Provision Of Library Service For The Physically Challenged In Imo State Public Library

Project and Seminar Material for Library and Information Science

Provision Of Library Service For The Physically Challenged In Imo State Public Library


The knowledge society does not have the physically challenged people excluded from its pronouncement that all people should have full access to needed information. This work investigates the operations of academic libraries in Imo State and their compliance with the pronouncement of the knowledge society. The various types of physically challenged were also enumerated. The work discussed the need for libraries to cater for the information needs of the physically challenged just like every other set of people. The operations and services of academic libraries in Imo State were also considered to determine the availability of library resources and services for the physically challenged in those libraries. Findings of the study revealed that physical challenged people are present in all sphere of life and tertiary institutions in Imo State are not left out. The study also revealed that only a few library in Imo State planned for the physically challenged right from inception. This work thereby concluded that there is ability in every disability and libraries are advised to help the physically challenged in nourishing their abilities in their respective disabilities.

Table of Content

  • Title Page
  • Certification
  • Dedication
  • Acknowledgement
  • Table of Content
  • List of Tables
  • Abstract

Chapter One:


  • 1.1 Background of the Study
  • 1.2 Statement of the Problem
  • 1.3 Objective of the Study
  • 1.4 Research Questions
  • 1.5 Significance of the Study
  • 1.6 Scope of the Study
  • 1.7 Limitation of the Study
  • 1.8 Definition of Terms
  • 1.9 Organisations of the Study

Chapter Two:

Review of Literature

  • 2.1 Conceptual Framework
  • 2.2 Theoretical Framework
  • 2.3 Empirical Review

Chapter Three:

Research Methodology

  • 3.1 Research Design
  • 3.2 Population of the Study
  • 3.3 Sample Size Determination
  • 3.4 Sample Size Selection Technique and Procedure
  • 3.5 Research Instrument and Administration
  • 3.6 Method of Data Collection
  • 3.7 Method of Data Analysis
  • 3.8 Validity of the Study
  • 3.9 Reliability of the Study
  • 3.10 Ethical Consideration

Chapter Four:

Data Presentation and Analysis

  • 4.1 Data Presentation
  • 4.2 Analysis of Data
  • 4.3 Answering Research Questions

Chapter Five:

Summary, Conclusion and Recommendation

  • 5.1 Summary
  • 5.2 Conclusion
  • 5.3 Recommendation
  • References

Chapter One


1.1 Background to the Study

The operations and services rendered by Libraries of all types are usually structured to support the attainment of the vision and mission statements of their parent bodies. Traditionally, libraries are attached to a parent body (organization) that have several units working together to achieve a common goal. Though each unit might operate differently, their objectives are usually drawn from the general aim and objectives of the organization as a whole. Libraries attached to educational institutions are usually structured to research, reading and learning activities while those attached to governmental agencies structured their operations towards the attainment of the scope of their respective agencies. Kumar (2007) posited that library does not exist for its own sake, it exist to serve the needs of a community and its objectives drawn from its parent body. The library is thereby one of the arms of an organization that is meant to contribute tremendously to the growth and development of the organization.
The community meant to be served by Libraries comprise of people that are diverse in their mode of understanding, physical, mental and moral wellness. An in-depth understanding of the fundamental principles that guide the operations and services of libraries painted the library as a unit that is meant to treat all users (community members) fairly without prejudice. Aina (2004) opined that users of the library are those who avail themselves of the services offered by a library in a community. As such, the library need the users as much as the users need the library because the essence of establishing a library is to meet with the information needs of the users who can hardly survive without necessary information.

Library users are of different categories and its division vary between libraries. Nwalo (2003) grouped library users into specialists, students, disadvantaged majority and the indisposed. As a user-oriented centre, libraries serve all manners of people and it has become imperative for the library to ensure that the information needs of the people are continuously satisfied for them to remain in business. The Library Science Principles posited that all users should be given their books and every book should be linked to their users. Libraries are meant to acquire information / information materials in varying formats to ensure that the information needs of their users are satisfactorily met. Libraries shouldalso not relent in their efforts in continuous acquisition to justify the purpose of their existence.

