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Third-year students' perceptions of the library services at the Butterworth campus of the Eastern cape technikon, south Africa.

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The purpose of the study was to investigate third-year students' perceptions of library services at the Butterworth campus of the Eastern Cape Technikon (ECT) in South Africa. The study was conducted with full-time and part-time third-year students in all the three faculties, namely the Faculty of Engineering, the Faculty of Business Sciences and the Faculty of Applied Technology. The methodology included a review of related literature and the data collection involved a descriptive survey using self-administered questionnaires. Proportionate stratified random sampling was used to select respondents from all three faculties. Out of the 274 questionnaires distributed, 220 were returned, resulting in a response rate of 80%. The questionnaires focused on the library resources and services available to third-year students of the ECT, ranging from the extent of awareness and usage to the level of satisfaction with various library resources and services. The data collected was analysed by means of SPSS®. A coding list was developed from the variables in the study and the results were interpreted in relation to these variables. The findings of the study revealed that third-year students were aware of the resources and services available in the ECT library. However, the study also revealed that the resources and services are not fully utilized by the ECT students whom they are supposed to serve. There were a variety of problems perceived by the students which emerged from the results of the study. These were: the lack of space in the library, the shortage of computers, out-dated library books, the attitude of librarians, library opening hours, long queues, lack of individual user instruction, level of noise, the need for a study room, the need for training of library staff, lack of photocopiers and difficult access to the electronic room. Many respondents found the Online Public Access Catalogue (OPAC) to be inadequate, in the sense that it did not give a true reflection of all the books on the shelves in the ECT library. However, the majority of them were generally satisfied. Recommendations for possible future library services were made in the light of this discussion. Suggestions for future research form part of the conclusion of this study.


Masters Degree. University of KwaZulu-Natal, Pietermaritzburg.