International Journal of Digital Library Services (IJODLS)
April - June, 2012, Volume-2, Issue-2, ISSN:2250-1142
ONLINE INFORMATION LITERACY OF THE SOCIAL SCIENCE RESEARCH SCHOLARS
Dr Fayaz Ahmad Loan
Information is cornerstone of research. The research scholars were solely dependable on library collection for satisfying their research needs before the birth of the Internet. However, with the introduction of the online sources, there are evidences of departure from total reliance on print collection to the online information. This online information is stored in various digital archives; available in many formats and retrieved through different search tools by applying various search techniques. The scholars need to be literate about these digital archives, formats and search tools and techniques. The present study was conducted to how far the social science scholars’ are aware and make use of online sources, search tools and techniques. The study was conducted on social science scholars of the University of Kashmir, Jammu & Kashmir, India carrying the M.Phil. & Ph.D. research programmes. The survey method was applied to conduct the study and questionnaire was used as a data collection tool. The results reveal that majority of the scholars are aware and make use of search engines and OPACs whereas majority of them aren’t aware of other search facilities like gateways (subject/regional), directories, meta-search engines and deep Web search tools. The findings also depict that excluding phrase searching, all the scholars aren’t aware and make use other search techniques like field searching, keyword searching, Boolean Operators and truncation methods. The findings also reveal that majority of the scholars are aware and highly make use of JSTOR, JCCC/UGC Consortium and Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) respectively whereas other sources like Directory of Open Access Repositories (OpenDOAR), Project Muse, Questia, Ebrary, EBSCOHOST aren’t used adequately due to illiteracy. At the end the suggestions are recommended to enhance online searching skills of the scholars.