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- Identification of Remote Leadership Patterns in Academic and Public Libraries
- Seminal works on leadership, including those in librarianship define a traditional model of interaction between leaders and followers without reference to the information technology-driven environment. In addition, remote leadership indicates a different model from the traditional model, one that is focused on the interaction of leaders and their staff through digital technology. Although leaders still use face-to-face interaction, due to varied work schedules or job responsibilities, they also recognize the need to lead employees remotely. Leadership studies in library literature have not addressed how library leaders use information technology to lead employees remotely, nor have these studies addressed remote leadership and remote employees, except for some articles on telecommuting. As a result, this research was conducted to address this gap, providing an exploratory foundation of emergent patterns of remote leadership with its associated leadership dimensions rooted in personality traits, behaviors, and skills. Quantitative and qualitative data were obtained from a small sample size of academic and public-library leaders in the United States who participated in a Web-based survey designed specifically for this study, limiting generalizations. Factor analysis was the principal methodology used to obtain findings. Its composite factor scores were also used in the t-test and chi-square analyses. This study identifies some emergent patterns of remote leadership in the library and information-science field, exploring whether library leaders use information technology to be effective remote leaders in a technology-driven environment, and whether existing leadership attributes could be identified as part of the remote-leadership model. Because this study's findings indicated that library leaders are not quite the traditional leader but are not fully integrated into remote leadership, it becomes apparent that they would function with a blend of both face-to-face and electronic interactions, due to the nature of library work. Additionally, this research revealed underlying issues and challenges faced by library leaders as they transition from a traditional-leadership model to a blended model of face-to-face and remote leadership. Future research could include increasing the sample size and response rate to conduct factor analysis properly, and conducting longitudinal studies.
- Toward an Ideal Library: A Synthesis of Wilson's Library and Information Policy and Gilbert's Performance Matrix
- Inquiry about ideal library was sought by interdisciplinary approach from human competence derived from performance engineering by Gilbert (1978), and the library information policy by Wilson (1977). With Wilson's insights into the field of library and information science (LIS), this work demonstrated the synthesis of Wilson and Gilbert: engineering as common ground. One of the central concerns in LIS, utilization of knowledge, is re-conceptualized as Gilbert's view of performance, which reflected at different vantage points. Four leisurely theorems are introduced for his view of performance engineering, which produce human competence. The performance matrix is the application tool that represents Gilbert's theorems of performance engineering. It is used to clarify vantage points about the library, and constructed a model of the performance engineering system of ideal library. Based upon the model, two applications were made. One is to apply the performance matrix to the existing academic library. Another is to apply the performance matrix for building a special collection. These two applications show that the performance matrix is capable to analyze existing performance system as well as designing and building a performance system.
- Factors Influencing How Students Value Asynchronous Web Based Courses
- This dissertation discovered the factors influencing how students value asynchronous Web-based courses through the use of qualitative methods. Data was collected through surveys, observations, interviews, email correspondence, chat room and bulletin board transcripts. Instruments were tested in pilot studies of previous semesters. Factors were identified for two class formats. The asynchronous CD/Internet class format and the synchronous online Web based class format. Also, factors were uncovered for two of the instructional tools used in the course: the WebCT forum and WebCT testing. Factors were grouped accordingly as advantages or disadvantages under major categories. For the asynchronous CD/Internet class format the advantages were Convenience, Flexibility, Learning Enhancement, and Psychology. The disadvantages included Isolation, Learning Environment, and Technology. For the synchronous online Web based class format the advantages were Convenience, Flexibility, Human Interaction, Learning Enhancement and Psychology, whereas the disadvantages included Isolation, Learning Environment and Technology. Concurrently, the study revealed the following factors as advantages of the WebCT Forum: Help Each Other, Interaction, Socialization, Classroom News, and Time Independent. The disadvantages uncovered were Complaints, Technical Problems and Isolation. Finally, advantages specified for the WebCT testing tool were Convenience, Flexibility and Innovations, and its disadvantages were Surroundings Not Conducive to Learning, and Technical Problems. Results indicate that not only classroom preference, learning style and personality type influence how students value a Web based course, but, most importantly, a student's lifestyle (number of personal commitments, how far they live, and life's priorities). The WebCT forum or bulletin board, and the WebCT testing or computerized testing were seen mostly by students, as good tools for encouraging classroom communication and testing because of the convenience and flexibility offered. Still, further research is needed both quantitatively and qualitatively to ascertain the true weight of the factors discovered in this study.
- Networked generation youth's information seeking process: An examination of cognitive, affective and physical behaviors and problem solving techniques.
- This study investigated the information seeking process of the networked generation youth. Specifically, I examined the cognitive, affective, and physical information seeking behaviors and problem solving techniques adolescent student users of the networked environment utilize to solve information needs. Grounded in the theoretical context of the information seeking process in the networked environment, the research extended the user-centered approach to modeling the information seeking process of networked generation youth. A mixed model research design was used to address the research questions. Phase 1 used an online questionnaire to solicit information from 125 students in Grades 7-12 regarding their understanding and use of networked environments, information seeking skills, and problem solving techniques. Phase 2 observed 12 students, two from each grade level, to gain an understanding into the information seeking process of networked generation youth. Participants completed information seeking scenarios of varying levels of complexity. As the participants completed the scenario, they engaged in talk-aloud verbal protocol to describe and explain their behaviors and techniques as they advanced through their information seeking process. Semi-structured interviews were conducted which provided an opportunity for the participants to clarify their information seeking experience. A profile of students' networked environment knowledge and use in relationship to their information seeking process was created. Findings suggested that knowledge and experience influence networked generation youth's information seeking process in the networked environment. A subset of students were found to be experienced information seekers who applied various cognitive, affective, and physical information seeking behaviors and behavioral actions that guide them through their information seeking process. The study presented a preliminary model of the networked generation youth's information seeking process. The model provides a detailed map to networked generation youth's information seeking and problem solving. I bring to light experienced users successful behaviors, as well as areas where all students need assistance in understanding networked environments and their own information seeking. The study suggests ways in which educators can evaluate students and integrate the successful behaviors as well as assist students with the behaviors that hinder their process.
