School of Information and Communication Studies
Charles Sturt University
Arif Khan is a senior client services librarian at Charles Sturt University. He began work in the field of librarianship in 2000 and later practiced in areas of information management, knowledge governance, information literacy, corporate training, professional development and community development. Arif grew up in Pakistan and has coordinated a national-level Public Sector Development Project as project director. He has maintained an interest in the technological and social aspects of information and communication studies. Arif has published several papers and presented his research work in international conferences. Arif worked with international projects run by AusAID and Cowater. As a corporate trainer, he has designed and conducted 23 national-level training for information science professionals in Pakistan. Arif’s PhD explored experiential learning programs (ELP) and presented a theory of ELP supervision in information sector organisations.
PhD - Information Management
MPhil - Libraries and Information Studies
Master - Libraries and Information Sciences
Bachelor - Library and Information Science
BS - Computer Science
• Knowledge governance
• Socially deprived communities
• Information literacy
• Data security
• Qualification Framework
• Accreditation standards
• Experiential learning
• Web Impact Factor
• Virtual reference services
Muhammad Asim Qayyum, Arif Khan, and Sarah Redshaw World Scientific Pub Co Pte Ltd
Goal/purpose: This study focused on information professionals working in the GLAM (galleries, libraries, archives and museums) sector, and how information was sought and used by them for community engagement and to attain wiser outcomes. The primary purpose was to investigate the information collection, use, reflection and values of professionals in the GLAM sector to determine if wise actions occur that may potentially benefit the community. Methodology: A qualitative approach was used to conduct this research using the wise action model’s (WAM) wisdom characteristics. Data were collected from information professionals working in managerial positions in the GLAM sector using in-depth interviews. Thematic analysis was used to analyse the data. Results: The findings indicate that while most participants exhibit some elements of wisdom, there are gaps that need to be addressed before wise functioning is deemed applicable in their roles. While knowledgeable information acquisition and community engagement were very visible, more emphasis on values and stakeholder well-being is recommended for wiser considerations. Originality/Value: Study of wisdom certainly deserves more attention in knowledge management research as previous studies have indicated. With increasing stresses in the lives of professionals, it is now more important than ever to gain an understanding of how much wisdom prevails in organisational functioning to improve the works of individuals and consequently improve the well-being of impacted communities.
Arif Khan SAGE Publications
The purpose of this article is to discuss competencies required for practicum supervision within the field of library and information science (LIS) education. In doing so, this study attempts to propose Practicum Supervision Competencies Framework for professionals working in libraries and similar information organisations. The study aims to contribute to the body of knowledge on supervision of experiential learning programmes such as practicum and internships in the field of library and information science. Constructivist Grounded Theory approach was used for collection and analysis of data. Qualitative data was collected through semi-structured interviews with 43 participants that included library and information science professionals and students. Using constant comparative method, suggested in the Constructivist Grounded Theory literature, the components of the framework were developed and then validated and strengthened through the literature on competencies for library and information science professionals. Qualitative data analysis software NVivo 12 pro was used to support coding, category development and constant comparison methods in the data analysis process. Results of this study propose a framework for library and information science practicum supervision competencies and signify its importance for the academia and industry. The proposed framework is composed of five distinct but interrelated components, that is, Interactive, Management, Pedagogical, Professional and Technology which are important for practicum supervision in the field of LIS. The study also discusses empirical insights about the significance of research on practicum supervision within the field of library and information science as a distinct area. Practical implication of research encompasses several dimensions: methodological, theoretical, managerial and academic. For example, the framework should attempt to help better understand gaps between potential and actual competencies required by practicum supervisors in the field of library and information science. Research results may lack generalisability because of the chosen research method. However, researchers in other regions of the world are encouraged to test the proposed framework further.
