Part Two: Measurement of User Perceptions
LibQUAL provided an analysis of the core and local questions indicating user satisfaction as measured by perceived level, minimum acceptable level, and desired level for each question. The core and local questions are listed in the Appendix. Users were asked to separately rank on a scale of 1-9 their minimum acceptable level, their desired level, and their perception of the current level for each question. Questions with responses showing that the perceived level is greater than the minimum level are considered to be within the zone of tolerance. Questions with responses indicating that the perceived level is less than the minimum acceptable level are problem areas. Question with responses indicating that the perceived level is more than the desired level can indicate areas that exceed expectations. The University of Maine did not have any areas that exceeded expectations.
2.1 Area Rankings for Core Questions
The core questions deal with the areas Affect of Service, Information Control, and Library as Place. When user groups are combined, the perceived means for all areas are higher than the minimum means. This puts all areas of the library within the zone of tolerance. Looking at the users groups shows that faculty and graduate students were not satisfied with the area of Information Control. The following tables indicate the minimum mean, desired mean, and perceived mean for the three core areas. Perceived means that are not within the zone of tolerance are shown in bold. N represents the number of respondents.
2.2 Problem Areas for Core and Local Questions
Undergraduates showed no problem areas in the local or core questions. Both graduate students and faculty indicated dissatisfaction for questions within the area of Information Control. The combined scores of all users indicate a problem area for the local question dealing with comprehensive collections of online full-text articles. The following tables give the minimum mean and the perceived mean. Perceived means that do not fall within the zone of tolerance are shown in bold.
2.3 Measurement of Priorities
LibQUAL results were also used to assess priorities by examining the top and bottom of rankings for desired level. The following tables give the top three and bottom three desired library services based on desired rankings of 1-9.
Undergraduate student desired rankings showed that they place the greatest importance on library hours, the online catalog, and the building. Graduate students and faculty desired rankings selected the same three questions dealing with Information Control.
2.4 General Satisfaction
Respondents were asked to rate their general satisfaction with the library in three questions. Each question was ranked on a scale of 1-9. The table below gives the questions and the mean scores for undergraduates, graduate students, and faculty.
2.5 Information Literacy Outcomes Questions
Respondents were asked to rate literacy outcomes for five questions on a scale of 1-9. The table below gives the mean scores for undergraduates, graduate students, and faculty.
2.6 Frequency of Library Use
Survey respondents were asked how frequently they used library resources on site, accessed the library resources online, and used non-library gateways such as Google. Respondents rated frequency by the following time units: daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, and never. The table below gives the highest frequency for each group.
2.7 Statistical Analysis
Pearson’s correlations were run to see if there were relationships between frequency of library use and perceptions of library services. No meaningful relationships were found. Univariate analysis of disciplines and information control questions found significant results. However, the levels of representation within disciplines make the results unreliable.