ERIC Number: ED261687
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1985
Reference Count: 0
Survey of Online Searching in the Humanities in Four-Year College and University Libraries.
Falk, Joyce Duncan
College and university librarians were surveyed in May 1984 to assess their experiences and opinions with respect to online searching in the humanities. A questionnaire was mailed to 1,160 4-year college and university libraries in the American Library Directory (1983) that listed an online services coordinator, an enrollment of 1,000 or more, or holdings of 100,000 or more books. Out of 350 (30%) replies, 85 (24% of returns) indicated their institutions had no online searching service. A majority of the 254 replies that contained usable data reported that less than 10% of their searching occurred in the humanities. The most frequently used databases were MLA (Modern Language Association) Bibliography; America: History and Life; and Historical Abstracts. The percentage of humanities database use compared to total online searching was estimated and the seriousness of problems in searching in the humanities was ranked. The most important problems were identified as the limited scope of existing humanities databases and the lack of databases for some fields in the humanities. The study also summarized the impact of online searching in the humanities on other library functions, including bibliographic instruction. The question of a vocabulary of the humanities elicited divided opinion from respondents. The report includes a copy of the questionnaire, 11 tables, and a number of bibliographic references. (Author/THC)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: California Univ., Irvine. Univ. Library.