TABLE OF CONTENTS
Title Page i
Approval page iii
Table of Contents vi
List of Tables viii
CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION 1
Background of the Study 1
Statement of the Problem 10
Purpose of the Study 12
Research Questions 12
Significance of the Study 13
Scope of the Study 14
CHAPTER TWO: LITERATURE REVIEW 15
Conceptual Framework 15
Collection Development in university libraries 15
Concept of Electronic Collection Development in University Libraries 16
Electronic Collection Development Practices in University Libraries 21
Methods Employed in Electronic Collection Development in University Libraries 25
Resources Employed in Electronic Collection Development in Libraries 28
Problems/Impediments in Electronic Collection Development in Libraries 31
Strategies for Enhancing Electronic Collection Development in Libraries 33
Review of Related Empirical Studies 37
Summary of the Literature Review 49
CHAPTER THREE: RESEARCH METHOD 50
Design of the Study 50
Area of the Study 50
Population of the Study 50
Sample Size and Sampling Techniques 51
Instruments for Data Collection 51
Validation of the Instruments 52
Method of Data Collection 53
Method of Data Analysis 53
CHAPTER FOUR: RESULT 54
CHAPTER FIVE: DISCUSSION, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATION
Discussion of the findings 67
Implications of the Study 77
Limitations of the Study 79
Suggestions for further Research 80
Appendix 1 95
Appendix 2 96
Appendix 3 105
Appendix 4 107
LIST OF TABLES
Table 1: Distribution and percentage return rate of questionnaire in respect of the three studied university libraries. 54
Table 2: Mean responses of respondents in the libraries on the state of ECD 56
Table 3: Mean responses of respondents in the libraries on methods that have been put in place for effective ECD 57
Table 4: Mean responses of respondents in the libraries on the appropriate methods that will facilitate ECD 58
Table 5: Mean responses of respondents in the libraries on resources required for enhancing ECD 59
Table 6: Mean responses of respondents in the libraries on factors that militate against ECD 61
Table 7a: Mean responses of respondents in the libraries on strategies for enhancing ECD 62
Table 7b: Mean
responses of respondents in the libraries on the participatory role of library
staff for effective ECD 63
study investigated the strategies for enhancing Electronic Collection
Development (ECD) in selected university libraries in Southeast Nigeria. Seven
research questions were raised to guide the study. The study design was
descriptive survey. The study population comprised of all professional
librarians and paraprofessionals in the three studied university libraries. The
total population size of the professionals and paraprofessionals in the three
university libraries stood at two hundred and eight (208). The instruments used
for data collection were questionnaire, observation check list and interview
schedule. Data collected for the study were analyzed based on each research
question, using frequency count, percentage, and mean. The result of the study revealed
that the professional and paraprofessional respondents from the three studied
university libraries identified various methods that their respective libraries
have been able to put in place for effective ECD including use of Internet,
World Wide Web (WWW), provision of good Internet facilities etc. Among the
appropriate methods that will help in facilitating ECD in Nigerian university
libraries as identified by the professional and paraprofessional respondents
(library staff) from the three studied university libraries include provision of good Internet
facilities, World Wide Web (WWW), use of Internet and subscribing to electronic
resources. Important resources for
enhancing ECD in Nigerian university libraries were also identified by the
professionals and paraprofessionals from the three studied university libraries
to include: Internet, 24 hours Internet access, electronic books, Online Public
Access Catalogue (OPAC), electronic journals, indexing and abstracting database
and stand alone computers. The result
showed major militating factors of ECD in the three university libraries
including inadequate funding, automation at infancy level, epileptic power
supply, lack of technical knowhow, lack of higher bandwidth in Internet
connectivity and lack of sound administrative policies and guidelines. The
major strategic measures that the library managements should employ to enhance
ECD include computerization/full automation of the university libraries,
provision of improved funds, constant evaluation of automation facilities,
adequate systems upgrade, constant electricity power supply, provision of skill
manpower and training of librarians and paraprofessionals in the use of modern
Background of the Study
University libraries are libraries that are owned and funded by universities to take care of the information needs of the university community. These libraries strive to provide quality services to support education, learning, and research needs of different levels of the academic community. University library is considered to be an organ around which all academic activities revolve (Kavitha, 2009). University libraries are positioning themselves to be the learning and research centres of universities. They are sometimes known as the “learning building” and are constantly asked to examine what value they add to student learning outcome (Chaudhry, 2002). University libraries provide quality information service and knowledge products (print and electronic) to resident community of scholars. Important activities of university libraries include the following: Collection Development, Reference Service, Circulation, Document Delivery, User Education, and Access to Electronic Resources etc. Obviously, university libraries are expected to provide cost effective and reliable access to information, using the state-of-the art information technology tools.
