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Library Services in Medical and Paramedical Colleges of Assam : Analytical Study

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  1. Seminar paper presentation for CALIBER 2013 BY Dalimi Devi Library Services in Medical and Paramedical Colleges of Assam : Analytical Study

  2. INTRODUCTION Library is a service–oriented institute. It fulfills information needs of the students and contributed for the enhancement of their knowledge. To fulfill the needs of the students, college libraries provide a variety of services to a wide range of user groups.

  3. INTRODUCTION (Contd.) • Although most college libraries share a core set of services related to the provision of documents and information, each library defines the limits of its service areas and its relative priorities among them differently. • Most library analysts agree that achieving effectiveness in library services is a basic responsibility of library management. Library services are multi-dimensional. So, Library Services must be measured by a set of measures covering the major library functions.

  4. MEASURES FOR THE LIBRARY SERVICES Success at various Library activities Over all User Success Overall satisfaction Ease of use Materials availability and use Facilities and equipment availability and use Information Services

  5. Medical colleges and institutes promote medical education and research. The libraries of these colleges and Institutes form the primary information support system for achieving the objectives the parent organizations have placed before them. However, these libraries are facing the usual constraints like inadequate funds, untrained and inadequate manpower, high cost of resources, lack of integrated network at regional and national level etc. A wide difference persists between information support needed for research and educational programmes, and the existing library services. Libraries of some paramedical colleges still struggling to find their feet in their state of inception at the moment. NEED OF THE STUDY:

  6. OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY The study has been conducted with the following objectives: To collect and understand the indicators of effectiveness of library services for a college library. To apply the indicators of effectiveness to assess the performance of medical and paramedical college libraries. To assess the existing state of affairs of the library in respect of its services, facilities and general satisfaction of the students regarding the library services in selected Medical /Paramedical college libraries in Assam. To suggest ways and means to improve the existing library services to achieve user satisfaction.

  7. There are various Health Science institutions in Assam. The prominent among them are the three Medical Colleges(Allopathic), three Medical Colleges (Homeopathic), one Ayurvedic Medical college situated in different regions of the state. Apart from this there are five paramedical colleges (including one govt. Nursing College) and three Pharmacy colleges and one Dental college. The Table-1 that is given below will highlight the year of establishment of the Medical and Paramedical Colleges and their libraries. RESEARCH SITES:




  11. RESEARCH SITES: Table-1: The year of establishment of the Medical and Paramedical Colleges and their libraries

  12. ANALYSIS AND INTERPRETATION OF DATA: Analysis of the sample: Composition of the sample is one of the facets usually discussed in a survey research like the present one. The sample taken for data collection should be indicative of the universe from where the sample is drawn. For the current study, the college students of Medical/Paramedical colleges of Assam are form the universe. Owing to time constraints, till now, the study could collect data from 310 students from the Medical and a few selected Paramedical Colleges of Assam.

  13. GENDER WISE DISTRIBUTION OF DATA In order to avoid any gender bias, efforts are made to collect data from almost equally distributed samples. It may be noted from Table-2 that the data are collected from 162(52.25%) boys and 148 (47.75%) girls students. Table:2 Gender-wise Distribution of Data


  15. COURSE –WISE DISTRIBUTION OF DATATable-3 below provides the data regarding distribution of students with regard to their course of study.

  16. FREQUENCY OF LIBRARY VISITS The frequency of library visit by the users is usually influenced by the factors such as collection, organization, and maintenance of the library resources along with the library resources, facilities and the library services. The frequency of library visit and its utilization by the respondents are presented in Table-4

  17. As can be observed from the above table about half of the students’ population claim to visit the library everyday. It appears that the respondents have claimed that they visit the library on daily basis. Where as 23(7.41%) of students visit twice a week and 30(9.68%) visit the library three times a week,29(9.36%)of them visited Four times a week , 68(21.75%) visited the library five times a week.. The cumulative total of the rows 2, 3 and 4 in the above table given an indication that significant number of students (26.45%) use the library rarely. Some measures need to be taken immediately to improve upon this situation. FREQUENCY OF LIBRARY VISITS


  19. PURPOSE OF VISITING LIBRARYIn order to find out reasons for visiting the library, respondents are asked to indicate their major purpose of visit on the day of the data collection. My data shows that there are different purposes for which the users visit libraries. They visit to borrow books to read, to browse electronic resources and so on. Table 5: Purpose of visit

  20. Large percentage of users on the day of questionnaire collection, visited the library either for study(37.09%) or for borrowing books (35.48%).This trend of course conforms to the normal expectations . Usage of reference materials may have to be increased by some means in the Paramedical college libraries as my study shows that only 6.69% of the users visit the library for consulting the reference books. Taking into account the cost of these materials we feel that if the collection development policy has to be cost effective the librarians and other stakeholders have to give importance for improving the usage of reference collection. PURPOSE OF VISITING THE LIBRARY

