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dc.contributor.advisorCaroline Mutwirien_US
dc.contributor.advisorRose Njorogeen_US
dc.contributor.authorKiambati, Fridah Gatwiri
dc.date.accessioned2022-08-05T08:25:32Z
dc.date.available2022-08-05T08:25:32Z
dc.date.issued2021
dc.identifier.urihttp://ir-library.ku.ac.ke/handle/123456789/23884
dc.descriptionA Research Thesis Submitted in Partial Fulfilment for the Award of the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy (Information Science) in the School of Education, Kenyatta University, December, 2021en_US
dc.description.abstractUsability studies play a key role in advancing best practices in the design of usable digital libraries. Users with visual impairment have been excluded in design of digital libraries due to unintentional biasness towards the sighted majority. As a result, these users experience difficulties when using the digital libraries to retrieve information. The purpose of this study was to evaluate five usability attributes of digital libraries from the perspective of a user with visual impairment regarding information retrieval. The study sought to determine the level of user friendliness, efficiency, user satisfaction, learnability, and the level of accessibility of digital libraries by persons with visual impairment when retrieving information. Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology was adopted for the study. The study used a cross-sectional survey design in which 126 students with visual impairment and 12 special needs librarians were targeted. Complete enumeration technique was used to select all for the study. Questionnaire, interview guide and focus group discussion guide were used to collect data from the students and special needs librarians. A pilot study was conducted at the University of Nairobi to improve the reliability and validity of the data collection instruments and enhance data collection logistics. A mixed method approach to data analysis was used, where descriptive and inferential statistical methods were used in the analysis and presentation of quantitative data while thematic approach was used to analyse qualitative data. The study findings revealed that digital libraries were not friendly to use by students with visual impairment. On efficiency of digital libraries, slightly more than half of students with visual impairment reported that digital libraries are efficient. On user satisfaction with digital libraries, it was found that a bigger percentage of students with visual impairment were dissatisfied. The findings further revealed that user’s level of satisfaction was independent of their gender and age. Research findings also established that majority of students with visual impairment found the digital libraries not easy to learn. Further, the study findings revealed that digital libraries were not accessible to persons with visual impairment and that some of them lacked the basic accessibility requirements for the visually impaired as guided by the World Wide Web Consortium standards. This study established that there is a close interrelation among four of usability attributes; friendliness, efficiency, learnability, and accessibility as they all correlated positively to user satisfaction. The study concludes that prior training of students with visual impairments in assistive technology improves overall user experience with digital libraries. Thus, the study recommends institutionalization of assistive technology training as a strategy to enhance the use of digital library resources among users with visual impairment. The study also recommends involvement of persons with visual impairment in usability testing of information retrieval (IR) systems such as digital library to facilitate design of friendly, efficient, easy to use, easy to learn and accessible systems.en_US
dc.description.sponsorshipKenyatta Universityen_US
dc.language.isoenen_US
dc.publisherKenyatta Universityen_US
dc.subjectUsabilityen_US
dc.subjectDigital Librariesen_US
dc.subjectInformation Retrievalen_US
dc.subjectPersons With Visual Impairmenten_US
dc.subjectSelected Public Universitiesen_US
dc.subjectKenyaen_US
dc.titleUsability of Digital Libraries during Information Retrieval by Persons With Visual Impairment in Selected Public Universities in Kenyaen_US
dc.typeThesisen_US


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