The objectives of a university library include
- Conservation of knowledge amassed from times immemorial.
- Dissemination of such knowledge through teaching and publication.
- Extension of the bounds of knowledge through research work by teachers and other research workers.
- Helping the teachers and the students to achieve the highest academic honours and a lifetime of good reading.
A university library is no longer a part of an ivory tower; it is a potential service oriented institution, accountable for every aspect of its performances (Ameen and Haider, 2007). The fundamental role of the university library is education. University libraries should not be operated as mere storehouse of books attached to reading room, but as dynamic instruments of education.
Every university library in any academic community aims to provide the teaming population with a variety of information services, especially in this age of Information and Communication Technology. The popularity of any university library will always depend on the extent to which satisfactory of optimum library services are being provided to the readers or library clientele. University library services can be grouped into two-technical services and reader services (Vohra, 2003).
Technical services are also known as work behind the scene. In order words, technical services are the preparation for providing better reader services, which include acquisition of materials, cataloguing, classifications, binding, weeding out of reading materials etc. On the other hand, reader services include circulation work, reference services, bibliographic services, information services, etc where the Staff is in direct contact with the reader in providing library and information services. A university library also provides the following minimum services: lending services, bibliography instruction and library orientation, provision of general and specific information assistance in the location, searching of documents or bibliographies, preparation of abstracting and indexing services, reservation of documents, interlibrary loan, holding or library exhibition, including display of new additions, current awareness service, reprographic services, and translation services.
The university library also offers various services required by its researchers, right from concepts and analysis of the topic stage of research to the report writing stage. Examples include the following:
- Bibliographical services (compilation of subject bibliographies relevant to the research topic).
- Literature search service (either manual or on-line service from various data bases depending on the availability of the facilities.
- Current awareness services aimed to keep researchers up to date with current advances in the subject field of the researchers, by providing monthly list of articles or contents pages of journals recently received, new accessions lists, in house abstracting and indexing services.
- Document delivery services (involve the delivering of the physical document to the user, either from the library collection or from other sources).
- Reference and information services (Provision of specific pieces of information and also long-range reference services by searching for current and retrospective literature).
- Translation services (aims at obtaining the required translation copies of the foreign language documents from the translation pools or translation banks).
- Referral services (a method of service to the scholars/students by directing them to the most likely institutions, universities, libraries, or individuals who possess the information/documents when they are not in stock of one’s institution library and cannot be obtained by interlibrary loan (ILL).
University libraries are established to take care of the information needs of students, lecturers, researchers, and other scholars. These libraries strive to provide quality information service and knowledge products (print and electronic) to resident community of scholars (Yacob Haliso, 2011). For timely and faster information provision to library users, librarians in university libraries have resorted to the use of information and communication technologies (ICTs).
Collection building is a vital process in creating and building of a library collection to serve study, teaching, research, recreational, and other needs of library users (Sanchez et al., 2006). Collection development is the process of evaluating what is published and making purchasing recommendations based on these evaluations (Carrie, 2012). Librarians try to identify the best resources or materials for their libraries, based on the mission of their university libraries and the needs of their users (Carrie). Originally based on printed items, this process has evolved to include audio and printed digital items. Library collection development as one of the library services, is the process of meeting the information needs of the people (a service population) in a timely and economical manner using information resources locally held, as well as from other organizations (Evans, 2000).
