Assessing the Implementation Status of Institutional Repositories for Scholarly Communication in the Selected Universities in Kenya
Njagi, Pauline Ruguru
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Institutional repository is a concept that has been embraced worldwide as a means through which academic institution showcase their research output globally. The aim of this study was to assess the implementation status of institutional repositories for transmitting scholarly communication in newly established universities in Kenya, with particular reference to Machakos, Kirinyaga and Embu University. The study objectives were establishing content recruitment criteria the universities employ to populate their institutional repositories, assess role of staff who are charged with responsibilities of managing institutional repositories, establish user awareness levels of the existence and purpose of institutional repositories, evaluate the extent of user acceptance of the institutional repositories and finally identity challenges that face successful implementation of institutional repositories. The study used quantitative and qualitative methods for data collection and analysis. Data for the study was collected through structured questionnaires and interview schedule. Simple random sampling was used to sample data from student population and purposive sampling from the staff. Qualitative data was analysed by the use of content analysis. A statistical package for social sciences was used to analyse quantitative data and represent it through the use of percentages, tables, pie charts and graphs for the purpose of interpretation. The study established that majority of the users (faculty heads and student) were averagely aware of existence of institutional repository. Users had an average perception on institution repository and some were depositing and archiving their research work with the repository. The surveyed institution repositories had fairly functional institution repositories governed by submission and metadata policies. The institutional repository librarians were charged with responsibilities of recruiting content, understood the scholarly communication process. The study concluded that the level of awareness needs to be improved through user education on content hosting, digital archiving and scholarship. The study recommends for methods of promoting institutional repositories concept and management support.