The Library Right There in My Hand: Determining User Needs for Mobile Services at a Medium-Sized Regional University
While there have been a number of articles written about the need to provide mobile services for users, most have focused on large institutions. The authors, both librarians, wanted to find out how patrons of Houston Cole Library at Jacksonville State University (JSU), a small regional university, are using mobile devices and what mobile services they want or expect from the library. The possibility of finding the answers to these and other questions initiated the authors’ interest in surveying JSU students about their mobile device use. They invited 9,166 students and 1,053 employees to participate in the Mobile Devices Use Assessment Survey. The student population for the survey was composed of the total undergraduate and graduate enrollment in fall of 2011. The authors wanted to find out what mobile devices students own and whether these devices are used to access the Internet, including library web pages and services. An incentive for taking the survey was an entry into a drawing for a $15 iTunes gift card (a personal purchase by a librarian).