- The effectiveness of using LEGO Mindstorms robotics activities to influence self-regulated learning in a university introductory computer programming course.
- The research described in this dissertation examines the possible link between self-regulated learning and LEGO Mindstorms robotics activities in teaching concepts in an introductory university computer programming course. The areas of student motivation, learning strategies, and mastery of course objectives are investigated. In all three cases analysis failed to reveal any statistically significant differences between the traditional control group and the experimental LEGO Mindstorms group as measured by the Motivated Strategies for Learning Questionnaire and course exams. Possible reasons for the lack of positive results include technical problems and limitations of the LEGO Mindstorms systems, limited number and availability of robots outside of class, limited amount of time during the semester for the robotics activities, and a possible difference in effectiveness based on gender. Responses to student follow-up questions, however, suggest that at least some of the students really enjoyed the LEGO activities. As with any teaching tool or activity, there are numerous ways in which LEGO Mindstorms can be incorporated into learning. This study explores whether or not LEGO Mindstorms are an effective tool for teaching introductory computer programming at the university level and how these systems can best be utilized.
- Negotiation, communication, and decision strategies used by hostage/crisis negotiators.
- By conducting this theory-based empirical study, gathering data from working negotiators in the US and Canada, I have determined what primary dynamic activities, communication skills, and negotiation tools are used by hostage/crisis negotiators. Negotiators implement their negotiation and decision strategies differently depending on whether the situations they deal with are instrumental or expressive. I have determined which elements of negotiations and factors affecting negotiations differ while handling instrumental and expressive hostage situations. I found that the collected data did not reveal any significant relationship between handling instrumental/expressive hostage situations differently and belief in the elements of Brenda Dervin's and Shannon-Weaver's theories. I have also determined that the belief in the elements of the Dervin's and Shannon-Weaver's theories is workable and practical for negotiators to use. Based on the above findings, the model suggested by this research adds the elements and directives of Dervin's and Shannon-Weaver's models to the common approach used by the negotiators. This revised model suggests that the negotiators pay attention to the dynamics of the interactions presented between the two parties: the negotiators themselves and hostage takers. The revised model also recommends that the negotiators focus on not only the hostage takers behavioral characteristics, psychological conditions, and criminal history but also on the meaning of the sent message and the interaction itself as performed between the two parties. This perspective enables the negotiators to look at the negotiation process as information and communication process. We are not ignoring the fact that hostage negotiation is a format of extreme information management. By looking at such an extreme case, we can add to our understanding of Dervin's and Shannon-Weaver's perspectives in order to see the hostage negotiation process from a wider perspective. The revised model is not an alternative approach to the common approach most negotiators use. Instead, the revised model uses the perspective and directives of the common approach and extends its meaning and content by also focusing on Dervin's sense making theory and Shannon-Weaver's communication model perspectives. The use of the perspective of this revised model is one more tool for the negotiators to use in order to promote new ways of looking at hostage negotiation resolutions.
- A study of on-line use and perceived effectiveness of compliance-gaining in health-related banner advertisements for senior citizens.
- This research investigated banner ads on the World Wide Web, specifically the types of messages used in those ads and the effectiveness of the ads as seen by their intended audience. The focus was on health-related banner advertisements targeting senior citizens. The study first sought to determine the frequency of appearance of those ads when classified into categories of compliance-gaining tactics provided by research scholars. Second, the study explored the relative perceived effectiveness among those categories. Two graduate students from a Central Texas university sorted text messages into predetermined compliance-gaining categories. Chi square tests looked for significant differences in the frequencies of banner ads in each category. Forty-five senior citizens from the Central Texas area completed surveys regarding the perceived effectiveness of a randomly ordered, randomly selected set of categorized banner ads. A repeated measures test attempted to determine whether some compliance-gaining strategies used in health-related banner ads were perceived as more effective than others. The hypothesis stated that there would be differences in frequencies of compliance-gaining strategies used among the compliance-gaining categories in health-related banner ads for senior citizens. The hypothesis was supported. The research question asked if some categories of compliance-gaining strategies used in health-related banner ads were perceived as more effective than others by senior citizens. There was no evidence that senior citizens perceived any compliance-gaining category as being more effective than any other. However, post hoc analyses revealed trends in the types of compliance-gaining messages senior citizens perceived as more effective. These trends provide a basis for directional predictions in future studies.
