1.1 Background of the study
Systematic organization of resources in the library is achieved through cataloguing and classification education. Cataloguing and classification as a subject area in Universities has been dramatically affected by rapid changes in library and information science schools. Hijji, K.M.(2013) confirm a shortage of cataloguers in library schools due to Lack of sufficient time allocation for teaching, insufficient cataloguing and classification tools, inadequate professional staff, method of teaching and ineffective laboratories for practical's.
The tools as reported by Edoka (2000) were Anglo American Cataloguing Rules second edition (AACR2), Machine Readable Cataloguing (MARC2.), Resource Description and Access (RDA), Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH), SEARs List of Subject Heading and Cutter table. The most commonly used classification schemes worldwide, are Dewey Decimal Classification Scheme (DDCS), Colon Classification Scheme, Bliss Classification Scheme, Library of Congress Classification schemes (LCCS), Universal Decimal Classification Scheme (UDCS).
Library and information science schools in Nigeria are facing challenges, from the researcher's preliminary investigations, most library schools do not have adequate lecturers in cataloguing and classification courses to teach. Therefore, an increasing challenge, prompted the researcher to conduct a research on the Analysis of cataloguing and classification course in the department of library and information science ATBU, in terms of teaching method, availability of tools, adequacy of time and staff strength in terms of professional cataloguers.
Analysis means the process of gathering and discussing information from multiple and diverse sources in order to develop a deep understanding of what students know, understand, and can do with their knowledge as a result of their educational experiences, the process culminates when result is used to improve. Bowen-chang and Hosein (2009) suggest that the infusion of technological innovations in to libraries and the changing role of cataloguers have unearthed a new dimension in the sphere of cataloguing that influences its teaching as well. it is difficult to discharge a role without appropriate professional skills and competence. As the work of knowledge organization moves dominantly to a global information network environment, cataloguer will need professional upgrading various areas.
The work of a cataloguer is of professional who requires dedication and skillful use of the various tools to teach in order to have a complete knowledge of the profession that can easily link the users of the library to the needed available resources in a particular library. Ocholla and Ocholla (2014) stated that practical cataloguing/hands on is taught together with theory at all levels. The schools offering cataloguing and classification education is considered to be a core course; backbone of librarianships professional qualification; a course that supports knowledge of library information and reference services; extremely useful for the critical analysis and synthesis of a library collection for the organization of knowledge in libraries (Boydston and Leysen 2014). Nwalo (2010) in his study on the cataloguing and classification tasks, reported that it required intellect of a cataloguer who must be knowledgeable on a wide variety of subjects and logical in thought and who must pay attention to details and have a mastery of the technicalities of classification schemes.
Classification of library resources is very important in bringing orderly arrangement and location to the resources. It is imperative for students of librarianship to have adequate knowledge of cataloguing and classification courses to prepare them for professional practice. Invariably, this will enable students to organize information resources in any library where they are employed after graduation. The human resource in cataloguing and classification consist of lecturers, laboratory instructors/assistants. These are considered very important in the facilitation of teaching and learning process in the library schools. Alimi and Balogun (2010) asserted that the success of any teaching and learning process invariably influences or depends on how effective and efficient the lecturers are, tools for practicals and as well how current they are.
Obomanu and Akporehwe (2011), reported in their research, affirmed that, lecturers and instructors in cataloguing and classification should be experts in the field. Lecturers who are teaching students in the classroom and instructors handling cataloguing and classification laboratories are expected to make cataloguing and classification tools available for their practical work, while laboratory instructors/assistants are expected to guide the students in the use of cataloguing tools as it is being done in the science laboratory.
The instructional and learning materials should be adequate and meaningful to the needs of the learner (Yoloye, 2004). It is imperative that learning materials should be easily comprehended by the readers. Materials needed for teaching and learning cataloguing and classification consist of textbooks, cataloguing and classification tools, such as Library of Congress Subject Heading (LCSH), SEARS List of Subject Heading, Anglo American Cataloguing Rules (AACR2), Dewey Decimal Classification Scheme (DDCS) these materials are needed to enhance teaching and learning of the courses. Adeogun and Osifila (2011) revealed that, the availability of educational resources is very important because of its role in the achievement of educational objectives and goals. Cataloguing tools are very essential in teaching and learning cataloguing and classification courses in library schools.
Aina (2007) reported that “processing of library materials is an important task in the library profession”. The author added that, all students must be adapted to cataloguing, classification, indexing and abstracting, and that the need for these activities are expensive, yet they must be available to students on one-to- one in a LIS school. The author further described cataloguing tools are specialized publications and equipment, hardware and software used in cataloguing and classification. Although cataloguing tools are very expensive all library and information schools are expected to procure and make them available for the undergraduate students' practicals.Aina (2007) listed the required cataloguing tools to be made available to include the following:20 sets of both Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC) scheme and AngloAmerican Cataloguing Rules (AACR2); 10 copies of Library of Congress Subject Headings; and Sears List of Subject Headings.
Undergraduate library science students are expected to register and pass all courses relating to cataloguing and classification as part of the requirements for the award of bachelor's degree in library and information studies. Lecturers are employed in various departments in the universities to impact appropriate and adequate knowledge on the students. Appropriate teaching method is expected to be used by lecturers in teaching and learning processes in all the various courses being offered in the universities. Teaching is the art and science of using various strategies or methods in any situation to make learners learn or to facilitate their learning (Moronkola2010).
