Using qualitative research methods for the improvement of collaborative information searching tools design
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Regarding the change of information seeking to a collaborative activity, DLs as dynamic information systems, have to adopt collaboration searching tools. This study investigates the degree of collaboration in information retrieval and the extent of collaboration tools usage in DLs. The collaborative tools of a prototype digital library are assessed through a qualitative study by the aspects of usefulness, usability and usage. Results show that information search transforms to a collective form, while they prove that usefulness and usability have a significant effect on usage and on user satisfaction. The results also show that collaboration tools evolve into indispensable design parameters for modern digital libraries.