Academic journal article Library Philosophy and Practice

The Relationship of Academic Role and Information Use by Engineering Faculty

Academic journal article Library Philosophy and Practice

The Relationship of Academic Role and Information Use by Engineering Faculty

Article excerpt

Introduction

The user is the key person in any library. All the luxuries of information revolution and problems of information explosion center on the user and his convenience. Understanding the user is half the battle in providing information services. The success of any library depends considerably on how best the system design is based on a close and accurate understanding of the users. The user is not only the most important aspect, but also, a dynamic component of the library paradoxically. As such, understanding user is an important and a continuous activity. 'Know thy customer' is a cardinal rule of any business enterprise. Accordingly, extensive market research, customer behaviour studies and demand forecasting are carried out in business. A formal information centre or library is yet to pick up these activities in the same spirit. Hence it is necessary to know the information needs, information use, the motives and purposes of seeking information, ways and means of gathering information and the entire user-attitudes and practices in relation to information.

Information seeking behavioural studies is one of the important areas in user studies. The motives and purposes of users give rise to information use and requirements. To satisfy such needs and requirements, users adopt many ways and means of accessing and searching sources of information. Then they try to acquire necessary information both regularly and in an ad hoc way as necessary from these sources. In the act of acquiring information, the user uses or calls upon the predetermined, which may thus leading to satisfaction or dissatisfaction in relation to purposes and needs.

The users may seek information in a number of ways such as reading books, browsing periodicals, consulting, abstracting and indexing periodicals, contacting colleagues and friends, seeking information from guides and senior co-workers, gathering information from library and information centers and attending seminars, conferences etc.

This study is designed to go beyond the description of the investigation of the relationship between academic role and information seeking bahaviour of engineering faculty members and proceeding on to assess the levels of frequency of information use of the faculties from different forms of their teaching and research purposes

Objectives

The objectives of the study are:

* Identifying the roles that the engineering faculty members execute in their academic positions.

* Identifying faculty members perceptions of the level of frequency of information use of printed form such as books, journals, thesis, dissertations, government publications, conference proceedings, and reference sources.

* Analyzing the relationship between roles and information importance.

Hypotheses

* Professors use books more in their teaching than in their research.

* Professors use journals more in their research than in their teaching.

* Professors use theses and dissertations more in their research than in their teaching.

* Professors use government publications more in their teaching than in their research.

* Professors use conference proceedings more in their research than in their teaching.

* Professors use reference sources higher in their teaching than in their research.

Methodology

The methodology used in the present study is clearly described in the following paragraphs.

Sample Selection

In order to study "an investigation of the relationship between academic role and the importance of information of Engineering faculty members of Acharya Nagarjuna University", Gunter, a city in the state of Andhra Pradesh has been chosen. There are 19 Universities and 280 engineering colleges affiliated to different Universities. Among them 5 Engineering Colleges are Velagapudi Ramakrishna Siddhartha Engineering College, Vijayawada, R V R and J C College of Engineering, Guntur, K. …

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