Introduction to Library and Information Science/Information Seeking
Scientific and academic research
Antwerp State University Centre conducted a survey of 3545 scientists which confirmed that the scientists first consult references at the end of articles in journals and books when staying informed about their field. Ranked second, Current Contents and the library operated SDI service were reviewed for paper titles. Abstracting and indexing journals, followed by personal recommendations, computerized information services, library browsing, theses and catalogues ranked next. The Antwerp survey was compared to Hakulinen's findings which also conclude that for scientific research abstracting and indexing journals are less important. The so-called information explosion poses the challenge of keeping aware of new publications and what has been published on a given subject. With the increase in information, scientists do not read more, but are finding relevancy to their subject area in a set number of core journals.
The use of computer data bases to scan titles and subjects in a scientist’s field is more pertinent today than when the article was published. A search across multiple listings of journals through computer data bases saves time previously spent reading the table of contents of journals and having to physically retrieve those journals. Academic libraries are maintaining fewer periodicals in print each year. The findings of the article remain important in its contribution to bibliometrics specifically regarding where scientists can find current information in their field.
- Van Styvendaele, B.J.H, 1977. University Scientists as Seekers of Information Sources of References to Periodical Literature. Journal of Librarianship 9:270-277.