Open Access Open Access  Restricted Access Subscription Access

Information Seeking Behaviour of the Academic Staff and Students

M.A. Cobblah


The paper presents the results and findings of a survey conducted on library usage and information seeking behaviour of the academic staff and students of the Methodist University College Ghana. It is argued that the user is the most important aspect of the library and therefore studies aimed at understanding the user behaviour should be a continuous activity to help provide better services to the users. The study used both quantitative and qualitative research design. In all 300 questionnaires were administered to the selected population out of which 204 were completed, returned and analyzed. The quantitative approach made use of well structured questionnaires which were administered on the selected population consisting of lecturers and students while the qualitative approach made use of interview instrument in which a total of 30 selected participants were interviewed to seek further clarification on some of the answers provided in the questionnaires. The results and findings show that despite the availability of electronic information resources, books, theses/dissertations, journals and lecture notes are the most consulted information sources. The major source of identifying information needs is through the recommended booklist provided by lecturers and experts. The results and findings of the study confirm the critical role play by the University Library in academic work. The study also shows that majority of the respondents with cumulative percentage of (70%) were effectively using the library for research and academic purposes.
However, library users were still using the traditional method of scanning through titles and pages of books on the book shelves as a means of searching and retrieving information. This method is rather time consuming and not effective in seeking information .In recent time the use of Open Public Access and Online catalogues, indexes/abstracts, internet and librarians assistance have proofed to be more effective.
The study also established that, textbooks, reference materials and journals are the most dominant materials that library users consults as information sources. It also confirms that there is a high level of information sharing in the university community.
The study further established that the library collections are not adequate and suggested subject areas that need improvement. The recommendations as well as the challenges encountered by the library users in seeking and use of information are also enumerated.
The study concludes with a discussion of the results and made recommendations on how to improve upon information use in the university community.

Full Text:



  • There are currently no refbacks.