In order to ensure a quality user experience, it is important that the new questions and responses clients submit will work within the parameters of our AI model. Before creating new content, you should test your chatbot to see if already provides a response to the proposed question. If the chatbot answers the proposed question with content from the knowledge base, you can update the existing response rather than creating a new question from scratch. If the chatbot answers the proposed question with relevant suggestion boxes, you can select which question(s) you would like to update the response(s) for rather than creating a new question from scratch.


Best practices for editing existing responses:


Do not change or delete any office-clarifier variables when editing the responses of the following ten General Library questions. Office-clarifier variables trigger the chatbot to ask the user which office they are asking about before displaying the chosen office's information. Office-clarifier variables are identified by their use of curly brackets ( { ) and the prefix !{office}:

  1. Am I going to receive an email or do I wait to be helped?
  2. Can I make an appointment to speak with a counselor?
  3. How can I contact you?
  4. What are the office hours?
  5. What is your email?
  6. What is your fax number?
  7. What is your mailing address?
  8. What is your phone number?
  9. Where are you located?
  10. Who do I contact for questions?


Editing or removing one of these variables from a response will impact the functionality of that response for all other offices using the chatbot. A best practice is to have someone with Administrative-level permissions use Content Locking functionality to lock these questions to prevent these variables from being changed or deleted.


Best practices for writing new questions:


  • Think about the purpose and goal for the question.The AI model must be able to determine the intent of the question in order to provide the appropriate response. 

  • Write in question format and make sure it is a full sentence with both a noun and verb.

  • Make sure that the question is direct and concise. Avoid submitting questions that are too short and vague or questions that are too long and provide unnecessary information. 

  • Speak student; avoid using jargon, acronyms, and abbreviations by spelling out full names.

  • Avoid greetings or other pleasantries (examples: Hello, Hi, Good morning bot).

  • Avoid including your school name or the specific name of your portal.

  • Avoid specific campus locations, room names, and numbers.

  • Use staff member titles rather than specific names, since people change more often than positions: 

    • Example: use the title Financial Aid Director instead of the name of the Director

  • Combine program-specific questions into a more general question rather than submitting program-specific content:

    • Example: Instead of asking “Which campus is the police academy on?” And “Which campus is the Biology Lab on?” ask “How can I figure out where the classes for my program will be located?")

  • Make sure any questions you submit fall within your contract areas or are part of your out-of-library (OOL) limit. 


Best practices for writing new responses:


  • Make sure the response provides a clear and direct response to the question it is attached to.

  • Use existing variables when appropriate to reduce the need for upkeep later; remember you can also create your own variables.

  • Use hyperlinks to keep responses concise and evergreen. 

  • Avoid year-specific information if possible; try to write a response that will be relevant for a longer period of time so that the response will not need to be reviewed as often.

  • Avoid starting responses with “yes” or “no” since the question could be asked in many different ways and a yes/no response is not always appropriate.