Librarians’ Use of NLA Online Forum for Collaborative Activities
This study assessed the use of Nigerian Library Association (NLA) online forum for collaborative activities among Librarians in Nigeria. The main objective of the study was to examine the use of NLA online forum for collaborative activities among librarians in Nigeria. The study population was made up of 1074 registered librarians on NLA online forum. Purposive sampling technique was used in selecting 143 members of the forum as respondents in the study. A self constructed questionnaire was used for data collection which was analysed using descriptive statistics. Findings from the study reveal that the forum is used mainly by librarians working in the cataloguing and e-library departments. Reasons for using the forum are associated with acquiring information about the library profession, getting ideas for research and identifying experts. Major hindrances to use of the forum were found to be lack of familiarity with online technologies, lack of access to computers with internet connectivity and incessant power outage. The findings however reveal that improved visibility, cross fertilisation of ideas, access to data and widening knowledge of a particular topic are stronger motivations for members of the forum to engage in collaborative activities when compared to factors like access to equipment and funding. Uncooperative attitude of members in the online forum was discovered to be the greatest hindrance against collaboration activities, followed by anonymity of some members of the forum. The study concludes by recommending that libraries provide internet facilities in all sections of the library to encourage greater use of the forum by librarians irrespective of their section of work. Administrators of NLA online forum are also to find means of ensuring that members of the forum identify themselves to check anonymity on the forum among others.
Key words: Collaboration; Librarians; Nigeria; NLA online forum; Online forums
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