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Title: Access to information: experience of undergraduates from two universities of Sri Lanka
Authors: Jazeel, M.I.M.
Dehigama, K.
Keywords: Access to information
Islamic Studies
Sri Lanka
Issue Date: 30-May-2016
Publisher: Faculty of Islamic Studies and Arabic Language, South Eastern University of Sri Lanka
Citation: 3rd International Symposium. 30 May 2016. Faculty of Islamic Studies and Arabic Language, South Eastern University of Sri Lanka, Oluvil, Sri Lanka.
Abstract: The study aims to investigate perceptionsof accessing information byundergraduate students of the Department of Islamic Studies of the University of Peradeniya and South Eastern University of Sri Lanka.Cross sectional survey design was employed in the study. Structured questionnaires were administered among all students of the Department of Islamic Studies of the two departments.Four hundred and thirty nine duly completed questionnaires wereselected and analyzed using descriptivestatistical tools. It is found that the first year and second year students of the University of Peradeniya have experienced major difficulties in language to access information.Among the first year undergraduates, 78% admitted that they could not access information properly due to communication difficulties. Barriers in communication with the staff and technical issues are experienced by 61% of the undergraduates.Apart from the above difficulties, cultural differences appear to be a major barrier in accessing information.Undergraduates from South Eastern University have experienced no difficulty in communication. Only 43% of the University of Peradeniya and 41% of South Eastern University undergraduates are aware of Electronic Resources available in the library. Among the total respondents, 82% of the total population prefer to access information through printed materials.It can be concludedthat majority of the selected students from the University of Peradeniya find difficulties in accessing information due to language barriers, technical issues and cultural differences. Also, the study leads to the conclusion that undergraduates from both universities show less awareness of accessing information through Electronic Information Resources available in the library. On the basis of the findings of the study,providing more training, assisting in their library searches and employing more Tamil speaking employers to foster maximum interaction with ethnically diverse undergraduates in the library is recommended. Payingmore insight to requirements of ethnically diverse undergraduate students in designing library orientation programmes is also strongly suggested.The study provides direction to further research on the theme in qualitative manner to understand the phenomenon in-depth and in detail.
Appears in Collections:3rd International Symposium of FIA- 2016

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