Overheard at the Reference Desk . . .

Benning/Dorothy I. Height Library

Overheard at the Reference Desk . . .

Online Occupation Test Prep

Occupational Test PreparationHeading out of the library, a customer complains to her companion. "I can't find the book I need here," she says. "I'm going to order the book from Amazon.com. I hope it gets here on time!"

I catch her before she passes the reference desk. "What were you looking for?" I ask.

"I'm about to take my cosmetology exam and I need help in the nail technician section," she replies. "Y'all don't have what I'm looking for."

I invited the ladies over to the desk and showed them how to get to the library's website, dclibrary.org. I clicked on the Research tab and followed the link to the library databases. Under Career, Education and Vocation, I introduced the customer to the Testing & Education Reference Center (Just enter your library card number to access).

The online service, provided by the DC Public Library, helps customers “prepare for tests, plan for higher education, explore career paths, build a résumé and find job interview tools and tips.” In the cosmetology test preparation section, there was a section on nail technology. The customer was delighted to find an online version of the workbook she was prepared to purchase.

In addition to the Testing & Education Reference Center, test prep services are available in the Learning Express Library. This online service “offers practice tests and courses designed to help students and adult learners improve skills and pass academic and licensing tests.” Education levels are from fourth grade to college. Prepare for the G.E.D., S.A.T., ASVAB and more.

Both services are free and accessible with a valid D.C. Public Library Card.