2003 Presentation -- Information Use and Needs of Biology Faculty
Information Use and Needs of Biology Faculty Joe Kraus University of Denver June 10, 2003 SLA Conference - NYC
Why did I do this research? Because I wanted to learn more about the information needs and seeking patterns of biological science faculty Correlate teaching faculty with student use of information
Introduction Background of Information Needs Assessment “Frequently, the simplest and most effective way to develop information is to identify major stakeholders and just ask them how they use information, what information resources they believe they need, or similar questions.” Biblarz, page 15
Needs, wants and demands Needs are “situations that require solution; it does not always follow that a need is something the group or person wants.” “Wants are things that the group or person is willing to expend time, effort or money to acquire; it does not always follow that the thing wanted is good for the group or person.” “Demands are things the group or person wants and is willing to act … to acquire” Evans, page 32-33.
Prior information use research Curtis, Weller, and Hurd, 1997 Cecelia M. Brown, 1999 Tenopir and King, 2000, Towards Electronic Journals, pages 163-165
What did I do? Surveyed Biological Sciences Faculty at the University of Denver (DU) to inquire about their information use and needs. Focused on this group because I am not as familiar with life science research and their information needs. 14 questions covering 2.5 pages -- modeled after the Curtis and Brown surveys
What did I want to learn? What databases do the faculty use and how often How do they find and use journal articles How many articles and how much time is consumed reading articles
Basic statistics 17 surveys were sent out 7 were returned (41%) 6 male, 1 female 1 full professor, 3 associate, 1 assistant, 1 lecturer, and 1 adjunct Have been on the DU faculty an average of 10.1 years (Range 5 to 18 years)
What databases were used in thelast year? 4 AGRICOLA3.5 Bio Abs 3 CSA Bio2.5 2 Chem Abs1.5 MEDLINE 1 PsychINFO0.5 0 PubMED Databases used SCI or WoS
How often were those databasesused in the last year? AGRICOLA was used 1-2 times by one person BioAbs was used 5+ times by three people CSA Bio was used 5+ times by one person Medline and PubMED were used 5+ times by four people SCI / WoS was used 1-2 times by two people, and 5+ times by one person
Where do they use thoseresources? 6 5 DU Office/Lab 4 Home 3 Campus Library CU Health Sciences 2 CU Boulder 1 Other, Cornell U. 0 Where
How do they obtain journalarticles? 7 Download 6 Personal subs 5 Colleague subs Reading Room 4 Library print or Web 3 Assistant 2 ILL 1 Email author 0 Area Lib How do they obtain journal articles DocDel
Other services to obtain articles? 4 3.5 HighWire 3 UnCover 2.5 BioMedNet 2 InfoTrieve 1.5 Scirus 1 Google 0.5 Lib databases 0 Other Services
How do they keep abreast ofcurrent developments? 7 Scanning/browsing 6 current issues 5 Search DBs 4 Personal Comm 3 2 Conferences 1 Current Awareness 0 Service Current Developments
How do they become aware of lessrecent articles?7 Citations at ends of joural articles6 Citations at ends of5 book chapters or conf. proceedings4 Searching lib DBs32 Personal Comm1 Browsing older0 journals Less Recent
How many hours during a typicalweek do they read articles? Range from 2 to 5 hours Average of 3.1 hours/week (161 hours/year, 13.43/month) Compare with Tenopir and King Research – University Scientists, 259 hours/year in 1984, 182 hours/year in 1990-93. – Life Scientists, 8.1 to 24.1 hours/month
How many articles during a typicalweek do they read articles? Range from 2 to 8 articles Average of 4.1 articles (215 articles/year) Compare with Tenopir and King Research – University Scientists, 172 articles/year in 1984, 188 articles/year in 1990-93
What are the most importantjournals read to stay current 33 journals were listed The only duplicates were: – Nature – Science – PNAS – Journal of Cell Biology
Comments given Need more journals online How about a site subscription to ScienceDirect? Site-wide access to the Science Citation Index would be useful.
What did I learn? MEDLINE and PubMED are still more “popular” than Biological Abstracts (BioAbs). BioAbs is used heavily by the faculty that know about it. The CSA databases are not used as much by the faculty Much more use in faculty offices than at home
What did I learn? The demand for BioMedNet has waned Colleagues do not share personal journal subscriptions Not many faculty know about HighWire Press as the provider of FT journals Compared to national studies, DU faculty read similar numbers of articles and for similar periods of time
What was confirmed Faculty want more access to electronic journals and databases in their offices (follows from Curtis, and anecdotal evidence) Scanning current issues of journals is still performed (follows from Brown) Faculty continue to follow citation chains for older articles (Brown) Desire for Web of Science and ScienceDirect (Anecdotal)
References Brown, C. M. (1999). "Information Seeking Behavior of Scientists in the Electronic Information Age: Astronomers, Chemists, Mathematicians, and Physicists." Journal of the American Society for Information Science 50(10): 929-43. Curtis, K. L., A. C. Weller, et al. (1997). "Information-seeking behavior of health sciences faculty: the impact of new information technologies." Bulletin of the Medical Library Association 85(4): 402-10. Tenopir, C. and D. W. King (2000). Towards Electronic Journals: Realities for Scientists, Librarians, and Publishers. Washington, DC. Special Libraries Association.
References Biblarz, D., S. Bosch, and C. Sugnet. (eds.) Guide to Library User Needs Assessment for Integrated Information Resource Management and Collection Development, Lanham, Md., Scarecrow Press, 2001. Evans, G. E. and M. R. Zarnosky. Developing Library and Information Center Collections, Englewood, CO, Libraries Unlimited, 2000. (Chapter 2 is “Information Needs Assessment,” pages 31-68)
Questions 1 & 2 What databases and indexes have you used in the past year, and how often? Such as AGRICOLA, Biological Abstracts, Biological Sciences Collection in CSA, Medline (or PubMED), Science Citation Index (or the Web of Science), etc.
Questions 3, 4 & 5 Where do you use these resources? How do you obtain journal articles? Are there any other services that you use to obtain journal articles? (DocDel, Highwire, Google, etc.)
Questions 6 & 7 How do you keep abreast of current developments in your field? How do you become aware of less recent research?
Questions 8 through 12 8, 9 & 10 – Demographics – faculty rank, gender, and years at the University. 11 & 12 – How many articles do you read per week, and how many hours per week.
Questions 13 & 14 13 – What are the five most important journals that you read to stay current in your field. 14 – Comments on library resources/services? Are there services you need that we do not offer?