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Information literacy and open access in Croatian academic libraries

Ivana Hebrang Grgic (Department of Information and Communication Sciences, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Zagreb, Zagreb, Croatia)

Library Review

ISSN: 0024-2535

Article publication date: 4 July 2016

1145

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to present results of a survey of Croatian academic libraries’ user education about open access (OA)-related issues. The concept of OA literacy will be explained, and the term will be put in the context of information literacy (IL) and scholarly communication.

Design/methodology/approach

An anonymous online questionnaire was sent to all the Croatian academic libraries with the aim to find out if libraries are involved in OA and to learn about plans for user education about the aspect of IL that is important for using OA information.

Findings

Almost all the libraries are involved in OA publishing, either through OA repositories or through OA journals. However, 22 per cent of the libraries do not educate their users about OA. Two most important IL skills in the context of OA are finding OA information and understanding OA citation advantage. Academic libraries in Croatia mostly recognize the questionable publishers as a threat for OA. However, 40 per cent of libraries do not plan any form of education about OA literacy.

Practical implications

The results of this research can be a basis for creating programmes of user education in academic libraries. Some problems are recognized, some skills are identified and further steps could be undertaken to improve academic library users’ OA literacy skills.

Originality/value

The research results contribute to understanding the importance of academic libraries in developing OA literacy of their users. The paper gives results of a survey of Croatian academic libraries and some new perspectives for authors, readers and libraries on how to evaluate OA sources using OA literacy skills.

Keywords

Citation

Hebrang Grgic, I. (2016), "Information literacy and open access in Croatian academic libraries", Library Review, Vol. 65 No. 4/5, pp. 255-266. https://doi.org/10.1108/LR-01-2016-0009

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2016, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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