM/Chat services depend heavily on online resources; during chat we are unable to consult print materials in other parts of the Library’s collections.
Response time for e-mail reference queries is 48 hours, Monday through Friday, when the Main Library is open. Most questions will receive a response within 24 hours.
Help Ask A Librarian cannot provide
Though most requests submitted through our virtual reference services can be accommodated, there are a few things that cannot:
Verification of incomplete citations that require searching through paper copies of books or journals.
Requests for legal, medical, financial or tax advice.
Requests for genealogy or family history research.
IM/Chat transcripts and e-mail messages are retained for up to one month and then permanently deleted. All personal information (name, e-mail address) is stripped from IM/Chat transcripts.
Last modified: May 8, 2013