Libraries were primarily established to satisfy the information needs of some set of people classified as primary users. Though studies (Aina 2004; Nwalo, 2004) have it that discrepancies exist within the libraries primary users. Nwalo (2003), and Aina (2004) presented library users as rational beings with variations in their respective mode of reasoning, their information needs their respective mode of satisfaction. The degree of information needed by people will continue to vary for as long as no two individual reason in the same way. As such, libraries are left with no other choice than to provide information materials in different formats and form to ensure that the library capture materials needed by a substantial number of library users. Some library users prefer information materials in electronic form while others prefers theirs in print format. Library users are rational beings that makes decisions with their own interest in mind in the first instance

As an information unit, the library continuously strike to meet-up with the information needs of all users irrespective of the huddles required to get this done. Naturally, libraries commerce operations with a clear description of whom their primary users are but it has been proven by literatures that libraries rarely consider the change in the status of their users that might crop-up unexpectedly. Except for few libraries that are set-up for physically challenged people, most libraries (especially) in Nigeria do not have adequate provisions for the physically challenged. Eze (2014) posited that there are some groups of people in Nigeria that do not to have same privileges to the library due to their physical, mental and social condition. These people include the physically challenged persons who are also labelled handicapped, disadvantaged or disabled (Mackie, 2009).

Physically challenged individuals are presented by Eze (2014) to be victims of unfortunate circumstance that could have happened to anyone. Poor provision and use of information resources and services have a resultant effect on the quality of life of library users of all categories and the society at large. It is therefore imperative for libraries to ensure that the physically challenged members of the society are well catered for in terms of their information needs in their respective operations and services.

Libraries attached to tertiary institutions are generally referred to as academic libraries and their primary aim is to support reading learning and research processes. Oyegunle (2013) posited that academic librariesare libraries that are attached to academic institutions above the secondary level, serving the teaching and research needs of students and staff. Academic libraries acquire resources and render services to the tune of the mission and vision statement of their respective parent bodies. Though their resources and services are tied to the mission and vision statement of their parent bodies, they usually operate a wider range of service compared to other types of libraries.
Abubakar (2011) opined that academic libraries are at the forefront of providing information services to their respective communities which comprises of students, lecturers, and researchers in order to support their teaching, learning and research needs. Much like their counterparts across the world, all tertiary institutions in Imo State have an operational academic library that is meant to service them.

1.2 Statement of the Problem

Physically challenged dwellers in a community need Library and Information services like every other member of the community. Iroeze et. al. (2017) reported that between 75 and 90 percent of physically challenged people live below poverty line due to years of neglect by the society, especially their lack of access to information and information resources. Neglecting this set of people is a breach of their fundamental human right as stated in “Nigerians with Disability Decree (NWDD) of 1993” and by the “United Nation General Assembly 1975”. Eze (2014) posited that neglecting the physically challenged in the community is tantamount to underutilization and wastage of human resources and underutilization of services. Libraries as an information centre are meant to support the society in building resourceful human resources without fear or favour. Physically challenged people in a community need information for self and societal development like their able counterpart and the library should give them the opportunities needed to access resourceful information materials. Physically challenged members of the society aspire to make something out of life rather than confine themselves to their disabilities. It is therefore pertinent for libraries to play their roles to all members of the community fairly.

1.3 Objectives of the Study

The aim of this study is to investigate the Provision Of Library Service For The Physically Challenged In Imo State Public Library.

Other objectives of the study are;

  1. To identify the types of libraries resources that are available to the physically challenged in Imo State Public Library;
  2. To identify the types of libraries services that are available to the physically challenged in Imo State Public Library
  3. To identify the level of awareness created for the available libraries resources and services to the physically challenged by Imo State Public Library

1.4 Research Questions

The study is guided by the following research questions;

  1. What are the Library Resources that are available for use by the Physically Challenged in Imo State Public Library?
  2. What are the Library Services that are provided to the Physically Challenged by Imo State Public Library?
  3. What is the level of awareness of the libraries resources and services to the physically challenged by Imo State Public Library?

1.5 Significance of the Study

The findings of this study is expected to be beneficial to the physically challenged users, school authorities, researchers, ministry of education, other allied educational institutions that are not captured in this study and the federal government of Nigeria.

The findings will enable the physically challenged users to learn how to select or distinguish between specific knowledge based materials that will be of use to them in their areas of interest. (For example, someone who is blind may prefer to use Braille because it has some facilities like key board that can easily be used by a blind person than using desktop computer). The identification of library resources will be useful to the school authority when they want to acquire or purchase the right materials that will be useful to various physically challenged individuals.

Researchers and scholars in other areas can use the data gathered in this study as a reference point when conducting similar research that will be of importance in the life of these physically challenged (PC) users in the special educational institutions and the society as a whole.

