Research Problem

Recent research has investigated users' perspectives of accessing library websites through traditional desktop/laptop computers and alternatively using mobile technology (Aldrich 2010; Kim 2011, 67-69; Seeholzer and Salem 2011, 9). These studies do not examine user preference in a particular method of access in browsing, navigating and searching library websites. This study seeks to determine user preference in the mode of access of library websites and evaluate users' perspectives comparing interfaces, features of the two points of access and the library and information services provided.

This research study would compare web and mobile versions of library websites from the user perspective, explore user preferences in browsing, navigating and searching for content and discover whether users consider one of the interface types as more accessible for their information needs. It uses a qualitative framework, as the study would solicit, evaluate and interpret personal opinions from multiple users comparing library website interface choices.

With the increasing popularity of mobile technology and the mobile web, libraries are integrating mobile versions of their websites as a point of access for users to the resources and services they deliver. The study would investigate a deeper interpretation of user preference between desktop computers and mobile device interfaces of library website resources, benefiting the library and information studies field by examining user behavior and mobile libraries. Additionally, the study would survey participants from both academic and public library institutions, allowing for cross comparison.