VIABILITY OF DEVELOPING DIGITAL LIBRARIES IN ACADEMIC INSTITUTIONS: THE CASE OF CATHOLIC UNIVERSITY OF RWANDA
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The aim of the study was to assess the viability of developing digital libraries in academic institutions with particular reference to the Catholic University of Rwanda . This was done by initially establishing the need for developing a digital library at the CUR. The objectives were to determine the basic requirements for developing a digital library; finding out challenges that are encountered during the process of digital library development; and by suggesting a framework for developing an effective digital library system at the CUR. Survey design was used to carry out the study. The respondents comprised lecturers, librarians, and students. Probability sampling method was used to select respondents from the two campuses with the researcher utilizing systematic random sampling techniques to select sixty respondents. Data for the study was collected through the administration of questionnaires. The study revealed that digital libraries can always be available to everyone since they do not depend on physical boundaries. The study also indicated that content of quality depends on both the capabilities of the librarian and the availability of funds. Findings also revealed that digital content determines the worth of any digital library. The study concluded that developing a digital library is an arduous and complex process which requires competent staff, updated technologies, organized content with quality standards and thorough knowledge of data rights. In order to cope with the fast changing digital resources, the study recommends that users should be trained constantly. Finally, the study recommended that local/internal publications in digital format should be encouraged and promoted in order to be successful and competitive.