This paper aims to present the results of a survey conducted to determine the effective use of online public access catalogue (OPAC) at the libraries of engineering colleges in Karnataka. The paper examines the results from a questionnaire-based survey conducted at the libraries of engineering colleges in Karnataka. 1716 samples of the questionnaire was distributed randomly between the staff and students of engineering colleges across Karnataka, out of which 1338 completed and valid questionnaires (77.97%) were received for analysis. The data received from the respondents through these questionnaires was analyses. Some of the major constraints for the use of OPAC at the libraries of engineering colleges were found to be 1) Lack of awareness of between user community 2) OPAC is not user friendly software 3) Information technology (IT) competency between user communities was lack luster. Thus, the study clearly highlighted the need for an education programme module for users to promote the effective usage of OPAC. An attempt is made through this study to present the difficulties faced by users at engineering college libraries, in searching information using OPAC. This paper provides useful empirical evidence for librarians and the research community on the usage of OPAC in libraries of engineering colleges. The results of this study will be useful for librarians at engineering colleges in Karnataka and also to other librarians around the state and country. This paper provides original data from library end users in engineering colleges, regarding their experience whiles using OPAC.
Key words: OPAC, online public access catalogue, library automation, engineering colleges, libraries, effective usage.
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