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Libraries all over the world are established to enrich the knowledge of the users through provision of vital information. This manifests more in the universities where students and faculty members and other readers are expected to use the library for teaching, learning and research. University libraries in educationally advanced countries support the educational, teaching and research needs of the parents' organization they serve. These libraries see to their responsibility of ensuring that the use of information sources is maximized to the benefit of its users.
It has been observed that the basic goal of the university education in any country is to produce graduate whose training in liberal tradition will enable them to deal with the increasingly specialized problems of the country and those intellectual accomplishments and mental perspective will prepare them to operate on a more encompassing level outside their areas of specialization. Before this goal could be achieved, universities in the country needs to provide conducive environment, the facilities and competent personnel that are dedicated to the advancement of knowledge and its practical application to the needs of the modern society. The paper investigates the use of electronic information sources among faculty members in Nigerian universities.
The introduction of Electronic Information Resources into academic environments particularly universities, is almost predictably followed by rapid growth in awareness and by students and academics as documented by Peled and Rasty (1999).
Ekwelem, Okafor and Ukwoma(2007) described EIS as information sources that are available and can be accessed electronically through such computer networked facilities as online library catalogues, the internet, the world wide web and digital libraries .
EIS have increasingly become an invaluable asset in education, research, teaching and learning. EIS have transformed the conduct of research and teaching in universities by allowing faculty members a wide range of opportunity for accessing accurate and timely information on various subjects.
The use of Electronic Information Sources enables the faculty members and the students to effectively and efficiently access digital information to assist with investigating issues, solving problems, making decisions, product and creative solutions to support learning, develop new understanding in areas of learning and teaching (Aramide and Bello, 2010).With the use of electronic sources faculty members have access to up –to –date information on various subjects and also assist in developing new thinking and learning skills. Corroborating this assertion Chisenga (1997) maintained that internet gives the faculty members a wide range of opportunities, in the creation, processing, transmission and dissemination of information.
Rosenberg (2010) stated the various benefits of EIS to faculty members which include;
1. E-learning this is very effective way to deliver instruction particularly for faculty m usly.
3. Faculty members can access EIS anywhere and any time
4. EIS resources serve as a motivating factor to faculty members because they provide them opportunity to transmit acquire or download, and disseminate information on various subjects.
Oduwole and Akpati (2003) identified the available electronic resource that are commonly used in Nigerian Universities which includes CD-ROM databases, electronic mail, online public catalogue (OPAC), and Web resources.
Aramide and Bello (2010) stated the three major migrations that have occurred in library academic services: from printed resources to online electronic data bases; from CD-ROM data bases to on line internet access to bibliographic and full- text or full image data base
Merrill (1996) argued that Online database searching skills would help faculty members to compile bibliographies on particular subjects and direct students in their course works.
Electronic information resources greatly increase access to information and its implementation must be carefully planned to ensure optimal use of space and time (Adeleke, 2005). Bropphy (1993) stated the advantages of electronic resources which include speed, ease of use, embers.
2. Faculty members can use electronic resources to reach unlimited number of students virtually simultaneoability to search multiple files at the same time, ability to save, print and repeat searches more frequently updating and ability to access from outside the library.
Tenopir(2003) in a major survey of literature on the subject analyzed ,the results of two hundred studies on the use of electronic resources in libraries published between 1995 and 2003.Results drawn from this study indicate that electronic sources have been rapidly adopted in academic spheres, though the behavior varies according to discipline.
Manda (2005) studied the use of electronic resources in Tanzania by faculty members. He discovered that use was low, due to inadequate end-user training, low connectivity,
limited access to PCS, poor search skills. Smith (2007) looked at South Africa; finding revealed that lack of bandwidth was a major problem.