  21. Effectiveness can be measured by the success rate of the users in finding the information. Respondent are asked about their success on that day of their visit. They are asked the question “What do you do in the library today?” The table given below represents the different kinds of activities done by the users along with their success rate. Success of Library Visit:

  22. SUCCESS OF LIBRARY VISIT Table-6: Success rate

  23. It may be noted that comparatively a large number of students 227(76.95%) are able to study successfully. This shows that there is a pleasant atmosphere in the libraries for studying. However, the unsuccessful percentage (23.05%) is also significantly higher than usual expectations. One of the major reasons found is lack of sitting facility for studying within the library. This might call for more spacious buildings for the libraries/reading activity. Looking for books/periodicals form the next successful activity with 65.72% score. This also probably indicates that most of the libraries are fairly well organized. Again the unsuccessful rate is high for this activity also. This may be because of the fact that some users are not aware about the mechanism of library organization. It is found out that the unsuccessful attempt was due of misplacement of books also. In all other activities the unsuccessful rate is significantly higher and immediate attention needs to be taken by the librarians to combat the situation properly. SUCCESS OF LIBRARY VISIT

  24. TIME SPENT IN THE LIBRARY Library being housed with wealth of knowledge, any amount of time can be spent for a worthy cause. Sincere and serious students normally spend more time in Libraries. Where as others hardly spend time to meet their information requirements. Users are asked to indicate the average time spent by them on their each visit. The responses received are analyzed from the data presented in table 7 Table-7: Time spent in the Library

  25. TIME SPENT IN THE LIBRARY As expected only 6.69% students spend their time about three hours a day. As can be seen from the related literature, this trend is because of the fact that our education is not library oriented. Students are satisfied with the class notes given by the teachers. However, some medical students said that they do not have sufficient time to visit libraries for longer hours as they have tight academic schedule. Graph-3

  26. EXTENT OF USE LIBRARY SERVICES Library is service – oriented institute. It fulfils information needs of the students and contribute for the enhancement of their knowledge. To fulfil the need of the students Medical and Paramedical Libraries provide various services such as reference services, photocopy services etc.

  27. EXTENT OF USE LIBRARY SERVICES Table 8: Extent of use of Library services

  28. Table -8 depicts the various services that are rendered to the student community in the college libraries, so far as per the study is concerned, text book service is the highly sought after service in medical and paramedical college libraries (66.45%). Some services are totally unknown to the users such as inter-library loan, repackaging and condensation service, abstracting & indexing service, standards information, patent information etc. The teaching faculty and librarian have to work together to encourage students to use periodicals and internet for self-learning in colleges. EXTENT OF USE LIBRARY SERVICES

  29. SATISFACTION OF INFORMATION PROVIDED The importance of existence of libraries is to satisfy the information needs of its user. It has to move with the time and equip with modern technological gadgets to satisfy the needs of the users. Table -9 : Satisfaction of Information provided

  30. Twenty-five percentage of students are completely satisfied with the information provided in the library. It can be observed from the study that 37.41% of them have partially satisfied with the information provided in the library. On the other hand there are some dissatisfied users also. Medical/ Paramedical college libraries in Assam must take some steps and have to plan for better service. SATISFACTION OF INFORMATION PROVIDED

  31. SUGGESTION TO IMPROVE THE LIBRARY SERVICES Table-10: Suggestion to improve the library services

  32. Table 10 shows the suggestions made by the students to improve library services. It is now an established fact that computers can really enhance the speed and the efficiency of services in libraries. This is evident from the fact that 31.29% of the respondents have asked for the computerization of libraries. One of the most important services that usually found is circulation of books, as most of the students depend on this facility, they (27.09%) have asked for the increase in the number of books loaned out. Infrastructure facilities is the common problem, that college libraries come across often, as most of the paramedical college libraries placed in a very small room or some time classrooms converted into the library, this has to be stopped forthwith, hence 21% of students have asked for improvement of infrastructure facilities. Browsing room can be used to enhance to technological information literacy skills of the medical/paramedical college students. SUGGESTION TO IMPROVE THE LIBRARY SERVICES

  33. CONCLUSION: The developments and changes that have happened (ing) over the years in information profession is un believable. But the underlying factor of satisfying information needs of users is still the focus of attention of libraries. This study found that college libraries are lagging behind particularly in providing user specific information. It is imperative thus that they must redesign their approach. This study reemphasized that fact that the collection development alone would not result in attracting students to libraries. A college library is the best place to acquire knowledge and spend valuable time for the users. However, it is found from the study that a good number of students spend not more than one to two hours a day in libraries. This situation has to be improved and libraries should attract them more. The suggestions made by the students are valid and the appropriately for taking those suggestions seriously, where the world is becoming flat and global work-culture is the order of the day.