- A mechanism for richer representation of videos for children: Calibrating calculated entropy to perceived entropy
- This study explores the use of the information theory entropy equation in representations of videos for children. The calculated rates of information in the videos are calibrated to the corresponding perceived rates of information as elicited from the twelve 7 to 10 year old girls who were shown video documents. Entropy measures are calculated for several video elements: set time, set incidence, verbal time, verbal incidence, set constraint, nonverbal dependence, and character appearance. As hypothesized, mechanically calculated entropy measure (CEM) was found to be sufficiently similar to perceived entropy measure (PEM) made by children so that they can be used as useful and predictive elements of representations of children’s videos. The relationships between the CEM and the PEM show that CEM could stand for PEM in order to enrich representations for video documents for this age group. Speculations on transferring the CEM to PEM calibration to different age groups and different document types are made, as well as further implications for the field of information science.
- Constraints on adoption of innovations: Internet availability in the developing world.
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In a world that is increasingly united in time and distance, I examine why the world is increasingly divided socially, economically, and digitally. Using data for 35 variables from 93 countries, I separate the countries into groups of 31 each by gross domestic product per capita. These groups of developed, lesser developed and least developed countries are used in comparative analysis. Through a review of relevant literature and tests of bivariate correlation, I select eight key variables that are significantly related to information communication technology development and to human development. For this research, adoption of the Internet in the developing world is the innovation of particular interest. Thus, for comparative purposes, I chose Internet Users per 1000 persons per country and the Human Development Index as the dependent variables upon which the independent variables are regressed. Although small in numbers among the least developed countries, I find Internet Users as the most powerful influence on human development for the poorest countries. The research focuses on key obstacles as well as variables of opportunity for Internet usage in developing countries. The greatest obstacles are in fact related to Internet availability and the cost/need ratio for infrastructure expansion. However, innovations for expanded Internet usage in developing countries are expected to show positive results for increased Internet usage, as well as for greater human development and human capital. In addition to the diffusion of innovations in terms of the Internet, the diffusion of cultures through migration is also discussed in terms of the effect on social capital and the drain on human capital from developing countries.
- News photography image retrieval practices: Locus of control in two contexts.
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This is the first known study to explore the image retrieval preferences of news photographers and news photo editors in work contexts. Survey participants (n=102) provided opinions regarding 11 photograph searching methods. The quantitative survey data were analyzed using descriptive statistics, while content analysis was used to evaluate the qualitative survey data. In addition, news photographers and news photo editors (n=11) participated in interviews. Data from the interviews were analyzed with phenomenography. The survey data demonstrated that most participants prefer searching by events taking place in the photograph, objects that exist in the photograph, photographer-provided keywords, and relevant metadata, such as the date the picture was taken. They also prefer browsing. Respondents had mixed opinions about searching by emotions elicited in a photograph, as well as the environmental conditions represented in a photograph. Participants' lowest-rated methods included color and light, lines and shapes, and depth, shadow, or perspective. They also expressed little interest in technical information about a photograph, such as shutter speed and aperture. Interview participants' opinions about the search methods reflected the survey respondents' views. They discussed other aspects of news photography as well, including the stories told by the pictures, technical concerns about digital photography, and digital archiving and preservation issues. These stated preferences for keyword searching, browsing, and photographer-provided keywords illustrate a desire for a strong internal locus of control in digital photograph archives. Such methods allow users more control over access to their photographs, while the methods deemed less favorable by survey participants offer less control. Participants believe they can best find their photographs if they can control how they index and search for them. Therefore, it would be useful to design online photograph archives that allow users to control representation and access. Future research possibilities include determining the preferences of other image retrieval system users, performing user studies with moving image information retrieval systems, and uniting content-based and concept-based image retrieval research.
- Quality management in museum information systems: A case study of ISO 9001-2000 as an evaluative technique.
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Museums are service-oriented information systems that provide access to information bearing materials contained in the museum's collections. Within museum environments, the primary vehicle for quality assurance and public accountability is the accreditation process of the American Association of Museums (AAM). Norbert Wiener founded the field of cybernetics, employing concepts of information feedback as a mechanism for system modification and control. W. Edwards Deming applied Wiener's principles to management theory, initiating the wave of change in manufacturing industries from production-driven to quality-driven systems. Today, the principles are embodied in the ISO 9000 International Standards for quality management systems (QMS), a globally-recognized set of standards, widely employed as a vehicle of quality management in manufacturing and service industries. The International Organization for Standardization defined a process for QMS registration against ISO 9001 that is similar in purpose to accreditation. This study's goals were to determine the degree of correspondence between elements of ISO 9001 and quality-related activities within museum environments, and to ascertain the relevance of ISO 9001-2000 as a technique of museum evaluation, parallel to accreditation. A content analysis compared museum activities to requirements specified in the ISO 9001-2000 International Standard. The study examined museum environment surrogates which consisted of (a) web sites of nine museum studies programs in the United States and (b) web sites of two museum professional associations, the AAM and the International Council of Museums (ICOM). Data items consisted of terms and phrases from the web sites and the associated context of each item. Affinity grouping of the data produced high degrees of correspondence to the categories and functional subcategories of ISO 9001. Many quality-related activities were found at the operational levels of museum environments, although not integrated as a QMS. If activities were unified as a QMS, the ISO 9001 Standard has potential for application as an evaluative technique in museum environments.
- Privacy concerns and personality traits influencing online behavior: A structural model.
