TABLE OF CONTENTS
Title page – – – – – – – i
Approval page – – – – – – ii
Certification page – – – – – – iii
Dedication – – – – – – – iv
Acknowledgement – – – – – – v
Table of contents – – – – – – vi
List of tables – – – – – – – ix
Abstract – – – – – – – x
CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION
Background to the Study – – – – – 1
Statement of the Problem – – – – – 7
Purpose of the Study – – – – – – 8
Research Questions – – – – – – 9
Significance of the Study – – – – – 9
Scope of the Study – – – – – – 10
CHAPTER TWO: LITERATURE REVIEW
Conceptual Framework – – – – – 12
Selection of Serials in the university Libraries – 20
Acquisition of Serials in the university Libraries – 21
Organization of Serials in the university Libraries – – 23
Computerization and automation of Serials in the university Libraries – 27
Preservation of Serials in the university Libraries – 31
Problems Encountered in Serials Management in the university Libraries – 33
Strategies for improving Serials Management in the university Libraries – 36
Theoretical Framework – – – – – 39
The Bureaucratic Theory – – – – 39
The Systems Approach (Theory) of Management – 40
Review of Related Empirical Studies – – – 42
Summary of Literature Review – – – – 46
CHAPTER THREE: RESEARCH METHOD
Research Design – – – – – 47
Area of the Study – – – – – – – 47
Population of the Study – – – – – – 48
Sample and Sampling Technique – – – – – 48
Instruments for Data Collection – – – – – 48
Validation of the Instruments – – – – – 49
Method of Data Collection – – – – – 49
Method of Data Analysis – – – – – 50
CHAPTER FOUR: RESULTS
Summary of Major Findings – – – – – 66
CHAPTER FIVE: DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSION
Discussion of Findings – – – – – – 68
Selection of serials in the university libraries – – 68
Acquisition of serials in the university libraries – – 69
Organization of serials in the university libraries – – – 69
Computerization and automation of serials in the university libraries – – 70
Preservation of serials in the university libraries – – 70
Problems encountered in serials management in the university libraries – – 71
Strategies for improving serials management in the university libraries – – 71
Implication of the Study – – – – – 72
Recommendations – – – – – – 74
Limitations of the study – – – – – 75
Suggestions for further research – – – – – 75
Conclusion – – – – – – 75
References – – – – – – – 77
APPENDIX I: A distribution table showing the population of category of library staff in the institutions under study – – – 83
APPENDIX II: Serials management in three university libraries in Benue state (SMULQ) 84
APPENDIX III: Serials management observation checklist – – 89
APENDIXIV:Serials management observation checklist – – 90
LIST OF TABLES
Table 1: Distribution of questionnaire in the three university libraries in Benue state 51
Table 2 shows mean responses of library staff on criteria for selecting serials in the three university libraries in Benue state – – 52
Table 3 shows percentage responses of staff on the methods for acquiring serials in the university libraries – – – – 54
Table 4 Presents mean responses of library staff on how serials are organized in the university libraries – – – 55
Table 5 presents staff responses on the extent of computerization of serials management in the university libraries 57
Table 6 shows library staff mean responses on the methods of preservation of serials in the university libraries – – – – – 58
Table7 presents library staff mean responses on the problems encountered in serials management in the university libraries – – – 60
Table 8 presents library staff mean responses on the strategies for improving serials management in the university libraries 62
Table 9 Presents Serials management
observation checklist in three university libraries 64
examined serials management in three university libraries in Benue state. Seven
(7) research questions guided the study. The study sought to identify criteria
for selection of serials and acquisition of serials, examine how serial
collections are organized and the extent of computerization of serials
management. It also sought to determine methods of preservation of serial
titles, the problem encountered in serials management as well as strategies for
improving serials management in the university libraries. Descriptive survey
design was employed for the study and total population of 180 library staff
were all used. The instruments used for data collection were questionnaire,
interview and observation checklist. The questionnaire had sixty (60) items
while observation checklist forty-one (41) items, and face validation of the
instruments were done by two lecturers in the Department of Library and
Information science, University of Nigeria Nsukka, including the research
supervisor. The researcher employed two trained assistants who assisted him in
the collection of data. About 136 questionnaires were returned out of the 180
questionnaires distributed. Descriptive statistics including frequency tables,
percentages, and mean (x) were used to answer the research questions. It was
revealed from the study that, the university libraries consider relevance to
the curricula of the university, currency, readability, quality of their
production and authority in selecting their serials. It also revealed that,
they acquired their serials by purchase, gifts/donations and exchange with other
libraries and organizations. It also revealed that, they organized their
serials through proper cataloguing in line with AACR2 and classified using
standard classification scheme. They also computerized their serials processes
to some extent and make their serials accessible to users to a certain level.
The university libraries preserved their serials accordingly for future use.
