The Review of the Usage Rate of Clients of Central Library Information Facilities in Birjand University of Medical Sciences

Document Type : Original Article


1 Birjand University of Medical Sciences. Birjand، Iran.

2 Birjand University of Medical Sciences. Birjand، Iran

3 of Medical Library and Information Science، Birjand University of Medical Sciences .


Background: This study was  designed in order to review the client's usage rate  of central library information facilities  at Birjand University of Medical Sciences.
Materials & Methods: This is a descriptive - analytical study that was conducted on all facualty members and free members through Census method and on student and clerks through random systematic sampling. A questionnaire was prepared and completed based on the rate of using information service and facility receiving. After data collection and encoding, it was  analyzed with Chi-Square test under SPSS software.    
Results:  Participants having  diploma with 9.6 included the lowest percentage of participants and experts with 8.57 included the highest percentage of  the research community. The highest percentage of useage belonged to  of Irandoc database (8.66%) and the lowest to the Ovid database (54%). Among the demographic variables measured, a significant relationship was observed between the average scores of people with field (P= 0/01), degree (P= 0/02), rank (P= 0/002) and jobs (P= 0.001).
 Conclusion:  Considering the availability of information, number of computers, considered time range, predictive duration for Internet using, and print costs were optimum and proper.The overall evaluation of the information and use of services and facilities Birjand University of Medical Sciences was relatively low.



Attempt for achieving knowledge and its development have always been ideal for humans and man has always done material and spiritual investments in this field. This attempt has always taken the usage of equipment and facilities in to consideration and applied different devices for this purpose which have affected the development of science and thought differently.

Living in information explosion  era needs libraries and effective information giving systems which makes information accessible actively alongside information making so that  besides information making ,efficient transfer of  it influences expand of sciences and as a result total development of countries .Thus in this period active ,critical, and close relationship of researchers with information giving system(1).And as the final goal of libraries in society is providing access to any kind of  information for everybody ,anywhere, anytime. Evaluating the function is taken in to consideration as one of the important aspects of library management and information centers (2).This is of prime importance for both library managers and users. One of the methods of assessing the quality and quantity of services and facilities of library is the awareness and usage of these services and also easy accessibility of the required information by users .Caring about the opinions of users is an important factor in the success of an information system(3).In other words users are the most important elements in information world(4).Successful libraries and information centers are those that concentrate on fulfilling the information needs of their users(5) and can identify the needs of    users   and satisfy them .Libraries and information centers as important factors in education and research  of universities develop thoughts of university members by providing information sources and make them work(6),and also it is an improving and important basis in research and teaching for researchers ,instructors and students, and university library(7).

Therefore ,libraries evaluate themselves as an educational ,research, and social center,so that by identifying weaknesses and strengths step toward improving and developing issues(8).Creating a special unit of information besides other units for giving electronic services is the result of this improvement and researchers like others use this network for different jobs such as getting access to scientific resources and also publishing the results of their own work(9).

Studies show that the relationship of electronic resources and teaching and research field can be evaluated and the expand of resources for individual and class learning is effective and electronic sources for universities or a vat geographic area often can stabilize learning everywhere and includes the usage of electronic devices, fast improvement in research ,simultaneous scientific relation and creation of new works .The purpose of the present study is to examine the effect of these facilities on the quality and quantity of scientific works of students ,researchers, and university instructors which usage of results seems necessary in future developments.



This descriptive-analytical study was conducted on all faculty members ,graduates ,and general physicians selected through census and on students and clerks selected through systematic random sampling. For conducting the research ,a questionnaire including 29 questions about the rate  and method of using the services in information center was used which was based on Likert Scale(none ,little, average ,much, very much) and was scored from 0 to 4.The content validity of the questionnaire was achieved by getting ten library and information science experts' opinions. In the case of reliability ,as the questions of the questionnaire were objective  and were used repeatedly in other studies, its reliability was confirmed.

Data was analyzed  by SPSS and descriptive statistical tests(percent and frequency) and qui-square. P˂ .05 was meaningful.


The study was conducted on 98 faculty members,30 free members,400 students, and 160 clerks.

The study based on education shows that the participants having diploma and those having B.S. included the highest percent of the participants with 6.9% and 57.8% respectively. The rates of participants' knowledge of English and computer were 55.5% and 58.4% respectively which were higher than average.

The results express that 93.4% of the users were aware of the working hours of library and only 16.6% considered the hours suitable. The use of data bases such as Elsevier ,Prequest, Ovid ,Pubmed, Iranmedex, and  Irandoc was assessed and the highest percent of use went to Irandoc(66.8%) and the lowest went to Ovid(54%).The number of computers, time limitation considered for using services ,the predicted share for using the Internet and the cost of print have been reasonable in information center.

64.8% of participants  evaluated the existing facilities of information center as positive and had made success in restoring their required information.

Among the demographic variables under assessment there was a meaningful relationship between the average of  achieved scores of participants and major  (P=0.001),level of education(P=0.02),rank(P=0.002),and job (P=0.001)(table no.1). 


