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Online Catalogs: What Users and Librarians Want – OCLC

A new OCLC report on online catalogues has been released by OCLC:  Online Catalogs: What Users and Librarians Want.  The principal contributors were:
Karen Calhoun, Vice President, WorldCat and Metadata Services; Joanne Cantrell, Marketing Analyst; Peggy Gallagher, Market Analysis Manager; and Janet Hawk, Director, Market Analysis and Sales Programs.

“Selected research findings:

  • The end user’s experience of the delivery of wanted items is as important, if not more important, than his or her discovery experience.
  • End users rely on and expect enhanced content including summaries/abstracts and tables of contents.
  • An advanced search option (supporting fielded searching) and facets help end users refine searches, navigate, browse and manage large result sets.
  • Important differences exist between the catalog data quality priorities of end users and those who work in libraries.
  • Librarians and library staff, like end users, approach catalogs and catalog data purposefully. End users generally want to find and obtain needed information; librarians and library staff generally have work responsibilities to carry out. The work roles of librarians and staff influence their data quality preferences.”

Main page is here and executive summary here.

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