Conducting Research In Librarianship

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Information about Conducting Research In Librarianship

Published on October 13, 2007

Author: plaistrlc

Source: slideshare.net

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ppt of Ma'am Fe Angela Verzosa lecture

Conducting Research in Librarianship: an overview by F e Ang e la M. Ve rz o s a Presented at the PLAI-STRLC Seminar-Workshop on “Research in Librarianship : Challenges, Competencies, and Strategiesquot; held last October 9–10, 2007 at La Vista Pansol Resort, Brgy. Pansol, Calamba City, Laguna.

This pre s e ntation… • Tackles the role of library research in understanding the needs to which libraries should be responsive • Explores the problems and issues involved in library research • Assesses the effectiveness of various research approaches • Discusses research trends • Recommends a research agenda by which the profession can promote library research and encourage librarians to conduct research

Why re s e arc h?… •It is a re s po ns ibility of e ve ry profe s s ional. •Eve ry librarian s ho uld approac h all pro ble m s o lving ac tivitie s with me thodologies that ac kno wle dge res e arc h as appropriate , de s irable , and e ven ne c e s s ary. •Librarians can make be tte r dec is ions about how to achie ve library effe c tivene s s if the y have a knowle dge of the re s earc h pro c e s s , and, as individuals , the y can more e ffec tive ly c o ns ume profe s s ional re s e arc h lite rature. •Re s e arc h is c e ntral to the c ontinued de velopme nt of library and info rmation s c ie nc e as a profes s ion or dis c ipline whic h mature s and gains s tature through its the ory and res e arc h, as we ll as through thos e who advanc e its the o ry and res e arc h.

Why no t? .... • Librarians fe e l ill-e quippe d to c o nduc t re s e arc h be c aus e the y do no t have a s o lid bac kg ro und in me tho do lo g y? • Re s e arc h is dis c o urag e d in the ir wo rkplac e . • The y are o ve rburde ne d with daily tas ks that the y do no t find the time . • Co nduc ting re s e arc h is no t impo rtant to the ir wo rk. • It is no t s ig nific ant to advanc e the ir c are e r/re putatio n.

Bas ic is s ue s --- Co mpe te nc e & Re adine s s • Is re ading re s e arc h lite rature part o f jo b e xpe c tatio n? • Is time to re ad re s e arc h lite rature inc lude d in wo rking ho urs ? • To what e xte nt do Librarians re ad the re s e arc h lite rature ? • Is ac c e s s to library lite rature re adily available ? • Do librarians find re s e arc h lite rature applic able to the ir jo b func tio ns ? • What kind o f re s e arc he s are applic able o r re le vant to library func tio ns , s e rvic e s , o r have impac t o n the pro fe s s io n? • Do the y apply the re s ults o f re s e arc he s to the ir prac tic e ? • Are the y traine d to c o nduc t re s e arc h?

Bas ic is s ue s … --- Attitude o r Re s e arc h-minde dne s s • Are the y inte re s te d in re s e arc h? • What are the ir attitude s to ward re s e arc h? • Ho w do the y as s e s s the ir re s e arc h s kills ? • What kind o f inc e ntive s are pro vide d to mo tivate librarians to c o nduc t re s e arc h?

S urve y re s ults … • Librarians who are g ive n time to re ad o n the jo b re ad library lite rature but no t re s e arc h-bas e d lite rature o n a re g ular bas is . • 15% o f tho s e who g ave re as o ns fo r no t re ading re s e arc h-bas e d artic le s c he c ke d that the y did no t have e no ug h e xpe rtis e in re s e arc h me tho ds . • 50% indic ate d that the ir mas te r’s de g re e pro g ram ade quate ly pre pare d the m to re ad and unde rs tand re s e arc h-bas e d public atio ns . • Only 4 o ut o f 10 are g ive n time to do re s e arc h. Of the 4 g ive n time , o nly 2 will c o nduc t re s e arc h. • Only 50% o f the re s e arc he s c o nduc te d we re publis he d. • As to s uppo rt, abo ut 50% we re g ive n time -o ff; 25% inte rnal funding , and 15% e xte rnal. • As to applic atio n o f re s e arc h to prac tic e , o nly 50% o c c as io nally did, while 25% s e ldo m, and 15% fre que ntly did.

De finition Library Re s e arc h c an be bro adly de fined as the “s ys te matic s tudy and inve s tig atio n o f s ome as pe ct of library and info rmation s c ienc e in whic h c o nc lus ions are bas e d o n the s tatis tic al analys is of data c o lle cte d in ac c ordance with a pre-e s tablis he d re s earch des ig n and methodology.”

