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Information literacy: 21st century library research methods for African Studies
http://journals.cambridge.org/abstract_S0266673111000031 ( Publisher's URL )
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Title: Information literacy: 21st century library research methods for African Studies
Series Title: Africa Bibliography
Physical Description: Journal Article
Creator: Reboussin, Daniel
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Place of Publication: Cambridge CB2 8RU, UK
Copyright Date: 2011
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Acquisition: Collected for University of Florida's Institutional Repository by the UFIR Self-Submittal tool. Submitted by Daniel Reboussin.
Publication Status: Published online: November 2011. DOI: 10.1017/S0266673111000031
General Note: Available as published version and as draft submitted subsequent to revision arising from peer review prior to editorial input by Cambridge University Press. This paper was published in Africa Bibliography on Nov. 1, 2011.
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InformationLiteracy:21stCentury LibraryResearchMethodsfor AfricanStudiesDanielA.Reboussin* 1.WhatisinformationliteracyandwhyisitimportantforAfricanstudies? Today ’ sinformationenvironmentforAfricanstudies,asinotherareas,isvastly differentfromwhatitwasinthelastcentury.Thecentralproblemforlibrary researchersinAfricanstudiesdecadesagohingedonawarenessofarelatively fewspecialist,publishedreferenceandotherprintbibliographictoolsfor discoveringrelevantmaterials(Frank-Wilson 2004 :106;seeMcIlwaine 2007a ).ManymoreresourcesareavailablenowfromAfricanandother sources,buttheypresentacomplexterraintonavigateformanyreasons,both oldandnew(seeLimb 2007 ).Thefieldhasbecomemoreinterdisciplinaryin termsofdatasourcesandsubjectmatter,makingbibliographicsearchesinany singletopical,geographical,ordiscipline-basedsource(oreveninthemost comprehensiveindexdatabases)lesslikelytofulfilallofone ’ sscholarlyneeds. Whilescholarlysourcesofdocumentationarefreelyavailableonline,thesemay befragmentary,idiosyncraticorincompleteascitationsaremadeavailable passivelyandwithoutcontextthroughservicessuchasGoogleScholar.1Studentsmayencounterlibraryresourcesonlinewithouthavingdevelopedthe criticalevaluationskillsandcontextualjudgementthatmoreexperienced scholarsmaytakeforgranted(Hargittai etal 2010 ),andwhichmaybe essentialtoemployduringlibraryresearchtoidentifyandengageeffectively withAfricanscholarlyperspectives. ThisessaycallsforAfricanstudiesacademicprogrammestoeducate studentsininformationliteracy,orlibraryresearchmethods,sothatthey becomemorecapableofnavigatingtherichbutdifficultandincreasingly complexinformationenvironmentofthe21stcentury.Mybackgroundand attentionisontheNorthAmericanuniversityenvironment,somyarguments andconclusionsareinformedprimarilybythisperspective.WhileIhave attemptedtoincorporateAfrican,Europeanandotherworldperspectivesin *DanielA.ReboussinisHeadoftheAfricanStudiesCollectionsattheUniversityofFloridaGeorge A.SmathersLibraries.HisanthropologydoctoralfieldworkwasconductedinSenegalwithwomen migrantstoDakarfromtheLowerCasamanceregion.HisworkintheDepartmentofSpecial&Area StudiesCollectionsincludesarchivalprocessingofAfrica-relatedmanuscriptsandcollaborationwith theUniversityofFloridaDigitalCollections(< http://ufdc.ufl.edu/ >)toprovidefree,worldwide,open accesstotheseuniquematerials.Email:danrebo@uflib.ufl.edu1Librariescanlinksubscription-basedscholarlydatabaseandfulltextresourcestoGoogleScholar, providingaccesstotheirelectronicholdingsforalllibraryuserswhologintotheiruniversityaccounts. AtNorthwesternUniversity, ‘ libraryadministratorsfounda78percentincreaseinrequestsforarticles comingfromGoogleScholarusers ’ (Google 2007 ).Transparencyandseamlessness,twoadvantagesof thisapproach,arealsoproblems:usersremainunawarethattheyareaccessingsubscriptionsourcespaid forbytheirinstitutionallibraries(Herrera 2011 :329).

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thiswork,muchoftheliteratureontheinformation-seekingbehaviouroflibrary researchersfocusesonundergraduatestudentsintheUnitedStates.Muchof myownworkiswithpostgraduateandfacultyresearchers,butarelativelysmall portionofpublishedsourcesfocusonthesemoreadvancedgroups(whose membersbyallindicationsdemonstratequitedifferentresearchbehaviourby disciplineandotherfactors).Myinterpretationoftheoverallliteratureisthat additionaltraininginlibraryresearchmethodsisneededtoimprovelibrary researchskillsateverylevelandthatsuchtrainingshouldbeofferedinasmany differentformats,locationsandsettingsaswecanofferinordertofindways toengagelibraryresearchersinthetimesandplacesthattheyneedassistance. Forsomestudents,formalcredit-bearingcourseworkmaybeappropriate. Onesuchgroup,Iargue,isgraduatestudentsinAfricanstudies,manyofwhom faceparticularchallengesinpursuinglibraryresearchwithintheirfields. Informationliteracy,formulatedconceptuallyintheUSinabout1990,isthe abilitytoengageastrategicapproachindiscoveringappropriate,available sourcesofinformationgivenaresearcher ’ sneedsandresources,allowingthe researchertoadaptandemployresearchskillseffectivelyandefficientlyina complexandchanginginformationenvironmenttoevaluate,use,communicate andmanagefindings(seeBadke 2008 :2 – 4,7;Gibson 2008 :16 – 18;seealso CILIP 2011 ).TheAssociationofCollegeandResearchLibraries ’ (ACRL) reviewofbestpracticesforteachinginformationliteracyrecommendsthe integrationofdisciplinarycontentwithinformationliteracyconceptsthat ‘ resultsinafusionofinformationliteracyconceptsanddisciplinarycontent ’ (ACRL 2006 ;seeJohnson,Arendall,Shocret etal 2010 :53 – 4).University studentsaregenerallyfarlessinformation-literatethantheyimagineorreport, sotheyremainlimitedintheirabilitytoconductscholarlyresearch.Thisisno lesstrueforstudentsinAfricanstudiesthanitisforuniversitystudentsmore generally. Unlessuniversitiescultivateimprovedinformationliteracyamongcurrent students,studentsinturnwillnotbeaseffectiveatgatheringandanalysingor interpretingusefulinformationastheymightbeintheiruniversityworkand later,duringtheirprofessionalcareers.Beyondtheacademy,professionalsmay sufferevenmoreiftheylackastrategicapproachthatpreventsthemfrom developingorincorporatingnewsearchskillsintotheirwork-relatedlibrary researchastechnologieschangethroughouttheirworkinglives.Shortcomings ininformationliteracymayimpedepractitionersfromthediscoveryandimplementationofproven,publishedsolutionstotheproblemstheyarecharged tomitigateandresolve.ThiswasthecaseinonerecentstudyofTanzanian livestockveterinarians,whohadaccesstoarangeofusefulelectronicresources ofwhichfewwereaware,althoughthosewhohadbeentrainedininformation literacydidemployarangeofeffectivesearchingskills(Angello 2010 :13 – 16).2 2SeeTable5listinginorderofgeneralawarenessthefollowingresources,availablewithoutcost(or atasmallinstitutionalcharge)topractitionersinthedevelopingworld:AGORA(AccesstoGlobal OnlineResearchinAgriculture,aFAOproject,see:< www.aginternetwork.org >);HINARI(aWHO projectsponsoringaccessto1,500healthrelatedjournalsfrommajorpublishers,see< www.who.int/ hinari >);Medline,see< www.nlm.nih.gov >;Inform(theInternationalNetworkforOnlineResources andMaterials,see:);CochraneLibrary(anNGOwithofficialtiestoWHO,see < www.cochrane.org >;Ingenta,see< www.ingentaconnect.com >;OARE,apublic-privatepartnership sponsoredbytheUnitedNationsEnvironmentProgrammeandYaleUniversity,see: < www.oaresciences.org >;TanzaniaDevelopmentgateway,see:< www.tanzaniagateway.org >;viii Introduction

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AsimilarcasewasreportedforagroupofKenyanmedicalprofessionals (KamauandOuma 2005 :6).TheseexamplesarefrustratingfromanAfricanist librarian ’ sperspectivebecausetheyillustratehowinsufficientlevelsof informationliteracyeffectivelypreventaccesstoappropriatescholarly informationresources,despitegreateffortandprogressinimprovingthe availabilityofsuchresourcestoresearchersandpractitionersindeveloping areas(seeMurray 2009 ).3OneofthemostrewardingaspectsofmyworkasanAfricanstudieslibrarian isteachingstudentshowtoovercomethedifficultiesofworkingwithAfrican andotherscholarlyresourcestomoreeffectivelyandstrategicallyengagein libraryresearchrelatingtoAfrica.Whileinstructionplaysaroleinmanyofmy encounterswithlibraryresearchers,includingemailmessageexchanges, classroomorientationsandone-to-oneconsultationsinmyoffice,themost thoroughandeffectivewaytodevelopstudents ’ informationliteracyforAfrican studieslibraryresearchhasbeenwiththegraduatecreditcoursethatIhave taughtforovertenyears.Inthisessay,Idescribewhatweknowoflibrary researchandinformation-seekingbehavioursofstudents(muchofitthanksto theincorporationofethnographicmethodsintostudiesofhowstudents perceiveanduseinformationresourcestoconducttheirresearch),considerthe diversityoftheirskillslevelsandarguethatthereisanoverallneedformore (andmoreformal)traininginlibraryresearchmethods.Itishelpfulto understandhowstudentsarepursuinglibraryresearchpriortointroducing moreeffectiveresearchstrategiestothem.Whileusefulworkaroundsolutions tointroduceimprovedstudenttraininginlibraryresearchhavebeendeveloped andpursuedbycreativeinstructionallibrarians,ImakethecaseforwhatI considerthemosteffectivelong-termsolutionforAfricanstudiesandother graduatestudents:offeringfor-creditinformationliteracycoursesdesigned specificallyfortheirdisciplinaryneeds.Finally,Isummarizethecontentsofmy course,emphasizingtheconceptual,strategicapproachthatIhavefoundto workbesttodramaticallyimprovethelevelofstudents ’ informationliteracy. 2.Studentinformation-seekingbehaviourwithinandoutsidelibraries Thereissometruthtothestereotypicalimageofthetechnologicallyskilled universitystudent.Havinggrownupinaworldofseeminglyubiquitous electronicgamedevices,networkedcomputers,wirelesscommunications, sophisticatedgadgetsandinstantaneousonlineaccesstotrovesofinformation, manyuniversitystudentsseemutterlyateasewitheverythingdigital,internet, wireless,andmobile;theyappeartobenaturallygiftedexpertsatrapid informationaccessfromanywhere.Whilesuchstudentscertainlyexist,theyare notasrepresentativeoftheiruniversitypeersassomemayimagine.Asan academiclibrarianatalargeuniversity,Imeetmanystudentswhoare embarrassedbytheirlackofskillsinelectronicinformationsearching, unfamiliaritywithlibraryresearchandinability(orunwillingness)tobein constantmobilecontact.Theyknowwhatisexpectedofthemandunderstand thattheydonotfitthisoversimplifiedimage.Themajorityofstudentsmay TanzaniaOnline,see:< www.tzonline.org >;HealthandWellnessResourceCentre,see:< www.gale. cengage.com/Health/HealthRC/about.htm >;andAfricaJournalsOnline,see:< www.ajol.info >.3SeealsoHarris(n.d.)foranexampleofoneexceptionalvolunteerefforttoeducatehealthcare practitionersinAfrica.Introduction ix

