Posted by: bluesyemre | August 9, 2019

Academic Research: The Librarian’s Point of View On the Need for Varied Content Types 2019

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The ProQuest and Library Journal academic collections survey set out to better understand academic librarian perspectives on the needs and challenges facing researchers as they discover and use information as part of their research or studies. The fundamental problem is that there are more and more channels and formats in which academic discussion takes place—blogs, videos, working papers, etc. (88% of academic librarians surveyed agreed with this assessment). This prevalence of content creates several challenges for both library users and the libraries themselves. For library users (students, faculty, etc.), it has become difficult to find all the information that may be relevant to their research or study because it tends to be scattered across so many different formats and locations. At the same time, it can be difficult for researchers to determine which information sources are accurate, reliable, and/or trustworthy, and which are not (95% of survey respondents agreed with this assessment).Users, especially students, need to balance this with the ability to gather a variety of viewpoints and be able to draw their own conclusions, thus building important critical thinking skills (94% of survey respondents agreed with this). For libraries, academic research is expanding beyond the traditional journal and monograph into ever-evolving new formats, and libraries must in turn evolve their collections to account for this (87% of survey respondents agreed with this). Complicating matters is the fact that the most appropriate content and format can vary depending on the researcher and the nature of the research (98% of survey respondents agreed with this assessment). By focusing on traditional formats, libraries may not be offering the most appropriate content type for each user. Given the value of using multiple content types in research, what kind of research database(s) would librarians and library users find to be the most valuable? Ultimately, multi-format databases solve many or most of these problems. Essentially, having all of a
library’s databases and content on one platform would simplify the administration of electronic resources (66% of survey respondents agreed with this assessment). And access to a multidisciplinary, multi-format research database would help library users to discover and use the most relevant and reliable content (67% of survey respondents agreed with this assessment). The survey also found that the smaller the institution, the
more agreement with this statement. There is even stronger agreement on the value of a discipline-specific, multi-format database. Ultimately, academic faculty use a variety of resources in their teaching and learning, including scholarly journals, books, dissertations, etc., while they also overwhelmingly see value in students using a variety of resources in their studies. Providing ease of access to all of these materials using multi-format databases can aid library users in accessing appropriate information as well as help academic library administration.

Academic Research The Librarian’s Point of View On the Need for Varied Content Types 2019


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