INFLUENCE OF ICT SKILLS AMONG LIBRARY PERSONNEL IN THE PUBLIC UNIVERSITIES IN NORTH-EAST, NIGERIA

Muhammad Yahaya Sulaiman, Chinyere N. Ikonne (PhD)

Abstract


Information and communication technology (ICT) has changed the world of library such that activities been carried out manually before are now been automated. The work of library personnel are now being characterized by information and communication technologies. Academic libraries were observed to be more equipped with information infrastructures more than any other type of libraries, but no library no matter how well equipped that doesn't require the service of a workforce that is highly skillful in the use of ICT tools, as such information infrastructure will remain unused or under-utilized. It is in connection to the above, that this study assessed the ICT skills of professional librarians and para professional librarians in the public universities in North-East, Nigeria using a descriptive survey design of quantitative research method, where sample size of two hundred and fifty four (254) were drawn from population of seven hundred and two (702). Questionnaire served as instrument for data collection, with two twenty five participants (which constitute 89% return rate) fully completed and returned the instrument. Result of findings demonstrated a high level of ICT skills on the part of librarians and para professional librarians in selected university libraries, most especially on skills that were considered basic and intermediate ICT skills. Judgement from the study, library staff in those universities can effectively deploy ICT tools for operations in the library. Identified challenges militating against effective utilization of ICT tools in the library for dynamic information service delivery, digitization in particular include; Inadequate funding. high cost of purchasing equipment, preservation of digital resources, security of databases, use of unsuitable software, inadequate computer technologies, hardware and software obsolescence, staff capacity to manage the process of digitization as well as epileptic power supply. Sequential to the above identified challenges, the study recommends that library management should make available adequate information infrastructure and as well make provision for staff development and training. Experienced staff should as well train the upcoming or new staff in the library.


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