Arif Khan, Asim Qayyum, and Linda Mahony SAGE Publications
Library and information science (LIS) education in Pakistan requires students to undergo in-depth supervised practicum placement as part of the course requirements. The purpose of this study was to explore the supervision styles of LIS practicum supervisors, and to examine how these supervision styles are perceived by the practicum students. Forty-three semi-structured in-depth interviews were conducted with practising librarians ( n = 21) who supervise practicums in their respective libraries, and LIS students ( n = 22) who had completed their practicums. Data were collected across 13 higher education LIS institutions in Pakistan. Constructivist Grounded theory was used as a method of data collection and analysis. Findings revealed four distinct styles of practicum supervision: (1) directed, (2) developmental, (3) independent, and (4) reflective. While LIS practicum supervisors practise a combination of these supervision styles, one style was found dominant among others. Also discovered was a mismatch of supervision style preferences between supervisors and students, which can negatively impact the promotion of learning and consequent development of professionally competent graduate librarians. Findings of this study warrant the need for more research to explore impacts of supervision on professional practice.
Arif Khan, Muhammad Ibrahim, and Abid Hussain Elsevier BV
Arif Khan, Haroon Idrees, Ali Asghar, and Urrehman Aziz SAGE Publications
There are more than 285 million blind and visually impaired people in the world, 90% of whom live in developing countries. The purpose of this paper is to present the findings of a study on visually impaired school teachers in Pakistan in order to examine how they identify, explore, select, organize, create, present, assess and apply information (IFLA’s Information Literacy Empowering Eight model) in teaching and everyday life. Interviews were conducted in January 2015 with 55 visually impaired teachers in 10 schools for the blind located in the province of Khyber PukhtunKhwa, Pakistan. The study also explores their ability to find, evaluate, and apply pedagogical information. Collected data revealed information on different aspects of information literacy skills. Although basic skills of the studied population were assessed; the study found that visually impaired teachers are highly skilled in terms of organizing the information and they prefer to take personal responsibility while searching for required information. They were found less skilled in using and apply new tools for information searching and lacking in ability to present the data effectively. This is the first research on the information literacy skills of visually impaired teachers in Pakistan. Results are useful for planners and experts to integrate IFLA’s E8 model of information literacy into several courses taught at the blind schools in order to enable the disadvantaged community to benefit from the information literacy skills.
Arif Khan MDPI AG
Purpose: There is ample evidence that students and teachers often seek academic information using participatory online social sites (POSS). The purpose of this study is to explore the intent of social information seeking (SIS) among library & information science research students in Pakistan. The study also attempts to examine the relationship between change in information behaviour and information retrieval strategies while seeking information from online social spaces. The influence of online collaboration in the use of social media was also examined. Methodology: Quantitative research method was used to conduct this study. Data was collected from 123 research (MPhil & PhD) students currently enrolled in seven postgraduate library schools in Pakistan. The data was gathered using survey questionnaire (using 5-point Likert scale items), administered both in print format and online through Google Form. SPSS version 19 was used to analyse the data. Findings: Major findings of this study were that there is a strong positive correlation between SIS and change in the overall information behaviour of research students. Majority of participants responded that social websites help in reshaping the information behaviour in a collaborative environment thus contributing to upsurge the SIS practices among research students. The study also found that LIS research scholars in Pakistan prefer to consult interactive websites more than social media spaces for academic information. Gender has been an influencing variable in SIS practices, however, time spent and frequency of using POSS does not affect one’s SIS practices. Originality: Social Information helps people to connect with each other and is comparatively a new concept in the field of Information Seeking Behaviour. This is the first study on SIS with respect to LIS research students in Pakistan.
Rubia Khan, Arif Khan, Sidra Malik, and Haroon Idrees MDPI AG
Web search engines (WSE) are powerful and popular tools in the field of information service management. This study is an attempt to examine the impact and usefulness of web search engines in providing virtual reference services (VRS) within academic libraries in Pakistan. The study also attempts to investigate the relevant expertise and skills of library professionals in providing digital reference services (DRS) efficiently using web search engines. Methodology used in this study is quantitative in nature. The data was collected from fifty public and private sector universities in Pakistan using a structured questionnaire. Microsoft Excel and SPSS were used for data analysis. The study concludes that web search engines are commonly used by librarians to help users (especially research scholars) by providing digital reference services. The study also finds a positive correlation between use of web search engines and quality of digital reference services provided to library users. It is concluded that although search engines have increased the expectations of users and are really big competitors to a library’s reference desk, they are however not an alternative to reference service. Findings reveal that search engines pose numerous challenges for librarians and the study also attempts to bring together possible remedial measures. This study is useful for library professionals to understand the importance of search engines in providing VRS. The study also provides an intellectual comparison among different search engines, their capabilities, limitations, challenges and opportunities to provide VRS effectively in libraries.
