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World Digital Libraries: An International Journal (WDL)
Vol.5(2)  December 2012
Print ISSN : 0974-567X
Use of Web-based Online Public Access Catalogue by the Foreign Students at the University of Delhi
Dr M. Madhusudhan
Department of Library and Information Science, II Floor, Tutorial Building, University of Delhi, Delhi-110007. Email: madhumargam@gmail.com

This paper investigates the use of Web based Online Public Access Catalogue (Web-OPAC) by the foreign students at the University of Delhi and enquires into their ability, knowledge, reasons for effective use, as well as problems faced while using the Web-OPAC.

The results indicate that a majority of foreign students come from developing countries and had not used Web-OPAC prior to coming to the University of Delhi. Most of the respondents used the Delhi University Library System (DULS) OPAC to find book titles only. The most popular search type is the title search and is also the first choice. The survey results show that the known item searches are more popular than the unknown item searches. Journal titles search, check borrower information, find articles, conference papers, for renewals of items borrowed, etc., features are unknown in existing DULS OPAC. The interface of DULS OPAC was too old and unattractive. Language is the most obvious difficulty faced by foreign students while searching the Web-OPAC. Most of the students had not received any training or learnt it from the library and for those who attended the training programme, a majority of them noted that it was successful. Most of the students are generally unaware of other facilities that are available in the OPAC. The paper focusses on many aspects of Web-OPAC, particularly those used by the foreign students at the University of Delhi. The findings of the study will certainly help the other university libraries in India to plan their Web-OPAC for effective use by their foreign students.



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