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The concept of privacy has proven difficult to analyze because of its subjective nature and susceptibility to psychological and contextual influences. This study challenges the concept of privacy as a valid construct for addressing individuals' concerns regarding online disclosure of personal information, based on the premise that underlying behavioral traits offer a more reliable and temporally stable measure of privacy-oriented behavior than do snapshots of environmentally induced emotional states typically measured by opinion polls. This study investigated the relationship of personality characteristics associated with individuals' general privacy-related behavior to their online privacy behaviors and concerns. Two latent constructs, Functional Privacy Orientation and Online Privacy Orientation, were formulated. Functional Privacy Orientation is defined as a general measure of individuals' perception of control over their privacy. It was measured using the factors General Disclosiveness, Locus of Control, Generalized Trust, Risk Orientation, and Risk Propensity as indicator variables. Online Privacy Orientation is defined as a measure of individuals' perception of control over their privacy in an online environment. It was measured using the factors Willingness to Disclose Online, Level of Privacy Concern, Information Management Privacy Concerns, and Reported Online Disclosure as indicator variables. A survey questionnaire that included two new instruments to measure online disclosure and a willingness to disclose online was used to collect data from a sample of 274 adults. Indicator variables for each of the latent constructs, Functional Privacy Orientation and Online Privacy Orientation, were evaluated using corrected item-total correlations, factor analysis, and coefficient alpha. The measurement models and relationship between Functional Privacy Orientation and Online Privacy Orientation were assessed using exploratory factor analysis and structural equation modeling respectively. The structural model supported the hypothesis that Functional Privacy Orientation significantly influences Online Privacy Orientation. Theoretical, methodological, and practical implications and suggestions for analysis of privacy concerns and behavior are presented.
- The effect of information literacy instruction on library anxiety among international students.
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This study explored what effect information literacy instruction (ILI) may have on both a generalized anxiety state and library anxiety specifically. The population studied was international students using resources in a community college. Library anxiety among international students begins with certain barriers that cause anxiety (i.e., language/communication barriers, adjusting to a new education/library system and general cultural adjustments). Library Anxiety is common among college students and is characterized by feelings of negative emotions including, ruminations, tension, fear and mental disorganization (Jiao & Onwuegbuzie, 1999a). This often occurs when a student contemplates conducting research in a library and is due to any number of perceived inabilities about using the library. In order for students to become successful in their information seeking behavior this anxiety needs to be reduced. The study used two groups of international students enrolled in the English for Speakers of other Languages (ESOL) program taking credit courses. Each student completed Bostick's Library Anxiety Scale (LAS) and Spielberger's State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI) to assess anxiety level before and after treatment. Subjects were given a research assignment that required them to use library resources. Treatment: Group 1 (experimental group) attended several library instruction classes (the instruction used Kuhltau's information search process model). Group 2 (control group) was in the library working on assignment but did not receive any formal library instruction. After the treatment the researcher and ESOL program instructor(s) measured the level of anxiety between groups. ANCOVA was used to analyze Hypotheses 1 and 2, which compared pretest and posttest for each group. Research assignment grades were used to analyze Hypothesis 3 comparing outcomes among the two groups. The results of the analysis ascertained that ILI was associated with reducing state and library anxiety among international students when given an assignment using library resources.
- Computer support interactions: Verifying a process model of problem trajectory in an information technology support environment.
- Observations in the information technology (IT) support environment and generalizations from the literature regarding problem resolution behavior indicate that computer support staff seldom store reusable solution information effectively for IT problems. A comprehensive model of the processes encompassing problem arrival and assessment, expertise selection, problem resolution, and solution recording has not been available to facilitate research in this domain. This investigation employed the findings from a qualitative pilot study of IT support staff information behaviors to develop and explicate a detailed model of problem trajectory. Based on a model from clinical studies, this model encompassed a trajectory scheme that included the communication media, characteristics of the problem, decision points in the problem resolution process, and knowledge creation in the form of solution storage. The research design included the administration of an extensive scenario-based online survey to a purposive sample of IT support staff at a medium-sized state-supported university, with additional respondents from online communities of IT support managers and call-tracking software developers. The investigator analyzed 109 completed surveys and conducted email interviews of a stratified nonrandom sample of survey respondents to evaluate the suitability of the model. The investigation employed mixed methods including descriptive statistics, effects size analysis, and content analysis to interpret the results and verify the sufficiency of the problem trajectory model. The study found that expertise selection relied on the factors of credibility, responsibility, and responsiveness. Respondents referred severe new problems for resolution and recorded formal solutions more often than other types of problems, whereas they retained moderate recurring problems for resolution and seldom recorded those solutions. Work experience above and below the 5-year mark affected decisions to retain, refer, or defer problems, as well as solution storage and broadcasting behaviors. The veracity of the problem trajectory model was verified and it was found to be an appropriate tool and explanatory device for research in the IT domain.
- What makes a quality Ph.D. program in library and information sciences?
- The intent of this study was to establish and validate criteria for use to assess the quality of a library and information sciences (LIS) Ph.D. program. The Ph.D. student-centric topology for quality Ph.D. programs was developed from a 2001 position statement by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) regarding the quality indicators in research-focused doctoral programs in nursing. Topology components were tested using a survey instrument to establish their importance to the community of practice and their potential use to assess a Ph.D. program. Survey participants were asked to rank terms or concepts in a balanced incomplete block (BIB) design then rate, on a Likert-type scale, statements about the applicability of these terms or concepts to assessing a quality LIS Ph.D. program. Survey participants were from the Association for Library and Information Science Education (ALISE) Open Lib/Info Sci Education Forum jESSE Listserv. Of 225 survey participants affiliated with universities or schools from North America who submitted usable surveys, slightly less than two-thirds (64.4 %) were female while 35.5 % were male. Ninety-eight participants (43.6 %) were faculty, 114 (50.7 %) were Ph.D. students or candidates, and 13 (5.8 %) were in other roles. Statistical analysis of survey responses showed consistent results between the different demographic groups. The topology was validated by the results of the statistical analysis of the research data. Every component of the topology was acknowledged as very important to assess the quality of a LIS Ph.D. program. Faculty was the highest ranked item in the BIB analysis with a statistically significant difference (p < .0001) in the mean rank order from the next highest ranked item, Ph.D. students. The rank order from the BIB analysis was as follows: faculty, Ph.D. students, programs (courses) of study, teaching, learning environment, resources, and evaluation. Faculty was also the highest rated item in the Likert-type statement analysis.