Table 1:The comparison of participants' usage based on demographic variables






Standard Deviation









Associate Degree























Para medicine





Associate Degree















Associate Professor


















Faculty member








Free Member






In this study ,using services and facilities of information center based on education didn't show a meaningful difference among participants, in a way that participants with M.S. degree were not superior to those with B.S., associate degree,or diploma.Kamaneh azari(2002) in his study named "The study of viewpoint and awareness of members of information services in Mirzay-e-Shirazi library and library of medical school of Shiraz University of  Medical Sciences" concluded that there was not a significant difference in the awareness and usage of library members based on education(10).

The results of the study of the usage rate of members based on major shows that there is a meaningful difference between the average of the use of services and facilities .In a way that medical students used the most and nursing students used the least and also PhD students had the most usage and B.S. students had the least ,which reason can be writing medical theses by medical students .In Moosavi Shooshtari's study (2003)called"The study of the rate of  users' satisfaction with the services of the library of center of information and scientific documents of Iran",the most usages related to conducting research and preparing theses(11).

The average score of trainers' usage of services and facilities of information center has been significantly more than associate professors .It can be said that professional involvements of associate professors which include working in hospitals ,private offices, or executive ranks, and etc. can be the reason of less usage of services and facilities of information center. Malekizadeh in his research has mentioned that the major obstacles use information are time limitation ,being busy, and spread of libraries(12).Effatnezhad (2005) believed that the most important problems in using information technologies are lack of facilities and time limitation(13). 

Also Siamian et al.(2011)have supported that the most important problems in the process of finding information are time limitation and being far from information centers. As a whole ,most of the members mentioned that they could not catch up with the modern advances(14).The results of usage of services and facilities of information center based on job showed that there was a meaningful relationship among the average of  the usage of students, faculty members ,clerks, and free members .In a way that clerks used the least and faculty members used services and facilities of the information center the most.The results of Moosavi Shoshtari's study (2003) showed that the average of awareness and the usage of services of the library of Information and Scientific Documents of Iran expressed a low level of awareness and usage(11). Updating knowledge and information of faculty members and also providence of the required conditions for better and more usage can be the reasons of more usage among this group than other groups.Mohagheghzadeh and Abdollahi (2003)conducted a research called"The study of opinions and members' methods of usage of the facilities of center and its effect on research works of these members". The results of the study showed that the members of the center were aware of  the importance of Internet and used it for some issues. These people mentioned that the  first reason of their tendency to use Internet was "accessing updated information"(15).The results of Lazigner et al.(1998) showed that the tendency  toward using the Internet was high among faculty members and 80.3% of the participants used the Internet. Effective factors of not using electronic information resources include little information about electronic resources and their value, costly services ,and lack of training(16).The results of Golabian's research ( 2002) showed that almost half of the faculty members under study used e-mail .Also users of e-mail had written and published more articles(17).

Higher than average familiarity of half  of the participants with English and computer  knowledge can be the cause of doing research and scientific jobs, writing theses ,and increasing role of computers in education and research, these causes have made them improve their English and computer knowledge.Shahsavari (2006)mentioned that the rate of English language and computer knowledge is an influential factor in using resources(18).

Using the services of information center for doing personal affairs allocated a higher percentage to itself  than doing homework. Doing personal affairs such as checkmail ,playing games and entertainment, and surfing the net may seem more fun. Bashiri (1999) in a study called "The study of the information needs of faculty members of agricultural research and education organization" has mentioned that in an information community in which everything is based on information and everybody wants easy and fast access to information ,it is necessary that information needs of every individual or the whole community are identified precisely and a plan is designed carefully to fulfill them, so that waste of time, money ,and supply of unrelated information are prevented(19).

Raeesi and Ebrahimi (2005) in their article called "The rate of users' satisfaction with central library of Iran University of Medical Sciences' resources and services" found out that because of unskilledfulness of some members in doing computer searches or accessing electronic sources and perhaps not receiving enough help, the facilities are not used properly(2).

The participants' viewpoints toward the available facilities in library was evaluated as positive and expressed that most of them to some extent had access to their required knowledge in information center. Zamani and Allahdadian (2008)in their thesis called "The rate of students' satisfaction with computer services of Educational Science and Central Libraries of Esfahan University" ,in the case of students' viewpoints toward the effect of computer on the distribution of library services ,mentioned that easy and fast access to different information sources has been a privilege of computerized systems over traditional ones(3).Also the results of Hayati and Tasviri Ghamsari's study (2001) showed that 46.2% of users have evaluated that the effect of Internet on their research activities has been much, and 25.6% have evaluated it as average.73.2% of non-users tended to use the Internet(20).

In the comparison of the usage of English data bases Pubmed ,Elsevier, Proquest ,and Ovid had the most users respectively.Probably free access to Pubmed could be one of the reasons of its more usage. Also access to full text of Medline articles is possible through shared data bases in the library. Shahsavari (2006) in his study believed that the main reasons of recognition and satisfaction of faculty members with computer services were free services and the possibility of search in data bases(18).

Among Persian data bases Irandoc was used more than Iranmedex ,one of the main reasons could be the widespread subject field of Irandoc which covers all scientific topics, while Iranmedex just covers medical sciences articles.

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