Dissertation Information for Ruth Maddox Swan
- Ruth Maddox Swan
- Library and Information Science
- Florida State University (USA) (1998)
- F. William Summers
- Thomas L. Hart
- Jane B. Robbins
- Gary Heald
- Kathy Burnett
MPACT Status: Fully Complete
Title: Perceived performance and disconfirmation of expectations as measures of customer satisfaction with information services in the academic library
Abstract: The purpose of this study was to determine the usefulness of the performance-based SERVPERF and the disconfirmation-based SERVQUAL scales in the setting of the academic library. The study also sought to explore what service quality factors are important to customers of the academic library. The relationships between overall customer satisfaction and selected study variables were explored to explain what accounts for the most significant variation in customer judgments of satisfaction.
A sample of 384 students of Florida State University was selected to receive one of the modified service performance scales. 40% of the sample responded to the mail survey. Along with the mail survey, focus surveys were used to gather data for analysis.
The results of the focus interview and focus mail questionnaire yielded several findings. The factors important to customer satisfaction can be supported by the five dimensional service quality structure as developed by SERVQUAL developers. Descriptions of the dimensions may differ, however, from descriptions given by customers of non-library service providers. The two most frequently mentioned factors important to customer satisfaction related to reliability and to customer-staff-relations. Results also suggest that customers of the academic library may place a higher value on the service dimension Tangibles than customers of non-library service providers.
The results of the mail survey show strong support for three of the five service quality dimensions proposed by SERVQUAL developers. The findings of the study also show that service quality scores for SERVPERF are more heavily correlated to an overall measure of customer satisfaction than are scores for the SERVQUAL scale. The service variables that were shown to explain the most variance in overall satisfaction scores were the following: willingness to recommend services to others, value of library services, and value of the dimension Reliability. User characteristics were weakly correlated to values of overall customer satisfaction. Of this set of variables, income was the strongest.