ATTITUDE OF STUDENTS TOWARDS THE USE OF LIBRARY FACILITIES: A CASE STUDY OF COLLEGE OF EDUCATION
BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
The academic libraries have been described as the “heart” of the learning community providing a place for students and faculty to conduct their research and advance their knowledge. In the education system, an academic library is the centre of academic life. A university library or any library attached to an institution of higher education exists to support the goal of its parent organization, since university libraries are an integral part of the higher education system, they should provide support services for the formal educational programs as well as for facilities for research and for generation of new knowledge. It is important of any information professional working in an academic or any other library to know the real needs of the user community. Understanding the needs of the target group will help to develop the diverse strategies that are appropriate to obtain effective results. Since the university library is committed to provide excellent resources and services, it has to develop an ongoing dialog with its user community. On the other hand academic libraries have to improve the quality of their service to survive in this volatile competitive environment. Therefore it is crucial to evaluate the library service from customer’s point of view at the same time order to set up user-centered service, the library needs to know the user and user needs. One of the main tools that can be used to evaluate and assess the library services is the user survey. It is impossible to assess the changing needs of the clientele unless user surveys are conducted to determine user needs and their reading interests.
A library, strives to play a leading role in the teaching, learning and research activities of its parents institution, it should be aggressively dynamics in the provision of its services and manned by personnel of the highest quality, who possess adequate background, appropriate professional training and experience and the proper orientation to meet the challenges of modern university academic, use expectation from any information system is to make available directly or remotely and in real time the needed information, formal notwithstanding, in the university environment the library a major information providing system support’s teaching learning and research with information materials of various types (Anunobi and Edoka 2010)
Most students finish their education without even visiting the libraries or using library resources. Though library is called the integral part of academic library it has not become fully an essential part of educational system and the learning process. Especially on the student of underunderundergraduate s level they generally start their searches with an encyclopedia rather than card catalog (Shrestha,1998)
Users have a distorted view of their knowledge of library skill. Realizing this malice situation it is necessary for students at all level to be given library-user education so that they won’t waste their valuable learning time and without assistant also student can make an effective use of library resources. The overall objective should be to make the student appreciate the value of information and to impart library skills and study skills (Prabha,1991).
Information sources are available in various forms such as journal as journal articles, research paper, books, magazines film and audio/video recording plus the data stored in computer as well as in compact disks. As a growth in literature its volume, variety and complexity has put severe constraints of the users search for their needed information. The complexity of electronic resources also led to the tedious search for every unsatisfactory search, which further discouraged the students in using library resources (Krishna, 1997).
In today’s scenario more students surf the Internet for information then going through the library resources, as it is less complicated and readily available. Still student who are regular uses of the library know that libraries have resources that are more comprehensive and scholarly then most web sites provide. Which also are not freely available or may not be online at all. Libraries of academic field do have subscription to e-journals that could give access to good articles in the needed studies but are not available through other search engines. For these whole mass of Gen X as they called them could be motivated towards using library resources which could be possible only by shifting the education system from teacher centered learning to student centered learning, from a subject based to knowledge based learning (Judith, 2005 ).