n Mousaion - An exploratory study of the information behaviour of veterinary practitioners in South Africa




The importance of access to information and deepening understanding of information behaviour in order to improve library and information (LIS) services is widely recognised. An exploratory research project was therefore conducted at the Jotello F. Soga Library of the Faculty of Veterinary Science of the University of Pretoria to gain insight into the information behaviour of veterinary practitioners in South Africa, in order to recommend and develop appropriate information products and services. A survey of a small sample (70) with 24 respondents was undertaken to identify information needs and the methods used to satisfy such needs. The survey also covered the processes involved in information usage as well as the role of Google and other search engines, web services such as the International Veterinary Information Service (IVIS) and Web 2.0 applications such as blogs and wikis. Considering the importance of compulsory continued professional development (CPD) initiated by the South African Veterinary Council to assist veterinary practitioners in keeping up to date with contemporary veterinary developments, the role of the library in assisting veterinary practitioners earning CPD points was also investigated. In conclusion, a brief overview of existing products and services of the library is linked to recommendations for reducing information gaps and satisfying the requirements identified as a means of extending the services of veterinary libraries and furthering theoretical studies.


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