Reference Analysis as an Aid in Collection Development: A Study of Master of Architecture Theses at Dalhousie University

Kelly Dickinson, Bryanna Boyd, Regan Gunningham



Librarians face difficult collection management decisions due to the proliferation of potential resources and the limited funding available to libraries. Reference analysis can act as a tool for selecting and de selecting materials because it provides insight into the materials that are selected by various user groups. This study analysed references in graduate architecture theses at Dalhousie University written between 2003 and 2006 to determine the format and age of materials used and the most frequently cited items. The study indicated that the average age of materials used was 18 years. It also showed that 65% of the items referenced were monographs, 17% were web-based materials and 10% were serials. This is contrary to other reference analyses, which found that journals are the most frequently used format. These findings suggest the need for further research into information literacy and interlibrary loan. To confirm this study additional reference analysis of Dalhousie architecture collections are necessary.


Dalhousie University, Theses, Architecture

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