Capturing patron selections from an engineering library public terminal menu: An analysis of results

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The Grainger Engineering Library at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign has developed a mechanism to capture and record user resource selection from the Grainger public terminal menu using a 'click-through' redirect transaction log technique. The transaction log record includes the Internet Protocol (IP) address of the source computer and an indication of the resource selected, whether it is located on a local or remote server. While there are limitations in this approach, this data is useful for collection assessment, user service needs analysis, and interface design purposes. An analysis of 84,824 public terminal menu selections over the period from January 2001 to May 2002 was performed. During this period, 67.8% of the recorded selections came from Grainger in-library computers, indicating heavy use of the public terminal page by remote users. Online catalog usage (at 35.6% of the total selections) and Abstracting and Indexing (A & I) Services usage (at an aggregate 34.6%) were high. Periodical access selections represented, at the minimum, 47.6% of the total selections and direct electronic journal links were 14.9% of the total. Patrons are making extensive use of publisher full-text repository sites.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)127-138
Number of pages12
JournalScience and Technology Libraries
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Sep 1 2001


  • End-user searching behavior
  • Grainger Engineering Library
  • Public terminal menus
  • Transaction logs

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Library and Information Sciences


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