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RE: Universities May be Failing to Sufficiently Teach Basic Research
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- Subject: RE: Universities May be Failing to Sufficiently Teach Basic Research
- From: "David P. Dillard" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
- Date: Fri, 12 Nov 2010 22:44:29 EST
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I agree that one should not be arguing that library leased databases are better than Google databases. Each, the Googles and databases, have benefits and both the Googles and databases should be used for the benefits each provide. Google Scholar often gets users to sources citing a found source in a search result and Google Scholar can find more results than a database search. Google books can find topic pertinent information within a book that one would never suspect to be there or would never find without access to this tool. On the other hand, the ability to do multistep complex searches, to use proximity operators not limited to exact phrases, and to limit search statements to specific fields like title or subject headings, amongst other features, in combination allow users of bibliographic databases to do far more precise searching which can save huge amounts of time in wading through lots of source citations to find a few that are on target for ones research topic as can often happen in Google search results with its limited one step and out search interface. Google also is prone to very inconsistent and inaccurate search result numbers that are logically inconsistent with numbers in related searches, so that one can never be sure of any degree of comprehensiveness using Google search results. I have seen this on web search Google, but have not tested this on other Google databases. Library services and tools are not necessarily for generations past because they are not known or used by todays students, teachers or scholars. Better marketing of these resources is also a possible need and producers of products libraries purchase, such as journal producers and databank and database providers need to be a strong source of this kind of public service promotion of libraries as go to places for quality research resources, not just the libraries themselves. Keep in mind that the market for database and other publication products may be greatly reduced if libraries are not there to provide access to these products. Lobbying state governments to provide public library and K-12 library access to databases for general information needs will facilitate some learning of these tools, if taught in K-12, before students get to college, and K-12 instrucion in database saerching technique and information literacy is another area in which database and databank providers should be proactive. A major part of the battle to teach students how to do research is lost if students come to college with none of these database searching skills in their background. David Dillard Temple University (215) 204 - 4584 email@example.com =================================== On Thu, 11 Nov 2010, Chen, Xiaotian wrote: > Maybe librarians should re-evaluate the traditional services---If > students can get by by never having "been to a library and never > seen or used an online database," maybe some of our services are > no longer essential to them. > > Maybe we should re-define what "basic research" is in the 21st > century. Maybe we should ask ourselves why students do not have > the perception that they need us, as mentioned by Rick Anderson > and Bernie Sloan in recent posts. > > Maybe in fact (or indeed) they do not need us as much as we > think, because, A. search and access have been made easier by > Google, Amazon, OpenURL and Open Access; B. we are too much > behind by the Google standard. > > Maybe it is the time for us to stop trying to convince them that > library databases are better than Google Scholar or PubMed, > because we may not have scientific data to back us up. > > Xiaotian Chen > Bradley University Library > Peoria, Illinois > http://hilltop.bradley.edu/~chen/
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