- The online and the onsite Holocaust museum exhibition as an informational resource.
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Museums today provide learning-rich experiences and quality informational resources through both physical and virtual environments. This study examined a Holocaust Museum traveling exhibition, Life in Shadows: Hidden Children and the Holocaust that was on display at the Art Center of Battle Creek, Michigan in fall 2005. The purpose of this mixed methods study was to assess the informational value of a Holocaust Museum exhibition in its onsite vs. online format by converging quantitative and qualitative data. Participants in the study included six eighth grade language arts classes who viewed various combinations or scenarios of the onsite and online Life in Shadows. Using student responses to questions in an online exhibition survey, an analysis of variance was performed to determine which scenario visit promotes the greatest content learning. Using student responses to additional questions on the same survey, data were analyzed qualitatively to discover the impact on students of each scenario visit. By means of an emotional empathy test, data were analyzed to determine differences among student response according to scenario visit. A principal finding of the study (supporting Falk and Dierking's contextual model of learning) was that the use of the online exhibition provided a source of prior orientation and functioned as an advanced organizer for students who subsequently viewed the onsite exhibition. Students who viewed the online exhibition received higher topic assessment scores. Students in each scenario visit gave positive exhibition feedback and evidence of emotional empathy. Further longitudinal studies in museum informatics and Holocaust education involving a more diverse population are needed. Of particular importance would be research focusing on using museum exhibitions and Web-based technology in a compelling manner so that students can continue to hear the words of survivors who themselves bear witness and give voice to silenced victims. When perpetuity of access to informational resources is assured, future generations will continue to be connected to the primary documents of history and cultural heritage.
- A Framework of Automatic Subject Term Assignment: An Indexing Conception-Based Approach
- The purpose of dissertation is to examine whether the understandings of subject indexing processes conducted by human indexers have a positive impact on the effectiveness of automatic subject term assignment through text categorization (TC). More specifically, human indexers' subject indexing approaches or conceptions in conjunction with semantic sources were explored in the context of a typical scientific journal article data set. Based on the premise that subject indexing approaches or conceptions with semantic sources are important for automatic subject term assignment through TC, this study proposed an indexing conception-based framework. For the purpose of this study, three hypotheses were tested: 1) the effectiveness of semantic sources, 2) the effectiveness of an indexing conception-based framework, and 3) the effectiveness of each of three indexing conception-based approaches (the content-oriented, the document-oriented, and the domain-oriented approaches). The experiments were conducted using a support vector machine implementation in WEKA (Witten, & Frank, 2000). The experiment results pointed out that cited works, source title, and title were as effective as the full text, while keyword was found more effective than the full text. In addition, the findings showed that an indexing conception-based framework was more effective than the full text. Especially, the content-oriented and the document-oriented indexing approaches were found more effective than the full text. Among three indexing conception-based approaches, the content-oriented approach and the document-oriented approach were more effective than the domain-oriented approach. In other words, in the context of a typical scientific journal article data set, the objective contents and authors' intentions were more focused that the possible users' needs. The research findings of this study support that incorporation of human indexers' indexing approaches or conception in conjunction with semantic sources has a positive impact on the effectiveness of automatic subject term assignment.
- Usability of a keyphrase browsing tool based on a semantic cloud model.
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The goal of this research was to facilitate the scrutiny and utilization of Web search engine retrieval results. I used a graphical keyphrase browsing interface to visualize the conceptual information space of the results, presenting document characteristics that make document relevance determinations easier.
- Intangible qualities of rare books: Toward a decision-making framework for preservation management in rare book collections, based upon the concept of the book as object.
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For rare book collections, a considerable challenge is involved in evaluating collection materials in terms of their inherent value, which includes the textual and intangible information the materials provide for the collection's users. Preservation management in rare book collections is a complex and costly process. As digitization and other technological advances in surrogate technology have provided new forms representation, new dilemmas in weighing the rare book's inherently valuable characteristics against the possibly lesser financial costs of surrogates have arisen. No model has been in wide use to guide preservation management decisions. An initial iteration of such a model is developed, based on a Delphi-like iterative questioning of a group of experts in the field of rare books. The results are used to synthesize a preservation management framework for rare book collections, and a small-scale test of the framework has been completed through two independent analyses of five rare books in a functioning collection. Utilizing a standardized template for making preservation decisions offers a variety of benefits. Preservation decisions may include prioritizing action upon the authentic objects, or developing and maintaining surrogates in lieu of retaining costly original collection materials. The framework constructed in this study provides a method for reducing the subjectivity of preservation decision-making and facilitating the development of a standard of practice for preservation management within rare book collections.
