Scholarly Electronic Journals: Availability and Use in Universities in Nigeria

Article · October 2012with 28 Reads
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Abstract
Current print journals have become scarce commodity in university libraries of the developing countries serials have become a scarce commodity in university libraries of developing countries. This is because of the high cost of these materials. In Nigeria the situation is worsened by the high exchange rate of the Naira to foreign currencies. Electronic journals have come as a better, cheaper alternative to the print format. Knowledge seekers and information professionals need to be familiar with the use of this novel resource format. This research explored the availability and use of electronic journals (e- journals) in the University of Nigeria, Nsukka amongst academics, including librarians. A structured questionnaire was used to elisit information from respondents. Descriptive statistics was used to present the data for discussion. Findings showed that majority of the sampled population were well aware of the existence of e-journals. 93.13% of the respondents have used them to source information pertaining to their research and studies. Internet-ready computers provided by the university; cybercafés in and around the University and personal laptop computers with wireless access were sources of access. Respondents face varied challenges against smooth access to e-resources. The university library is poised to tackle many of the challenge in order to give their user unrestricted access.

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  • Article
    Since the year 2000, the world has witnessed an increased call for improved access to scholarly information. The cost of scholarly content is a major barrier in accessing needed research information. In order to fully contribute to the global knowledge economy, African scholars need to access both global information resources and locally published works. Few studies have focused on the African knowledge production vis-à-vis access to scholarly research information in Africa. This paper examines access to scholarly research information in sub-Saharan Africa. The review focuses on available published works on access to scientific literature in Africa and seeks to understand Africa’s scholarly publishing scene. In the process, challenges and opportunities regarding access to scholarly research information are explored. Three approaches in addressing these issues emerge in literature – namely (i) open access, (ii) donor-funded schemes and (iii) negotiated access schemes for scholarly content. This review shows that these approaches have leveraged information access to the African researchers who now have almost the same levels of access to scientific literature as their peers in the developed world. African governments, institutions, researchers and librarians still need to exploit the potential of open access. There remain, however, infrastructural issues that need to be addressed to ensure that the African scholar enjoys access to current scientific information.
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