Re s e arc h me tho do lo g ie s … • c as e s tudy • c o nte nt analys is • de s c riptive s urve y • pro g ram e valuatio n • e xpe rime ntal • o bs e rvatio nal • qualitative

Cas e s tudy • o ne o f the mo s t po pular re s e arc h me tho ds • de s c ribe s and analyze s the re s e arc he r’s e xpe rie nc e s with a pro c e s s , g ro up, inno vatio n, te c hno lo g y, pro je c t, po pulatio n, pro g ram, o r o rg anizatio n • has be e n wide ly us e d to ans we r que s tio ns o f ho w o r why e ve nts o c c urre d as re po rte d •criticisms of case studies have centered on the unbalanced reporting styles of researchers who depict an experience in an overly negative or positive light. Even the most laudatory case studies should include negative outcomes as “lessons learned” to lend greater balance to the reporting style

De s c riptive s urve y • Surve ys c an be e mployed as part o f a larg e r o bs e rvational or expe rime ntal me thodology s uc h as a c o ho rt s tudy or a randomized co ntro lle d trial. • A de s criptive s urve y, by c ontras t, typic ally s e e ks to as c e rtain re s po ndents ' pe rs pe c tive s or expe rie nc e s o n a s pe c ifie d s ubje ct in a pre de termine d s truc tured manne r. • Citatio n analys is re pre s e nts a variation o f the de s criptive s urve y me thod.

Program e valuatio n • o c c urs o n a daily bas is in o ur pro fe s s io n with varying de g re e s o f rig o r • de fine d as the “s ys te matic as s e s s me nt o f the o pe ratio n and/o r the o utc o me s o f a pro g ram o r po lic y, c o mpare d to e xplic it o r implic it s tandards , in o rde r to he lp impro ve the pro g ram o r po lic y” • c an be c o nc e ptualize d alo ng a c o ntinuum fro m its fo rmative type to its s ummative type • Fo rmative e valuatio n fo c us e s o n the pro g ram e valuatio n as the pro g ram e vo lve s . • S ummative e valuatio n fo c us e s o n the o utc o me s to ward the e nd o r at ano the r c ritic al junc ture in de te rmining the future dire c tio n o f a pro g ram. • S o me have arg ue d that true pro g ram e valuatio n o ffe rs a “way o f g athe ring c o mparative info rmatio n s o that re s ults fro m the pro g ram be ing e valuate d c an be plac e d within a c o nte xt fo r judg me nt o f the ir s ize and wo rth . . . • he lping the e valuato r to pre dic t ho w thing s mig ht have be e n had the pro g ram no t o c c urre d o r if s o me o the r pro g ram had o c c urre d ins te ad

Uno btrus ive Obs e rvatio n • re c o g nize s the po s s ibility that pe o ple will be have diffe re ntly whe n the y kno w the y are part o f a re s e arc h s tudy o r unde r the dire c t o bs e rvatio n o f a phys ic ally pre s e nt re s e arc he r • atte mpts to s tudy human ac tio ns and pre fe re nc e s witho ut the ac t o f s tudying s ubje c ts c aus ing the m to c hang e o r mis re po rt tho s e ac tio ns o r pre fe re nc e s • e ntire re s e arc h traditio n invo lving uno btrus ive o bs e rvatio n re late d to the ac c urac y and quality o f re fe re nc e s e rvic e s • S o me o f the s e s tudie s als o have rais e d e thic al c o nc e rns

Effe c tive ne s s o f re s e arc h appro ac he s • Librarians ne e d to e xplo re whic h type s o f re s e arc h appro ac he s be s t ans we r the ir pro ble ms . • Qualitative re s e arc h s uc h as o bs e rvatio nal s tudie s mig ht be the be s t c ho ic e fo r a partic ular re s e arc h que s tio n. Fo r e xample , rathe r than having c o ntro l and e xpe rime ntal g ro ups to c o mpare us e o f two diffe re nt type s o f re fe re nc e s e rvic e in a unive rs ity s e tting , an o bs e rvatio nal s tudy to e xamine the e ffe c t o f e ac h re fe re nc e s e rvic e wo uld be more prac tic al. • The re s e arc h me tho do lo g y fo r pro ble ms whic h will like ly invo lve us e rs o f a library's s e rvic e , will pro bably be quite diffe re nt fro m Collections o r Management type s o f pro ble ms , whic h do no t ne c e s s arily invo lve us e rs in the s tudy de s ig n. • Librarians hip, whic h has g ro wn o ut o f the s o c ial s c ie nc e s , re lie s mo re he avily o n qualitative than quantitative s tudie s .

Evide nc e -bas e d Librarians hip (EBL) • is a me ans to impro ve the pro fe s s io n o f librarians hip by as king que s tio ns as we ll as finding , c ritic ally apprais ing and inc o rpo rating re s e arc h e vide nc e fro m library s c ie nc e (and o the r dis c ipline s ) into daily prac tic e . • It als o invo lve s e nc o urag ing librarians to c o nduc t hig h quality qualitative and quantitative re s e arc h.

