Distance learners' lack of knowledge about available library resources and services is the research problem addressed in this study. It is significant to Library and Information Studies because library professionals are called upon to consider and examine their methods and practices of how they create a presence among their distance learners. This signals librarians to make adjustments to bridge the gap between what is available and students' actual use of the library. This research sought to find out how community college libraries might establish a presence among new distance education students that would result in their greater use of library resources and services. How librarians feel they achieve library promotion to distance education students and the extent to which promotion is carried out for the purpose of reaching those students are the focus of this study. Information is provided concerning how community college libraries can promote themselves among new distance learners via means that may positively impact use of library resources and services.
As a result of the findings, it may be concluded that the majority of libraries in the study use more than one means of creating initial communications between the library and distance learners and that growth has also occurred in the use of library resources and services among distance education students. Data indicate that promoted benefits that correspond with the promoted product also positively impact consumption of the product, in that the benefit is of a utilitarian or a hedonic nature in regard to consumer needs. Those libraries that used only one means of promotion or none at all, experienced usage losses, no growth, or very little growth. The telephone interviews revealed that while libraries are incorporating innovatively proactive means of reaching and serving distance learners, more planning, initiatives, and library awareness assessments are needed for furthering the presence of the library among distance learners. Such efforts could prove to increase library usage and student productivity.
Cite: Austin, Sandra. "Communication of Community College Library Promotion to Distance Learners: Librarians' Practices and Perceptions as Determined Via e-Surveys and Telephone Interviews." Order No. 3347054, Texas Woman's University, 2008, http://search.proquest.com/docview/304317815?accountid=10906 (accessed November 11, 2013).