A Comparison of the Characteristics of the Most-Linked and Least-Linked Academic Medical Library Web Sites
Harker, Karen R.
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There seems to be a great disparity in the number of links to the Web sites of the 125 academic medical libraries in the United States. Some, like Harvard Medical School, have over 4,000 links to their site. Others, like University of Nevada, Reno, have less than 10 links to them. The question then is, what makes people want to link to these often-used sites? This study will attempt to answer this question by ranking these sites according to the number of files pointing to them. An analysis will be done on the top and bottom 25% ranked sites. The following characteristics of each site will be categorized, counted and compared to determine if any one, or any combination of these factors affect their probability of being linked: --Number of files --Prominence in the institution's site --Compatibility wit the variety of browsers --Awards --Placement in the top search engines/directories Additionally, characteristics of the library and the institution will be analyzed, including library expenditures, the ratio of institutional to library expenditures, collection size, public/private institution, and the institution's rank in U.S. News and World Report 's list of the best medical schools. The results of this study could be helpful to library Web page designers, library outreach directors, and library administrators. [Research Special Commendation Award]