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Information and Knowledge Management ISSN 2224-5758 (Paper) ISSN 2224-896X (Online) Vol.3, No.5, 2013

2.5. Barriers to Information Search Barrier to information search is defined as obstructions and limitations which affects a person seeking for information or who intends seeking for information thus limiting his access to information resources or his ability to satisfactorily access information resources or use information resources or visit location of information resources. These obstructions and limitations are normally seen as barriers to information search. According to OCLC (2002) and Makri, Blandford and Cox (2006), barriers are found in the internet environments while in Ossai(2009)and Ossai(2011) barriers are found in the physical Library environment. In Makri, Ann and Cox (2006), students were found to be helpless in legal database environment while in OCLC (2002) they got frustrated (when in search engine environment) when their internet search is unsuccessful. In Nigeria, law students have been found to meet barriers when researching in academic traditional (physical) Libraries. They were found to meet difficulty in locating resources for case laws, legislation and journals. As a result of this, they try to navigate their barriers by using textbooks for most of their information needs while they avoid seeking assistance from library staff (2009). This behaviour of Nigerian law students was found different from behaviours of students from other African countries. In Kakai, Odongo and Kingongi-Bukenya(2004), African students who also experience difficulties in locating print information resources seek assistance from Library staff instead of finding their own navigational means. The studies above have shown that lack of easy access to information resources is a barrier to information search. However in Meyers, Nathan and Saxton (2006), information barriers were found to transcend access to information to constraining forces which affects the information search of students. Thus the studies above do not provide rich findings on the barriers normally met by students during information search. This is a research gap which would be addressed in this research through the use of interview and questionnaire methods. 2.6. Factors to Information Seeking Behaviour Chambers (1999) defines “Factor” as “a circumstance that contributes to a result”. As simple as this definition might be, it is adopted as definition of factor for this research. The literatures on the above facet would be reviewed under the sub-facets below: 2.6.1. Library and Information Services(LIS) Plethoras of studies have shown that students do not adequately patronise academic Libraries and library facilities (Meyers, Nathan and Saxton 2006). Old studies carried out by Zondi(1992) and Wilson(1999) show that students avoid the use of Library and its facilities due to lack of library and information skills; while they do not seek assistance from Library staff due to harsh attitudes. These are old studies which are yet to be confirmed in studies carried out in Nigeria. Recent study by Stephens (2011) portrayed the library as a positive factor to information seeking behaviour. In Ann Arbor District Library (AADL) Michigan(Stephens 2011), where the Library runs online services that complement social services like Web 2.0(Web 2.0 is a matrix of dialogues, not a collection of monologues; a user centred web through which users converse across blogs, wikis, and at photo sharing sites, via comment or through online discussions(Manness 2006) ), Blogs(Blog is an online diary on website; it is a frequently updated journal chronicling links at a Web site, intended for public viewing(Microsoft Encarta 2009) ) and RSS feeds(RSS feeds provide a way to syndicate and republish content on the web. Users republish contents from other sites or blogs from their sites (Manness 2006)); producing a high increase in the number of online library users. Through the introduction of these facilities, students who previously avoided the library immediately started patronising the library sites and its services to the extent that there was incremental number of patronisers of library sites. While the above studies portray infusion of modern library services as a positive factor to information seeking behaviour, studies in Nigeria portrayed the library as a negative factor. Inadequate library services in the area of indexing, abstracting, bibliography and reference enquiry services were found missing (Anunobi, 2008). 2.6.2. Mode of Teaching Teacher centred and content oriented mode of imparting knowledge to University students were found prevalent across Universities in Nigeria. This was found to be a negative factor to information seeking behaviour of students in Nigeria (Ossai 2011) and outside Nigeria (Makri, Blandford and Cox 2006). This mode of teaching was found to affect negatively students’ prerogative to indulge in consistent research in order to make their information skills sharpened overtime. 2.7. Behaviours attached to Information search For the purpose of this study, information behaviour is defined as actions, sentiments, mood swings and psychological reasoning carried out in the mood of information seeking by individuals; before, during and after information seeking which determines the environment of research, the information source, the information sourced and taken, the ability to conclude research and the mode of using the information sourced.


Information seeking behaviour of final year law students in south western nigerian universities