Library use and academic achievement

K. De Jager

Abstract


Objective measures of the impact of library services are difticult and in view of some writers even impossible to obtain. As part of a major investigation into the support provided by the University of Cape Town Library Service for both the studying and research activities at the university, an investigation was launched to establish objectively whether any statistically significant association could be shown to exist between student academic performance and library use. Earlier investigations at institutions in Australia and the United States of America had indicated that such an association could by no means be assumed. If it could therefore be shown through matching of examination results and library borrowing records at the University of Cape Town, that students with the best academic performance used the most library materials and that those with low or failing grades used significantly fewer, it would be possible to demonstrate objectively the value of the library service.

Dit is besonder moeilik en volgens sommige skrywers self's onmoontlik om objektiewe maatstawwe vir die impak van biblioteekdienste te verkry. As deel van 'n grootskaalse ondersoek na die diens wat deur die biblioteek aan die Universiteit Kaapstad gelewer word ter ondersteuning van navorsing- en onderrigaktiwiteite, is 'n projek geloods om objektief vas te stel of daar 'n verband bestaan tussen studente se akademiese prestasie en hul biblioteekgebruik. Vroeere ondersoeke in Australie en die Verenigde State van Amerika het aangedui dat so 'n verhouding nie as vanselfsprekend aanvaar kan word nie. lndien dus aangetoon kan word dat studente met die beste akademiese prestasie ook die meeste biblioteekmateriaal gebruik en dat diegene met swakker prestasies biblioteekmateriaal beduidend minder gebruik, sou dit moontlik wees om objektief die waarde van biblioteekgebruik uit te wys.


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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7553/65-1-1497

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