Students Borrow Fewer Books, Halving Four Years Ago: The DONG-A ILBO

The number of library books borrowed by students at major national universities in the country last year was halved from four years earlier due to the growing preference for e-books and lack of access to libraries during the Covid-19 pandemic.

According to data on university students’ library book loan status received by Representative Min Hyeong-bae with the National Assembly’s Education Committee on Sunday, the average number of books loaned per student was 3.25. , a decrease of 3.1 (48.8%) from 6.35 pounds in 2017. This figure has gradually decreased from 5.76 pounds in 2018, 5.41 pounds in 2019 and 3.36 in 2020 at the height of the pandemic. This year, the average student lent out 2.44 books at the end of August.

The number of library books on loan to universities across the country is gradually decreasing. According to the analysis of the 2021 University Library Study released by the Ministry of Education and the Korea Education and Research Information Service (KERIS), the number of books loaned per student in 2020 was of 2.3, only half the number of 4.6 books in 2017. “Many students are opting for e-books which have become increasingly diverse in content. Moreover, students prefer various media channels to paper books because information can be obtained faster,” KERIS said.

Sung-Min Park [email protected]

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