A study of the information-seeking behaviour of the researchers in the Parliamentary Research Unit at the Parliament of the Republic of South Africa

Swartz, Barbara Dawn (2005-03)

Thesis (MPhil)--Stellenbosch University, 2005.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: This study examined the information seeking behaviour of the researchers attached to the Parliamentary Research Unit in Parliament. It looked at their use of the Parliamentary Library, their use of the library and its resources, what other avenues for information they use and what suggestions they have for improving the service. A questionnaire was developed and e-rnailed to researchers. As the response rate was poor, it limited the conclusions that could be drawn from the research. In line with other studies, it was found that electronic resources and the Internet played a great role in how they sourced information. Researchers frequented the Internet to find information more than they use the library and they have difficulties with accessing online resources and the catalogue. The manual circulation system was a source of frustration as well. They made use of personal contacts to a certain extent to find unpublished information and very recent information. These categories of information, especially government information, are crucial to their work. Suggestions for improvement centred on the online catalogue, instruction in the use of the online resources, updating the collection of books and journals and consulting researchers where necessary.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Hierdie ondersoek fokus op die inligtingsgedrag van die navorsers in die Parlementêre Navorsingseenheid. Dit ondersoek hul gebruik van die Parlementêre biblioteek en sy bronne, die alternatiewe inligtingskanale tot hul beskikking en watter voorstelle hulle het vir die verbetering van dienste. 'n Vraelys is ontwerp en per e-pos aan navorsers gestuur. Swak terugvoering het die proses om finale gevolgtrekkings te maak, beperk. In ooreenstemming met ander studies, is wel gevind dat die Internet en elektroniese bronne 'n groot rol speel in die proses om inligting te bekom. Daar is ook gevind dat navorsers hierdie tipe bronne verkies bo traditionele biblioteekbesoeke. Opleiding om die elektroniese bronne en die katalogus te gebruik is noodsaaklik. Alternatiewe bronne van inligting soos persoonlike kontakte met ander kundiges word tot 'n sekere mate gebruik om inligting te kry wat beide op datum en ongepubliseer is. Voorstelle vir verbetering fokus op die elektroniese katalogus, opleiding in die gebruik van elektroniese bronne, die kwaliteit en inhoud van die versameling en konsultasie met die navorsers.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/50283
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