Assessing Institutional Repositories As Enabler Of Research Output In Academic Institutions In Kenya: The Case Of Kca University
Njoroge, Regina Wakaro
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The study assessed the role of institutional repositories as enabler of research output in academic institutions in Kenya with special reference to KCA University. Objectives of the study were to: assess the level of awareness of IR as enabler of research output in academic institutions, investigate the usage of institutional repository by the researchers in academic institutions, explore the role of the university management in adopting institutional repository in academic institutions and propose an appropriate model for embracing IR as enabler of research output in academic institutions. The study employed descriptive design where both qualitative and quantitative methods were used. Cluster and purposive sampling methods were used to get the target population. Data was collected by means of questionnaires and interview guides. Questionnaires were used to collect primary data from 62 postgraduate students, 88 fulltime academic staff and 14 library staff while an interview was conducted on the 6 senior library managers. Cluster sampling was used to select 62 postgraduate students while census sampling was used to select all the 88 fulltime academic staff. Library staff and senior library managers were purposively selected because of their knowledge and experience of using the IR. Content analysis was used to analyze the qualitative data from open-ended questions and interviews. Quantitative data in the questionnaires was analyzed through Statistical Package for Social Sciences and information presented in form of tables, percentages, pie charts and graphs for better interpretation. Findings from this study established that lack of skills to use the repository, lack of awareness, legal and copyright issues were the main challenges that hindered the adoption of institutional repository. The study also revealed that IR is an effective tool that supports widespread circulation of research work and increases value to published scholarly work. The study, therefore, recommended the need for promoting and marketing the platform though library orientation, workshops and trainings as a way of creating awareness. The study further recommended, the university management to review the available policies and to provide relevant guidelines on the use and access of materials. Management also to recognize the staff members who have deposited their work in the repository as a way of encouraging others. Finally, the study recommended an appropriate model for enhancing research productivity.