Librarians/library staff develop collections by buying or otherwise acquiring materials over a period, based on assessment of the information needs of the library’s users. In addition to ongoing materials acquisition, library collection development, according to Evans, includes the following:
- The creation of policies to guide material selection.
- Replacement of worn or lost materials.
- Removal (weeding) of materials no longer needed in the collection.
- Planning for new collections or collection areas.
- Cooperative decision-making with other libraries or within library consortia-group of libraries that have common interest to work together.
Collection and dissemination of information is the most important function of a university library. The importance and success of library collection lies in the satisfaction of user’s information needs. It is very important to note that educational reading in a formal sense is the concern of academic, special and technical libraries. Such libraries should have a varied collection so that they are able to fulfil these needs (Kivitha, 2009). In universities and other institutions of higher learning, provision of syllabi study and research material is another reason for library collection development. Provision of information material for cultural and recreation reading is an important aspect of library collection development (Parekh, 2003). Above all, library collection development is the pool of achievements of the past preserved for the benefit of the present and future generations.
Library collection development being the collection of different types of library materials, keeping in view the changing requirements of the users, has three methods of execution.
- Making collection development policy decisions. Usually the policy decisions are made at the highest level of the university library (senate library committee or library management committee).
- Selection of library resources and acquisition of materials. Here, Division and Departmental heads are involved in decision making.
- The process, by which the library acquires various materials, makes or implements selection decisions and collection development plan. Here, the librarian is fully involved.
Collection development within a university library environment demonstrates a wide variety of development patterns (Madeleine and Stephen, 2003). University libraries exist to support teaching, research, and public service programmes of the university. In any university library, a written collection development policy is an important tool for guiding all activities related to planning, building, selecting and acquiring library materials (Magrill and Hickey, 1984). It is one of the first pieces of evidence in determining whether a library is engaged in true collection development. University libraries are becoming increasingly aware of the benefits of having a strong and constantly updated written collection development policy (Bostic, 1988). Collection development policies provide guidelines in the selection of materials and the allocation of funds. A written policy provides the rationale for the selection of individual items and ensures consistency and balance in the growth of collections.
Ordinarily, the term “collection” denotes the holdings of materials. From library perspective, collection means the holding of several types of documents in a library (Vohra, 2003). There are various forms of library collections. Such collections include
- Serial collections (Periodicals, journals, magazines, newspapers etc).
- Reference collections (annual reviews, conference proceedings, pamphlets, standards, specifications, patents, trade literature, maps, atlases, globes etc.).
- Special collections (Africana books, United Nations Organization books-UNO books, Government documents, theses, dissertations, research reports etc.).
- Audiovisual (AV) collections (Photographs, illustrations, paintings, microfilms, microfiches, slides, audio cassettes etc.).
- Electronic collections (E-collections) (electronic books, electronic journals, Online Public Access Catalogue-OPAC etc.).
- Grey literature (informally published written material, such as reports). Examples of grey literature include: patents, technical reports from government agencies or scientific research groups, working papers from research groups or committees, white papers, and preprints.
Professionals (librarians) who work in the modern day libraries need continuous grooming or training in other to acquire core competencies and new skills that will make them not to be obsolete in this fast changing environment (Singh and Pinki, 2004). As a result of this, they (librarians) need to shift their attention from traditional library activities of collecting, processing, storing and accessing information, to offer or deliver customer-centred automated information services; generated by using online/offline databases, e-resources, e-journals, networks, consortia, etc. In electronic or digital library collection development, librarians tend to make digitization recommendations rather than purchasing recommendations. They (librarians) do not evaluate what has been published, but rather evaluate what is within their collection that is most valuable and unique to users. To achieve this goal, librarians must be aware of the digital resources provided by other libraries or organizations. With the advantage of the Open Archival Initiative’s Protocol for Metadata Harvesting (OAI-PMH), resources in digital libraries are easily shared between libraries and or organizations. Librarians should ensure that their proposed collection will contribute not only to their own library’s needs but to the collective resources available (Carrie, 2012).
