Full Project – Design and utilization of a site-specific search engine for undergraduate projects

Full Project – Design and utilization of a site-specific search engine for undergraduate projects

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1.1       Background to the Study

In today’s world information processing has become the nerve centre of the day to day activities. Advanced systems are been nurtured to extract, process and store textual metadata among other forms of data. As the Web grows larger and more diverse, search engines are becoming the “killer app” of the Web. Whenever users want to look up information, they typically go to a search engine, issue queries and look at the results Alexandros N et al (2004).

Site-specific search engine has become increasingly important for the websites of educational institution, government and private companies because it provides more detailed information that general search engine usually can’t offer. However, the method of keeping track of undergraduate projects in the Nigerian Institution system which is still manually done is tedious, inefficient and not keeping pace with global developments. This causes a delay in services, loss of projects and hence lack of adequate information. Besides, it is unlikely that the institution will continue to satisfy user (Student) needs using conventional catalogues as the primary access mechanism. To be certain, on-line catalogues facilitate good access to projects and other materials traditionally kept in the institution.

The rapid swiftness of technological changes in the Educational system and the need of up-to date information initiated the importance of the research. The design from this study is expected to deliver services to students and more importantly, give effective management to the way projects are archived and retrieved. The background information provides satisfactory content to the user so they can understand the reason of the project, the design and the analysis of the result.

In order to keep pace with global development and also the initiative of going paperless in our environment (schools, offices), the project is designed to make all undergraduate projects readily available to all users (students). The experiment will allow upload of individual project of word document (.doc and .pdf) that can be accessed by any word processor system and can be downloaded too.

The little chit-chat engaged with some librarians in charge of student projects revealed that projects will be easily accessed and managed when they can be searched automatically using a desktop application that consumes web services which allow the URL to be used on any web browser compared to the traditional manual search done by student and in some cases mutilation of projects.

The project allows undergraduate projects to be stored in a simple manner. The purpose of collecting data (project) is to ensure that whenever a search is done either for a topic, the student name or contents of a particular project, the result is readily available to the searcher (user) otherwise the project has not been done by any student or has not been uploaded at the time hence to ensure authenticity and genuineness.

1.2       Statement of Problem

An intensive study of activities in Abdu Gusau Polytechnic’s Library shows that undergraduate projects has always been kept in dusty old cupboards and shelves which make future retrieval impossible. Because of the huge activities embarked upon by staffs in the library, sorting student’s projects becomes an issue and this leads to the piling up of project material at a location that seems difficult for retrieval. In some other cases, projects cannot be found because of the negligence from students who do not return the projects or staff that do not care if the projects are returned or not.

In human activities, there are a lot of developments, researches, and discoveries, which result in the diverse production of publications that need to be stored. These have brought an increase in complexity of retrieval. In view of this, the following difficulties are facing the undergraduate projects:

  1. Lacks of adequate storage facilities in the Library
  2. Mutilation of projects by students i.e. students tear/hide projects.
  • Manual searching of the collection of books that are not catalogued effectively which leads to a tedious search and sometimes waste of time.
  1. Lack of proper recording system leading to haphazard storage of projects

1.3       Aim and Objectives of the Study

The aim of this project is to study, design and utilize a Site-Specific Search Engine for Undergraduate Project that enables proper record and storage of undergraduate project allowing a fast, easy retrieval, robust, and efficient services delivery and making academic activities more accurate and effective. Therefore, the following are the objectives of the proposed system:

  1. To review the existing methods of archiving and retrieving undergraduate projects;
  2. To provide greater access to research materials;
  • High efficiency and availability of service to students anywhere in the world while reducing the cost of sourcing for materials.
  1. To implement a site-specific search engine with necessary specifications.

1.4       Significance of the Study

The significance of search engine in sourcing for information cannot be over emphasized, as most educational institutions are looking forward to offer their students standard education whilst reducing cost. Looking into the trend of adoption and reliance on search engines in standard institutions, an increase has been identified. The project gave rise to new software that allows uploading and retrieval of projects that are easily accessible and also allow the Liberian and other staffs to manage the affairs of the library without hiccups.

One of the significance of this study is that it will help reveal the flaws and problems associated with the existing system of achieving and retrieving student’s undergraduate projects. The significances of this study are:

  • Scalability, low maintenance efforts, enormous cost savings potential, and intend to make academic activities become faster, better, and efficient.
  • It will help provide a wide-range of course materials and academic support tools for students.
  • It will also deliver a web-based student services at a rapidly accelerating rate.
  • Provides large storage facilities for archiving undergraduate project records.


1.5       Scope and limitation of Study

This study looks into the processes involved in keeping tracks of undergraduate final year projects, storage, retrieval and future use. The researchers concentrated on the activities going on in the acquisition and cataloguing of research materials as well as its retrieval. But for the sake of this study the scope of this work has been limited to uploads, search and download of undergraduate projects in various departments of Abdu Gusau Polytechnic TalataMafara.

1.6       Definitions of Operational Terms

Systems: An assemblage of interrelated elements, which we find interesting to study, it could be a process, machine or program.

Design: It is a detailed plan or arrangement to achieve a particular purpose.

Search Engine: A search engine is a software system that is designed to search and retrieve information.

Software: A program designed to perform particular tasks.

URL: Uniform Resource Locator is also known as web address.

Metadata: Data that describes other data. It could be referred to as Data that provides information about one or more aspects of the data.

HTTP Web Service: allows exchanging data with remote servers using nothing but the operations of http.

Cataloguing: The process of listing information resources – books, sound recordings, moving images etc – for inclusion in a database.


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Full Project – Design and utilization of a site-specific search engine for undergraduate projects