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Article
Publication date: 8 June 2012

Melissa A. Hofmann and Sharon Q. Yang

This paper aims to determine the current usage of next generation online public access catalogs (OPACs) and discovery tools in academic libraries in the USA and Canada.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to determine the current usage of next generation online public access catalogs (OPACs) and discovery tools in academic libraries in the USA and Canada.

Design/methodology/approach

Using the same random sample of 260 colleges and universities in the USA and Canada from their original study, the authors revisited each institution's library web page to ascertain whether the OPAC interface(s) offered were the same or different than in their initial data collection. Data was collected and analyzed in October and November 2011.

Findings

Discovery tool use has practically doubled in the last two years, from 16 percent to 29 percent. A total of 96 percent of academic libraries using discovery tools still provide access to their legacy catalog. The percentage of institutions using ILS OPACs with faceted navigation has increased from 2 percent to 4 percent. Combining the use of discovery tools and faceted OPACs, at least 33 percent of academic libraries are now using a faceted interface. Discovery tools that aim to be the “single point of entry for all library resources” are the most recently popular.

Research limitations/implications

About 16 percent of the institutions (n=43) in the sample either did not have web sites or did not provide access to their online catalogs. Thus, some data might be underreported.

Practical implications

The findings identify trends that may inform academic libraries in the quest to providing next generation interfaces to their varied resources.

Originality/value

This study gives a timely update of next generation catalog (NGC) and discovery tool usage in academic libraries in the USA and Canada.

Details

Library Hi Tech, vol. 30 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0737-8831

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 14 June 2011

Sharon Q. Yang and Melissa A. Hofmann

The study described in this paper aims to identify the progress made in the efforts to model current online public access catalogs (OPACs) after the next generation…

Abstract

Purpose

The study described in this paper aims to identify the progress made in the efforts to model current online public access catalogs (OPACs) after the next generation catalog (NGC) in academic libraries in the USA and Canada.

Design/methodology/approach

A random sample of 260 colleges and universities was selected from Peterson's Guide to Four‐Year Colleges 2009, an estimated 10 percent of the total population of 2,560 listed academic institutions. A checklist of 12 features of the NGC was used to evaluate the OPACs of the 260 libraries in the sample. The authors took as the OPAC that which the library linked to as its “catalog,” even though some might be more properly considered “discovery tools” or “discovery layers.” Some libraries used more than one OPAC interface simultaneously; in this case, each OPAC was analyzed separately. In the case of several institutions using the same consortial OPAC, only the first instance of the OPAC was analyzed. About 15 percent of the institutions (n=40) in the sample either did not have web sites or did not provide access to their online catalogs. In all, a total of 233 unique instances of OPACs were analyzed. Data were collected from September 2009 through July 2010. The findings can be extrapolated to the population at the 95 percent confidence level with a confidence interval of ±3.

Findings

While bits and pieces of the next generation catalog are steadily working themselves into the current catalog, academic libraries still have a long way to go. About 16 percent of the OPACs in the sample did not show any advanced features of the NGC. More than half of the libraries (61 percent) had only one to five advanced features in their OPACs. Many of those with six or more NGC features were discovery tools. Only 3 percent of the OPACs in the sample (n=8) demonstrated seven to ten out of the 12 functionalities of the NGC, and they were instances either of WorldCat Local or Summon. The weak areas were federated searching, relevance based on circulation statistics, and recommendations based on patron transactions.

Originality/value

This is the first and only study on a large scale conducted thus far that evaluates the progress towards the NGC in academic libraries in the USA and Canada. The findings help academic librarians to recognize and pin‐point the weak links in implementing a true next generation catalog.

Details

Library Hi Tech, vol. 29 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0737-8831

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 2 March 2012

Sharon Q. Yang

The purpose of this paper is to discuss the latest information on cloud computing in a library context.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to discuss the latest information on cloud computing in a library context.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper adopts an investigative approach including literature review and vendor‐provided information.