It is expected that lecturers use various methods to impact the expected knowledge to be gained by learners so that learners will be able to understand and demonstrate appropriate skill required from them. Bakare (2011) and Magit (2012) observed that, the lecture method is the most common method of teaching used by lecturers in higher institutions. The lecture method is teacher-centered pedagogy. It is pertinent to note that if adequate resources are provided to enhance teaching and learning, there should also be adequate instructional time allotted for teaching to cover the course contents as well as for students to make use of cataloguing tools in the laboratories. In an educational setting, time is allotted for teaching and practical subjects/courses which requires practical classes.
Cataloguing and classification courses are expected to be taught theoretically and practically in library and information schools. Allison and Olugbade (2011) citing Agabi and Olugbade (2010) noted that all school system activities are carried within a time frame which may be limited to minutes, hours, days, months or even years. In educational institutions, time table is prepared to cover subjects/courses with allocated time and classrooms to be used for teaching. Therefore, this study is carried out to examine students' attitudes to the cataloguing course in an academic institution.
1.2 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.
Ideally skillful and dedicated professional librarians who acquire professional certificates are expected to teach Cataloguing and classification as subject area in library schools. Based on the preliminary observation by the researcher, that cataloguers are rarely in most library schools in Nigeria. Cataloguing and classification have been dramatically affected by rapid changes which become a challenge to library schools in Nigeria. From the researcher's preliminary investigations cataloguers are lacking in most library schools in Nigeria.
There are increasing challenges in which the following components needs to be look in to, how available are tools for practical class, how adequate is time allotted for teaching the courses, what methods are used for teaching the courses and how adequate are the qualified staff for teaching the courses? The above problems prompted the researcher to undergo for the research so that the findings may proffer a way of encouraging producing more professional cataloguers. The library school to be investigated is Benue State University.
1.3 Objectives of the study
The main objective of the study is to examine students' attitudes to the cataloguing course in the department of library and information science, Benue State university, Makurdi.
This research work stands to nurture the following specific objectives;
- To determine the attitude of students towards cataloguing and classification as a course.
- To determine the factor that gives rise to the attitude towards learning of cataloguing and classification as a course.
- To know the challenges being encountered during cataloguing and classification lecture (Both theory and practical aspect).
- To suggest the recommendation on how to provide the solution to the challenges if encountered.
1.4 Research questions
- What is the attitude of students towards cataloguing and classification as a course?
- What is the factor that gives rise to the attitude towards learning of cataloguing and classification as a course?
- What are the challenges being encountered during cataloguing and classification lecture (Both theory and practical aspect)?
- What is the solutions to the encountered challenges?
1.5 Significance of the Study
The result of the study will be useful to National Universities Commission (NUC), library schools, students, librarians and the libraries in related library and information science schools in Nigeria. The study will be useful to NUC in curriculum design as identified necessary tools for teaching and learning cataloguing and classification. It will help library schools in planning process to make available laboratories for students to undergo practical classes at the time need be. Study is expected to positively influence standard in teaching cataloguing and classification courses in Benue state university.
Furthermore, the results of this study are expected to analyze the availability of cataloguing tools, adequacy of time allotted for teaching the courses, method of teaching and the staff strength for teaching cataloguing and classification in library schools in Nigeria. This would provide facts that will enable Nigerian Library and Information Science Educators (NALISE) to formulate policies on teaching methods, time allocation and resources for teaching and learning cataloguing and classification courses.
Findings from the study would reveal the extent of availability of cataloguing and classification tools, adequacy of time allotted, method of teaching and provision of qualified staff that will enable library schools to design programmes to motivate the students in learning the courses which may improve their performances. In addition, information on adequacy of textbooks on cataloguing and classification in library schools in Nigeria would be revealed and may enable NALISE and library school's authority to adopt strategy in motivating lecturers in producing quality books for teaching and learning the courses. The study will add to the body of literature on cataloguing and classification in Nigeria and the world at large. The study is expected to be of great interest to researchers, cataloguers and administrators in library and information science.
1.6 Scope of the Study
The study will focus on the influence of availability and use of tools, time allocation, staff strength and method of teaching cataloguing and classification courses in the department of library and information science, Benue State university, Makurdi. Teaching methods being used by lecturers will be investigated as it affects Library schools in Nigeria. Resources like textbooks, cataloguing tools and laboratories will be analyzed as they also affect teaching cataloguing and classification courses.
1.7 Limitation of the study
There are two major limitations of this study; financial time and constraints. Constraints of time resulting from a short period of time allocated to the researcher to carry out this research work more effectively and, secondly, the financial constraint on the part of the researcher. In addition, there was a constraint of the unavailability of adequate information material and Nigeria's information and communication system in Nigeria is poor. This has resulted in delays in the research work of the researcher.
1.8 Organization of Study
The study is organized into five chapters. Chapter one deals with the study's introduction and gives a background to the study. Chapter two reviews related and relevant literature. The chapter three gives the research methodology while the chapter four gives the study's analysis and interpretation of data. The study concludes with chapter five which deals on the summary, conclusion and recommendation.