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neverrequesthelpwhenconfrontedbyalibraryresearchproject,despitethe availabilityofreferencelibrarianswhoareeagertoassist(orreferthemto disciplinaryspecialists)throughawidevarietyofconvenientcommunication channels. Academiclibrariansmaybepronetobelievethat ‘ digitalnatives ’ (Prensky 2001a 2001b ), ‘ Millennials ’ (HoweandStrauss 2000 2007 ),or ‘ net generation ’ students(Tapscott 1998 1999 )enteruniversitywithwell developedonlinesearchskills,demandingnewservices(GardnerandEng 2005 ;Gibbons 2007 ).Thisgeneralizedimpressionmaybeduetoselection biasamongthosestudentswhoaremostvocalandwillingtoapproach librariansandpublicserviceorreferencedesks,whereasonestudyreported thatupto85percentofstudentswereanxiousaboutlibraryresearch assignments,embarrassedattheirlackoffamiliarityandunwillingtoreveal theirignorancebyrequestinghelpfromlibrarians(Mellon 1986 :162;see Fister 2002 ;Vondracek 2007 ;Bridges 2008 ;AsherandDuke 2011 ).Agood dealofresearchdemonstratesthatuniversitystudentsareadiversegroupin termsofskillslevels,use(or,astheseauthorsdemonstrate,avoidance)of libraryresourcesandbuildingsandexpectations.Thesecharacteristicsreflect economic,gender,culturalorracial,educational,anddisciplinarybackgrounds (Whitmire 1999 2001 2002 2003 ;Bridges 2008 ;Hargittai 2010 ).Thereis noneedforeducatorstorevolutionizereliableeducationalmethodsorfor librarianstoreshapebasiclibraryservicessimplybecauseofthechanging backgroundsofsomeofourmostvisiblestudents.Their ‘ everydaytechnology practicesmaynotbedirectlyapplicabletoacademictasks ’ (Bennett etal 2008 : 781).Eventhosestudentsalreadycomfortablewithdigitaltechnologiesasdayto-daytoolsoutsideofacademianeedtolearnsomeofthespecificapproaches andsearchtechniques(forbothprintanddigitalresources)requiredfor effectivescholarlyresearch(Barry 1997 ;Kai-WahChu etal 2007 2008 ). Amongtheseareskillsinindependentlyevaluatingthecredibilityand appropriatenessofsourcesdiscoveredonline,ratherthannaivelytrusting searchenginerankings,commercialrelevance-sortingalgorithmsandpaid placementdealsbetweenadvertisersandsearchengineproviders. ‘ Howusers gettoaWebsiteisoftenasmuchapartoftheirevaluationofthedestination siteasanyparticularfeaturesofthepagestheyvisit ’ (Hargittai etal 2010 :486; seeFlanaginandMetzger 2007 ). Scholarlyandgeneralinformationenvironmentsarelargeandcomplex; librariesthemselvespresenttheirownorganizationalandnavigational challenges(bothphysicallyandonline).Rapidtechnologychangelimitsthe long-termvalueofspecificsearchskillsandchallengesallofuswhoworkinthis changinginformationenvironmenttoconstantlybuildnewawarenessand upgradeourskills.Basedonempiricalresearchemployingethnographic methodsatseveralUSMidwesternuniversities,AndrewAsher,leadresearch anthropologistattheEthnographicResearchinIllinoisAcademicLibraries (ERIAL)Project,recentlysummarizedthissituationwithregardtouniversity students:“ Studentsdonothaveadequateinformationliteracyskillswhentheycometo college ... evenhigh-achievingstudents ... they ’ renotgettingadequate trainingasthey ’ regoingthroughthecurriculum.Studentoveruseofsimple searchleadstoproblemsofhavingtoomuchinformationornotenoughx Introduction

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information ... bothstemmingfromalackofsufficientconceptualunderstandingofhowinformationisorganized, ” hesaid.Thoselibrariesthathave triedtoteachgoodsearchprincipleshavefailed,hecontinued,becausethey havespent “ toomuchtimetryingtoteachtoolsandnotenoughtimetrying toteachconcepts. ” Itwouldbemoreusefulforlibrarianstofocustraining sessionsonhowto “ criticallythinkthroughhowtoconstructastrategyfor findinginformationaboutatopicthatisunknowntoyou ” (Kolowich 2010a ).Alltoofrequently,studentsarelookinginthewrongplaces,orintoofewof therightplaces,whentheyengageinscholarlyresearch.Theydonot necessarilyunderstandhowalibrarycataloguediffersfromjournalindex databases,orthedifferencesamongthetensofthousandsofindexesandother specialistdatabasesavailablethroughtheiruniversityandlibraryaffiliation. Theyalsomaynotbeawarethatloggingintotheironlineuniversityaccounts whileresearchingonlinedramaticallyenhancesevenpubliclyavailable resourceswithsuchbenefitsasfulltextaccess(seeGoogle 2007 ).Somemay beeffectiveworkinginonedatabase,orinafewsearchinterfaces(each incorporatingmanydatabases),butmaynotbeawareofhowbesttomodify theirresearchtechniquesinothersettings.Evenamonggraduatestudents (whogenerallyhavedevelopedbetterskillsinusingspecificjournalsets, bibliographicindexdatabasesandsimilarresources)awiderangeof informationresourceawareness,researchsophisticationandtechnicalsearch skillsisevidentinreviewinginitialclassroomexercises.Manylibraryusers (oftenusinglibraryandotherinformationresourcesfromoutsidethephysical librarybuilding)needassistancetousetheseinformationsystemseffectively andefficientlytoconductscholarlyresearch(Suchman 1987 2007 ). Animportantfirststepinknowinghowbesttosupportandassistacademic researchersseekingscholarlyinformationistoimproveourunderstandingof theirneedsbylearninghowtheyconductlibraryresearch.Librarianshave recognizedtheimportanceofunderstandinglibrarycommunitiesasameansof improvingservicestotheirusersforoveracentury(seeCutler 1896 ;Stingley 1919 ;Wheeler 1924 ).Ourfirstinclinationinseekinglibraryuserperspectives andinputisoftentoaskthemdirectlythroughsurveys.Whilesurveysmaybea usefulmethodforassessingwhatlibraryuserswantorneed,therearerisksto relyingonsurveyresponsesalone(seeBernard 2011 ;MillerandSalkind 2002 ). Forexample,samplingbiasisdifficulttoavoid:includingpeoplewhowalkinto thelibrarymaybeaskewedrepresentationoftheoverallpopulationoflibrary resourceusers,whileonlineusersmaynotbewellrepresentedbythosewho respondtoanonlinesurvey.Validityisnotoriouslydifficulttoestablishusing surveymethods(forexample,respondentsmayreportsatisfactionbecausethey arenotawareofmissingbutusefulresources).Furthermore,therearestrong indicationsthatstudentsgenerallyevaluatetheirownresearchskillsasabove average(seeTwenge 2006 ;TwengeandCampbell 2009 ),wheninfactthey maymostoftenrelyongeneralonlinesearchtools,ratherthanspecialist resourcesbettersuitedforscholarlypurposes.4Asonerecentresearchteam 4InformationprovidersareunderpressuretoemulateGoogle ’ ssimplesearchinterface.However, overrelianceonGoogledoesnotservescholarlypurposeswell(seeWalsh 2004 ;Zell 2006a ;Kolowich 2010b ).Moststudentsdonotunderstandwhatinformationsourcesare – andarenot – includedin Googlesearches,thestructureoftheinformationavailabletothesearchengine,howsearchresultsareIntroduction xi

