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University of Dar es Salaam Library Journal

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A comparison of information needs and information seeking behaviour of students of the Open University of Tanzania and those of Sokoine University of Agriculture

A Malekani

Abstract




This study was carried out to examine awareness and use of different sources of information for course-work and research by students of the Open University of Tanzania and those of Sokoine University of Agriculture. Specifically, the study sought to understand students use of the information sources, why they visited the university library, the type of assistance they had received in using the library as well as the type of instruction they would like to receive in the future. A questionnaire was designed and administered to Open University students in the Faculty of Science, Technology and Environment who were attending their summer studies in July 2005 at Sokoine University of Agriculture and students of Sokoine University of Agriculture who were on campus during vacation. The objective was to compare the information needs and information-seeking behaviour of these students. The study highlights the positive aspects of seeking information from the students perspective as well as the kind of assistance they require when seeking information in the library. The findings show that there are differences in the extent to which students of the Open University of Tanzania (OUT) and those of Sokoine University of Agriculture (SUA) use sources of information in the library. The OUT students rely mainly on the use of print books and journals as opposed to electronic information resources, where as SUA students use both print books and electronic resources at varying degrees. The results further show that many of the information services offered in the library are not used effectively due to lack of awareness on availability of these resources among many students. It is recommended that a thorough and intensive training is carried out to both SUA and OUT students to help them use library resources more effectively and efficiently.

University of Dar es Salaam Library Journal Vol. 8 (1&2) 2006: pp. 60-72



http://dx.doi.org/10.4314/udslj.v8i1.26647
AJOL African Journals Online