- Improving Recall of Browsing Sets in Image Retrieval from a Semiotics Perspective
- The purpose of dissertation is to utilize connotative messages for enhancing image retrieval and browsing. By adopting semiotics as a theoretical tool, this study explores problems of image retrieval and proposes an image retrieval model. The semiotics approach conceptually demonstrates that: 1) a fundamental reason for the dissonance between retrieved images and user needs is representation of connotative messages, and 2) the image retrieval model which makes use of denotative index terms is able to facilitate users to browse connotatively related images effectively even when the users' needs are potentially expressed in the form of denotative query. Two experiments are performed for verifying the semiotic-based image retrieval model and evaluating the effectiveness of the model. As data sources, 5,199 records are collected from Artefacts Canada: Humanities by Canadian Heritage Information Network, and the candidate terms of connotation and denotation are extracted from Art & Architecture Thesaurus. The first experiment, by applying term association measures, verifies that the connotative messages of an image can be derived from denotative messages of the image. The second experiment reveals that the association thesaurus which is constructed based on the associations between connotation and denotation facilitates assigning connotative terms to image documents. In addition, the result of relevant judgments presents that the association thesaurus improves the relative recall of retrieved image documents as well as the relative recall of browsing sets. This study concludes that the association thesaurus indicating associations between connotation and denotation is able to improve the accessibility of the connotative messages. The results of the study are hoped to contribute to the conceptual knowledge of image retrieval by providing understandings of connotative messages within an image and to the practical design of image retrieval system by proposing an association thesaurus which can supplement the limitations of the current content-based image retrieval systems (CBIR).
- Functional Ontology Construction: A Pragmatic Approach to Addressing Problems Concerning the Individual and the Informing Environment
- Functional ontology construction (FOC) is an approach for modeling the relationships between a user and the informing environment by means of analysis of the user's behavior and the elements of the environment that have behavioral function. The FOC approach is an application of behavior analytic techniques and concepts to problems within information science. The FOC approach is both an alternative and a compliment to the cognitive viewpoint commonly found in models of behavior in information science. The basis for the synthesis of behavior analysis and information science is a shared tradition of pragmatism between the fields. The application of behavior analytic concepts brings with it the notion of selection by consequence. Selection is examined on the biological, behavioral, and cultural levels. Two perspicuous examples of the application of the FOC modeling approach are included. The first example looks at the document functioning as a reinforcer in a human operant experimental setting. The second example is an examination of the verbal behavior of expert film analyst, Raymond Bellour, the structure of a film he analyzed, and the elements of the film's structure that had behavioral function for Bellour. The FOC approach is examined within the ontological space of information science.
- The adoption and use of electronic information resources by a non-traditional user group: Automotive service technicians.
- The growing complexity of machines has led to a concomitant increase in the amount and complexity of the information needed by those charged with servicing them. This, in turn, has led to a need for more robust methods for storing and distributing information and for a workforce more sophisticated in its use of information resources. As a result, the service trades have "professionalized," adopting more rigorous academic standards and developing ongoing certification programs. The current paper deals with the acceptance of advanced electronic information technology by skilled service personnel, specifically, automotive service technicians. The theoretical basis of the study is Davis' technology acceptance model. The purpose of the study is to determine the effects of three external factors on the operation of the model: age, work experience, and education/certification level. The research design is in two parts, beginning with an onsite observation and interviews to establish the environment. During the second part of the research process a survey was administered to a sample of automotive service technicians. Results indicated significant inverse relationships between age and acceptance and between experience and acceptance. A significant positive relationship was shown between education, particularly certification, and acceptance.
- Sanctioned and Controlled Message Propagation in a Restrictive Information Environment: The Small World of Clandestine Radio Broadcasting
- This dissertation seeks to identify the elements that inform the model for competing message propagation systems in a restrictive environment. It pays attention to message propagation by sanctioned and clandestine radio stations in pre- and post-independent Zimbabwe. This dissertation uses two models of message propagation in a limiting information environment: Sturges' information model of national liberation struggle and Chatman's small world information model. All the message propagation elements in the Sturges and Chatman's models are present in the broadcast texts analyzed. However, the findings of this dissertation indicate that communication in a restrictive information environment is designed such that its participants make sense of their situation, and come up with ways to solve the challenges of their small world. Also, a restrictive information environment is situational, and message propagators operating in it are subject to tactical changes at different times, accordingly altering their cognitive maps. The two models fail to address these concerns. This dissertation focused on message propagation in Zimbabwe because there is military belligerence involved in the information warfare. It therefore provides an extreme situation, which can help our understanding of more everyday instances of communication and interference of communication. Findings of this dissertation recommend the need to emphasize that information input, output and suppression are components dependent on each other; not discrete and independent categories of information activities.
- The intersection of social networks in a public service model: A case study.
- Examining human interaction networks contributes to an understanding of factors that improve and constrain collaboration. This study examined multiple network levels of information exchanges within a public service model designed to strengthen community partnerships by connecting city services to the neighborhoods. The research setting was the Neighbourhood Integrated Service Teams (NIST) program in Vancouver, B.C., Canada. A literature review related information dimensions to the municipal structure, including social network theory, social network analysis, social capital, transactive memory theory, public goods theory, and the information environment of the public administration setting. The research method involved multiple instruments and included surveys of two bounded populations. First, the membership of the NIST program received a survey asking for identification of up to 20 people they contact for NIST-related work. Second, a network component of the NIST program, 23 community centre coordinators in the Parks and Recreation Department, completed a survey designed to identify their information exchanges relating to regular work responsibilities and the infusion of NIST issues. Additionally, 25 semi-structured interviews with the coordinators and other program members, collection of organization documents, field observation, and feedback sessions provided valuable insight into the complexity of the model. This research contributes to the application of social network theory and analysis in information environments and provides insight for public administrators into the operation of the model and reasons for the program's network effectiveness.