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putit: ‘ peopledonotnecessarilydowhattheyreportonsurveys ’ (Hargittai etal 2010 :486). Therearemanyexamplesofwelldesignedsurveys5thatanswerimportant questionsandprovidevaluableinsightsforlibrarians,publishersandscholars asweevaluatetheimpactsandoptionsinprovidinglibraryservicesandworkto improveaccesstoandawarenessofscholarlyresources(seeWhitmire 2002 ; Heath etal 2004 ;ChrzastowskiandJoseph 2006 ;RadfordandSnelson 2008 ; Bridges 2008 ;SchonfeldandHousewright 2010 ).Butemployingavarietyof socialresearchmethodsinlibrariesprovidescomplementarysourcesof evidenceandotherimportantbenefits.Focusingobservationdirectlyon researcherandlibraryuserpractices(ratherthanonattitudes,opinionsand self-reportedactions)providesanopportunitytogatherdatanotavailableto surveys,whichisespeciallyimportantinbuildingawarenessofissuesor problemsnotyetidentified.Byconductingbehaviouralresearch,weallow ourselvestheopportunitytoseelibraryresearchersinanewlightandtobe surprisedbyourfindings.Bypayingattentiontochangesinlibraryresearch behaviour,wecandevelopstrategiestoreachourclientelemoreeffectively, teachtheprinciplesofinformationliteracyandprovidestudentswiththetools theyneedtoexcelinarapidlychanginginformationenvironment. Onewaytoinvestigatelibraryusers ’ informationseekingpatternsmoreor lessindirectlyistointerviewandobservehowtheyinteractwithreference librarians,engagewithlibraryservicesandsharewiththeircolleaguesthe resourcestheyhavefound(seeEllis 1989 ;O ‘ DayandJeffries 1993a 1993b ; Folster 1995 ;NardiandO ’ Day 1996 1999 ;SadlerandGiven 2007 ).Citation patternsareindirectevidencethatcanbeunobtrusivelyobserved,asscholarshiprequiresdocumentingconsultationwiththearchive,allowingothersto accessdatasourcesforindependentanalysisandinterpretation.Citation patternanalysisallowsconvenientcomparisonovertimeandacrossdisciplines aswellasconcreteevidenceoftheimpactofarapidlychanginginformation environmentonscholarlypractices.Thesestudiesmaysuggestwaysthat librariescantargetparticularacademicareasforimprovedservices(see Broadus 1987 ;WilberleyandJones 1989 ;Ellis etal 1993 ;Watson-Boone 1994 ;Brown 1999 ;Hiller 2002 ;Hemminger,DihuiLu,Vaughan etal 2007 ; Evans 2008 ;KayongoandHelm 2009 ;Smyth 2011 ).6Appliedanthropologyistheemploymentoutsideofacademiaofresearch methods,theoriesandconceptsfromthediscipline.It ‘ becamearecognized disciplineintheprewarcolonialepoch ’ (Thompson 1976 :2).7Applied anthropologistshaveplayedanimportantroleinbringingbehaviouralresearch rankedforrelevancyandreturnedtotheuser,orhowadvancedsearchescanimproveresults(see Tenopir 2002 ).5Usingalesscommonmethod,Daly( 2011 )employsasmallsample,intensiveinterviewtechnique toexploreDukeUniversityundergraduatehonoursprogrammeparticipants ’ researchstrategiesand processes.6SeeWebb,Campbell,Schwartz etal .( 1966 :37)foraclassicexampleofanunobtrusivemeasure: thatofmuseumexhibitpopularitybasedontilewear.Evans( 2008 )isparticularlyinterestingforthe debateinspiredbyhiscontroversialfindingthat,asthescholarlyarchivehasbeenopenedthrough convenientelectronicaccess,socialsciencecitationshave(counterintuitively)narrowed.7Theearliestknownuseoftheterm ‘ appliedanthropology ’ datestoan1881meetingoftheRoyal AnthropologicalInstitute(Bodley 1999 :173).Thiswasnotalocalizedoridiosyncraticusage,asDaniel Brintonusedtheterminhis1895speechonPaulBrocainWashingtonDC(Peattie 1958 :4).Edward BurnettTylor(afounderofEnglishsocialanthropology)calledanthropologya ‘ policyscience ’ andxii Introduction

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methodstomanyfieldsandorganizations.Anthropologistsconducting researchoncampusandinlibrariesmaybringmediaattentionthatplaysonthe ironythatmundane,stereotypicallyformal8institutionsshouldinterest ethnographers,associatedmorewithworkinfar-offlandsthanamongourown ‘ digitalnatives ’ .Infact,anthropologistshaveworkedinfamiliarorganizations (seeAgar 1980 ;vanMaanen 1988 )andonuniversitycampuses(seeMoffatt 1989 ;Nathan 2005 )fordecades.Noneofthisshouldbesurprising:theorigins ofanthropologyasadisciplinelieinanengagementwiththeimportantsocial issuesofthe19thcentury.9Theearliestexamplesofethnographicmethodsemployedinresearch relatingtolibrariesgrewfromworkontheroleofinformationtechnologyin organizations(seeOrlikowski 1991 ;OrlikowskiandBaroudi 1991 ).Authorsin technicalfieldssuchasinformationsystemsdesign(Bentley,Rodden,Sawyer etal 1992 ;AvisonandMyers 1995 ;HarveyandMyers 1995 ;Harvey 1997 ; Hartmann etal 2009 ),informationretrieval(Ellis 1989 )andhuman-machine interfaces(Suchman 1987 ,seealso 2007 2ndedition;NardiandO ’ Day 1996 1999 )havenotgenerallybeenprofessionalanthropologists,buthaveemployed andadvocatedethnographicmethodstounderstandinformation-seeking patterns,closelyrelatedtolibraryresearchbehaviours.Amongtheseauthors, onlySuchmanandNardiareprofessionalanthropologists.Suchmanworked for20yearsasaresearcheratXerox ’ sPaloAltoResearchCenter(PARC), developinginformationsystemsbasedonherethnographicstudiesofwork. Nardi,withresearchpartnerO ’ Day,acomputerscientistwithoverlapping experienceinresearchlaboratoriesatHewlett-Packard,AppleComputerand PARC,focusesoncorporatereferencelibrariansandservicesatthese institutions(NardiandO ’ Day 1996 ).Consideredgroundbreakingbymany, thisarticleismuchappreciatedbyreferencelibrariansthemselves,whoare identifiedasa ‘ keystonespecies ’ inthe ‘ informationecologies ’ ( ibid .:81)of modernorganizations(importantinmakingtechnologyworkwellforusers). BoththisstudyandSuchman( 1987 )emphasizetheunderappreciatedimportanceofhuman,expertagentsinmediatingtheengagementofpeoplewith technologicalresources,providinguserswithmoreresourcesthantheyknow theyneedandplayingarolethattheauthorssuggestwillneverbeeffectively subsumedbythesoftwareagentsthatmaynonethelesssupplementthem. Anextendedobservationofacademiclibraryserviceswasconductedby Pedersen,Espinola,Huston etal .( 1991 ),butinmanywaysKlopfer ’ s( 2004 ) JamesHunt,co-founderoftheAnthropologicalSocietyofLondon(whichmergedwithrivalgroupsto createtheRoyalAnthropologicalInstitute),usedtheterm ‘ practicalanthropology ’ (Simonton 2010 ). Between42to60percentofPh.D.anthropologistsandvirtuallyallM.A.anthropologistsworkoutside theacademyatpresent(Guerrn-Montero 2008 :1;seeFiske 2008 ;KediaandvanWilligen2005).The historyandscopeofappliedanthropologyisreviewedbyNolan( 2003 );EddyandPartridge( 1987 );Fox ( 1991 );Peattie( 1958 );Rylko-Bauer etal .( 2006 );Simonton( 2010 );vanWilligen etal .( 1989 );and vanWilligen( 2002 ).8Modernlibrariesanduniversitiestracetheiroriginstomedievalmonasticpractices,butthereare classicalsurvivalsintheseinstitutionsaswell,nottheleastofwhichareofficialcomplaintsattheircost. In Detranquillitateanimi (ix,4 – 7)SenecatheYoungerarguesthat ‘ Suchamassofbooksjust overwhelmsthestudentanddoesn ’ tteachhimanything ’ (Setton 1960 :373).9‘ TheethnologicalsocietiesofLondonandParis[foundedintheearly19thcentury] were ... abolitionistorganizations ’ (Peattie 1958 :4);AmericanlawyerandanthropologistLewisHenry MorganappliedhisresearchtodefendIroquoislandrightsagainsttheOgdenLandCompanyinthe 1840s(MorganandWhite 1993 :2,54;seealsoArmstrong 1978 ).Introduction xiii

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ethnographyofpopularsidewalkcommerciallibrariesinIndiarepresentsa closerantecedenttotheapproachofcurrentworkinconsideringthe communitycontext.Whileother ‘ interactiveobservationsofusersorlibrarians withinparticularlibraries ’ (e.g.,PendletonandChatman 1998 )employthe termethnographic,fewconsiderhowthecommunityofusersinteractswiththe informationecologiesofthelibrary: ‘ Likemuseums,librariesarecomplex institutionswhosepersonnelandtechnologiesmediateformalandinformal practicesoflearning,entertainmentandcommunication. ... Librarystudies wouldbenefitfrombroaderethnographicresearchthatplaceslibrariesin communitiesandsocieties ’ (Klopfer 2004 :106).Theauthorsuggests Durrance( 1995 2001 )isabettermodelforthisbroaderview.Morerecent work,suchasthatofDent(DentandYannotta 2005 ;Dent 2006 ;DentGoodman 2011 ),offersanethnographicperspectiveofaUgandacommunity libraryandinsightintoapplyingethnographicresearchmethodsinlibraries (includinghistoricalprecedentsincommunityanalysis).Severalrecentstudies ofAfricancommunitiesandtheiruseoflibrarieshavebeenrecentlyreportedas well(seeKwake etal 2005 ;Chilimo etal 2011 ;andStilwell 2011 ),while participantobservationmethodswereusedtoinvestigatefacultyresearch behaviour(whoselibraryresearchmethodsweregenerallycharacterizedas ‘ trialanderror ’ )byethnographersatseveralSwedishuniversities(Haglundand Olsson 2008 :55). Anemergingtrendintheethnographicstudyoflibrariesandlibraryusers appearstobelargelyassociatedwithprojectstodesignlibraryservices,redesign spaces,buildnewfunctionalareasandestablishinformationorlearning commons(seeBeagle 1999 ;Bisbrouck 2001 ;Bennett 2005 ).Whenbuilding projectsareplanned,fundsmaybecomeavailabletohireconsultants,opening uppossibilitiesforethnographicresearchfocusingonlibraryusers.Anearly exampleofsuchstudieswasconductedatTheUniversityoftheSouth (O ’ Connor 2005 ),butgreaterattentionhasbeenfocusedonthe ‘ Rochester Study ’ attheUniversityofRochester ’ sRiverCampuslibraries(seeFosterand Gibbons 2007 ).Inpartthismaybebecausethelatter(directedbyan anthropologist)appearstohaveinspiredsomanyothereffortsatemployinga rangeofbroadlyethnographicmethodstounderstandstudentbehaviourwith relationtolibraryresourcesandbuildings(seeSuarez 2007 ;Gabridge etal 2008 ;Bryant 2007 2009 ;Bryant etal 2009 ;Delcore etal 2009 ;Applegate 2009 ;Gilbert,Hulsberg,Monson etal 2010 ;DukeandAsher 2011 ).These studieswereundertakenatBrockUniversityinCanada,theMassachusetts InstituteofTechnology,LoughboroughUniversity(UK),CaliforniaState UniversityatFresno,IndianaUniversity-PurdueUniversityIndianapolis, NorthwestMissouriStateUniversityandbytheEthnographicResearchin IllinoisAcademicLibraries(ERIAL)Project,whichincludesDePaul University,IllinoisWesleyanUniversity,NortheasternIllinoisUniversity,the UniversityofIllinoisatChicagoandtheUniversityofIllinoisatSpringfield. Giventhattheseprojectshaveallbeenreportedinthelastfiveyears,thebreadth oftheirgeographicalrepresentationandthediversityoftheirinstitutional characteristicsareremarkableandtheirfindingsrichlydeserveattention. InareviewoftheRochesterstudy,Seadle( 2007 )callstheprojecta milestone,asabout30percentofthelibrary ’ sprofessionalstaffwereinvolved intheresearch(seeFosterandGibbons 2007 :55),butalsobecauseofthe innovativeuseofadiversesetofmethodsthatincludedgivingcamerastoxiv Introduction

