Evolving and Enduring Patterns Surrounding Student Usage and Perceptions of Academic Library Reference Services

Jodi Jameson, Gerald Natal, John Napp

Abstract

This descriptive study analyzes results from an 18-item survey which assessed students’ usage and perceptions of library reference services at a comprehensive public metropolitan university. Among 235 surveys completed between November 2016 and January 2017, the majority of respondents represented the “Generation Z” population of college students, 18 to 24 years of age. Quantitative and qualitative findings revealed patterns of reference service usage, perceptions of librarians, and barriers and facilitators to seeking help from a librarian. These findings can inform decision-making to improve marketing and outreach to students regarding general reference services, reference models, and liaison roles.

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