Model Reference Behaviors

Welcoming behaviors and approachability

Patrons are often reluctant to ask questions. Your job as a reference librarian is to encourage their questions by using welcoming behaviors and by being approachable. Being approachable encourages questions from patrons.

Some Behaviors for Encouraging Questions


Maintain natural eye contact
(Be aware of cultural sensitivities)


Give a friendly greeting
Use a relaxed, upbeat tone of voice


Be at patron's eye level
Keep a relaxed, open body posture
Have an interested facial expression
Lean forward slightly (if sitting)
Walk around the library -- Slowly!
Let people know your name
Provide an appropriate setting
Maintain privacy
Eliminate physical barriers
Reduce desk clutter
Lower distracting noise levels

Go to Paraphrasing.

Back to Model Reference Behaviors Checklist.

Back to Table of Contents.

Back to MORE Manual Home Page.

This page was last updated on November 24, 2003.