- An exploratory study of factors that influence student user success in an academic digital library.
- The complex nature of digital libraries calls for appropriate models to study user success. Calls have been made to incorporate into these models factors that capture the interplay between people, organizations, and technology. In order to address this, two research questions were formulated: (1) To what extent does the comprehensive digital library user success model (DLUS), based on a combination of the EUCS and flow models, describe overall user success in a prototype digital library environment; and (2) To what extent does a combined model of DeLone & McLean's reformulated information system success model and comprehensive digital library user success model (DLUS) explain digital library user success in a prototype digital library environment? Participants were asked to complete an online survey questionnaire. A total of 160 completed and useable questionnaires were obtained. Data analyses through exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses and structural equation modeling produced results that support the two models. However, some relationships between latent variables hypothesized in the model were not confirmed. A modified version of the proposed comprehensive plus user success model in a digital library environment was tested and supported through model fit statistics. This model was recommended as a possible alternative model of user success. The dissertation also makes a number of recommendations for future research.
- Implications of the inclusion of document retrieval systems as actors in a social network.
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Traditionally, social network analysis (SNA) techniques enable the examination of relationships and the flow of information within networks of human members or groups of humans. This study extended traditional social network analysis to include a nonhuman group member, specifically a document retrieval system. The importance of document retrieval systems as information sources, the changes in business environments that necessitates the use of information and communication technologies, and the attempts to make computer systems more life-like, provide the reasons for considering the information system as a group member. The review of literature for this study does not encompass a single body of knowledge. Instead, several areas combined to inform this study, including social informatics for its consideration of the intersection of people and information technology, network theory and social network analysis, organizations and information, organizational culture, and finally, storytelling in organizations as a means of transferring information. The methodology included distribution of surveys to two small businesses that used the same document retrieval system, followed by semi-structured interviews of selected group members, which allowed elaboration on the survey findings. The group members rated each other and the system on four interaction criteria relating to four social networks of interest, including awareness, access, information flow, and problem solving. Traditional measures of social networks, specifically density, degree, reciprocity, transitivity, distance, degree centrality, and closeness centrality provided insight into the positioning of the nonhuman member within the social group. The human members of the group were able to respond to the survey that included the system but were not ready to consider the system as being equivalent to other human members. SNA measures positioned the system as an average member of the group, not a star, but not isolated either. Examination of the surveys or the interviews in isolation would not have given a complete picture of the system's place within the group.
- A multi-dimensional entropy model of jazz improvisation for music information retrieval.
- Jazz improvisation provides a case context for examining information in music; entropy provides a means for representing music for retrieval. Entropy measures are shown to distinguish between different improvisations on the same theme, thus demonstrating their potential for representing jazz information for analysis and retrieval. The calculated entropy measures are calibrated against human representation by means of a case study of an advanced jazz improvisation course, in which synonyms for "entropy" are frequently used by the instructor. The data sets are examined for insights in music information retrieval, music information behavior, and music representation.
- Knowledge management in times of change: Tacit and explicit knowledge transfers.
- This study proposed a look at the importance and challenges of knowledge management in times of great change. In order to understand the information phenomena of interest, impacts on knowledge workers and knowledge documents in times of great organizational change, the study is positioned in a major consolidation of state agencies in Texas. It pays special attention to how the changes were perceived by the knowledge workers by interviewing those that were impacted by the changes resulting from the reorganization. The overall goal is to assess knowledge management in times of great organizational change by analyzing the impact of consolidation on knowledge management in Texas's Health and Human Services agencies. The overarching research question is what happened to the knowledge management structure during this time of great change? The first research question was what was the knowledge worker environment during the time of change? The second research question was what was the knowledge management environment of the agencies during the time of change? The last research question was did consolidation of the HHS agencies diminish the ability to transition from tacit to explicit knowledge? Additionally, the study investigates how the bill that mandated the consolidation was covered in the local media as well as the actual budget and employee loss impact of the consolidation in order to better understand the impacts on knowledge workers and knowledge documents as a result of major organizational restructuring. The findings have both theoretical and practical implications for information science, knowledge management and project management.
- Terrorism as a social information entity: A model for early intervention.
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This dissertation studies different social aspects of terrorists and terrorist organizations in an effort to better deal with terrorism, especially in the long run. The researcher, who also worked as a Police Captain at Turkish National Police Anti-Terrorism Department, seeks solutions to today's global problem by studying both literature and a Delphi examination of a survey of 1070 imprisoned terrorists. The research questions include questions such as "What are the reasons behind terrorism?", "Why does terrorism occur?", "What ideologies provide the framework for terrorist violence?, "Why do some individuals become terrorists and others do not?" and "Under what conditions will terrorists end their violence?" The results of the study presents the complexity of the terrorism problem as a social experience and impossibility of a single solution or remedy for the global problem of terrorism. The researcher through his examination of the findings of the data, presented that terrorism is a social phenomenon with criminal consequences that needs to be dealt by means of two dimensional approaches. The first is the social dimension of terrorism and the second is the criminal dimension of terrorism. Based on this, the researcher constructed a conceptual model which addresses both of these dimensions under the titles of long-term solutions and short-term solutions. The long-term solutions deal with the social aspects of terrorism under the title of Proactive Approach to Terrorism and the short-term solutions deal with the criminal aspects of terrorism under the title of The Immediate Fight against Terrorism. The researcher constructed this model because there seems to be a tendency of not asking the question of "Why does terrorism occur?" Instead, the focus is usually on dealing with the consequences of terrorism and future terrorist threats. While it is essential that the governments need to provide the finest security measures for their societies, at the same time they need to address the reasons behind terrorism. This research, from stated perspective, offered a conceptual model to address both aspects of terrorism for a more complete fight against today's most painful problem.