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students,askingthemtotakephotographsanddrawmapstohelpthelibrarians understandtheirsocialconstructsofthelibrarylandscape( ibid .:48).The Rochesterstudyhasattractedspecialistjournalisticcoveragein TheChronicleof HigherEducation and LibraryJournal (seeCarlson 2007 ;Marshall etal 2007 ), producing,forexample, ‘ oneofthemostpopulararticles TheChronicle hasrun inrecentyears ’ (Carlson 2009 ).10Anumberofconferencesessions,workshops,blogentriesandthelikehavefollowed,concentratingtoalargeextent onundergraduatestudy,work,orresearchpractices(seeBishop 2010 ;CARLI 2010 ).Alsoannouncedforpublicationthisautumnistheeditedvolumeonthe ERIALprojectentitled CollegeLibrariesandStudentCulture (DukeandAsher 2011 ).113.Studentlibraryresearchandtheneedforbetterinformationliteracy Whatdowecurrentlyknowaboutstudentlibraryresearchbehaviour?Even goodstudentsatprestigiousinstitutions(suchasMIT)lacksufficient awarenessofthescholarlyresearchtoolsthatacademiclibrariesprovideand theskillstousethemeffectively(Gabridge etal 2008 :521 – 2).Theyoveruse generalresourcesandunderusescholarlytoolssuchasthelibrarycatalogueand journalindexdatabases.While ‘ thetypicalstudentin[theRochesterstudy]was familiarwithdatabasesotherthanGoogle ’ (FosterandGibbons 2007 :8;see Herrera 2011 :323),theymaystillunderusescholarlyresourcesinfavourof familiar,everydaysearchengines.Studentsmayevaluatewebsitesbasedonthe perceivedprofessionalismofpagedesign,oronofficial-appearingnamesand logos(AsherandDuke 2011 ).TheyliketheextremesimplicityofGoogle ’ s screendesign(Seadle 2007 :617)andnavelytrustthispopularsearchengine brandtoplacethebestandmostappropriateresultsontop:Tocompletemanyoftheassignedtasks,studentsoftenturnedtoaparticular searchengineastheirfirststep.Whenusingasearchengine,manystudents clickedonthefirstsearchresult.Overaquarterofrespondentsmentioned thattheychoseaWebsitebecausethesearchenginehadreturnedthatsite asthefirstresultsuggestingconsiderabletrustintheseservices.Insome cases,therespondentregardedthesearchengineastherelevantentityfor whichtoevaluatetrustworthiness,ratherthantheWebsitethatcontained theinformation(Hargittai,Fullerton,Menchen-Trevino etal 2010 :479). Studentsdifferintheextenttowhichtheyunderstandthereasonsbehind searchenginerankings.Afemalehealth-sciencesmajordescribedhersearch routineasfollows: “ IusuallyclickonthefirstthingthatIsee. ” Askedto clarifyhowshedecidestopickthefirstresult,sheemphasized, “ Well,Iknow theonesthatare[ ... ]inhere[pointingtotheshadedSponsoredLinksection onaGoogleresultspage]they ’ rethemostrelevanttowhatI ’ mlookingfor. ” Interestingly,inthiscaseshewaspointingtoahighlightedlinklabelledasa SponsoredLinkbyGoogle.Whilesponsoredlinksmaywellbeapplicableto asearchquestion,theirplacementontopoftheresultspageisatleastinpart determinedbyfinancialincentivesratherthansolelyrelevance,apointthe 10‘ Ananthropologistinthelibrary:theU.ofRochestertakesacloselookatstudentsinthestacks ’ TheChronicleofHigherEducation53(50):A26,17August,< http://chronicle.com >,accessed27May 2011.11Iwouldliketothanktheauthorsandpublisherforprovidingmewithapre-publicationdraftofthis volume.Introduction xv

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respondentdidnotraiseatall,presumablybecauseshewasunawareofit ( ibid .:484).Moststudentsdonotaskforhelpwiththeirlibraryresearchfromlibrarians (favouringadvicefrompeersorinstructors).Thismaybeinpartbecausethey considerlibrarians ‘ bookexperts ’ ratherthaninformationspecialists: ‘ Iwould talktoalibrarianwhenIneedtofindbooks.Ican ’ timagineanythingelseI wouldneedthemfor ... ’ (FosterandGibbons 2007 :10). ‘ Inthemindsof students,librariansequalprint ’ ( ibid .:60).Otherresearchsuggeststhatmost studentsfaceanxietywhenaskedtodolibraryresearchandmayavoidseeking helpinordertosaveface,ormayhavenotfoundsatisfactoryhelpinthepast (Mellon 1986 :162;seeFister 2002 ;Vondracek 2007 ;Bridges 2008 ;Miller andMurillo 2011 ).Accesstoanduseofscholarlyresearchresourcesprovided bylibrariesisnotrelatedtophysicalpresenceinlibrarybuildings,butis decentralizedtomanyoff-sitelocations,resultinginfeweropportunitiesfor buildinglibrarian-researcherworkingrelationships(HaglundandOlsson 2008 : 55 – 6).Therearefeweropportunitiestoengageandteachserendipitouslyor opportunisticallyaslibrarianshavedoneinthepast(Fister 2002 ).12Fromtheir perspective,the ‘ libraryisforstudying ’ andthatisgenerallythereasonthey visitanduselibrarybuildings.Finally,universitystudentsrepresentadiverse, heterogeneouspopulation.Theirhabitsandneedsvarybydiscipline, demographicsandothercharacteristics.Inthefollowingsection,Iconsiderthe implicationsofthesefindingsforlibraries. Theseoverallfindings,firstandforemost,supporttheassumptionthat universitystudentswillbenefitfromacombinationoflibrarytrainingsessions andinformationliteracycoursestointroduceseveralscholarlytoolsand supportastrategicapproachtotheirlibraryresearch.Brieftrainingsessions buildawarenessoftherangeoflibraryresourcesandencouragemore sophisticatedsearchingskillswithavarietyofgeneralandspecialistresearch tools.Contactandfamiliaritywithlibrarianinstructorsismostlikelytoreduce anxietyandcreateopportunitiestobuildrapport,engageininformalteaching andbuildanunderstandingoflibrarians ’ areasofexpertise(includingprintand electronicinformation,aswellasotherformats).Insofarasthesesessions involveinteractionwithacademicdepartments,facultyandgraduatestudents, theyalsoprovideopportunitiestodevelopcollaborativerelationshipsamong academicsandlibrarydisciplinaryspecialists.Oneofthemostimportant outcomesinworkshopsandshorttrainingsessionsmaybetointroduce studentstothelibrarianresponsibleforsupportingtheirmajordiscipline(or simplyawarenessthatlibrarydisciplinaryspecialistsexist),encouragingdirect follow-upshouldtheywishtoseekassistanceatalaterdate.Alongwithbrief orientationandtrainingsessions,thereisaneedformoreformalandindepth courseofferings,especiallyforgraduatestudentsandotherswhomayneedto developtheirlibraryresearchskillstoagreaterextent. Informationliteracycoursesforcreditareavailableonaminorityof NorthAmericanuniversitycampuses(Owusu-Ansah 2004 2007 ; 12Aninterestingresponsetothedecentralizationoflibraryusewasrecentlyreportedas ‘ gamingthe library ’ .AnMITprofessorpurposelykeptoverduebooksbecausestudentswantingthemweresentto hisoffice.Hetheninterviewedthemaspotentialassistants,knowingtheysharedaninterestinhisareaof expertise(HarvardLibraryInnovationLaboratory 2011 ).xvi Introduction

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Gibson 2008 ).13Giventhissituation,alongwiththelackofinformal opportunitiesthatusedtobethemainstayofentrylevellibraryskillseducation (forexample,interceptingapparentlybefuddledorloststudentsinthelibrary), traininginlibraryresearchmethodsshouldbeintegratedintoavarietyof dispersedstudentactivities.Atmyuniversitylibrary,thegreatesteffortfor manyyearswasdirectedatintroducingabout1,100first-yearEnglishenrollees toasingle,scripted,hour-longlibrarytrainingsessioneachsemester(standard coursenumberENC1101intheStateUniversitySystemofFlorida).This programmefacedproblemsofscalability(Gibson 2008 :15),requiredconstant managementtoscheduleinstructorsandconsumedagreatdealoflibrarians ’ time.Librariansorstaffmembersreadstandardizedscriptsdirectlytolarge sectionsofstudentswithlittleassessmentofwhatlearning(ifany)wastaking place. Iamhappytoreportthatsincethattime,thingshavechanged.Thelibrary instructionprogrammeatmyinstitutionhassincebecomebetterintegrated withacademicdepartmentsandmorecollaborativewithdisciplinary instructors.AcombinedfocusontrainingTeachingAssistantstothemselves incorporateinformationliteracyandspecificlibraryskillsintotheuniversity ’ s first-yearwritingcoursesisthecurrentapproach,providingonlinesupport materialsdirectlytostudentsandreducingtheworkloadconsiderablyformany librariansforwhominstructionisnotaprimaryassignment.Asaresult, academiclibrarians(withdisciplinaryexpertiserangingwellbeyondthefew EnglishDepartmentcoursespreviouslytargetedforsupport)havebeen enabledtorespondmorecreativelytostudentneedsintheirbranchesand disciplineswithavarietyofcomplementarystrategiestoimproveinformation literacyinlieuofformalcourseavailability.Forexample,manyofmy colleagueshavedonesoby ‘ embedding ’ informationliteracycontentinto academiccourseswithinstructorswhocollaboratewithlibrarianstoteach informationliteracymodulescloselyintegratedwithcoursecontent(Dewey 2005 ;Hine,Gollin,Ozols etal 2002 ;Johnson,Clapp,Ewing etal 2011 ;Love 2009 ),creatingpeerbasedinstructionalprogrammes(Deese-Robertsand Keating 2000 ),linkingwithcampuscommonreadingprogrammes(Shoop 2010 )andintegratinglibrarytrainingwithelectronicandsocialgaming (RussellGonzalez,Davis,Dinsmore etal 2008 ).Librariansatoneinstitution offeraworkshoppromisingtrainingto ‘ Googlelikealibrarian ’ (O ’ Kellyand Lyon 2011 ).Whilelibrariesshouldnotsimplyofferusersanythingtheywant, ‘ ourjobistolearnhowtoreachthemandteachthem ’ (Seadle 2007 :618)in thecurrenthighlydecentralizedsituationonuniversitycampuses. Thesecreativeapproacheshavebeenaneffectivewaytointroducebasic informationliteracyconceptstoalargenumberofuniversitystudents,across manyacademicprogrammes.Theyarecomplementedbyseveraladditional strategiesatmyinstitution,includinggeneralandtopicalworkshopofferings, advertisedeachsemesterforstudentsmotivatedenoughtoseekoutbrief instructionalsessionstoimprovetheirlibraryresearchskills.Disciplinaryor liaisonlibrariansoffer ‘ ondemand ’ or ‘ dropin ’ instructionalservicesas targetedone-to-oneconsultationsessionstosupportstudentsinspecific 13About30percentofsurveyedinstitutionsofferedsuchcoursesin1995(Holder 2010 :5). ContributorstoLau( 2008 )indicatethatinatleastsomeothercountries,morecomprehensiveofferings areavailable.Introduction xvii

