Academic libraries, BYU, federated searching


Randomly selected undergraduates at Brigham Young University, Brigham Young University Idaho and Brigham Young University Hawaii, all private universities sponsored by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, participated in a study of federated searching. This paper reports the study results including differences in time spent between searching databases in federated and non-federated fashion, satisfaction with citations gathered using each method, preference between methods, and quality of citations retrieved by each method judged by two different rubrics. Undergraduates rated their satisfaction with the citations gathered by federated searching 6.5% higher than their satisfaction using non-federated search methods. Additionally, 70% of undergraduates at the participating schools prefer federated searching and saved time using a federated search compared to a non-federated search. Which search method yields higher citation quality was ultimately indeterminable. The study sheds light on assumptions about federated searching and may interest librarians in different types of academic institutions given the diversity of the three institutions studied.

Original Publication Citation

Sailing into the Future: Charting our Destiny: Proceedings of the Thirteenth National Conference of the Association of College and Research Libraries, March 29-April 1, 27, Baltimore Maryland, pp. 13-113.

Document Type


Publication Date


Permanent URL


Association of College and Research Libraries




Harold B. Lee Library