Arif Khan, Rabia Anbareen, Haroon Idrees, and Gohar Saeed SAGE Publications
The purpose of this study is to explore the intention and competency of Library and Information Science (LIS) professionals regarding sensitivity of gender-related issues in libraries and to examine the effect of a short-term (five days) thematic training workshop on Information Management with Gender Perspectives for LIS professionals. Data was collected from working librarians around the country using two separate channels, i.e. an online questionnaire, and pre/post-training test results from the trainees of a workshop on gender mainstreaming in libraries. The findings discuss the level of competencies, need for training, and attitudinal responsiveness of LIS professionals in Pakistan and appropriate measures are discussed. Moreover, gender-related issues and the current status of LIS professionals are alarming in terms of gender responsiveness. Findings show that only 17% of the LIS community is gender responsive. The results are useful for planners of engendered programmes and policies, library science professionals and researchers, especially in the field of gender and women’s studies and provide an insight for international readers into the perception of LIS professionals on mainstreaming gender in Pakistani libraries. This study uniquely presents the current status and preparedness of LIS professionals to address gender-related issues in libraries
Arif Khan and Jia Tina Du Emerald
Purpose This paper aims to explore the extent of use of social media by Pakistani female librarians for professional development and their perception of its usefulness. The paper also attempts to find out social characteristics that influence the use of social media among female librarians for career and professional development (PD). Design/methodology/approach Data were collected through an online survey (using self-administered structured questionnaire) from 102 female librarians in Pakistan regarding usage frequency, perception, choice of librarianship as a profession and perceived benefits of social media. The list of participants was obtained from the Directory of Pakistani Library Professionals compiled by Sada-e-Librarian (a non-profit LIS professional organization). Data collections also include online interviews through Facebook chat with 20 key informants selected from the participants of the questionnaire survey. Findings The study reveals that the majority of Pakistani female librarians is well aware of social media and uses it frequently. They are found to make extensive use of social media for PD and perceive social media as a useful tool for PD. However, social media is judged to be less helpful in acquiring technical skills. The study found a number of factors affecting the use of social media for PD among female librarians in Pakistan. These factors include social characteristics such as privacy, parent’s years of schooling, marital status and family support. Originality/value This study is among the first attempts to discover social characteristics, the use of social media and its relationship with PD among female librarians in Pakistan.
Aziz Ur Rahman, Haroon Idrees, and Arif khan Emerald
Purpose This study aims to explore the awareness status of Web 2.0 tools among library and information science (LIS) professionals in the University Libraries of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Design/methodology/approach The study used quantitative method to collect data from 73 LIS professionals in 18 public sector university libraries of the province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan. Inferential and descriptive statistical techniques were used to analyze data using SPSS. Findings It was observed from the findings that majority of LIS professional s possess good knowledge of MS Office; however, some senior librarians were less acquainted. Internet facility was available to 60 participants out of 66. Librarians were not familiar with many services of Web 2.0; however, Facebook, YouTube and Skype were most familiar among the librarians. Majority of the respondents had no experience of using podcasting, RSS feeds, LinkedIn, LibraryThing, Flickr and MySpace. On the other hand, e-mail services, Facebook and YouTube were founded to be the most commonly used Web 2.0 tools among respondents. Problems faced by majority of the respondents were power failure, lack of training, non-cooperation from higher authorities, low speed of internet and financial problems. Practical implications These research results can be very beneficial for the interested librarians in universities, when they plan to use Web 2.0 applications in their libraries. Originality/value This study presents an overall picture of Web 2.0 applications in university libraries of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and attempts to provide the readers with helpful information to better understand how their colleagues elsewhere are utilizing Web 2.0 tools in execution of library services.
