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Discovering the Magic: Faculty and Student Use of Electronic Journals

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How Electronic Journals Are
Changing Scholarly Reading
Patterns
Carol Tenopir
University of Tennessee
ctenopir@utk.edu
web.utk.edu/~tenopir/
Subject experts…
1) read more in not much more time
2) use many more ways to locate and read
information
3) rely more on library provided articles
4) value reading for many reasons, but make
choices based on convenience
Tenopir & King Data From:
• Surveys of reading habits of 35,000+
subject specialists
• 1977 to the present
• University and non-university settings
• Recent surveys at U.S. and Australian
universities, pediatricians, astronomers
• Also focus groups, observations, logs
• These users have library access
1. Subject experts read more in not much
more time
Average Time Spent and Number of
Articles Read Per Year Person
140
120
100
Number
Read
80
60
Hours
Spent
40
20
0
1977 1981 1984 1987 1991 1996 2000 2003
Average number of articles
read per scientist
Average Articles Read per year
per University Faculty Member
300
250
200
150
150
172
188
216
252
100
50
0
1977
*280 with outliers
1984
93-98
00-03
04-06*
Average number of articles
read per scientist
Average Minutes per Article by
University Faculty Member
50
45
40
35
30
25
20
15
10
5
0
48
47
36
1 977
Year of Studies
1 9931 998
20002003
34
20042006
Average number of articles
read per scientist
Average Articles Read per year
per University Faculty Member
450
420
400
348
350
288
300
240
250
200
156
150
100
50
0
Med
Year of Studies
Science
Eng
Soc Sci
Hum
Average number of articles
read per scientist
Average Minutes per reading per
University Faculty Member
43
45
40
35
30
25
36
35
37
24
20
15
10
5
0
Med
Year of Studies
Science
Eng
Soc Sci
Hum
2. Subject experts use many ways to
locate and read information
Many Ways to Locate Information
• Browsing (through print or electronic journals; for
current awareness and reading from core titles)
• Searching (in search engine, e-journals system,
or index; for new topics; older articles; research
and writing; favorite method for students)
• Following citations in print or electronic
• Recommendation from another person
• Other, including alerts, preprint services
Faculty Still Use Many Ways to Locate
Articles
6%
35%
17%
12%
Browsing
Searching
Cited in Other Pub.
Colleague
42%
14%
Other
16%
10%
26%
U.S. Universities
2005-2006
22%
Australian Universities
2004-2005
More Subject Differences
5%
3%
Browsing
8%
3%
21%
21%
Online Searching
8%
Cited in Other Pub.
76%
Another Person
16%
39%
Other
Pediatricians
Astronomers
3. Subject experts rely more on library
provided journals and separates
Average Number of Personal
Subscriptions to Scholarly Journals
6
5
4
3
2
1
0
1977
19781983
1984
1985- 1990- 1994- 2000- 20021989 1993 1998 2001 2003
Years of Observation
Proportion of Readings of
Scholarly Scientific Articles
70%
60%
50%
40%
30%
20%
10%
0%
Personal
1977
Library-Provided
1993-1998
2001-2003
Other
2004-2006
Source of Articles Read at a
U.S. University
12%
46%
Personal
Subscriptions
Library
Provided
Separate
Copies
11%
14%
75%
42%
Faculty
Doctoral Students
OhioLink: All universities and all
journals
% No. of Journals
% of article usage
5%
38.8%
10%
53.8%
25%
77.2%
50%
93.1%
75%
98.6%
99%
100%
Readings of older materials may be
increasing (university faculty)
70%
60%
50%
40%
current year
2 year+
30%
20%
10%
0%
1990 1993- 20041998 2006
Older articles are judged more valuable & are
more likely to come from libraries
Library
10.3%
Personal
33.5%
18.1%
53.2%
Separate
28.8%
56.3%
17.5%
1st Year
2-5 Years
9.2%
73.3%
Over 5 Years
4. Readings have many values, but
readers want convenience
Subject Experts Want
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
More sources
More backfiles
Sources continue to be available
High Quality
Speedy access
No barriers to access
Convenience (getting their work done)
Purposes of Reading
Medical Faculty
• Keeping Up (22%)
• Research/writing (48%)
• Teaching (17%)
• Consulting/advising
(4%)
• Other (9%)
Pediatricians
• Keeping Up (50%)
• Research/writing (7%)
• Teaching (5%)
• Consulting/treating
(32%)
• Other (6%)
Value of Reading in Order of
Frequency of Responses (faculty)
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Inspired new thinking
Improved results
Changed focus
Resolved technical problems
Saved time
Collaboration
Faster completion
Wasted my time
Print or Electronic
20%
19%
Electronic
81%
Print
80%
Astronomers
Pediatricians
37%
32%
63%
Univ Scientists
67%
Australia
Form of Final Reading
Electronic
7.5%
Paper
92.6%
Pediatricians
n=644
Electronic
12.1%
Paper
87.9%
AustralianFaculty
In conclusion
• Articles are read more now than ever
• E-journal systems from libraries and
through the web are making this possible
• But both print and online and browsing
and searching are still important
• Students rely on libraries and searching
even more than subject experts
• Quality and convenience are both
important
For users of the New York Public Library
“Convenience trumps quality every time….
It is the job of librarians to make quality
convenient.”
Stewart Bodner, Associate
Chief Librarian, NY Public
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