Library Discovery Systems usability

Submitted by admin on Sat, 02/03/2018 - 17:32

Susan Teague-Rector & Jimmy Ghaphery (2008) Designing Search: Effective
Search Interfaces for Academic Library Web Sites, Journal of Web Librarianship, 2:4, 479-492,
DOI: 10.1080/19322900802473944

David Wells (2016) Library Discovery Systems and their Users: a Case Study
from Curtin University Library, Australian Academic & Research Libraries, 47:2, 92-105, DOI:

The replacement of the previous multiple and often specialist tools for discovery with a single interface provides a more streamlined search experience, but at the same time, it
entails a breakdown of pre-existing understandings of how the information universe is constructed – the previous boundaries between different sorts of information are blurred
or removed. On the one hand, the de-emphasis of the sophisticated search functionality of some specialised databases in discovery systems (as in federated search systems before them) for some implies a ‘dumbed-down’ approach to the discovery process (Rose-Wiles & Hofmann, 2013); at the same time, familiar library terms such as catalogue’ and ‘collection’are destabilised and given new meanings.

Aaron Nichols, Amber Billey, Peter Spitzform, Alice Stokes & Catherine
Tran (2014) Kicking the Tires: A Usability Study of the Primo Discovery Tool, Journal of Web
Librarianship, 8:2, 172-195, DOI: 10.1080/19322909.2014.903133

Asked the following questions:
1. Will new users be able to find relevant and appropriate content using the
Primo search interface?
2. Will users be able to interpret results lists and records?
3. Will users discover and use search limiters and facets?
4. Will users be able to find and use Primo tools such as e-mail, e-Shelf, and
the full-text button?
5. Will users discover and use the search scopes? If they do use the search
scopes, will they choose the appropriate scope for their research?

TASK 1 - Known Item Book Search
1A. Does the library have the book, A brief history of time: from the big bang
to black holes by Stephen Hawking? Y____N____
1B1. Can you find the call number of this book? Y____N____
If so, what is the call number?
1B2. How many copies are owned by the library? Are any checked out?
1C. How might you e-mail the citation for this book to yourself?

TASK 2 – Journal Title Search
2A. Does the library have online access to the current issues of the journal
2B. If so, how much of the journal can be accessed online by the library?

TASK 3 – Article Search
3A. Can you find the article How to get our democracy back by Lawrence
3B. If so, can you add the article to your e-Shelf?
3C. Can you open the article in a new window?

TASK 4 – Media Search194
A. Nichols et al.
For your theatre class, you need to watch a (any) performance of Hamlet.
4A. Does the library have a copy?
4B. Where is it/are they?
4C. Are any checked out?

TASK 5 – Image Search
5. Can you find an image of hiking the Long Trail?

TASK 6 – Research Question: Topical Search for Peer-reviewed Articles
6. You have a research paper on the topic of agricultural practices and dairy
policy. Please find three full-text peer-reviewed articles published within the
last two years.

Barbara Valentine & Beth West (2016) Improving Primo Usability and
Teachability with Help from the Users, Journal of Web Librarianship, 10:3, 176-196, DOI:

Zebulin Evelhoch (2016) Web-Scale Discovery: Impact on Library
Database Web Page Views and Usage, Journal of Web Librarianship, 10:3, 197-209, DOI:

Kylie Jarrett (2012) Findit@Flinders: User Experiences of the Primo
Discovery Search Solution, Australian Academic & Research Libraries, 43:4, 278-299, DOI:

David J. Comeaux (2012) Usability Testing of a Web-Scale Discovery
System at an Academic Library, College & Undergraduate Libraries, 19:2-4, 189-206, DOI:

Kim Durante & Zheng Wang (2012) Creating an Actionable Assessment
Framework for Discovery Services in Academic Libraries, College & Undergraduate Libraries,
19:2-4, 215-228, DOI: 10.1080/10691316.2012.693358

Mireille Djenno, Glenda Insua, Gwen M. Gregory & John S. Brantley (2014)
Discovering Usability: Comparing Two Discovery Systems at One Academic Library, Journal of
Web Librarianship, 8:3, 263-285, DOI: 10.1080/19322909.2014.933690

Xi Niu, Tao Zhang & Hsin-liang Chen (2014) Study of User Search Activities
With Two Discovery Tools at an Academic Library, International Journal of Human-Computer
Interaction, 30:5, 422-433, DOI: 10.1080/10447318.2013.873281