The transformative library: A narrative inquiry into the outcomes of information use.

Description:

This qualitative study uses narrative analysis to explore the outcomes of information seeking and use among public library users. Twelve women between the ages of 51 and 72, all residents of Fayetteville, Arkansas who self-identified as regular library users, were interviewed to gather their life stories and their experiences using the public library. The participants in this study used information to enable learning and, often, a change in their affective state. The participants used the new information they encountered constructively, to engage with the knowledge and experience they possessed; this use of information always involved reflection, dialogue, or both. The outcomes from these actions are the creation of new knowledge, a change in the participants' meaning schemes, and/or an affective change. In addition, the narratives strongly suggest that information seeking and use by adults in public libraries can sometimes facilitate or, on its own, precipitate a perspective transformation and the adoption of new meanings. Overall, the findings support Mezirow's theory of transformative learning as a model for understanding information use and outcomes among users of the public library. The major implications of this study are two-fold. One, it introduces to information science Mezirow's theory of transformative learning which could provide greater understanding of how adults use information, and the outcomes that arise from this use. Two, it provides library professionals with information about the library in the lives of their users and concrete information about how libraries can enable transformative learning.

Creator(s): Kenney, Brian
Creation Date: December 2008
Partner(s):
UNT Libraries
Collection(s):
UNT Theses and Dissertations
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Creator (Author):
Publisher Info:
Publisher Name: University of North Texas
Place of Publication: Denton, Texas
Date(s):
  • Creation: December 2008
  • Digitized: August 30, 2009
Description:

This qualitative study uses narrative analysis to explore the outcomes of information seeking and use among public library users. Twelve women between the ages of 51 and 72, all residents of Fayetteville, Arkansas who self-identified as regular library users, were interviewed to gather their life stories and their experiences using the public library. The participants in this study used information to enable learning and, often, a change in their affective state. The participants used the new information they encountered constructively, to engage with the knowledge and experience they possessed; this use of information always involved reflection, dialogue, or both. The outcomes from these actions are the creation of new knowledge, a change in the participants' meaning schemes, and/or an affective change. In addition, the narratives strongly suggest that information seeking and use by adults in public libraries can sometimes facilitate or, on its own, precipitate a perspective transformation and the adoption of new meanings. Overall, the findings support Mezirow's theory of transformative learning as a model for understanding information use and outcomes among users of the public library. The major implications of this study are two-fold. One, it introduces to information science Mezirow's theory of transformative learning which could provide greater understanding of how adults use information, and the outcomes that arise from this use. Two, it provides library professionals with information about the library in the lives of their users and concrete information about how libraries can enable transformative learning.

Degree:
Level: Doctoral
Discipline: Information Science
Language(s):
Subject(s):
Keyword(s): transformative learning | Information use | information seeking | public libraries
Contributor(s):
Partner:
UNT Libraries
Collection:
UNT Theses and Dissertations
Identifier:
  • OCLC: 436918240 |
  • ARK: ark:/67531/metadc9764
Resource Type: Thesis or Dissertation
Format: Text
Rights:
Access: Public
License: Copyright
Holder: Kenney, Brian
Statement: Copyright is held by the author, unless otherwise noted. All rights reserved.