Libraries at University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Characteristics and Nature of Academic Staff’s User Experiences in Electronic Library Database Utilisation
Introduction. The use of electronic library databases (e-library databases) by academic staff is accepted globally as contributing immensely-to academic staff research work. However, based on one of the researchers’ experiences as a Subject Librarian as well as context-specific issues that arose from the existing literature, e-library databases are underutilised by academic staff at the University of Jos and similar institutions in North-Central Nigeria. Many previous studies on the use of e-library databases by academic staff in Nigerian universities were centred on the quantitative survey methodology, which lack in-depth perspectives of academics’ experiences. Thus, additional qualitative insights are necessary. Hence, this study aimed to improve our understanding of the personal/individual experiences affecting academic staff e-library database utilisation in universities in North-Central Nigeria, through ethnographic research.
Method. The stratified sampling method was used in selecting participants. The researcher employed observation and semi-structured interviews to collect data from 44 academic staff selected from 22 faculties of the Universities and one system librarian from each of the university libraries. A constant comparative approach was used in the analysis of data.
Results. The results revealed negative/unsatisfying experiences and a lack of interest in using e-library databases affected academics’ use of the e-library databases. The researcher discovered that online library database use and technology are generally less common to older academics but appear to be more familiar amongst the younger ones.
Conclusion. Therefore, the study recommended that Academic Subject Librarians have to consider online library database design strategies to shore up the use rates. The university should also prioritise behavioural change.