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The Strathprints institutional repository is a digital archive of University of Strathclyde research outputs.

Strathprints serves world leading Open Access research by the University of Strathclyde, including research by the Strathclyde Institute of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences (SIPBS), where research centres such as the Industrial Biotechnology Innovation Centre (IBioIC), the Cancer Research UK Formulation Unit, SeaBioTech and the Centre for Biophotonics are based.

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Students' reactions towards e-books in a University library collection

Abdullah, Noorhidawati and Gibb, F. (2009) Students' reactions towards e-books in a University library collection. International Journal of the Book, 5 (1). pp. 107-112. ISSN 1447-9516

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Abstract

This paper reports on a study of e-book usage amongst students with an university library collection. The main objectives of this study were to: (i) investigate how easy or difficult students found it to use e-books by giving them the opportunity to interact with e-books in an operational environment; (ii) determine whether any differences existed in ease of use ratings between students that had and had not used an e-book before the survey; (iii) investigate which e-book features users valued in terms of shelf browsing and content browsing; (iv) measure students' preferences between e-books or printed books given several scenarios; (v) establish whether any differences existed in terms of book format preferences between students that had and had not used an e-book before the survey; (vi) explore students' perceptions and impressions regarding specific features, such as browsable and searchable book indexes and table of contents, in an online library catalogue. The respondents were selected using a systematic random approach from a list of respondents from a previous web survey who had agreed beforehand to participate in this study. A total of 18 participants consisting of undergraduate and postgraduate instructional students completed the study. The findings indicated that in general students found that interacting with e-books in the collection was very easy. Students indicated that their preferred book formats varied depending on the context. In general students were positive about incorporating certain additional e-book features into an online library catalogue. Despite their positive reactions and attitudes towards e-books, students commented that e-books needed to be promoted more strongly and that there were limitations with respect to their use.