Application of digital technology in libraries has led to high-level efficiency in transmission, communication, and storage of information. The acquisition, processing, storage, and dissemination of vocal, pictorial, textual, graphic, and numeric information by microelectronic based combination of computing and telecommunication is referred to as information Technology (IT) (Parekh, 2003). Libraries have been significantly transformed with the advent of Internet and the ability to provide resources to the people who may never visit a physical building, but use resources intensively in their own homes or work places (Manish, 2003). Academic libraries are changing dramatically by adopting new means of technology in all activities of print to electronic environment (e-environment).
Electronic collection development cannot be separated from knowledge production and dissemination in university libraries. The university libraries as well as faculties and departments are involved in research (which deals with how knowledge is generated), teaching, and learning (the arts of imparting and disseminating knowledge to the larger society (Nkoyo et al., 2011). The principal asset of university libraries/public libraries is knowledge. Every university authority invests so much in knowledge management. All over the world, knowledge management has been recognized as a key factor in organizational (library) success (Sarrafzadeh et al., 2010). The ultimate aim of knowledge management (KM) is to increase the effectiveness, and sustainability of growth of a library or an organization. Shanhong (2000), clearly showed that knowledge management will always help in sharing of knowledge within and outside the university library, which will ultimately lead the university in not only realizing but achieving its goal in the end. Based on the conventional functions of a library (university library)-collection, processing, storage, and retrieval, and dissemination of information; the library (university library) has become a treasure house of human knowledge in the emerging information age.
Rapid developments in the field of Information and Communication Technology have brought about the concepts of hybrid library and digital library (Omer, 2004). Hybrid library is a term used by librarians to describe libraries containing a mixture of traditional print library resources and the growing number of electronic resources (Chris Rusbridge, 1998). The traditional print materials range from books, pamphlets, magazines etc while electronic resources in hybrid library include downloadable audio books, electronic journals, electronic books etc. A digital library is an assemblage of digital computing, storage, and communication machinery, together with the content and software needed to reproduce, emulate and extend the services provided by conventional libraries based on paper and other material means of collecting, cataloguing, finding, and disseminating information (Manish Kumar, 2004). A full service digital library must accomplish all essential services of traditional libraries and also exploit the well-known advantage of digital storage, searching, and communication (Chowdhury and Chowdhury, 2003). It provides access to part of or all its collections, such as plain texts, images, graphs, audio/video materials and other library items that have been electronically converted, via the Internet and World Wide Web (www).
With the emergence of ICT, media such as computerized databases, floppies, CD- ROM (Compact Disc Read-Only Memory), DVD (Digital Versatile Disc), electronic journals, electronic books, electronic theses, Internet etc are part of library collections. Every library strives to build its collection to satisfy the needs of its users.
Today, the word digital is synonymous with computers. Libraries (academic libraries) are no exception to the fast changing digital environment. Academic libraries in digital environment basically is a computer based system for acquiring, storing, organizing, searching, and distributing digital or electronic materials for user access. Electronic resources are the primary attraction of readers in today’s digital environment. It is difficult to know what information exists, what format it is available and where to look or search for it. Academic libraries as well as other libraries in digital environment are concerned with digitization of existing library materials, connectivity to the users in the world online and offline, integration with networking and availability with the World Wide Web.
Electronic resources represent an increasingly important component of the collection-building activities of libraries (academic libraries) (Sharon et al., 2012). “Electronic resources” refer to those materials that require computer access, whether through a personal computer, mainframe, or handheld mobile device. They may either be accessed remotely via Internet or locally. Some of the most frequently encountered types of electronic resources are as follows:
- Electronic journals
- Electronic books
- Full-text (aggregated) databases
- Indexing and abstracting databases
- Reference databases (biographies, dictionaries, directories, encyclopaedias, etc)
- Numeric and statistical databases
- Electronic images
- Electronic audio/visual resources
Compact Disk-Read Only Memory (CD-ROM) is an electronic format for storing information on a small laser disk. CD-ROM requires the interfacing of a CD-ROM player and a micro-computer. The CD-ROMs generally contain huge volume of numeric, bibliographic or textual information. By using keywords, descriptions or formulating search strategy one can quickly locate the required information in the library. Obviously, the CD-ROM technology helps in relieving academic libraries from the problem of storage space (Anita, 1997). The Online Public Access Catalogue (OPAC) is an integrated library service system, which supports the cataloguing, acquisitions, online public access, serials management and circulation modules in any digitized academic library. Any fully digitized academic library can provide the university’s examination questions via online. Such libraries with full Internet connection are bound to have access to various other online databases worldwide.
