Tella, Olawuyi & Durodolu

Undergraduates' Use of Smartphones for Accessing Library Materials and Services in Selected Academic Libraries in South West Nigeria 

Adeyinka Tella, University of Ilorin & University of South Africa
Kolade Olawuyi, University of Ilorin

Oluwole Olumide Durodolu, University of South Africa

Abstract

This study examined undergraduates’ use of smartphones for accessing library materials and services in selected academic libraries in South West Nigeria. A survey approach was adopted that focused on undergraduate students as the target population. Four research questions were developed and answered. The findings revealed that an Android phone is the type of smartphone used by undergraduate students for accessing materials and services. Visual materials, reference materials, databases, maps, and atlases are the basic categories of library materials undergraduates access through smartphones. Reference service is the most accessible service by undergraduate students through their smartphones followed by circulation service and the online public access catalogue. Use of smartphones to access library materials enables quick access to information, offers solutions to problems, and enables immediate and timely submission of assignments. Undergraduates prefer using a smartphone for accessing library materials and services because it saves time compared to visiting the library and is stress-free and allows quick access to materials and services. The findings also demonstrated that gender, age, and year/level of study significantly influence the use of smartphones for accessing library materials and services by undergraduate students. The problems associated with accessing library materials and services through smartphones are expensive phone subscriptions, network and internet access issues, the high cost of smartphones, and phones distract students from working.

Keywords: mobile technologies, learning, access, smartphones, cell phones, library materials, library services, academic libraries.



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