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programmeswhorequestindividualassistance,mostoftenwithalibrary researchassignmentinhand.Publicserviceandotherlibrariansandstaffoffer instructionalsessionscateredtospecificclassneedsinlibrarytrainingrooms,in theacademicdepartment ’ sclassrooms,orelsewhereoncampus.All disciplinaryliaisonlibrariansatmyinstitutionalsoprovideonline,web-based resourcesandguides(sometimesavailablethroughinstructionalcourse managementsoftwareorasvideos,whichcanbemediatedbychatortelephone referenceservices).Together,theseandsimilareffortsbringlibraryinstruction tousers,whereandwhentheyneedassistance,andprovideacreative,varied andchangingmixofinstructionalopportunitiestoabroadrangeofuniversity studentsacrossallacademicprogrammeareas. Beyondthesevaluableinstructionaleffortstoprovideassistanceto individualsandgroups,formalcoursesshouldbeapartofthemix.French universitieshaveestablishedacomprehensiveapproachthathasreduced attritionsignificantlyamongfirstyearstudents(Lamouroux 2008 :141; Coulon 1999 ).Offeringindependentinformationliteracycoursesisnot withoutcontroversywithinUSlibraries(Holder 2010 :6),wheremanyonly supportinstructionthatiswellintegratedwithacademicprogrammes. Establishingfor-creditinformationliteracycoursesalsomaybehinderedbythe perceptiononuniversitycampusesthattheneedisforremedialortechnical skillstraining,bestaddressedbylaboratories,libraryworkshopsandother supportunitsratherthantheacademiccurriculum.However:Itisonethingtocreateatutorialorholdaclasstoteachsomeonehowto searchadatabase.Itisquiteanothertohelpthatsamepersontonavigatethe troubledwatersoftheinformationrevolutionwithsuchskillthattheright informationforthetaskiseffectivelyandefficientlyfound,evaluated,and thenusedtooptimumadvantagewithinlegalandethicalboundaries (Badke 2008 :7).Theremaybenosubstituteforcredit-bearingcoursestoimprovethe informationliteracysituationoncampuses(Hollister 2010 ).Whiletheconcept ofinformationliteracyispopularandcurrentinlibraryliterature(see:Badke 2008 ,Hine,Gollin,Ozols etal 2002 ,Hollister 2010 ;Lau 2008 ,Mackeyand Jacobson 2005 ,Owusu-Ansah 2004 ,Scales etal 2005 ),theterminologyis unfamiliartomostfacultyintheacademicdisciplinesthatlibrariansserve.In introducingthisconceptoutsideoflibraries,asIhavedoneinthisessay,Irefer to ‘ libraryresearchmethods ’ .Thisapproachresonateswellandappropriately withacademicfacultyandadministratorsasastrategic,contextual,adaptive andholisticapproachtoconductinglibraryresearchwithinthecontextofa discipline,asopposedtosimplytrainingstudentsinspecificskillsor techniques,whicharevulnerabletoobsolescenceasinformationtechnologies change.14 14MyfirstsuccessinthisregardoccurredovertenyearsagowhenIappliedtomyuniversitygraduate curriculumcommitteetoincludesuchacourseinthecatalogue.Thestaffmemberresponsiblefor collectingapplicationsontheirbehalftoldmethatthecommitteewouldneverapprovea ‘ library ’ course atthegraduatelevel.Fortunately,IhadthefullsupportofthedirectorofourCenterforAfricanStudies and,together,wepromoteditasaresearchmethodscourse.Thisapparentlymadesensetothe members,asitwasapproved.IhavetaughtiteachFallSemestersincewithstudentcourseevaluation feedbackthatisconsistentlyhigherthanthecollegeaverage.xviii Introduction

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4.TeachinginformationliteracyforAfricanstudiesgraduatestudents Idesigned,andteam-taughtwithmyformercolleaguePeterMalanchukfor almostadecade,thecourse AfricanaBibliography (coursenumberAFS5061)15fromthegrounduptofocusonlibraryresearchmethods(thoughitwasnamed accordingtoanearlierconceptionoflibraryinstruction).Sincebeforewefirst taughtthecoursein2000,colleaguesatinstitutionsinEuropeandtheUShave promoteddirectingAfricanistlibrarians ’ expertisetowardsthisapproachto teaching ‘ ratherthanspendingtimecreatingnarrowspecializedbibliographies ’ (Johnsen 1998 :67).16AfterdiscussingthehistoryofthecourseatIndiana University,MarionFrank-Wilsonexplainsthat:Thefocusoftheclassisnolongeronhowtofindscarce,hiddenmaterials, butrathertodevelopstrategiesandtechniquestofindawidevarietyof materialsrangingfromprintsourcestooralaccounts,aswellassources foundinAfricanarchives;and,moreimportantly,tobeabletoevaluatethese sourcesfortheirqualityandrelevance(Frank-Wilson 2004 :106).Irecognizetheimportanceofadoptingastrategicapproachtoteaching informationliteracyinAfricanstudies,addressingknownlibraryresearch behaviourpatternstoimprovestudentmethodsandsuccess.Whilemy approachhaschangedovertime,thefollowingthemesguidemypresentation oflibraryresourcesintroducedthroughoutthecourse.Itcanbeastruggleto ensurethattheclassisnotoverwhelmedbyasurveyofresourcesortools,but insteadfocusesontheirstrategicuseaccordingtoaresearchplan.Thesheer numberanddiverserangeofsuchtoolsinalargeacademiclibrarycandistract aninstructorintospendingallavailableclasstimeindescribinguseful resourcesandtechniquesforusingthem.Anyseriousattemptatsurveying Africanstudiesreferenceresourcesrequiresbook-lengthtreatmentandregular updating(seeforexample,Kagan 2005 ;Zell 2006b ;McIlwaine 2007a ).Fora class,itismoreimportanttomaintainafocusonresearchstrategiesthan specifictools:distinguishingbetweeneverydaysearchesoftheopenweband authenticateddeepwebsearchingthatincludesaccesstoproprietaryand scholarlydatabases;developingawarenessoftherangeofpotentiallibrary researchtoolsalongwithanunderstandingoftheirappropriateuse(basedin partontheadoptionoftheresearchnotestechniqueIdescribebelow);and buildingacriticalunderstandingofspecialistAfricanstudiesresourcesthat includesanappreciationoftheconditionsthatmightlimitAfricanscholarship fromdiscoverability.Ialsopromotethecontributionofsomeportionof creativeandscholarlyoutputtoopen-accessresourcesasawayofbuilding high-qualityresearchrepositoriesforusebyAfrican-based(andother)scholars whomaynothavethebenefitofaccesstocommerciallypublishedand distributedjournalsorothersourcesofscholarship. 15Thecoursesyllabusisavailableonline:< http://guides.uflib.ufl.edu/content.php? pid=6493&sid=1480100 >.16Thisassertionwasnotacceptedwithoutcontroversy,accordingtoWalsh( 2004 :8).Kagan( 1998 : 69 – 72)offersabriefhistoryofthesmallhandfulofsuchcoursesatuniversitiesintheUS.Formalcredit coursesinAfricanStudiesresearchstrategiesarecurrentlytaughtatthreeUSinstitutions.Mosthave postedthesyllabusandcoursematerialsontheirwebsites:UniversityofIllinoisatUrbana-Champaign, IndianaUniversityBloomingtonandUniversityofFlorida;asimilarUniversityofCaliforniaat LosAngelesofferingremainsinthecoursecataloguebuthasnotbeentaughtforseveralyears (seeWalsh 2004 :87 – 8).Introduction xix

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Ibeginclassroomdiscussionfromafamiliarpoint,buildingoncommon understandingsandadaptingtheemphasisasIbecomemorefamiliarwith studentsastheclassproceeds(enrolmenthasaveragedsevenstudentsover time,soitiseasytogettoknoweveryone).Everystudententerstheclassroom withsomeexperienceusingGoogleandotheronlinetoolsforeverydayneeds. Aconvenientplacetobeginconversationsaboutplanninglibraryresearchisto askquestionsabouthowtheyuseGoogle.IvolunteerthatIusethissearch enginemanytimeseveryday,leadingdiscussionintohowwebsearches function(conceptually,nottechnically)andthelimitsofwhatinformationis accessibletosearchengines.Theinformationavailabletopublicusersof Googlecanbecalledtheopenor ‘ surface ’ web.Theinvisibleweb,deepwebor darknetreferstoinformationavailableviatheinternetthatisnotaccessibleto generalsearchenginessuchasGoogle(Wright 2009 ). Accesstosuchprivatelycontrolledinformation,whichmaybe500timesas largeasthepublicinformationontheopenweb,maybehiddenforallbut peer-to-peertrustedusers(possiblyprovidingsomeprotectionforillegalor illicitactivities),orlimitedbycommercialdatabasesthatonlygenerateweb pagesdynamicallyonceauserisauthenticatedasapayingcustomerora legitimatememberofthesubscribinginstitution(He,Patel,Zhang etal 2007 : 95;seeKing,Li,Tao etal 2007 ).Atpublicinstitutions,simplyaccessingthe internetfromalibrarycomputermaybeenoughtogainaccesstoproprietary resourcesasalegitimateuser(Mann 2005 :xiv),butremoteuserequires accessingaproxyserver,orpreferably,theinstallationofavirtualprivate network(VPN)programmeontheuser ’ spersonalcomputerormobiledevice. Becausemanyexperiencedusersofpublicresourcesavailableontheopenweb arenotawareofthescaleoftheinvisibleweb,understandingthisdistinction canbeenlighteningandagoodinitiationintothevalueofunderstandingwhya strategicapproachtolibraryresearchisvaluable.IpointoutthatGoogle Scholarbecomesaqualitativelydifferentresourceonceloggedintoauniversity accountsothatlibraryresources,includingfulltextonlinebooksandarticles, canbecometransparentlyandseamlesslylinkedtothecitationsprovidedby GoogleScholar(seeGoogle 2007 )andotherapplications.Thisisagoodpoint todiscussassessingsourcecredibilitythroughevaluationofauthors ’ academic credentials,determiningwhetherornotanarticlehasbeensubjectedtopeer reviewandaconsiderationofpublisherreputation,alongwithattentionto appropriatecitationpracticesinscholarlywriting.Inmyexperience,fewifany graduatestudentshavethenavefaithinGoogle ’ srelevancesortingreportedby Hargittai,Fullerton,Menchen-Trevino etal .( 2010 ). Scholarlyresearchersbeginningworkinanewareawillbenefitgreatlyby employingasimplebutpotenttechnique:keepingalistofsearchterms(such askeyauthors,titles,relevantkeywords,subjectterms,themesandconcepts) derivedfromthesourcesconsultedduringtheirlibraryresearch.Thisenables combiningtheadvantagesofmanyresourcestogether,especiallywhen multipleiterationsofsearchesarerepeatedthroughasetofknownreliableand promisingnewresources.Thissearchnotestechniquecreatesafocused, dynamicaidtotheresearcherbycollectingdifferingconceptualapproaches acrossdisciplines,spellingvariations,alternatetermsandthelike.Theseare importantissuesinworkingwithAfricansubjectmatter,wheretherangeof ethnic,geographicalandothertermsvariesgreatlyovertime,acrossdisciplines andbasedonnationaltraditions(seeKagan 2005 ;McIlwaine 2007a 2007b ).xx Introduction

