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Volume 9, no. 1 (Fall 2006)

Feature Articles

Michael A. Weber

Robert Flatley

What Do Faculty Want?: a Focus Group Study of Faculty at a Mid-sized Public University

Abstract:Presents the findings of a focus group study to determine how faculty use library resources and what role they see the library playing on campus. Results indicated that faculty use was mixed. Information literacy instruction, electronic access to information, and the library as space were seen as important roles.

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Wayne Bivens-Tatum

Technological Change, Universal Access, and the End of the Library

Abstract: Library and Information Science (LIS) does not lend itself to philosophizing. Political philosophy offers a useful and necessary approach to thinking about libraries. Teleological thinking helps bring into relief some of the problems and issues of library and information science. When we do not address political problems teleologically, we may confuse means and ends, and ignore ends altogether. As an example of a teleological investigation, the author considers a proposition that some take to be the end of the library, the proposition that libraries should provide free access to all information to all persons all of the time. Should libraries embrace all radical technological changes in a quest to seem relevant? Should libraries act according to the Universal Access Principle?

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Markos Dendrinos

Philosophical views about digital information and relational schemata

Abstract:The nature and organization of digital information are examined from a philosophical point of view. A Platonic model is first suggested, based on both the Platonic allegory of the two worlds and the hypothesis of the informationised universe. Ancient classification schemata are presented in terms of the relationship types involved, concluding with an attempt to view the semantically rich web management system as an extended Platonic model.

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Westerly A. Donohue

For Charity or Profit? A Case Study of The Friends of Ferguson Library's Used Bookshop Program

Abstract: This paper hopes to contribute to inter-disciplinary literature by mapping out the ability of one community library's used bookshop volunteers to resolve a potential conflict, that of working in a Used Bookshop Program that both gives away books to institutional recipients deemed as eligible, with its overarching purpose: to maximize profitability on behalf of the library, for serving its programming to the urban City of Stamford, located in Stamford, Connecticut. The study encompasses visual sociological methods, and discusses multi-faceted concepts of community-building from a variety of social science perspectives, but mainly based in sociology.

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Baba L. Ndagana

S. A. Ogunrombi

Blazing the Trail in Poverty Alleviation among University Students in Nigeria: the Federal University of Technology Yola

Abstract: This study reports on the innovative “study and work” programme for students at the Federal University of Technology, Yola. In particular, the use of student part-time workers in the Library is discussed. The study reviews the widespread and severe poverty in Nigeria and among students in particular.This study reveals that the “study and work scheme” to alleviate poverty is beneficial to both students and university departments. The scheme extolls the dignity of labour in addition to alleviating the suffering of indigent students. The advantages of the scheme to the Library are discussed and it is recommended that the “study and work” scheme should be incorporated into the country-wide Poverty Alleviation Progamme of the Obasanjo administration.

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Terrence W. Epperson

Toward a Critical Ethnography of Librarian-Supported Collaborative Learning

Abstract:The emerging multidisciplinary field of computer-supported collaborative learning (CSCL) has the potential to address several theoretical, political, and praxis issues within academic librarianship. Librarians are uniquely situated to contribute to the ongoing development of CSCL, and the library is an ideal “place” for the development, implementation, and evaluation of collaborative learning strategies and systems. The author presents three pressing, interrelated challenges within library and information science (LIS) and discusses how CSCL analyzes the social production of knowledge, emphasizing the distinction between cooperative and collaborative learning. Issues of shared concern between LIS and CSCL can best be addressed through ethnographic analysis of small group collaborative learning. Four research strategies that have the potential to capture the social nature of learning are presented.

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Araby Greene

From Library to Knowledge Center : Building a Website to Introduce a New Building to the Community

Abstract: When announced in March 2004, the biggest gift in the University of Nevada 's history was in support of a new library building, to be called “The Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center.” The decision to call the new facility a “Knowledge Center” deliberately calls attention to the expanded role of the institution. This article describes the design and development of a website to tell users about the role and progress of the Knowledge Center, allay fears about books disappearing forever into the great maw of the Automated Storage and Retrieval System (ASRS), encourage feedback, and create some excitement about a beautiful new place to work and collaborate.

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Laura Taddeo

Information Access Post September 11: What Librarians Need to Know

The tragedy of September 11, 2001 has forced both the American people and the government to reevaluate how information is collected and disseminated. Part of the White House's response to September 11 includes protecting "sensitive information from inappropriate disclosure," and encouraging federal agencies to review whether certain information, formerly readily accessible, should be removed from the American public’s view. The ability to control the way information is made available to the public has changed, especially during the Digital Age. The Internet, like the radio during World War II, is one of the most powerful tools used to relay information to the public. This paper discusses the government's control of information post September 11, drawing some comparisons to actions taken during World War II.

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Samantha Hypatia Thompson

Bicycle Access to Public Libraries: a Survey of Pennsylvania Public Libraries and Their Accessibility to Patrons Arriving Via Bicycle

Abstract: In 1994, the US Department of Transportation set the goal of doubling the number of bicycle trips undertaken in this country. Impediments to this goal are trip and destination barriers. One major public destination intended for universal access is the public library. This is relevant to young adults, the poor, and recent immigrants, all of whom may choose bicycle transportation at higher rates than the general population. A survey of 225 public libraries in Pennsylvania found that 54% of respondent libraries had poor overall bicycle accessibility. These overall levels were the result of the trip or destination barriers at each library. The most significant barrier found was the lack of bicycle parking at destination libraries. To increase bicycle access to these libraries the most effective means would be the installation of secure bicycle racks in visible locations.

