Reference Coordinator - Kenneth Spencer Research Library

Updated: 8 months ago
Location: Lawrence, KANSAS
Deadline: The position may have been removed or expired!



Position Overview

The Reference Coordinator directs reference services at Kenneth Spencer Research Library, primarily by providing oversight of the Marilyn Stokstad Reading Room, where all collection materials are used by on-site researchers. S/he is responsible for maintaining a uniformly high level of customer service in the Reading Room, creating and maintaining a welcoming, accessible, helpful, and comfortable environment for teaching, learning, and research. The Coordinator has a holistic understanding of Reading Room operations and how they fit within broader work being undertaken at Spencer and KU Libraries. The person in this position also oversees the work of six Spencer curators, four Public Services colleagues, and approximately ten student assistants in the Reading Room. The Coordinator may take the lead in exploring and implementing changes to the service model in the Reading Room; as a result, s/he may supervise a graduate student assistant.

Additionally, the Reference Coordinator serves as the primary provider of high-quality research services to on-site patrons in the Reading Room, staffing this service point approximately twelve to twenty hours per week. The Coordinator also responds to queries received by phone, mail, and email. Working closely with faculty and other staff, this position provides instruction sessions for students and other patrons. The Reference Coordinator reports to the Head of Public Services.

Job Description

40% Manage Reference Services

  • Actively supervises and manages all day-to-day operations of Spencer’s Reading Room during the library’s operational hours.
  • Reviews and analyzes Reading Room operations. Develops and updates policies and procedures in accordance with best practices and in collaboration with the Head of Public Services. Reviews and modifies internal documentation and public descriptions of the library’s Reading Room policies and procedures.
  • Trains and oversees Spencer staff members and student assistants in their administration of policies governing the use, reproduction, security, and proper handling of collection materials.
  • Takes the lead in regularly and systematically compiling, analyzing, correcting, and sharing public services statistics in Aeon, an automated request and workflow management software.
  • Troubleshoots Reading Room equipment and refers problems to appropriate technology support.
  • Administers Spencer’s shared/general reference accounts and coordinates how queries are answered by library staff.
30% Provide Reference Services
  • Develops in-depth knowledge of the library’s collections.
  • Provides exceptional service to users in regular rotation in Spencer’s Reading Room.
    • Works individually with scholars, students, and other researchers through reference consultations.
    • Communicates, explains, and enforces library material use policies and procedures.
    • Assists library users with a range of information technology including computer workstations, scanners, laptops, microform readers, and associated software.
  • Answers remote reference queries submitted by mail, email, and phone.
20% Instruction Services
  • Actively contributes to the planning and development of undergraduate and K-12 instruction.
  • Actively participates in teaching undergraduate and K-12 library instruction sessions, both individually and with other colleagues within Spencer and the Libraries.
  • Leads tours for groups and individuals.
10% Administrative Support and Other Duties
  • Assists with special Public Services projects.
  • Attends and participates in appropriate reference/instruction and public services meetings.
  • Contributes content to the Spencer blog. May also develop content for other KU Libraries social media platforms and initiatives, e.g. Tumblr and Wikipedia.
  • Provides occasional support at the Spencer reception desk.
  • Assists with event planning, setup, and building maintenance.
  • May include service and committee work within KU Libraries.

Required Qualifications

  • BA degree.
  • Minimum of three years of library or related work experience.

  • Preferred Qualifications

  • Degree in history, the humanities, the social sciences, or a related field.
  • Work experience in an academic or research library.
  • Commitment to user-centered services.
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills.
  • Ability to establish and maintain working relationships with diverse patrons, staff members, faculty and administrators in an academic environment.
  • Knowledge of the use and proper handling of archives, manuscripts, rare books, and photographs.
  • Experience in teaching, library instruction, or technology training and knowledge of instructional theory, philosophy, and practice.
  • Strong analytical and problem solving skills.
  • Ability to work independently as well as part of a team.

  • Contact Information to Applicants

    Mike Broadwell

    Additional Candidate Instruction

    Application instructions:

    Applicants should attach a cover letter, resume/CV, and contact information for three professional references (including at least one previous or current supervisor) to this online application. Please use your cover letter to address how you meet the required and preferred qualifications.  An online application must be completed to be considered for this position.

    Apply by the deadline of Sunday, June 23rd, 2019 to be considered.

    Advertised Salary Range

    Starts at $41,299

    Application Review Begins


    Anticipated Start Date


    Work Location

    University of Kansas - Lawrence

    Employee Class

    U-Unclassified Professional Staff

    Work Schedule

    Monday- Friday, 8am-5pm

    Job Family

    Library Services-KUL


    The University of Kansas prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, national origin, age, ancestry, disability status as a veteran, sexual orientation, marital status, parental status, gender identity, gender expression, and genetic information in the university's programs and activities. Retaliation is also prohibited by university policy. The following persons have been designated to handle inquiries regarding the nondiscrimination policies and are the Title IX coordinators for their respective campuses: Executive Director of the Office of Institutional Opportunity & Access,, 1246 West Campus Road, Room 153A, Lawrence, KS 66045, 785-864-6414, 711 TTY 9for the Lawrence, Edwards, Parsons, Yoder, and Topeka campuses); Director, Equal Opportunity Office, Mail Stop 7004, 4330 Shawnee Mission Parkway, Fairway, KS 66205, 913-588-8011, 711 TTY (for the Wichita, Salina, and Kansas City, Kansas medical center campuses).

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