Application of Quality Assurance Mechanisms for Effective Library Services in Academic Libraries in Nigeria
In bit to ensure quality standards in Nigerian universities the Federal Government promulgated decree No. 16 of 1985 empowering the National Universities Commission (NUC) to lay down Minimum Academic Standards for all the Nigerian universities and also to accredit their degree programmes. In the case of library system, the assessment of libraries by NUC accreditation panel mostly browsed the library shelves without taking note of the quantitative and qualitative indicators of the information resources and services of the libraries. The main objectives of this paper included identification of the quality assurance mechanisms applied for effective library services in Academic Libraries in Nigeria. A descriptive survey research method was used for the study. Questionnaire and observation constituted the main instruments used to collect data for this study. The researcher used descriptive method to analyze responses to the questionnaires. The correlation analysis and chi-square statistic were used to test the hypotheses formulated for the study. The findings of the study showed that the methods used to assess the quality of the information resources were credibility of the author, relevance of the content, and currency of the information resources. Another significant finding was that the mechanisms used for the assessment of the quality of the university libraries were not uniform. The main strategy used for implementation of quality assurance was integration of the library` services quality assurance agenda into the university structures and the quality assurance mechanisms available and used in Nigerian university libraries were programme accreditation and benchmarking of library systems. Based on the foregoing, the key recommendation of the study was a designed proposal for uniform standards for assessing the quality of university libraries. The proposed standards aimed at unifying the methods, criteria, strategies and mechanisms of assessing the quality of the libraries.