Week 3 |Trends Reflection | References & Information Technology Providers

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    • #1044
      Michalina Lisik

      Throughout the investigation into references in a both modern and historical sense, a common conclusion has been identified. Technology has heavily impacted libraries and their approach to referencing. Throughout my investigation into references and IT providers, I will focus on the required adaption of library references, reflecting on modern user demands.


      In the simplest form, a reference is created to respond to relevant users seeking particular information (RUSA). During the late 1900’s, users seeking information grew dependent on library references. In addition, users utilised reference desks, namely centralised locations where librarians provided direction to relevant library materials (Reference Librarian). The centralisation of information required strong references to cater to individuals seeking specific material.

      However, in a modern sense, a centralised location for general information is often accessible within current computers and mobile devices. No longer are individuals travelling as often to libraries, to find information. Dependencies on modern forms of information providers are hence rising. As explored throughout the Library Journal, information sites such as Wikipedia are sources of great focus for modern information seekers. Coffman and Arret reinforce this due to a 40% decrease in reference transactions between 1997 and 2003 (Library Review).


      What does this mean for references? As the Library Journal identifies, Wikipedia and other IT information sites can provide basic information. However, references are most certainly required to allow for access of more sophisticated information. As explored by Barner, the sources and research available from search engines are not as reliable as those provided and referenced at a library, however the ease of using the internet makes up for it. In my personal reflection, I believe referencing and the presentation of these references must continue to adapt to facilitate the needs of modern users.

      Digital libraries are an excellent innovation facilitating the growth and reach to users. Throughout my initial research, I identified the change in reference demand as unsettling and almost ‘unfair’ to the past reference process. The basic idea that information is less sought after using transaction references made me believe that IT providers are preventing users to dig deep into library information. However, throughout further research into the issue, I identified a significant benefit to the adaptation discussed throughout this reflection. Rather than simply adapt to satisfy the trends of technology, libraries could harness and take advantage of the global reach of information. Accessibility through digital libraries encourages international contributions and reviews for information (Barner, 2011). This ultimately contributes to the human knowledge base and most importantly, maintains the strength and insight provided in the information.

      Supporting the familiar conclusions maintained throughout research on the changes of referencing, I too, believe that despite the decrease in reference transitions and the physical seeking of information, that references have maintained significance in the research world. The opportunities available to referencing, particularly in digital libraries, can further enhance the original forms of references.


    • #1179
      Georgia Pardey

      Hello Michalina.

      I agree with your comparison of reference services and open web research in terms of quality and access. Academic libraries can provide higher calibre resources from verified authors/publishers, but may struggle to impart vital corroboration and evaluation tools to users who are used to covering a lot of information with little consideration to its source. You favour the adaptation of modern reference work to benefit from the global network of information and I wonder how this might be achieved. The ‘cited by’ search of Google Scholar comes to mind and I assume something similar is already used in libraries. This service allows the user to search for articles which have referenced a particular item. The results are often more specific than the former article as they are building on previous research. I think this tool is also useful for corroborating particular research or opinions. Such a reference tool would have been difficult to create before the reach of the internet and connection of information from across the globe. It is also quick and easy to conduct – ideal for the modern user who must swiftly assess whether a source will be useful or not.

      Thanks for your insight!

    • #1202
      Peldon P

      Hi there, have you noticed that you have made a multiple posts on the same topic? Perhaps you should keep this one and deleted the duplicates, just an observation. Thanks 🙂

    • #1255
      Michalina Lisik

      Hi Georgia, I can’t believe I never considered Google Scholar! Definitely a cross over between historical referencing and modern demand for prompt results. I think Google Scholar is however, a little bit behind on the quality or resources in comparison to other library databases. Google Scholar has really considered the requirements of modern users, definitely paving the way for following library databases. Great point Georgia 🙂

      Thanks Peldon – It’s the same reflection – for some reason when I attempted to post it a few weeks ago, the website thought I was spamming. Kate recovered them and now I can’t delete them. Thanks for letting me know! 🙂

    • #2062
      Clare Thorpe


      I’ve tidied up your excess posts to keep your forum cleaner. I’ve left the original post for week 3 plus the version that students have commented on.


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