Problems like funding, erratic power supply, escalating prices of serials,
failure of serials subscribed to arrive, introduction of ‘M’ form by the
government and foreign exchange, etc are some of the problems affecting serials
management in the university libraries in Benue state Provision of a stand-by
generator to alleviate the problem of erratic power supply, computerization of
all serials processes, formulation of serials acquisition policy, weeding of
serials over a given period to enhance effective serials management among
others were suggested as strategies for improving serials management in the university
Background to the Study
University libraries are integral parts of educational institutions, especially at the tertiary level. They are established and managed by the institutions in which they are situated. As a result, they are saddled with the critical role of providing their community of users with the current and up-to-date information resources to enable them carry out their teaching, learning and research activities. According to Ogunniyi etal..(2011) a well stocked and organized library is the pride of any educational institution which will definitely help in meeting its teaching, learning and research needs. Therefore, this could be best achieved with the proper management of serial materials which usually contain such information.
Serials management in academic libraries is very vital due to the role serials play in research and study activities. They are usually current and up-to-date with information which students, teaching staff, researchers and other scholars need in carrying out their studies and researches. Despite the importance of serials to university libraries, it has been observed that university libraries do not manage their serials very well, and it is a known fact that improper management of serials lead to limited access to serials in the university libraries. However, this problem will be addressed only when serials management is properly carried out by the library managers through proper selection and acquisition of serials, their organization, preservation and so on.
University libraries are charged with the responsibility of selecting, acquiring, organizing, preserving and disseminating information resources to the university community to help meet the basic objective of learning and research activities. Such information resources include books, serials, audio-visual materials etc. Serials therefore are publications issued in successive parts, usually numbered and are appearing at regular or irregular intervals and are intended to continue indefinitely.
According to Anglo-American Cataloguing Rules (2002), Serial material is a publication, in printed form or not, issued in successive parts, usually having numerical or chronological designations and intended to be continued indefinitely. They include periodicals, newspapers, annuals, (report, yearbooks, directories and so on) journals, memoirs, proceedings, transactions of societies and monographic series. This definition do not includes works produced in parts for a period predetermined as definite.
Similarly but more comprehensively, Reitz (2005:648) defined serials as “a publication in any medium issued under the same title in a succession of discrete parts usually numbered (or dated) and appearing at regular or irregular intervals with no predetermined conclusion.” In the same vein, Ode and Omokoro (2007:136) stressed that, “serials are publications issued in consecutive parts at regular and irregular intervals and intended to continue indefinitely.” More so, Audio (2006) stated that, serials are publications in a medium, issued in successive parts, carrying numerical or chronological designation and intended to be continued indefinitely. In the words of Aina (2004:76), “Serial is a distinctive title which is issued in parts, and each issue is published independently. It is expected to be published indefinitely. It includes periodicals, journals, newsletters, newspapers and magazines, etc.”
Serials usually contain current and latest information in which students, teaching staff and researchers need in carrying out their studies and research activities. According to Ogunrombi (1997), “serial publications form the backbone of any academic library because of their nature of information value.” In the same vein, Alokun (2003) stated the importance of serials that:
- Serials carry the latest information.
- They (research journals) carry first hand information on new ideas or discoveries.
- Sometimes information in a serial journal, may not appear in books for many years or perhaps not at all.
However, management is the process of working with people and resources to accomplish organizational goals. Adesina (1990) defined management as the organization and mobilization of all human and material resources in a particular system for achievement of identified objectives in the system, while Nwachukwu (1988:4) defined management as “the co-ordination of all the resources of an organization through the process of planning, organizing, directing, and controlling in order to attain organizational objectives.” In the words of Nickels etal..(2002) Management is the process used to accomplish organizational goals through planning, organizing, leading, and controlling people and other organizational resources. To this end, academic library being an organization which manages human and material resources including serials has to effectively and efficiently carry out the managerial activities.
However, managing serials is as distinct from managing other library materials. They posed a lot of challenges. For instances, selection of serials entails one to make use of serials’ section tools such as Ulrich international periodical directory, publishers’ catalogue etc. These tools help the selector knows the current serials available, they also enable him/her knows their frequency of publication as well as their format, prices etc. It is only when the selector is aware of the above information that he/she will be able to select serials effectively.
More so, acquisition of serials is another issue, hence most of the serials we acquired are foreign journals. Libraries spend many funds for acquisition of few foreign journals. Local journals too are good to acquire and libraries patronize them as well, but the problem with them is that some of them do not have long life span and seize to exist at any time. Another issue is that of organization of serials. Serials are very difficult to organize owing to their nature. They are not easy to mange on the shelves like books. Cataloguing and classification of serials too is difficult. It is as a result of the involving tasks of serials that some libraries neither catalogue nor classify their serials.
Computerization of serials is another project that need huge amount of money. As such, many libraries find it uneasy to computerize their serials due to lack of funds. Another way of managing serials is that of preservation. But preservation of serials too is tasking and involving, hence serials are continuously coming to the libraries on subscription basis. Libraries therefore are compelled to establish bindery section that will enable them bind their serials so as to enhance effective serials management.