Arif Khan and Haroon Idrees Emerald
Purpose – This study aims to explore the Web impact factors (WIFs) for websites of Pakistani universities. The paper discusses why revised Web impact factor (RWIF) is more meaningful than simple WIF. The study also attempts to rank the top-five websites of Pakistani universities by considering four different website ranking systems and compares the WIFs of university websites of other developing countries as well. Design/methodology/approach – This study calculates the RWIF for subject websites using two webometric tools. Open Site Explorer service (i.e. Developer Shed) and two commercial search engines, i.e. Google and Bing, were used to collect the data for examining the RWIF for subject websites. Findings – Collectively 41,960 web pages and 49,740 inlinks were found in top-ten Pakistani universities’ websites. The collective RWIF for subject websites comes to 1.185, which is at the top in comparison with other developing countries, i.e. India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Indonesia. Originality/value – Calculating WIF for university websites in Pakistan and presenting the comparison with other types of website ranking system is a kind of first study conducted for Pakistani library websites. The study also presents alternate search strategy for data collection to calculate RWIF for websites.
Arif khan, Haroon Idrees, and Khan Mudassir Emerald
Purpose – This study aims to assess the accessibility of library Web sites of top ten universities of Pakistan. The study also explores commonly identifies accessibility barriers in the subject Web sites. Accessibility analysis of library Web sites has been conducted using Web Accessibility Evaluation Tool (WAET) to examine compliance of the library Web site with Web Content Accessibility Guideline 2.0. The study also attempts to rank each Web site according to number of quality issues identified. Based on literature review, the study also proposes a framework to conduct Web accessibility evaluation of library Web sites. Web accessibility encompasses all disabilities that affect access to the Web, including visual, auditory, physical, speech, cognitive and aging (old-age). Design/methodology/approach – This study examines accessibility of subject Web sites using automated accessibility evaluation tool based on Library Web site Accessibility Evaluation Framework (LWAEF). Commercial WAET SortSite® was used to assess accessibility issues in library Web sites. The tool was also tested to validate components of the LWAEF. Findings – Result shows that 70 per cent of library Web sites do comply with World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) standards. It means that compliance to essential guidelines of priority A level of WCAG 2.0 are finely met by 70 per cent library Web sites of Pakistan. However, important accessibility issues still exist in the subject Web sites. Moreover, in terms of accessibility issues, overall quality of university library Web sites in Pakistan is in better condition. Originality/value – Equal access to information by all citizens is an important UN charter supported by all developing countries. Assessing the needs of all citizens has been of great importance and value to developing countries like Pakistan, with 19.2 per cent population consisting of disabled people. The paper presents the overall status of accessibility to information and is conducted to focus the library Web sites of Pakistan for the first time. Focusing the library Web sites for accessibility evaluation, this research study will help improve accessibility elements of library Web sites in other developing countries also.
Khan, A. (2022). An exploratory prioritisation of key elements in library and information science practicum supervision: A grounded theory approach. (Doctoral Thesis). School of Information and Communication Studies – SICS, Charles Sturt University, Australia.
Khan, A. (2014). Evaluation of University Library Websites in Pakistan: Usability and Accessibility Analysis. (Unpublished master's thesis), University of Sargodha, Pakistan.
Project Director - Establishment Division, Pakistan
Gender Trainer - Communication for Effective Social Services Delivery (CESSD) project - AusAID and Cowater
Trainer - International Network for Availability of Scientific Publications (INASP)
Organiser - Advanced training workshop on WinISIS and GenISIS in collaboration with UNESCO and Pakistan Library Association
Associate member, Australian Library & Information Association (ALIA).
Member, Records and Information Management Practitioners Alliance (RIMPA)
Executive member, Pakistan Library Association (PLA)
• Editor, Pakistan Library Association Journal (PLAJ)
• Editor, Journal of Rural Development and Administration (JORDA)
• Reviewer, Pakistan Journal of Information Management and Libraries.
• Reviewer, Elsevier
• Reviewer, SAGE publications
• Reviewer, IGI Global publishers