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Particularlytroublesomearecolonialnamesandtheirchangesafterindependence,politicalsplitsandmergersandcasessuchastheBiafraWarinNigeria, whichhasbeenenteredwithoutthename ‘ Biafra ’ inLibraryofCongress subjectheadings(as:Nigeria – History – CivilWar,1967 – 1970).Otherkinds ofchangesinnamingpracticesoccurwithindisciplinesovertime(Walsh 2004 : 20 – 4,25,37).GretchenWalsh ’ sarticleisthebestsourceIknowofforfocusing student ’ sattentiononthemanywaysthataseeminglygoodsearcheffortcan failinthefaceoftherealitiesthatmakeresearchonAfricantopicsverydifficult indeedandistheonesourceIrequirestudentstoread. Inintroducinglibraryresourcesandbuildingawarenessoftherangeof scholarlyresearchtools,IpromotetheapproachadvocatedbyMann( 2005 ), structuringmypresentationstofirstintroducethevalueofreferencematerials andtheirproperuseasastartingpointforlibraryresearch.Onecannotdevelop aneffectivestrategyforundertakinglibraryresearchwithoutsomefamiliarity withtherangeofpossibleresourcesandasenseofhowinformationis organized.Mann ’ sguideprovidesasurveyofthekindsofgeneralandspecialist referenceresourcesavailableatalargeacademiclibrary.Ialsopresentthemain functionsandgoalsofalibrarycollectionmanagementapproach,where responsibilityfortheintellectualscopeandcohesionofacollectionoflibrary materialsinsupportofanAfricanstudiesacademicprogrammeisintegrated (forexampleselectionofmaterialswithinaknownbudget,controloverthe acceptanceandrejectionofgiftitems,decisionsonlocation,prioritizationfor conservation,reformattingorde-accessioning,etc.)toprovideanappreciation oftheoptionsandlimitationsforalmostanylibrarycollection.Iintroduce otherlibraryfunctionsastheyrelatetoAfricanAreaStudies(e.g.cataloguing, preservation,digitization)andofferanoverviewofcampuslibrarycollections, branches,organizationandthelocationofmaterialsinspecificformats(audio andvideorecordings,governmentdocuments,maps,etc.).Becauselibraries organizecollectionsdifferently,formanyreasons,onemayneedtofamiliarize oneselfwiththegeneralapproachtoarangeofmaterials,subjectsandformats priortonavigatingtheavailableresourcesatanunfamiliarinstitution. Themetaphorofnavigatingthroughaninformationlandscapeor environmentisrelevant,astherearemanyinterrelatedpathsalongwhich bibliographicmaterialscanbeconsidered.Eachprojectsuggestsdifferentsets ofresources,soitisusefulforthelibraryresearchertobefamiliarwiththe possibilitiesbeyondhercurrentneeds.Forexample,thehistoryofpublication inagivencountrymaybedocumentedinnationalbibliographies.Myformer colleaguePeterMalanchuksuggestssuchaprogressionforGhanawiththe 36-page GoldCoastLibrary (Cardinall 1924 )listing791items,followedbythe 5,168citationsfromthe16thcenturyto1931inthe384-page Bibliographyof theGoldCoast publishedin1932(reprintedasCardinall 1970 ),aneffortto coverallpublicationsonGoldCoastandGhanafrom1930 – 61(Johnson 1964 ) andsubsequentattemptsatsimilardocumentationbytheGhanaLibrary Boardwith GhanaNationalBibliography .Thissequencedemonstratesthatas thecorpusofnationalpublicationsgrowshistorically,thefocusmustturnto whatevermorespecialistreferencetoolsareavailable,suchasthoserepresented bytopicalanddisciplinarybibliographies.Onealsomayconsultselective individualcountryvolumessuchasthoseinthe Worldbibliographicalseries (see, forexample,Myers 1991 ).Wheremultipleeditionsofabibliographyare available,asMcIlwaine( 2007b )pointsout,earlierworksarenotnecessarilyIntroduction xxi

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subsumedorupdatedbylaterefforts;theymayremainthebestdocumentation ofanearlierperiodandthereforemaydemandconsultationalongsidemore recenteditions.Readingprefatorymaterialallowstheresearchertodetermine thecoverageofagivenwork. Anotherpathacrossthebibliographiclandscapeisthroughtheroleof publishers.Acountry ’ searlyhistoryofpublicationmayfollowaknown institutionalsequence,frequentlybeginningwithcolonialgovernmentprinting (forexample,Mozambique 1854 ;17seealsothearchivalmicrofilmcollections offormerBritishcolonialgovernmentpublicationsintheAfricanStudies AssociationoftheUnitedKingdomseries Governmentpublicationsrelatingto Africancountriespriortoindependence ),orreligiousmissionssuchasthose documentedinthe Records,1799 – 1920 (ChurchMissionarySociety 1960 ). WhenAfricangovernmentsandmissionsreplacedandsoldtheirprinting presses,insomecaseslocalentrepreneursinitiatedprivatepublishingsuchas theOnitshamarketliteratureofNigeria ’ sIgbospeakingarea,wherereaders newlyliterateinEnglishwereeagertobuyinexpensivebooks(Obiechina 1973 ; seeforexampleNwosu 196018).Elsewhere,governmentspromotedliteracyin indigenouslanguageswhilemaintainingcontrolovercontent,asforexample thecolonialgovernmentdidwithShonaandNdebelewriting,throughthe SouthernRhodesiaAfricanLiteratureBureau(laterknownastheZimbabwe LiteratureBureau),createdin1954aspartoftheNativeAffairsDepartment (Krog 2009 ). Asnotedabove,acomprehensivesurveyofAfricanstudiesreference resourcesisbeyondthescopeofasemester-lengthcourseoranarticle(for exemplaryefforts,seeKagan 2005 ;Zell 2006b ;andMcIlwaine 2007a ).Key resourcesforbeginninglibraryresearchinAfricanstudiesincludethesethree titlesaswellas AfricaSouthoftheSahara ,anannualprintencyclopedia publishedsince1971,19whichAfricanaLibrariansCouncilmembers unanimouslythoughinformallyagreedwasthe ‘ desertisland ’ reference resourcetheywouldrecommendforgeneraluse.TheonlineEconomist IntelligenceUnit20database(withitsextensiveprintbackrun)isanother extremelyusefulresourceforbeginningaresearchprojectinanareathat touchesonpoliticsoreconomy.Onefunctionitserves,asdo AfricaResearch Bulletin and AfricaConfidential21(thoughthereareindependentreasonsfor carefulconsiderationofeach),isasanewsdigestthatcanprovidearesearcher withmultiplestartingpoints(specificdates,events,people,organizationsand places)formoredirectedreadingonhistoricaleventsnotindexedbyother means. Afterselectingandconsultingpromisingreferencesources,thebestnext stepintacklinganewlibraryresearchsubjectistorefertothelibrarycatalogue. Familiaritywithlocalcataloguefeatureshelpsinmanysmallways(for example,convenientlyprovidingrecordsinyourpreferredcitationformat, sendinglistsofitemstoyouremail,ortextingbooklocationsandplace referencestoyourmobilephone)beyondsimplyfindingbooksinthestacks. 17BoletimdoGovernodaProvinciadeMocambique < http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00095049 >18MissCordeliaintheRomanceofDestiny < http://ufdc.ufl.edu/AA00004295 >19NowavailableaspartofRoutledge ’ sEuropaWorldonline< http://www.europaworld.com >20EconomistIntelligenceUnit< http://www.eiu.com/ >21AfricaConfidential< http://www.africa-confidential.com >xxii Introduction