Findings

Cloud computing is both a trend and technology to deliver software and hardware as a service, not as a product. It involves a centralized data center, virtual server space, and secure transfer of data over the internet. The alleged advantages of cloud computing include low cost to own (CTO), agile updates, openness, zero initial investment, just to name a few. Lately library system vendors have begun to deliver cloud computing options. For instance, Ex Libris will release Alma in early 2012. It is an Integrated Library System with a discovery layer based on cloud computing. Amazon (Elastic Compute Cloud called Amazon EC2) and other vendors also offer virtual servers for cloud computing and charge customers by hours, usage, and capacity. If this trend continues for the next several years, it is just a matter of time before librarians will face the decision as to whether they should move into compute cloud.

Originality/value

The paper discusses this new trend, focusing on the pros and cons of moving into cloud computing for libraries.

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Article
Publication date: 23 November 2010

Sharon Q. Yang and Kurt Wagner

The purpose of this paper is to evaluate and compare open source and proprietary discovery tools and find out how much discovery tools have achieved towards becoming the…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to evaluate and compare open source and proprietary discovery tools and find out how much discovery tools have achieved towards becoming the next generation catalog.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper summarizes characteristics of the next generation catalog into a check‐list of 12 features. This list was checked against each of seven open source and ten proprietary discovery tools to determine if those features were present or absent in those tools.

Findings

Discovery tools have many next generation catalog features, but only a few can be called real next generation catalogs. Federated searching and relevancy based on circulation statistics are the two areas that both open source and proprietary discovery tools are missing. Open source discovery tools seem to be bolder and more innovative than proprietary tools in embracing advanced features of the next generation catalog. Vendors of discovery tools may need to quicken their steps in catching up.

Originality/value

It is the first evaluation and comparison of open source and proprietary discovery tools on a large scale. It will provide information as to exactly where discovery tools stand in light of the much desired next generation catalog.

Details

Library Hi Tech, vol. 28 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0737-8831

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 27 May 2014

Sharon Q. Yang

– This study aims to ascertain the trends and changes of how academic libraries market and deliver information literacy (IL) on the web.

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to ascertain the trends and changes of how academic libraries market and deliver information literacy (IL) on the web.

Design/methodology/approach

The author compares the findings from two separate studies that scanned the Web sites for IL-related activities in 2009 and 2012, respectively.

Findings

Academic libraries intensified their efforts to promote and deliver IL on the web between 2009 and 2012. There was a significant increase in IL-related activities on the web in the three-year period.

Practical implications

The findings describe the status quo and changes in IL-related activities on the libraries’ Web sites. This information may help librarians to know what they have been doing and if there is space for improvement.

Originality/value

This is the only study that spans three years in measuring the progress librarians made in marketing and delivering IL on the Web.

Details

Library Hi Tech News, vol. 31 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0741-9058

Keywords

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Book part
Publication date: 30 August 2014

Sharon Q. Yang and Yan Yi Lee

This chapter aims to help librarians understand the underlying rationale for Resource Description and Access (RDA) and recognize the great potential of the Semantic Web…

Abstract

Purpose

This chapter aims to help librarians understand the underlying rationale for Resource Description and Access (RDA) and recognize the great potential of the Semantic Web for libraries.

Design/methodology/approach

It explains the linked data model and Semantic Web technologies in basic, informative terms, and describes how the Semantic Web is constructed. Semantic Web standards and technologies are discussed in detail, including URI, RDF, and ontologies. The study also traces the development of RDA and some of the major library Semantic Web projects. The authors explore how RDA shapes bibliographical data and prepares it for linked data in the Semantic Web. In addition, this study examines what libraries in the United States and the rest of the world have achieved in implementing RDA since its release.

Findings

RDA is the correct approach libraries should take.

Originality/value

This is the first and only chapter that covers the development of RDA in other countries as well as in the United States. It is highly informative for anyone who wishes to understand the RDA and Semantic Web and their relevance to libraries in a short period of time.

Details

New Directions in Information Organization
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-559-3

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Abstract

Details

Library Review, vol. 63 no. 8/9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0024-2535

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 7 November 2016

Philip Calvert

Abstract

Details

The Electronic Library, vol. 34 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0264-0473

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Book part
Publication date: 8 July 2013

Abstract

Details

New Directions in Information Organization
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-559-3

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Book part
Publication date: 8 July 2013

Abstract

Details

New Directions in Information Organization
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-559-3

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