Serials management is the act facilitating access to up-to-date information about the range, scope and location of materials within the serials collection. This covers the importance of clear and consistent cataloguing and classification practice, including ongoing catalogue record maintenance and updating. It also facilitates access to current and back issue of serials held in the collection – in other words ensuring the efficiency of processes and arrangements for check-in, shelving and tidying. Serials management exploits the collection by alerting users to the range of serial acquisitions, and by assisting users seeking information. Methods of exploitation include the organization and maintenance of displays of serial materials, current awareness services (CAS) and Selective dissemination of information (SDI) services; and answering user enquiries.
Furthermore, to manage serials entail to supervise serials personnel and oversee the processes by which serial materials are acquired, to ensure an effective and efficient service to library users. This entails the application of such management techniques as the setting of objectives, staff training appraisal and motivation. More so, serials management could be carried out in terms of its selection and acquisition, recording, organizing such as (cataloguing and classification), current awareness services (CAS), automation services, preservation and its security.
To Woodward (1998) management of serials collection in libraries requires an understanding of the nature of collection. He explained that, the role of serials management in academic libraries is to ensure that the serial collection is and remains relevant to the needs of the user community. Serials management is intended to ensure prompt and uninterrupted receipt of serial issues by careful budgeting, regular updating and maintenance of financial control systems, timely payment of invoices, claiming parts not received and close liaison with suppliers. He further stressed that serials management involves conserving and preserving materials within the collection as appropriate by binding and other conversations procedures. Agbaje (2002) stated that, the stages of serials management by organization include selection, order placement, delivery, processing, storage and retrieval of serials. He further stressed that serials management comprises all activities needed to facilitate and implement efficient and effective transfer from information to the potential user and thereby fulfills the aims and objective of the library. According to the Encyclopedia of Library and Information Science, the consolidation of orders with one vendor makes serials management easier, because of the combined, streamlined efforts made by the vendor on behalf of the customer with the publishers. It is through this means that, the issue of serials management which is the focus of this study will be solved.
However, the current situation of serials in the three university libraries under study is not effectively and efficiently managed. It is on this note that the researcher embarks on the present study so as to come out with possible strategies that will enhance effective serials management, if adopted by the three university libraries under study.
In the university system, the important of serials management is necessary to all the university libraries to enable the academic community access and make use of serial materials and be kept abreast of new developments and happenings. Universities being institutions of higher learning which admit students of various classes of degrees, employ teaching staff, and accommodate researchers as well as all kinds of scholars, need to properly manage their serial materials. These categories of people found in the university system always need current and up-to-date information which will help them involve in extensive research activities so as to promote education, economic and social development of the nation.
To achieve this, the need for proper serials management comes into play. Therefore, to accomplish this task, library managers in-charge of serials management have to play their effective role of serials management to enable the university community benefit from the information contain in serial materials. Serial materials usually contain current and new information that comes out frequently, sometimes daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, bi-annually and annually so as to cope with the challenge of information needs. As such, students, teaching staff and other researchers find serial materials as valuable sources of information which usually solve their current information needs. Therefore, for people in the academic community to be able to access and read relevant journals, there is need for proper management of serials. This is because if serials are not given the deserved management attention in the academic libraries, this will go a long way to affect those in the academic community who always need them for their teaching, learning and research activities. Some studies had been carried on serials management, but much of the available literature concentrate on other parts of the country. It is against this backdrop that the researcher had the initiative to undertake this study. The current study seeks to examine how the serial materials acquired in the three university libraries are managed.
This study seeks to examine serials management in three university libraries in Benue state. The university libraries are: Federal University of Agriculture library, Makurdi (FUALM), Benue State University library, Makurdi (BSULM) and University of Mkar library, Mkar (UMLM) in Gboko(Private). These university libraries were established at different times, and are all aimed at providing the educational needs of their students and other researchers. The libraries were established alongside their parent institutions. The Federal University of Agriculture Makurdi was established by the Federal Government of Nigeria in 1988. The mandate of the University is for the scientific transformation of agriculture and the provision of services needed to raise the quality life of the rural dwellers. The university library has sitting capacity of over 3000 students. It currently contain over 15, 000 volumes of books and over 7000 serials in various fields including newspapers. The university is situated at the out skirts of Makurdi town off Lafia road. (University of Agriculture Makurdi postgraduate school prospectus, 2010-2012)
Benue State University was established in 1992 as a result of culmination of decades of sustained efforts by successive administrations to address an educational imbalance (Sorkaa,2002). According to Benue State University News bulletin, (April 22-24, 2010), the university has eight faculties, thirty-three departments, in addition to a postgraduate school. The university library has sitting capacity of over 2000 students and contain over 10, 000 volumes of books and over 5000volumes of serials in different areas as well as national and state newspapers. The university is located in Makurdi along Gboko road.
University of Mkar on the other hand is a private Christian institution established by the Church of Christ among the Tiv (NKST) to make a mark in the educational landscape of the nation in 2005. It is a model university that is technologically driven up. It has strong passion for academic excellence; the university emphasizes God words and good moral character development. The centre for continuing education offers postgraduate diplomas in education and management. The university library has sitting capacity of over 1000 students. It currently contains over 5000 volumes of books and a good number of journals and newspapers. (University of Mkar; the vision booklet 2006:3).