POPULATION According to United States Census data, 16.1% of the population in New York State are of Hispanic origin. These groups vary in size from one county to the next as evident in the Bronx where 48.4% of the population is of Hispanic decent, and in Lewis county where .06% of the population is of Hispanic decent. Figure 1 shows the distribution of Hispanic populations throughout New York State counties. The majority of Hispanic populations in each county average between 1% and 10%.
Can a Spanish speaking/reading patron navigate the OPAC in the native language? Thirty-two percent of the catalogs contained the option to select a Spanish interface. The remaining 68% of OPAC’s were accessible only in English. Figure 2 illustrates Hispanic population data for those counties where the public library system's catalog has no Spanish interface .
How obvious was the text or icon that indicated the user could switch to a Spanish interface?
The location on the OPAC home page of the option to switch to a Spanish interface varied among the catalogs that provided this component. A breakdown is provided in Figure 3.
LANGUAGE LIMITING Can the user apply a Spanish language limit to the search? Of the 62 counties, 85% of the OPACs included an option to select the Spanish language as a search limit. Figure 4 illustrates the Hispanic populations for counties with catalogs that did not have language limits. Figure 4
What is the process for limiting by language? Data revealed that 11% of the OPAC’s allowed limiting to Spanish from the main search entry page, while the other 89% required the user to navigate to an advanced search and limit menu. Figure 5 represents the percent of Hispanics in counties where advanced navigation is required to change the search language to Spanish. Figure 5
SUBJECT SEARCHING Can the user search by Spanish subject term? When the Spanish subject term “perros” was entered in the main search box, 66% of the catalogs accepted searches using Spanish terms. Alternatively, 44% required the user to navigate to an advanced menu and search the subject by limiting to the Spanish language. Of the catalogs that allowed Spanish searching from the main search page, 76% provided records in both Spanish and English. Hispanic speaking users in these counties must navigate to an advanced menu in order to search by subject in Spanish . Figure 6
CATALOGING Are Spanish subject terms utilized in MARC records? The MARC records resulting from searches with Spanish subject terms were reviewed. Of the 62 counties, 46% of the OPACs contained records with Spanish subheadings in MARC 650 fields. Of the 54% that did not, the Hispanic populations are illustrated below. Hispanic population of counties where there were no Spanish subject headings in the MARC records. Figure 7