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Whileuptohalfofsearchesareforfindingknownitems(Tyckoson 1997 :11), thecatalogueisalsoapowerfuldiscoverytoolforidentifyingunknownrelevant materialsbydevelopingnewresearchpathways,aprocessmademore manageablebyusingthesearchnotestechniquedescribedabove.Being attentivetosubjecttermsinthemostrelevantrecordsretrievedcanyield additionalmaterialsonthetopicthatmaynotbepublishedwiththesame termsonyourlist(suchaswordsinotherlanguages,equivalenttermsthatvary overtime,orusagesthatdifferacrossdisciplines).Thisispossiblebecause cataloguershaveassignedrecordswithuniformheadings. Cataloguing ‘ isaprocessof adding termsthatare standardized “ ontopof, ” or inadditionto,thewordsprovidedbythebookitself ’ (Mann 2005 :23). Becauseinmanylibrariessubjectclassificationsareemployedtoshelvebooks inopenstacks,browsingbecomesfruitfulandallowsserendipitousdiscoveries ( ibid .:46 – 64).WhileTyckosonestimatesthat90percentofresearchcontent remainselusivefromcataloguesearches( 1997 :11),improvementshavesince enhancedmanyrecordswithchaptertitlesandauthors,forexample,e-books areagrowingportionofmanylibrarycollectionsandGoogleBooksSearch providesanautomatedfull-textindexofscannedtitles(Darnton 2009 :33). Thecatalogueisapowerfulresearchtoolbecauseitisacombinationof technical,socialandindividualeffortsthatdonotnecessarilyleadtoperfector perfectlytransparentresults:Fortheindividualscholar,academicresearchmayseemtobeasolitary, lonelypursuit,whethersheissiftingthroughvolumesofdecades-oldjournals inthestacksorsurfingtheWeb.Infact,successfulresearchdependsonthe combined(ifnotalwayscooperative)effortsofwidelydispersedpeople,often unknowntooneanother,including:authors,publishers,indexers,catalogers, referencelibrarians,aswellastheresearchersthemselves.Decisions,policies, andpracticesofanyofthesemanyactorsaffectthesuccessofresearch (Walsh 2004 :14).Forscarcelytreatedtopics,localresourcesmaynotbeavailableorwillnot suffice,soresearcherscansearchmulti-library ‘ meta-catalogue ’ databasessuch asWorldCat,22thecataloguesofinstitutionalconsortia,ormembershipgroups suchastheCenterforResearchLibrariesforleadsonaccessalternativessuch asinter-libraryloan. ThestrategiccycleIrecommendconcludeswithaconsultationofacademic journalindexes,includingspecialistindexesthatmaysimplyidentifyrelevant scholarlyworkaswellasconvenientintegratedindexdatabasesthatprovide accesstoentirefull-textarticles.Academicfacultymaynotneedanyother resourcesthanjournalindexes(possiblyaccessedviaaGooglesearch)iftheir fieldreliesprimarilyonjournalpublications(forexample,somephysical sciences).Theymayevenforgettoadvisestudentstofollowthelibraryresearch pathwayoutlinedhere.Asfull-textresourceshavebecomeincreasingly accessiblebymeansofindexdatabases,theallureofskippingdirectlytothe onlinejournalliteraturehasgrown.However,inexperiencedresearchersmay getlostinthespecificityofscholarlyarticlesbeforetheyhavefullyintegrateda sufficientlybroadunderstandingoftheirfieldofstudy.Tosimplyaccessa 22WorldCat< www.worldcat.org/ >Introduction xxiii

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knownarticle,JSTOR23(whichincludesanexcellentsetofAfricanstudies journalsinitsdatabase)maybethebestfirstplacetogo.However,inmany casesthereisaten-yearembargoonarticlesinJSTOR.Forthisreasonand becausefull-textsearchesinJSTORdependontheaccuracyofOptical CharacterRecognition(OCR)software(theoftencitedfigureof98percent accuracyproduceserrorsintwoorthreewordsperpage),Idonotrecommend itasaprimarysearchtool. Studentsshouldbecomefamiliarwithavarietyofgeneraluse,comprehensiveordiscipline-specific,commerciallydistributedjournalindexdatabases. ManyincludegoodcoverageofAfricanarticlesandprovideinterfacefeatures thathelptobuildgoodsearches.SuchtoolsincludeEBSCOAcademicSearch Premier,24CambridgeScientificAbstracts25(withtheLinguisticsand LanguageBehaviorAbstractsandPAISInternational),ProQuestDissertations &Theses,26theWebofKnowledge27interfaceto,forexample,theSocial ScienceCitationIndexandPeriodicalsIndexOnline.28Anyofthese commercialproductsprovideaccesstotheirindexthesauriofdescriptorterms, whichworkanalogouslywithsubjectheadingsinthelibrarycataloguetoadd relevanttermsnotaccessibletosoftwaresuchasOCRthatmerelyreproduces termsthepublicationitselfprovidestoreaders(Mann 2005 :66 – 7).I recommendthatsearchesintheselargedatabasesshouldbecomplementedby additionalworkwithAfrica-specific,humanspecialist-preparedbibliographic toolssuchasAfricanStudiesAbstracts(LeidenUniversity),29theUSLibrary ofCongressQuarterlyIndexofAfricanPeriodicalLiterature30andAfrica Bibliography31(InternationalAfricanInstitute,IAI). AfricaBibliography has beenavailableasanannualprintsupplementtotheIAI ’ sjournal Africa since 1984,butthisyearitisalsoavailableonlineasasearchable,consolidated bibliography.Oneofmystudentslastyearnotedthatthepre-releaseversionof thisdatabasehadbecomeherpreferredjournalindex. Employingastrategiccombinationofseveralscholarly,specialisttoolssuch asdisciplinary,regionalortopicalbibliographiesalongwithoneormore comprehensive,commercialjournalindexdatabasesisadvantageousinthatthe userbenefitsfromtheirdifferentapproaches.Foranthropology, AnthropologicalLiteratureisproducedbytheTozzerLibraryatHarvard University ’ sPeabodyMuseumofArchaeologyandEthnologyandthe AnthropologicalIndexattheRoyalAnthropologicalInstituteinLondon(their contentsarecombinedbytheAnthropologyPlusdatabase).32Theseacademic projectsuseexpertstoconsideranddescribeeachentry,assessingscholarly importandwritingabstracts.Whiletheirinterfacesmaybelessfriendlyandit maytaketimetolearnhowtobuildaneffectivesearchwiththese,effortsare 23JSTOR< www.jstor.org/ >24Academicsearchpremier< http://www.ebscohost.com/ >25CambridgeScientificAbstracts< http://www.csa.com/ >26ProQuestDissertationsandTheses< http://proquest.umi.com/ >27WebofKnowledge< http://wokinfo.com/ >28PeriodicalsIndexOnline< http://pio.chadwyck.co.uk >29AfricanStudiesAbstracts< http://www.ascleiden.nl/ >30QuarterlyIndexofAfricanPeriodicalLiterature< http://lcweb2.loc.gov/misc/qsihtml/ >31AfricaBibliography< http://africabibliography.cambridge.org/ >32AnthropologyPlus < http://www.oclc.org/us/en/support/documentation/firstsearch/databases/ dbdetails/details/AnthropologyPlus.htm >xxiv Introduction

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rewardedbytheinsightstheymakepossiblethroughhuman-created descriptiverecords.Incontrast,forexample,AnthroSource33representsthe benefitsoflarge-scalecommercialtechnology,leveragingtheresourcesof publisherWiley-Blackwelltoindexeverytermineachofoveraquartermillion full-textarticlesfromeveryAmericanAnthropologicalAssociationpublication includedinthisservice.Thedatabaseisaccessiblethrougharichlyfeatured interfacethatcanlinktheusertoaphraseortermasitwasprintedonthepage incontext.Thereisnoonebestindex,butratherresearchersshouldemploy severalrelevantproductsthatcomplementoneanother ’ sstrengthstoenable effectivesearchingandresultsthatnosinglesourcecanprovide. Itisunlikelythatanyone ’ slibraryresearchwillbecompleteatthisstageof themodelunlesstheprojectisverystraightforward.Theprocessdescribed aboveisintendedtobeiterative,ratherthanmerelyrepetitive,honingexisting andbuildingnewsearcheswitheachre-entryintothesetofavailabletoolsand resources.Individualneedswilldeterminewhichadditionalgeneral,specialist, discipline-specificandotherresourcesshouldbeconsideredastheproject develops.Mann( 2005 )providesmanyideasforadditionalpotentialdirections, includinggovernmentdocuments,newspapers,archives,etc.ForAfrican studies,tonameafewexamples,uniquematerialsmaybefoundintheAluka34databaseofmaterialsrelatingto StrugglesforFreedominSouthernAfrica ,in microfilmedarchivalcollectionscollectedbytheCooperativeAfricana MaterialsProject35andintherarebooksandmanuscriptscollectionsof academiclibrariesspecializinginAfricanmaterials(manyofwhicharebeing selectivelydigitizedforfree,public,openaccessthroughouttheworld).36Academicdissertationsareanothersomewhatneglectedsourceofdetailed literaturereviewsthatmayleadtocollectionsofuniquematerials.Graduate studentsinparticularmayfinddissertationsusefulfordevelopinganunderstandingoftheoreticalapproachesovertime,recognizingschoolsofthought andintellectualgenealogies,andgainingasenseofhowconceptsaresharedor alternativelyformulatedbydifferentscholars.Itmaybeproductiveforthe studenttospeakwithaspecialistlibrarianatthispointintheprocesstodiscuss researcheffortstodateandconsiderfurtheroptions.Manylibrarianscanalso provideassistancewithmanagingbibliographiccitationsthroughsoftware packagesthatarelicensedtotheentireuniversitycommunity. Themoderninformationlandscapeiscomplex;theAfricanstudies informationenvironmentisevenmoredifficulttonavigatethanmost (Zell 2002 ;Walsh 2004 ).Thegrowingbutthornyresearchandpublishing environmentinAfricaitselfcontributestothedifficultyofscholarlyresearchin thisarea(seeZell 2001 ;Mlambo 2006 ):ThatisnottosaythatlittleisbeingpublishedinAfrica.Indeedagreatdealof verygoodmaterialisregularlypublished,buttheviabilityofpublishers 33AnthroSource< http://www.anthrosource.net/ >34Aluka< www.aluka.org/ >35TheCooperativeAfricanaMaterialsProject(CAMP)wasfoundedin1963asajointeffortby researchlibrariesthroughouttheworldandtheChicago-basedCenterforResearchLibraries < http://www.crl.edu/area-studies/camp >36MyworkwiththeGeorgeA.SmathersDigitalLibraryCenterattheUniversityofFloridahas providedonlineaccesstoseveralcollectionsbasedonrarebooksandmanuscriptholdingsinthe library ’ sAfricanStudiesCollections(seeNemmers 2004 ;Reboussin 2009 2011a 2011b ).Introduction xxv