The ministry of education can also use the findings of this study when planning on the needs of the physically challenged users. This is to enable them have a sense of belonging and to live a useful life in the society.

Government can use the result of this study to improve the condition of life for the physically challenged, especially children in our society that requires support for the enforcement of their rights. This will help them to live equal and protected life just like other members of the society. Other allied educational institutions in the state that were not captured in this study can use the results of these findings to enhance the quality of teaching, learning and research in their various institutions.

1.7 Scope of the Study

The study will analyze the provision of library service for the physically challenged in imo state public library. The study is limited to some selected public library in the area. Hence, the respondents for this study will be obtained from and among physically challenged students in the study area.

1.8 Limitation of the Study

In the course of carrying out this study, the researcher experienced some constraints, which included time constraints, financial constraints, language barriers, and the attitude of the respondents. However, the researcher were able to manage these just to ensure the success of this study.

1.9 Definition of Terms


This the process through which individual are charged to increase their action or performance either by internal or external factors.

Academic Performance:

This is used in the study to refers to students’ attitude to competition for excellent in their attitude toward participating in classroom activities and home work. It also used to students’ interest in learning.

1.10 Organization of the Study

This research work is organized in five chapters, for easy understanding, as follows.

  • Chapter one is concern with the introduction, which consist of the (overview, of the study), historical background, statement of problem, objectives of the study, research hypotheses, significance of the study, scope and limitation of the study, definition of terms and historical background of the study.
  • Chapter two highlights the theoretical framework on which the study is based, thus the review of related literature.
  • Chapter three deals on the research design and methodology adopted in the study.
  • Chapter four concentrate on the data collection and analysis and presentation of finding.
  • Chapter five gives summary, conclusion, and recommendations made of the study.

Chapter Five

Summary, Conclusion and Recommendation

5.1 Summary

In this study, our focus was to examine the provision of library service for the physically challenged in imo state public library. The study adopted the survey research design and randomly enrolled participants in the study. A total of 230 responses were validated from the enrolled participants where all respondent are active users of the school library.

The findings revealed that the situation of the few existing school libraries in the selected secondary schools was not satisfactory to facilitate student learning as their condition was poor in terms of places where the books were kept and lack of digital resources. The findings also revealed that libraries were most frequently used by students for their private studies, doing assignment and when preparing for tests/examinations. The findings further revealed that utilization of school library resources have impacted the students’ academic performance in areas of; development of reading habit, getting good grades in assignments, tests and examinations as well as improving their knowledge.

5.2 Conclusion

This work collaborate previous studies (Anjiode, 2010; ) that posited that there are physically challenged people in all parts of the world and in all levels of every society. Also, this study also supported the claim that physically challenged persons should not be seen as unwell, unable to work, read neither should they be seen as people that needs help pity. None of the academic libraries in Imo State paid particular attention to the physically challenged despite the established roles of this set of people in national growth and development as documented in United Nation Act of 1948. Libraries as centre for all cannot leave out the physically challenged as this is contrary to their guiding principles. It is obvious that physically challenged people need special library resources and services and libraries are thereby implore to provide required resources and services. This work thereby concluded that there is ability in every disabilities and libraries should help the physically challenged to identify and build on their ability in their respective disabilities.

5.3 Recommendations

Due to the findings of this study that revealed that physically challenged people are everywhere, the study enjoined all libraries to make provisions for the physically challenged right from the very start. Provision of ramps should be made compulsory in all library architectural designs to facilitate access to the library resources and services. The operational policies of libraries should be reworked to accommodate policies that will facilitate access and use of the library by the physically challenged persons. Libraries are encouraged to make their policies flexible to accommodate some of the special demands of the physically challenged users.

Library educational / orientation programmes should be structured in such a way that the physically challenged people are carried along. It is not enough to organize a talk session to introduce library operations, services and resources to different categories of users at the same time. Libraries should endeavour to acquire Blaire and some other rear collections for use of their respective physically challenged persons.

Libraries should make provisions for the physically challenged as they are expected to provide “every user his/her books” and “every book its user”. Libraries in should make special provision for the physically challenged in their annual budget. Libraries should endeavour to have trained personnel that will help in attending to the physically challenged users as they demand for special form of services in most cases.

Libraries should look into the spacing right from the entrance and ensure that adequate spacing are made to favour the physically challenged users. Walkways should be up to 60 inches wild to enhance free flow of movement. Usage of library to the physically challenged should not be limited to special libraries as academic libraries are known for the richness of their collections.

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