Libraries rely on websites to inform patrons of their resources, services, and organizations. Consequently, these websites are a rich source of research data to discover library trends, whether it is determining which databases are most commonly offered or which departments have the most employees. Content from library websites not only allow researchers to explore these types of questions, but they also indicate how libraries communicate information to patrons.
Come to this session to learn when and how to conduct a content analysis of library websites. It will begin with an overview of the types of research questions that can be explored using this method, including examples from research projects within the library and information science literature. Then, the presenter will delve into the process of conducting a content analysis of library websites, breaking down the general steps and providing helpful tips along the way. These steps will be demonstrated with an example of a study conducted by the presenter that used information from library websites to determine which academic library departments (collections/technology, research/instruction, etc.) manage institutional repositories. Lastly, the session will conclude with an activity that will walk attendees through thinking of a research question and how to design a content analysis for that question.
Sergiadis, Ashley D.R.. 2020. Using Websites to Study Library Resources, Services, and Organizations. Empirical Librarian, Knoxville, TN.