STRATEGIES FOR ENHANCING ELECTRONIC COLLECTION DEVELOPMENT IN SELECTED UNIVERSITY LIBRARIES IN SOUTH EAST NIGERIA
This study investigated the strategies for enhancing Electronic Collection Development (ECD) in selected university libraries in Southeast Nigeria. Seven research questions were raised to guide the study. The study design was descriptive survey. The study population comprised of all professional librarians and paraprofessionals in the three studied university libraries. The total population size of the professionals and paraprofessionals in the three university libraries stood at two hundred and eight (208). The instruments used for data collection were questionnaire, observation check list and interview schedule. Data collected for the study were analyzed based on each research question, using frequency count, percentage, and mean. The result of the study revealed that the professional and paraprofessional respondents from the three studied university libraries identified various methods that their respective libraries have been able to put in place for effective ECD including use of Internet, World Wide Web (WWW), provision of good Internet facilities etc. Among the appropriate methods that will help in facilitating ECD in Nigerian university libraries as identified by the professional and paraprofessional respondents (library staff) from the three studied university libraries include provision of good Internet facilities, World Wide Web (WWW), use of Internet and subscribing to electronic resources. Important resources for enhancing ECD in Nigerian university libraries were also identified by the professionals and paraprofessionals from the three studied university libraries to include: Internet, 24 hours Internet access, electronic books, Online Public Access Catalogue (OPAC), electronic journals, indexing and abstracting database and stand alone computers. The result showed major militating factors of ECD in the three university libraries including inadequate funding, automation at infancy level, epileptic power supply, lack of technical know how, lack of higher bandwidth in Internet connectivity and lack of sound administrative policies and guidelines. The major strategic measures that the library managements should employ to enhance ECD include computerization/full automation of the university libraries, provision of improved funds, constant evaluation of automation facilities, adequate systems upgrade, constant electricity power supply, provision of skill manpower and training of librarians and paraprofessionals in the use of modern ICT facilities.