ERIC Number: ED255223
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1985-Jan
Reference Count: 0
Pennsylvania State University Libraries. A Final Report from the Public Services Research Projects. The Effect of an Instruction Program on Online Catalog Users. One of a Series of Self-Studies and Research Projects.
Larson, Mary Ellen; Freivalds, Dace
This study on the role of instruction in encouraging the successful performance of the first-time online catalog user examined three relationships to evaluate the effects of an instructional program: the comparative effectiveness of four instructional methods in orienting users to the online catalog; the influence of an instruction program on user reaction to the online catalog; and the role of instruction in influencing searching accuracy and efficiency over time. A pretest was administered to 253 participants, each of whom then received one of four instructional treatments: online instruction; printed pocket-guide; audiovisual slide/tape program; or librarian-led workshop. Two post-tests were administered, one at the conclusion of the instructional sessions and one six months later. An attitude survey, which measured user reaction to the online catalog, was also administered after the first post-test. An analysis of data collected from the 148 students completing the study indicates that: (1) three instructional methods--the pocket-guide, the audio-visual program, and the workshop--are effective for the first-time user; (2) Pennsylvania State's online catalog is a congenial system; and (3) the effect of online instruction as a "stand alone" method of instruction is unclear. No correlation was found between attitudes toward the online catalog and ability to search it accurately and efficiently. The population inventories, skill surveys, and results are appended. (Author/THC)
Descriptors: Academic Libraries, College Students, Higher Education, Intermode Differences, Library Catalogs, Library Instruction, Library Research, Library Services, Online Systems, Position Papers, Self Evaluation (Groups), Student Attitudes, Teaching Methods
Association of Research Libraries, Office of Management Studies, 1527 New Hampshire Ave., NW, Washington, DC 20036 ($15.00 per copy, prepaid).
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Reports - Evaluative; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: General Electric Foundation, Ossining, NY.
Authoring Institution: Pennsylvania State Univ., University Park. Univ. Libraries.; Association of Research Libraries, Washington, DC. Office of Management Studies.
Identifiers: Online Catalogs; Pennsylvania State University
Note: For related documents, see IR 051 066-074.