Reference and Information Services

An Introduction, 6th Edition

by Melissa A. Wong and Laura Saunders, Editors


This new edition of the classic text Reference and Information Services has been thoroughly updated to reflect current information in the field.

Print Flyer
Cover image for Reference and Information Services

April 2020

Libraries Unlimited

Pages 744
Volumes 1
Size 7x10
Topics Reference and Information Services and Tools/Reference and Information Services
  Acquisitions and Collection Management/Collection Development, Theory and Practice
  • Forthcoming!




    Add to Cart
  • Paperback



    Add to Cart
  • eBook


    eBook Available from ABC-CLIO
    Email ABC-CLIO
    Call Your Preferred eBook Vendor for Pricing

  • International Pricing

    Hardcover: £70.00/75,00€/A$116.00

    Paperback: £58.00/63,00€/A$97.00

This revised and updated sixth edition of Reference and Information Services continues the book's rich tradition, covering all phases of reference and information services with less emphasis on print and more emphasis on strategies and scenarios.

Reference and Information Services is the go-to textbook for MSLIS and i-School courses on reference services and related topics. It is also a helpful handbook for practitioners. Authors include LIS faculty and professionals who have relevant degrees in their areas and who have published extensively on their topics.

The first half of the book provides an overview of reference services and techniques for service provision, including the reference interview, ethics, instruction, reader's advisory, instruction, and services to diverse populations including children. This part of the book establishes a foundation of knowledge on reference service and frames each topic with ethical and social justice perspectives.

The second part of the book offers an overview of the information life cycle and dissemination of information, followed by an in-depth examination of information sources by type—including dictionaries, encyclopedias, indexes, and abstracts—as well as by broad subject areas including government, statistics and data, health, and legal information. This second section introduces the tools and resources that reference professionals use to provide the services described in the first half of the text.


  • Reference and Information Services is a recognized textbook for information retrieval courses and updates the previous edition
  • Editors and contributors are experts in the field
  • Activity boxes engage readers and invite them to reflect on what they are learning and practice skills through real-life exercises
  • Conscious integration of critical theory and social justice perspectives offers critical reflection on the standards and practices of the field and encourages readers to consider alternate perspectives
Author Info

Laura Saunders is an associate professor at Simmons University School of Library and Information Science, teaching in the areas of reference, instruction, and academic libraries. Prior to earning her PhD, she worked as an academic reference librarian and in circulation at a public library. She earned her master's of library and information science and her PhD at Simmons University.

Melissa A. Wong has been an online instructor for the University of Illinois since 2001, teaching courses in reference, instruction, management, and academic librarianship. Previously, she worked as an academic librarian for 14 years, including six years at the University of Southern California and eight years as library director at Marymount College Palos Verdes. She earned her master's degree in library science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Other Titles of Interest

Librarian's Guide to Online Searching cover imageThe Reference Librarian's Bible cover imageResearch Methods for Librarians and Educators cover image
Crash Course in Contemporary Reference cover imageReference and Instructional Services for Information Literacy Skills in School Libraries, 3rd Edition cover imageRethinking Collection Development and Management cover image

Product Search

Product Search

Publication Year



Need Help? Try our Search Tips