Re s e arc h tre nds … • A s mall but growing number o f re s earc he rs are regularly co ntributing to the lite rature . • The quantity of publis hed re s earc h has inc re as ed s inc e 1980. • The g e ne ral quality of res e arc h has impro ve d s ince 1980. • Within the library and information pro fe s s io n, aware ne s s and perc eive d importanc e of res e arc h has impro ved.

Re s e arc h tre nds … • Thes e s and Dis s e rtations are the pre do minant form of re s e arc h. • Mo s t re s earc h is s urve y-bas ed and de s c riptive . • Even tho ug h the re are e xample s o f diffe re nt methodologie s being us e d (c itatio n analys is , c onte nt analys is , o bs ervation, etc), over 90 perc ent o f the s tudie s e mploy s ome metho do lo g y othe r than expe rime ntal. • Exis ting re s earch doe s not build on pre vio us re s earc h in the fie ld.

Re s e arc h tre nds … • Mo s t re s e arc he s re lie d upo n data-g athe ring me tho d and que s tio nnaire s we re the pre do minant me tho do lo g y. • S e ldo m us e d we re c o nte nt analys is , whic h is the e xaminatio n o f re c o rds , lite rature , o r o the r mate rials , e xpe rime ntal de s ig ns , and inte rvie ws as a s ing le me tho d fo r g athe ring data. • The re has be e n no atte mpt to labe l s tudie s as quantitative o r qualitative , but the applic atio n o f multiple me tho ds in data g athe ring c le arly s ug g e s ts a s hift to ward us e o f qualitative me tho ds . • The array o f to pic s s tudie d appe ars to be dive rs e .

Re s e arc h tre nds … • In the inte rnatio nal jo urnal lite rature , info rmatio n s to rag e and re trie val was the mo s t po pular to pic , as we ll as the s ubto pic o n c las s ific atio n and inde xing . • Library and info rmatio n s e rvic e s was the s e c o nd mo s t po pular, with c o lle c tio ns , adminis tratio n and auto matio n as the po pular s ubto pic . • Info rmatio n s e e king was the third mo s t po pular to pic , with us e o f library and info rmatio n s e rvic e s as po pular s ubto pic . • Othe r po pular to pic s we re unique to China: princ iple s o f library and info rmatio n s c ie nc e , and the info rmatio n indus try. • Library his to ry ac c o unte d fo r 43% o f the re s e arc h to pic artic le s in the e arly pe rio d, but did no t fe ature as a po pular to pic .

Re s e arc h Agenda… • Mo re res e arc h on te c hnology is ne e ded, e s pe c ially s tudie s that analyze c lie nt-us e patterns and pre fe re nce s , us ing multiple me tho ds fo r g athe ring data. s tudie s o f online and CD-ROM Ex.: s ys te ms , c o mpute r-as s is te d ins tructio n, c lie nt pe rc eption of we b-bas ed tuto rials , and te c hno lo g y applic ations in diffe re nt library s e rvice s

Re s e arc h Agenda… •S tudie s o n the info rmatio n ne e ds o f c lie nte le s ho uld be fo c us e d by g ro ups , e .g ., te ac he rs by s ubje c t are a, o r s tude nts by ag e g ro up. Ex.: Bas e s o f us e r s atis fac tio n in ac ade mic librarie s amo ng fre s hme n o r g raduate s tude nts •Qualitative s tudie s o f us e rs ' pe rs pe c tive s and pre fe re nc e s fo r vario us info rmatio n re s o urc e s are ne e de d. Ex.: c o lle c tio n de ve lo pme nt bas e d o n as s e s s e d ne e ds , o rg anizatio n and s to rag e o f info rmatio n s o urc e s to fac ilitate re trie val and us e , e ffe c tive re pac kag ing o f info rmatio n, and dis s e minatio n is s ue s .

Re s e arc h Ag e nda… •Call fo r re s e arc h that inves tigates info rmatio n profe s s ionals who mode l the ro les o f library s pec ialis ts s hould be he e de d. Ex.: inve s tig ative s tudie s of le ade rs hip, ro le s o f s uc h s pe c ialis ts as the re s earc h librarian, the me dia s pec ialis t, e tc.

Re s e arc h Ag e nda… Cas e s tudie s for the manageme nt and e valuatio n o f e ffe c tive library pro g rams . Ex.: Evaluatio n of c urric ulum- inte g rated pro g rams through as s e s s ment o f s tude nt le arning, manag e me nt is s ue s s uc h as planning, po licy de velo pme nt and imple me ntatio n, and program e valuatio n, e tc .

Conc lus ion Wh ile not ma ny h a ve e xpre s s e d a n optimis m for re s e a rc h , we s h a re th e vie w th a t optimis m for re s e a rc h in libra ria ns h ip is we ll-founde d. Th e re s e a rc h c lima te is improving . More re s e a rc h e rs a re a s king que s tions be yond wh a t is be ing done a nd h ow. We h ope to s e e th is tre nd c ontinue .

Many thanks for coming to this seminar!

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