PURPOSE: The purpose of this paper is to present findings of an electronic survey to determine the extent of use of social software programs.
DESIGN/METHODOLOGY/APPROACH: The study was conducted to discover the extent to which students use social software programs, namely Facebook, MySpace, Instant Messaging and Second Life, and to determine their level of desire for having a librarian or library presence within those settings. A web survey was developed and distributed using convenience sampling. The survey was distributed to students at two college campuses located in the state of Colorado in the USA.
FINDINGS: The majority of respondents use social software programs, but are apathetic about using these programs for library questions or research.
RESEARCH LIMITATIONS/IMPLICATIONS: This research has several limitations to its findings: limited response rate, ambiguous phrasing of survey questions and geographic limitations all affect the results.
PRACTICAL IMPLICATIONS: Owing to constraints on librarian time and resources, involvement in social software programs should be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
ORIGINALITY/VALUE: Social software programs are discussed in library literature, but few research projects have been undertaken to determine patron expectations for librarian involvement.
New Library World
Academic libraries; Social networks; Students
Place of Publication
Copyright is held by the publisher.
Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Epperson, Annie and Leffler, Jennifer, "Social Software Programs: Student Preferences of Librarian Use" (2009). University Libraries Faculty Publications. 5.