Date of this Version
The study aims to bring to light the various channels students prefer to submit reference inquiries to librarians in Nigeria. A questionnaire was used to collect data on the various channels students prefer when making reference inquiries in Nigerian university libraries. The questionnaire was administered to the students in the university library. It was found that the students use the person-to-person/traditional reference desk, the phone/SMS, the library Facebook page most when seeking for reference help. Other channels such as: Instant messaging and e-mail were indicated to be least used by the students. The students of University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN) library expressed dissatisfaction with the services offered through the various channels. The reason given is that, most of them are not aware of the various reference channels used in the library, and others reported that librarians are reluctant to provide timely feedback. The findings of this study will offer insights on users preferred channel through which they make reference enquires, which may provide a useful basis for library staff and professionals who are considering the possibility of embracing new technologies as part of their system and will contribute to the growing literature on references services channels from developing countries like Nigeria. The findings will inform reference librarians as they seek to re-design their reference services to meet patron’s needs and inquiry preferences.