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Reference & Instruction Services

A logo for RISci with the words Teach, Explain, and Connect. A books opens to show it contains a person scaling a mountain with trees surround it and the sun rising behind.

Join the RISci Mailing List!

ArLARISD - the official mailing list of this community of interest. To get more information and to sign up go to

Mission & Responsibilities

To provide a forum for issues related to reference and instruction across various types of libraries in Arkansas.


Chelsea Young, 2024 Chair
Instruction and Engagement Librarian
University of Arkansas Little Rock

Who Should Join?

If you find yourself in a library type setting, answering questions, and/or teaching people, WE ARE YOUR COMMUNITY OF INTEREST.  

RISci Lunch & Learns (held virtually)

Teach. Explain. Connect. Lunch and Learns are all about sharing and connecting. Typically held one Friday a month over a lunch hour, these programs provide a place to discuss relevant topics in reference and instruction for our community. 

Do you have something you want to share with your fellow community members? A new tool, a method, an issue you don’t see being addressed in our community. Please get in touch and let’s talk about creating a Lunch and Learn on the topic. See below for past topics. We encourage teaming up with other community of interests on topics. 


Visit the ArLA Event Calendar to see this year’s Lunch & Learn events.

Hit Ctrl + F and search “RISCI.”


    • Per my last email: Writing emails people will read
    • Curriculum Mapping Information Literacy for Academic Librarians (Co-hosted with CULAR)
    • Creating Video Tutorials for Your Library
    • Student Retention in Higher Education
    • Emotional Intelligence for Librarians

    • Professional development opportunities through the State Library

    • User-centered and web-accessible research guides (Co-hosted with MArLA)

    • Empowering Libraries with ChatGPT

    • Using Cold Cases and Taboo to Develop Research Skills

    • Reference Stories that Spark Change

    • Librarian Job Satisfaction - What's your temperature?


    • Teaching with Tech (Co-hosted with CULAR)
    • Proactive Reference: When Users Don't Know What They Need to Know
    • You Are Not Alone. Getting MELLW with RISci (Co-hosted with MELLW)
    • Workshop Warm Up: Energize the Audience for Increased Engagement
    • Living with a Mental Illness as a Library Worker
    • 3D Printing & Makerspaces
    • Misinformation
    • UX @ Your Library
    • Continuing Education with the Arkansas State Library


    • Virtual Cookie Exchange & Vision Boarding
    • The U.S. Census Bureau @ Your Library
    • Creating Inclusion
    • Game On! Using Games & Gaming in Instruction
    • Weeding - The Prickly, Sticky and Stinky
    • Professional Development & Training Share-A-Thon
    • When is enough ENOUGH?
    • What’s on your reference & instruction mind?

    Reference Exchange Day 

    The Reference Exchange Day is an annual half-day learning event to explore a topic(s) in more depth than our standard Lunch & Learns.  

    2023 - Video Tutorials, Patron Retention & Emotional Intelligence

    2022 - Neurodiversity & Neurodivergence in the Library

    2021 - Do the right thing: Serve your patrons without abandoning your principles

    Previous Division Chairs

    2023 - Jessica Kirk

    2022 - Shawna Thorup
    2021 - Shawna Thorup
    2020 - Allie Stevens
    2019 - Allie Stevens
    2018 - Rachel Whittingham
    2017 - Jessica Riedmueller
    2016 – Pamela Meridith
    2015 – Pamela Meridith
    2014 – Pamela Meridith
    2013 – Michael Strickland
    2012 – Michael Strickland
    2011 – Amber Wilson
    2010 – Amber Wilson
    2009 – Kathy Davis
    2008 – Ronald S. Russ
    2007 – Jennifer Davis
    2006 – Dominique Hallett
    2005 – Laura Downing
    2004 – Jan Dixon
    2003 – Don Batson
    2002 – Don Batson
    2001 – Necia Parker-Gibson
    2000 – Necia Parker-Gibson
    1999 – Renee LeBeau-Ford

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