Seeing Double at Memorial University: Two WorldCat Local Usability Studies

Fahey, Sue and Gordon, Shannon and Rose, Crystal (2011) Seeing Double at Memorial University: Two WorldCat Local Usability Studies. Canadian Journal of Library and Information Practice and Research, 6 (2). pp. 1-14. ISSN 1911-9593

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Obtaining user feedback is valuable yet often overlooked; so, when Memorial University Libraries launched OCLC’s WorldCat Local (WCL) discovery tool in the fall of 2010, usability testing was a logical next step. The Ferriss Hodgett Library in Corner Brook and the Health Sciences Library in St. John’s, two branches each with distinct user groups, conducted unique usability studies to determine how WorldCat Local performed common research tasks. The Health Sciences Library was inspired by the information seeking habits of Memorial University’s Faculty of Medicine, School of Nursing and School of Pharmacy. This demographic’s heavy reliance on journal literature and known item searching made these users an interesting test group. The Ferriss Hodgett Library, serving an undergraduate Liberal Arts and Sciences population, was interested in the information seeking behavior of new students with little to no experience using library resources. At the local level, evidence obtained as a result of this usability testing will provide guidance into future use of WCL at Memorial University Libraries. On a broader scale, the usability findings are relevant to any library considering a shift to a new discovery tool.

2 Citations in Google Scholar
Item Type: Article
Item ID: 124
Department(s): Memorial University Libraries
Date: 2011
Date Type: Publication

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