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Volume 7, no. 2 (Spring 2005)

Feature Articles

John Buschman

On Libraries and the Public Sphere

Abstract: If information and its related sets of critical skills are as important to economic and political participation as we keep insisting, then what information we produce, how we keep it, what we keep, and how it is absorbed or not are crucial questions in our culture - and libraries are important institutions in this. Libraries in their collective existence in democracies embody and enact much of Habermas's classical definition of the public sphere. Adapted from the author's book,Dismantling the Public Sphere: Situating and Sustaining Librarianship in the Age of the New Public Philosophy, published by Greenwood/Libraries Unlimited, 2003

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Elaine Nowick

Kent M. Eskridge

Xingchun Chen

Jun Li

A Model Search Engine Based on Cluster Analysis of User Search Terms

Abstract: This paper describes an experimental search engine based on a cluster map of user search terms. User search terms were collected from log files and e-mail reference questions. Clusters were produced using the SAS Average Linkage Hierarchical Cluster Procedure and four distance measures. A concept map was constructed using common elements from the clusters produced using the four distance measures. An advanced smart search based on the concept map can be called up when users need assistance broadening or narrowing their search for a web site cataloging links to water quality information.

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Alessia Zanin-Yost

Christy Donaldson

How to Speak Out (Visually) at Your Library

Abstract: This article describes the importance of incorporating visual literacy into everyday activities in the library. Visual literacy promotes what librarians are trying to do: educate users on how to find, understand and use information in a visual context. Other themes discussed in the article include the similarity of information literacy and visual literacy, perception of users, why visual literacy is important to the library and the use of visual literacy to market the services of the library.

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Markos Dendrinos

From the Physical Reality to the Virtual Reality in the Library Environment

Abstract: Libraries give access to the intellectual contents of a work regardless of its physical form. Digital library initiatives give access to information that has no real physical form. This article explores considerations of data, metadata, and processes in creating digital libraries.

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Weiner, Sharon Gray

The History of Academic Libraries in the United States: A Review of the Literature

Abstract: Academic libraries have a close relationship to and influence on learning and research. Their history is one of ongoing evolution and change that parallels the history of their parent institutions. It is evident that responsiveness to student and faculty needs, quality of service, and resilience have been hallmarks of academic libraries in the U.S. This is shown by a chronological review of the literature. This paper is divided into the major periods of the history of U.S. academic libraries: the Colonial period, the Nineteenth Century, and the Twentieth Century. Included in this review of the literature are journal articles, books, and dissertations published between 1980 and 2003 that discuss historical aspects of the library in four-year colleges and universities in the United States.

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Brian Rossmann

Doralyn Rossmann

Communication with Library Systems Support Personnel: Models for Success

Abstract: The authors, a reference librarian and a systems librarian, provide an examination of the psychology of information technology (IT) workers and of other library employees. Within this framework, they offer successful models of IT support staff working with other library staff to establish policies, to set goals, and to form clear lines of communication about technology issues.

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J.E. Onohwakpor

The Role of Library Services in Adult Literacy Education

Abstract: This paper examines the role of the library as one of the essential ancillary services to literacy education with specific reference to Nigerian adult learner.

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Ukoha O. Igwe

Harnessing Information Technology for the 21st Century: Library Education in Nigeria

Abstract:Library education in Nigeria faces access and infrastructure problems. Increased Internet connectivity would benefit both education for librarianship and the library profession as well as benefitting the citizens of Nigeria by increasing their access to information.

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