The widespread adoption of computers and Internet as communication tools requires academic libraries to adapt to new demands from their users to make the collection accessible from outside the physical library buildings. As Zhou (1994) stressed, the current trends of advances in computer network connection have compelled academic libraries to move into a new technological environment. All library procedures or services, including collection development, have changed through technology. Collection development practices have changed because of the impact of new electronic formats being used for delivery of information (Gerhard, 2000). The rapid advances in computer storage capabilities, information storage and retrieval techniques and audiovisual technology have provided the force or stimulus for the transformation of collection development in digitized academic libraries. Information Technology (IT) and the Internet have brought about a proliferation of formal and informal electronic resources (Zhou, 1994).
In most university libraries in Europe and America, librarians employ ICTs to perform numerous functions, such as collection management and budgeting, in order to improve information services to library users. A report prepared by the Canadian Association of Research Librarians (CARL) revealed that in the year 2000/2001, academic librarians subscribed to 436,731 electronic journals. Again, the same report stated that librarians are leaders in using technology to transform traditional library resources and services to meet the challenges of the 21st Century.
Academic libraries in Africa do not enjoy the same information delivery methods like those in developed countries except a few of them in Southern Africa (Chisenga and Rorissa, 2001). Waiganjo (2006) stated that academic libraries in Kenya suffer poor funding, poor communication system and lack of ICT qualified librarians. Yacob, (2006) citing Adeya (2002, 2007), revealed that inadequate computerization, inadequate infrastructure, and inadequate human capacity were some of the major challenges towards use of ICT in educational institutions in Botswana. The report of Yacob (2006), showed that Information and Communication Technology that was made available by DANIDA sponsored project, under the auspices of the International Federation of Library Association-Africa branch, to six academic libraries in Ghana has now become a thing of the past due to lack of funds.
The situation is not different in university libraries in Nigeria, especially university libraries in South East Nigeria, where librarians are still struggling with manual library operation methods, which have resulted in poor information service delivery to library users. Technology was introduced in academic libraries of Nigeria in 1975 (Sharma, 2006), led by the University of Ibadan, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, and Obafemi Awolowo University. Ever since then, the progress has been quite slow and many university libraries in Nigeria are still behind in providing digitized library resources to their numerous clientele. A visit to most university libraries in Nigeria will leave you to see that there is no computerization of any of the library collection development in these universities. According to Omoniwa (2001), TINLIB software was introduced in leading academic libraries (University of Nigeria, Nsukka; University of Ibadan, and Ahmadu Bello University Library, Zaria) in Nigeria in the 90s but due to some technical and organizational problems, no single academic library in Nigeria in general and in the South East Area of Nigeria uses TINLIB software today. Obajemu and Ibegwam (2006) pointed out that libraries (academic libraries) in Nigeria are still on the race to make their collection development activities ICT-based.
The emergence of electronic information resources has tremendously transformed information-handling and management in Nigerian academic environment, and university libraries in particular (Ani and Ahiauzu, 2008). These dramatic changes include the way in which information is provided to a particular university community. A number of electronic resources initiatives have been put in place in Nigeria to assist in the development, training, and use of electronic resources in a number of academic institutions among who are the Morienson Centre for International Library Programmes acting on behalf of MacArthur Foundation to support some selected university libraries (Egberongbe, 2011).
Nnamdi Azikiwe Library (University of Nigeria, Nsukka), Enugu State University Library (Enugu State University of Science and Technology), and Professor Festus Aghagbo Library (Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka) are not left out of the race to embrace ICT for better information service delivery to their users, especially now that libraries all over the world are undergoing transformation, especially in areas of electronic collection development. Therefore, the present study attempts to assess the possible strategies for enhancing electronic collection development in university libraries in South East Nigeria in this age of Information and Communication Technology.