STUDENTS' ATTITUDE TO CATALOGUING AND CLASSIFICATION IN AN ACADEMIC INSTITUTION (THE CASE OF FEDERAL POLYTECHNIC OFFA).

Author:Idris, Yusuf Tunde
Position:Case study
 
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Introduction

Librarianship is an age-long profession that deals with management of libraries through acquisition, processing, organization, storage, preservation and conservation as well as dissemination of information in diverse formats and media. It could be noted from the above definition of librarianship that processing of information is highly paramount.

However, processing of information materials is concerned with all technical aspect of librarianship in which cataloguing and classification are not excluded. Cataloguing refers to the description of a book pointing out its important bibliographic details such as author(s) name, title, sub-title, edition, editor, publisher, place of publication etc [Nwalo, 2012]. on the other hand, classification is the process of grouping information materials according to their likeness and separation according to their difference thereby, assigning number, or alphabet, or alphanumeric to the library materials. It could be noted from the above explanation that cataloguing and classification are on essential aspect of librarianship which cannot be overemphasized.

Therefore, for adequate, effective and efficient discharging of cataloguing and classification services, future librarians or librarianship students must be well trained and adequately oriented so as to continue to modernize or up-date the principle of uniformity and universality and consistency of this profession.

Statement of the Problem

In any research work, it is clear that there will be a problem which the researcher will intend to solve. However, of recent, it is noted that cataloguing and classification as a course in an academic institution is being given less attention. Despite the importance of cataloguing and classification to librarianship, it is amazing that most undergraduate students of library science have some kinds of attitude for the subjects.

This study stands to investigate the impression that students have towards cataloguing and classification as a course.

Objective of the Study

This research work stands to nurture the following aims;

i. To determine the attitude of students towards cataloguing and classification as a course

ii. To determine the factor that gives rise to the attitude towards learning of cataloguing and classification as a course

iii. To know the challenges being encountered during cataloguing and classification lecture (Both theory and practical aspect)

iv. To suggest the recommendation on how to provide the solution to the challenges if encountered

LITERATURE REVIEW

Librarianship School: an overview and historical development

History of library and information science can also be referred to as history of library education or history of education for librarianship. It traces the developments in the study of principles and practices of acquisition, processing and dissemination of information resources in library schools. It is in the realization of the significant role played by information in the process of societal development that library and information schools were set-up. These schools are to train and produce man power for information work. A library school or library and information school is the department (or faculty) on library of information science in a higher education institution (HEI) with specialization in the training of librarians and information workers. It can be classified into university-based library school and polytechnic-based library school for the training of professionals and Para-professional, information workers respectively.

The study of library and information science (LIS) it may be argued began with the effort to organize a collection of information materials and provide access to them. In the 17th century, King Assurbanipal of Assyria assembled what is considered as the first systematically collected library at Nineveh. The legendary library of Alexandria Egypt was perhaps the best known example of an early library that flourished because of the quality of the organization of its collection. In the 19th century, Thomas Jefferson, a former president of United States of America had a private library of over 6,700 volumes. He devised a classification system for the collections based on the baconian method which grouped the books by subjects. Jefferson's collection became the nucleus of the present United States Library of Congress after the destruction of the congress library by fire during the First World War.

In Africa, the emergence and subsequent development of library and information science schools in its sub-regions owes a lot to the effort of UNESCO when in 1953 organized a seminar on the development of libraries in Africa at the University College, Ibadan, Nigeria. The seminar recommended among other things, the establishment on institution for the training of library personnel in Africa. Hitherto, a majority of the librarians planning the libraries in the regions were expatriates. The few privileged Africans who received training in librarianship were sent abroad (Europe and United States) to take courses lending to the award of the British America Library Association Qualification. In Nigeria, the first library and information science school started at the then University College Ibadan (now University of Ibadan) in 1959 as institute of librarianship (now Department of Library, Archival and Information Studies). This was followed by Ahmadu Bello University Zaria in 1965, Bayero University Kano in 1977, University of Maiduguri in 1978, Abia State University Uturu in 1981 (the then Imo State University), University of Nigeria Nsukka in 1983 etc.

Cataloguing and Classification: An Overview

Cataloguing and classification section (CC) is a technically oriented service. Cataloguing and classification are the heart and soul of librarianship {Shera, 1956; cited by Afolabi and Osaniyi, (1986) and Nwalo, (2001)}. Cataloguing and classification is responsible for bibliographic description and organization of information materials according to their subject areas for easy retrieval. This process begins as soon as the materials are received from the acquisition department. The cataloguing and classification section is out of bounds to clientele. This is to forestall the loss of new materials of which records have not been properly kept. Cataloguing and classification require maximum concentration. Cataloguing and classification is the foundation on which entire library system rests and depends upon. The cataloguing and classification services comprise of cataloguers, classifiers and other librarians that are involved in the art of organization of knowledge in libraries.

Cataloguing and Classification (CC) was established due to the technical nature of librarianship, and the need for an arm of the Nigerian library association to organize workshops and conferences to train and retrain cataloguers, information specialists and teachers/librarians nationwide with a view to advancing their techniques of organization of knowledge (Lasisi, 1999, 2001). This cataloguing and classification body (CC) has over the years concentrated its efforts in the area of information technologies, treating various themes and sub-themes ranging from computer appreciation, computer maintenance, software and hardware choice parameters for cataloguing and classification in Nigerian libraries, to retrospective conversion of cataloguing records (RCC).

The practice of cataloguing and classification has witnessed radical transformations over the years as a result of the introduction of ICT. The changes are reflected in both information sources and new tools in managing cataloguing records. Theses changes include; computers, internet, CD-ROMs, online databases, electronic files, metadata structures, library software packages, online public access catalogue (OPAC) as well as creation of hyperlinks.

The infusion of the aforementioned ICT components into cataloguing and classification marked a turning point in the way it is being done and by whom the cataloguing is done.

Attitude of Students to Cataloguing and...

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