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continuestobethreatenedbygeneralresourceshortages,instability,poorly developeddistribution,anddominationofmarketsbytransnational publisherswithlittleinterestinareassuchasAfricanlanguageimprints.The effectivereachofnewtechnologieswithinthecontinenthasalsobeen limited,crampingthevisibilityofAfricanpublishersandwriters (Limb 2007 :vii).ForscholarsinterestedinreadingAfricanpublishedresearchand incorporatingAfricanperspectivesintotheirwork,therearemanypotential brokenlinksinachainfromtheconductofresearch,writing,publishing, distributionandaccesstosuchmaterialsinlibraries.37If,infact,African producedmaterialsdoarriveinoneofthefewlibrariesthatcollectand catalogueAfrican-publishedacademicmaterials,accessmayremaindifficult; theymayrequirespecialtreatment,arelocatedseparatelyfromgeneral collections,orarenotwellcatalogued.Africanbooksandjournalspresent manychallenges:theymaybewritteninlesserknownlanguageswithout readilyavailabletranslationsoruseorthographicscriptswithoutstandardized electronic(i.e.Unicode)equivalents.Authors ’ namesmayuseunfamiliar conventionsormaybefoundinmanyversionsbasedondiffering transliterationpractices(Walsh 2004 :15 – 21).Publishinginformationmay notbeavailableinafamiliarlanguage;serialpublicationmaybelateor documentedinconsistently(withnamevariations,problemswithvolumeand issuenumbering,orpagination).So,evenwhenAfricanresearchmaterialsare collectedbylibrarieswherescholarsmightbebetterpositionedtodiscover, recognizeandpromotetheirsignificance( ibid .:11),theymayremainless visiblewithinthescholarlyarchivethanotherresources.Asaresult,Africanists needtobebettertrainedandmorepersistentwithlibraryresearchrelativeto theircolleaguesinotherareas. Additionaldifficultiesintheresearchprocessareposedbythebroadscope ofinterestsinthehighlyinterdisciplinaryfieldofAfricanstudies.Facultyand graduatestudentsmakechallengingdemandsontheirlibrariestocollectand provideaccesstoextremelydiverseformatsandsourcesofinformation.Video andaudiorecordings,photographs,uniqueandreproducedmanuscript collections,greyliteraturesuchasconferencepapers,non-governmental organizationreportsanddigitaldatafilesarerelativelycommonrequests.Even officialnationalgovernmentdocumentsmayhaveextremelylimiteddistributioninAfrica,whereitmaybeveryexpensivetocollectevenreasonably comprehensivecollectionsofsuchkeyresourcesascensusdocuments.The aboveformatsdonottouchuponephemerasuchaselectionmaterials,posters, politicalpamphlets,artandpopularcultureitems,children ’ stoys,graffiti, advertising,orsportsmemorabiliaand ‘ fan ’ paraphernaliasuchasthepopular decoratedhardhatsand vuvuzela hornsrelatingtothe2010FIFAWorldCup soccer(football)tournamentheldinSouthAfrica,whichdrewtheresearch attentionofmanyAfricanists(seeAlegi 2010 ;Koonyaditse 2010 ).Identifying andaccessingunusualformatsandscarcematerials,evenwhentheyareheldin theuser ’ sownlibrary,mayrequiregreaterexpertise(andpossiblyalibrarian ’ s guidance)astheymostlikelywouldnotbedescribedattheindividualitemlevel 37RemarkableimprovementsinaccesstoAfricanpublicationsintheUSandelsewherehaveresulted fromthecollaborativeeffortsoftheAfricanBooksCollective< http://www.africanbookscollective. com >.xxvi Introduction

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inthecatalogue,butratherascollections(asismostcommonformanuscripts andarchives,althoughdigitizationrequiresitemlevelmetadataforonline access). Themediationandassistanceofalibrariancanbeacriticalelementinthe libraryresearchprocess.Scholarshipisasocialprocessthatdependsonthe contributionsofmanyparticipants.Goodpracticeindocumentingone ’ s researchanddatasourcesisnecessary,asisthemaintenanceofsufficiently resourcedarchivesthatcanmanageandprovideaccesstowhateverresources thatacademicresearchandscholarshipdemands.Asthesedemandshave increasedandtheinformationenvironmenthasbecomemorecomplex,the needtoimprovetrainingininformationliteracyforAfricanstudiesresearchers hasalsobecomemoreevident.Animportantbenefitofincreasedinteraction betweenacademicsandlibrariansisthatopportunitiesforcollaboration multiplyaslibrarianrolesinthescholarlyprocessbecomemorefamiliarand betterappreciated. AfricanscholarsinAfricamaythemselveslacktheresourcestoparticipate fullyindebatesaboutissuesandprocessesthataffectthem,somanyAfricanists outsidethecontinentfeelanethicalobligationtoensurethatAfricanvoicesare heardanddocumentedthroughtheirownscholarlycommunications.African bookdonationprogrammesandfundingaredwindling.Giventhemanynew avenuesprovidedbyelectronicdistributionofinformation,studentsand facultycancontributeinsomesmallmeasurebymakingaconsciouseffortto deposittheirownworkinopenaccessdigitalinstitutionalrepositoriesand otherpubliclyavailableonlinearchivesthatensurereliableaccesstoresearchof valuetoAfricanswhereAfricanscholarsthemselvesmaylackaccesstopaid subscriptionresourcesordonatedmaterials.Inthiscontext,Iconsidera discussionofthelegalandmoralrightsofbothusersandcreatorsofdigital informationtobeanessentialpartofclassroomdiscussionsaboutAfrican researchresources.Inthisandmanyways,Ihopethestudentsinmyclasswill begintothinkofthemselvesasnotonlyconsumersofAfricaninformation,but alsowillconsidertheeffectoftheirownparticipationininformation productionincooperationwithAfricansasaresult. Conclusion WhilethefewavailablecoursesinAfricanstudieslibraryresearchmethods usedtofocusonthetechnicaluseofafewscarceresources,theinformation environmenthaschangedagreatdealinrecentyears.Therearemanypotential resourcesavailabletoAfricanstudiesresearchers,butthesecanbedifficultto identify,evaluateanduseeffectivelywithoutemployingastrategicapproachto libraryresearch.Manylibraryusersreporthighskillslevelsatsearchingfor informationonline(throughsurveys,forexample),butbehaviouralresearch amongstudentspursuinglibraryresearchindicatesthattheirsearchskillsare bettersuitedtoeverydayonlinetasks.Studentsbenefitfromtraininginlibrary researchmethodsandanimprovedawarenessofscholarlysearchtechniques, andthereareindicationsthatthecompletionofaninformationliteracycourse lowersattritionratesamongfirst-yearstudents.ForAfricanstudies,every aspectoflibrarycollectionsinsupportofthesehighlyinterdisciplinary academicprogrammespresentsgreaterchallengesthandomaterialsinother areas:fromtheircreationasresearchprojects,thechallengesofAfricanIntroduction xxvii

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publishing,limiteddistributionandmarketing,thedifficultiesoflanguagesand othercataloguingissues,tothebroadrangeofformatsofinteresttoscholars.In thisessay,Ihaveattemptedtosummarizeandprovideasenseoftheapproach thatItakeinmylibraryresearchmethodscourseforgraduatestudentswiththe hopethatthesesimplestrategiesandconceptscanbeintegratedintoother Africanstudiescoursesmorebroadlyintheinterestofbetterlibraryresearch andscholarlycommunication.ACRL(2006) CharacteristicsofProgramsofInformationLiteracythatIllustrateBestPractices:aguideline ChicagoIL:AmericanLibraryAssociation,AssociationofCollegeandResearchLibraries. Africaresearchbulletin.Political,social,andculturalseries .Oxford:BlackwellPublishers,1992 – AfricanStudiesAssociationoftheUnitedKingdom(n.d.) GovernmentPublicationsRelatingtoAfrican CountriesPriortoIndependence .EastArdsley(WestYorkshire):MicroformAcademicPublishersLtd. Agar,M.(1980) TheProfessionalStranger:aninformalintroductiontoethnography .NewYorkNY: AcademicPress. Alegi,P.(2010) AfricanSoccerscapes:howacontinentchangedtheworld ’ sgame .AthensOH:Ohio UniversityPress. Angello,C.(2010) ‘ Theawarenessanduseofelectronicinformationsourcesamonglivestock researchersinTanzania ’ Journalofinformationliteracy 4(2):6 – 22. Applegate,R.(2009) ‘ Thelibraryisforstudying:studentpreferencesforstudyspace ’ Journalof AcademicLibrarianship 35(4):341 – 6. Armstrong,W.H.(1978) WarriorinTwoCamps:ElyS.Parker,uniongeneralandSenecachief .Syracuse NY:SyracuseUniversityPress. Asher,A.D.andL.M.Duke(forthcoming2011) ‘ Searchingforanswers:studentresearchbehaviorat IllinoisWesleyanUniversity ’ inL.M.DukeandA.D.Asher(eds), CollegeLibrariesandStudent Culture:whatwenowknow .ChicagoIL:AmericanLibraryAssociation. Ashlund,S.(ed.)(1993) INTERCHI ’ 93:conferenceproceedings:bridgesbetweenworlds .Conferenceon HumanFactorsinComputingSystems,INTERACT ’ 93andCHI ’ 93,Amsterdam,the Netherlands,24 – 9April1993.NewYorkNY:AssociationforComputingMachinery. Avison,D.andM.D.Myers(1995) ‘ Informationsystemsandanthropology:ananthropological perspectiveonITandorganizationalculture ’ InformationTechnology&People 8(3):43 – 56. Badke,W.(2008) ‘ Arationaleforinformationliteracyasacredit-bearingdiscipline ’ Journalof InformationLiteracy 2(1):1 – 22. Barry,C.A.(1997) ‘ Informationskillsforanelectronicworld:trainingdoctoralresearchstudents ’ JournalofInformationScience 23(3):225 – 38. Baudino,F.,C.J.UryandS.G.Park(eds)(2010) BrickandClickLibraries:proceedingsofanacademic librarysymposium .MaryvilleMO:NorthwestMissouriStateUniversity. Beagle,D.(1999) ‘ Conceptualizinganinformationcommons ’ JournalofAcademicLibrarianship 25(2): 82 – 9. Bennett,S.(2005) LibraryasPlace:rethinkingroles,rethinkingspace .CLIRPub.129.WashingtonDC: CouncilonLibraryandInformationResources. Bennett,S.,K.MatonandL.Kervin(2008) ‘ The “ digitalnatives ” debate:acriticalreviewofevidence ’ BritishJournalofEducationalTechnology 39(5):775 – 86. Bentley,R.,T.Rodden,P.Sawyer etal. (1992) ‘ Ethnographically-informedsystemsdesignforair trafficcontrol ’ in ProceedingsoftheConferenceonComputer-supportedCo-operativeWork:sharing Perspectives(CSCW ‘ 92) .NewYorkNY:ACMPress. Bernard,H.R.(2011) ResearchMethodsinAnthropology:qualitativeandquantitativeapproaches LanhanMA:AltaMiraPress. Birx,H.J.(ed.)(2010) 21stCenturyAnthropology:areferencehandbook .ThousandOaksCA:Sage. Bisbrouck,M.(ed.)(2001) LibraryBuildingsinaChangingEnvironment:proceedingsoftheeleventh seminaroftheIFLAsectioninlibrarybuildingsandequipment,Shanghai,China,14 – 18August1999 Munich:K.G.Saur. Bishop,A.(2010) ‘ CLIRinauguratesworkshopsonundergraduateresearchpractices ’ CLIRIssues 72. Blin,F.(2008) ‘ 25yearsofacontinuousnationalpolicy:informationliteracynetworkinginhigher educationinFrance ’ ,inJ.Lau(ed.). InformationLiteracy:internationalperspectives .Munich: K.G.Saur. Bodley,J.H.(1999) VictimsofProgress .4thedition.MountainViewCA:MayfieldPublishingCo.xxviii Introduction

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