To what extent does digital literacy service differ across public libraries in the Republic of Ireland?

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O'Brien, Conor
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MSc in Information and Library Management
Dublin Business School
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Digital literacy is an area relatively understudied within public libraries. This study investigated the level and types of digital literacy service in place across public libraries in the Republic of Ireland, and to ascertain whether there an urban/rural divide exists. This research entailed a census, namely a survey sent out to all public libraries in Ireland. The research was quantitative in nature to handle the large amount of data, and employed a deductive, positivist approach. Results show regions across Ireland differ greatly, though some regions such as South-East and Midlands have higher levels of informal and formal DL service respectively, whilst the West has the most wide-ranging types. Most libraries, however, did not teach other digital literacy skills such as eSafety and website evaluation. The research could also not correlate whether an urban/rural divide exists, opening future research possibilities.