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Mahendra Kumar Seth

Baman Parida

Information Needs and Use Pattern of Disadvantaged Communities: A Case Study

Abstract: This article highlights the changing information needs in India and its importance to disadvantaged communities (specially historically disadvantaged Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe: students, scholars and faculties) especially in the state of Orissa. The role of academic libraries, departments of education and the Government of Orissa (India) are also explored.

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Dariush Alimohammadi

Web-based Reference Projects: An Approach for Iranian LIS Departments

Abstract: Reference courses are provided in LIS schools in Iran. Different instructional methods are applied and various approaches are adopted. Some of them focus on introducing reference sources. In this method, students learn that a given reference source can satisfy a user's information needs. Others pay attention to the production of reference tools by using print media. This article proposes the development of web-based reference tools.

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Gurdev Singh

S.M. Shahid

Blogs as Tools for Online Information Sharing

Abstract:This paper describes blogging as an Internet phenomenon. The origin and growth of blogs with historical is discussed in detail. The use of blogs in library and information science is explored, as are other issues such as ethical concerns.

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P. Olatunji Olaojo

M. A. Akewukereke

Collection Development Policies: Ground Rules For Planning University Libraries

Abstract: Various links that exist between planning and budgeting, selection, and acquisition with reference to collection development policy in libraries were revealed in this study. A collection development policy sets ground rules for planning, budgeting, selecting and acquiring library materials. Recommendations are made for combating the professional challenges facing acquisitions librarians.

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Felicia E. Etim

Resource Sharing in the Digital Age: Prospects and Problems in African Universities

Abstract: Africa’s universities and research centers have a unique role to play in knowledge production and dissemination as drivers of knowledge-based development. To this end, they need to be locally established and socially connected in order to draw fully from the society while feeding back the products of knowledge. Problems identified are the high cost of Internet access, partial realization of campus networks in the universities, ineffective configuration of platforms and the lack of reliable and permanent source of power. Regulatory bodies have been set up for the organization and production of contents which will serve for development support, and the Association of African Universities (AAU) with the support of the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) have taken up the challenges of plotting a path that captures the synergies, a roadmap to increased bandwidth, resources and knowledge networking for Africa’s knowledge centers.

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Dariush Alimohammadi

Mahshid Sajjadi

Library Instruction Courses: Past Lessons, Future Plans

Abstract: This article describes the redesigning of library instruction courses in the age of electronic information. Older research on instruction for undergraduates is described and discussed and compared with the needs of present-day undergraduates.

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Michael M. Kazanjian

Tomorrow's Library: The Building, Online Access, and Classroom

Abstract: In tomorrow's library, students, teachers, and the public will increasingly partner with librarians. The public can become better acquainted with recorded knowledge. Academicians including students can search for recorded specialized and general thought contained on shelves in a building. Online technology will extend access as needed. Classrooms will extend the nature of recorded specialized and general thought as students, teachers, and librarians engage in recording and updating information in specific fields and liberal arts. Online technology to course content can allow anyone, anywhere, anytime to learn what class sessions are recording. Online and classroom capabilities empower people to learn and think inside and outside the building: another way of learning and thinking inside and outside the proverbial box. Libraries may borrow examples of empowerment from Reformation, theology, and democracy. Online libraries or information systems will be only a part of tomorrow's library. Access to recorded knowledge will not be completely online. This article takes issue with the increasingly popular belief that the computer's widespread use means online libraries will replace the library building along with its books, journals, and other printed material.

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Mayank Trivedi

Health Science Libraries and the 21st Century

Abstract: The potential of telemedicine, particularly in remote or underserved areas, is an important issue for many countries. Telemedicine is described and discussed, and the role of health science libraries in facilitating telemedicine is explored.

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Ebong Nyama Nkebem

Henry Itohowo Okon

Effect of Cooperative, Competitive, and Individual Use of Self Instruction Method (SIM) on Learners' Achievement in Library Skills

Abstract: Self instruction is an instructional technique that is gaining popularity among teachers. Using this technique, students use instructional materials prepared by their teachers. Three approaches – cooperation, competition, and individual approaches were tested on randomly-assigned groups of students. A one-way Anova showed a significant differential effect for this instructional technique on academic achievement in library skills.

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J. K. Vijayakumar

T. A. V. Murthy

M. T. M. Khan

Experimenting with a Model Digital Library of ETDs for Indian Universities Using D-Space

Abstract:As a part of doctoral research, a study was made to identify the importance and support of having theses and dissertations in electronic form, through a survey of Indian academics and Librarians. Based on the study and special requirements of India, a model is suggested, which can be used by universities. File formats, software, workflow, infrastructure, and required support are discussed. A prototype ETD System using D-Space software is described. Integration of metadata, support for OAI-PMH protocol and CNRI handles to share content, compatibility with multilingual standards such as UNICODE were reasons for choosing D-Space as the software for the model.

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