Design and evaluation of a task-based digital library for the academic community

Gobinda Chowdhury, N. Meyyappan, Schubert Foo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


The paper discusses the design, development and evaluation of a task-based digital library, the Digital Work Environment (DWE), for the academic community of higher education institutions (HEI) with Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, as a test case. Three different information organisation approaches (alphabetical, subject category and task-based) were used to organise the wide range of heterogeneous information resources that were interfaced to DWE. A user evaluation study using a series of task scenarios was carried out to gauge the effectiveness and usefulness of DWE and these information organisation approaches. The time taken by respondents to identify and access the relevant information resources for individual tasks was also measured. The findings show that the task-based approach took the least time in identifying information resources. Regression analysis of information resource location time with gender, age, computer experience and digital resource experience of the participants are also reported.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)449-475
Number of pages26
JournalJournal of Documentation
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2004


  • digital libraries
  • information management
  • information retrieval
  • information searching


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