LAW STUDENTS’ PROFILES AS CORRELATES OF INFORMATION RESOURCES AND SERVICES UTILIZATION IN NIGERIAN LAW SCHOOL LIBRARIES
Law libraries as a special type of library are peculiar in nature and as such their services are peculiar as speed and accuracy is the essence of law library services. The studying and practicing of law is highly reliant and dependent on the use of legal texts and other legal information resources. Be that as it may, there is no gain saying the fact that knowing the profiles of users of such a library is of paramount importance as that could enhance the provision of effective and efficient services to the patrons. This study was designed to probe into the profiles of Law students’ vis-à-vis their utilization of information resources and services provided at four campuses of the Nigerian Law School libraries located at Abuja, Enugu, Kano and Lagos respectively. Six research questions with two hypotheses were formulated to guide the study. The correlational survey design was adopted in carrying out this study, with a sample size of 450 representing 10% of students’ total population of 4,500 from across the four campuses. Observation checklist and questionnaire titled Information Resources and Services Availability and Utilization Questionnaire duly validated by experts in library and information science as well as measurement and evaluation, were the instruments used for data collection for the study. The instruments were trial tested on 45 law students at the Yenagoa campus of the Nigerian law school using the Cronbach Alpha approach, with an overall reliability co-efficient of 0.94. Frequencies and percentages were used in analyzing research questions 1 and 2; mean and standard deviation were used to answer research questions 3 and 4 while Pearson correlation statistics was used to answer research questions 5 and 6. Multiple regressions statistics was used for testing the two (2) hypotheses at 0.05% level of significance. Findings from analyzed instruments revealed that though there is significant relationship between law students’ age and extent of their utilization of information resources, there is no significant relationship between other profiles of law students and utilization of information resources and services. The study further revealed that law texts as information resources are mostly utilized by the law students. On the basis of these findings, it was recommended among others that there should be equal provision of information resources and services in all the campuses of the law school given the fact that the curriculum is the same with one central qualifying examination. It is also recommended that proper and adequate orientation should be organized with good timing for all the students to participate. The timing should be at a time that all admitted students have registered. This is to enhance efficient and effective utilization of provided information resources and services.
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