A study on student and staff awareness, acceptance and usage of e-books at two Queensland universities

Borchert, Martin and Hunter, Alison and Macdonald, Debby and Tittel, Clare (2009) A study on student and staff awareness, acceptance and usage of e-books at two Queensland universities. In: Information Online 2009, 14th ALIA Exhibition and Conference, 20-22 Jan 2009, Sydney, Australia.

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Previous research on e-books has generally focused on business models and content delivery. This investigation, sponsored by the Queensland University Librarians Office of Cooperation (QULOC) aims to verify the quantitative and qualitative aspects of client awareness (or non-awareness), acceptance (or non-acceptance), usage levels (or non-use) and usage patterns of electronic books amongst students and staff at selected local universities. Results will inform library marketing, information literacy and collection development priorities.

Griffith University and University of Southern Queensland developed and made available online surveys via the institutions’ library web sites and catalogues. Print versions of the survey were also distributed in libraries. Various e-book publishers were approached to provide deep log usage statistics. Responses to multiple choice and textual responses were quantitatively and qualitatively analysed.

Over 2,200 students and staff responded and survey responses indicated a high level of awareness of ebooks amongst both staff and students, but relatively low usage, with the library catalogue being the major access point. Both students and staff generally liked ebooks and many had used ebooks in their subject area, but not within the context of resources for courses. Most preferred the library to purchase books in both print and electronic format with 24x7 access and ebook database searching being the most popular reasons for liking ebooks, while difficulty in reading from the screen for extended periods of time was the main reason for disliking ebooks. Few would read an entire ebook on the screen. Printing before reading was common. Usage log statistics from sample publishers were used to verify findings.

Results are discussed in the context of the available literature. Responses can be used in collection development to ensure ebooks are appropriately considered within collection development strategies and that ebooks are well received and used by clients.

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Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Commonwealth Reporting Category E) (Paper)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Authors retain copyright.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Academic Division - Library
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Academic Division - Library
Date Deposited: 17 Mar 2009 07:01
Last Modified: 02 Jul 2013 23:13
Uncontrolled Keywords: electronic books, ebook, ebooks, course resources, usage
Fields of Research (2008): 08 Information and Computing Sciences > 0807 Library and Information Studies > 080706 Librarianship
Fields of Research (2020): 46 INFORMATION AND COMPUTING SCIENCES > 4610 Library and information studies > 461006 Library studies
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): C Society > 93 Education and Training > 9305 Education and Training Systems > 930503 Resourcing of Education and Training Systems
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/4876

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