- Makeshift Information Constructions: Information Flow and Undercover Police
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This dissertation presents the social virtual interface (SVI) model, which was born out of a need to develop a viable model of the complex interactions, information flow and information seeking behaviors among undercover officers. The SVI model was created from a combination of various philosophies and models in the literature of information seeking, communication and philosophy. The questions this research paper answers are as follows: 1. Can we make use of models and concepts familiar to or drawn from Information Science to construct a model of undercover police work that effectively represents the large number of entities and relationships? and 2. Will undercover police officers recognize this model as realistic? This study used a descriptive qualitative research method to examine the research questions. An online survey and hard copy survey were distributed to police officers who had worked in an undercover capacity. In addition groups of officers were interviewed about their opinion of the SVI model. The data gathered was analyzed and the model was validated by the results of the survey and interviews.
- A complex systems model for understanding the causes of corruption: Case study - Turkey.
- It is attempted with this dissertation to draw an explanatory interdisciplinary framework to clarify the causes of systemic corruption. Following an intense review of political sciences, economics, and sociology literatures on the issue, a complex systems theoretical model is constructed. A political system consists of five main components: Society, interest aggregators, legislative, executive and private sector, and the human actors in these domains. It is hypothesized that when the legitimacy level of the system is low and morality of the systemic actors is flawed, selected political, social and economic incentives and opportunities that may exist within the structure of the systemic components might -individually or as a group- trigger corrupt transactions between the actors of the system. If left untouched, corruption might spread through the system by repetition and social learning eventually becoming the source of corruption itself. By eroding the already weak legitimacy and morality, it may increase the risk of corruption even further. This theoretical explanation is used to study causes of systemic corruption in the Turkish political system. Under the guidance of the complex systems theory, initial systemic conditions, -legacy of the predecessor of Turkey Ottoman Empire-, is evaluated first, and then political, social and economic factors that are presumed to be breeding corruption in contemporary Turkey is investigated. In this section, special focus is given on the formation and operation of amoral social networks and their contribution to the entrenchment of corruption within the system. Based upon the findings of the case study, the theoretical model that is informed by the literature is reformed: Thirty five system and actor level variables are identified to be related with systemic corruption and nature of the causality between them and corruption is explained. Although results of this study can not be academically generalized for obvious reasons; the analytical framework proposed here can be referenced by policy makers who are willing to trace the roots of systemic corruption in developing countries.
- Global response to cyberterrorism and cybercrime: A matrix for international cooperation and vulnerability assessment.
- Cyberterrorism and cybercrime present new challenges for law enforcement and policy makers. Due to its transnational nature, a real and sound response to such a threat requires international cooperation involving participation of all concerned parties in the international community. However, vulnerability emerges from increased reliance on technology, lack of legal measures, and lack of cooperation at the national and international level represents real obstacle toward effective response to these threats. In sum, lack of global consensus in terms of responding to cyberterrorism and cybercrime is the general problem. Terrorists and cyber criminals will exploit vulnerabilities, including technical, legal, political, and cultural. Such a broad range of vulnerabilities can be dealt with by comprehensive cooperation which requires efforts both at the national and international level. "Vulnerability-Comprehensive Cooperation-Freedom Scale" or "Ozeren Scale" identified variables that constructed the scale based on the expert opinions. Also, the study presented typology of cyberterrorism, which involves three general classifications of cyberterrorism; Disruptive and destructive information attacks, Facilitation of technology to support the ideology, and Communication, Fund raising, Recruitment, Propaganda (C-F-R-P). Such a typology is expected to help those who are in a position of decision-making and investigating activities as well as academicians in the area of terrorism. The matrix for international cooperation and vulnerability assessment is expected to be used as a model for global response to cyberterrorism and cybercrime.
- Perceived features and similarity of images: An investigation into their relationships and a test of Tversky's contrast model.
- The creation, storage, manipulation, and transmission of images have become less costly and more efficient. Consequently, the numbers of images and their users are growing rapidly. This poses challenges to those who organize and provide access to them. One of these challenges is similarity matching. Most current content-based image retrieval (CBIR) systems which can extract only low-level visual features such as color, shape, and texture, use similarity measures based on geometric models of similarity. However, most human similarity judgment data violate the metric axioms of these models. Tversky's (1977) contrast model, which defines similarity as a feature contrast task and equates the degree of similarity of two stimuli to a linear combination of their common and distinctive features, explains human similarity judgments much better than the geometric models. This study tested the contrast model as a conceptual framework to investigate the nature of the relationships between features and similarity of images as perceived by human judges. Data were collected from 150 participants who performed two tasks: an image description and a similarity judgment task. Qualitative methods (content analysis) and quantitative (correlational) methods were used to seek answers to four research questions related to the relationships between common and distinctive features and similarity judgments of images as well as measures of their common and distinctive features. Structural equation modeling, correlation analysis, and regression analysis confirmed the relationships between perceived features and similarity of objects hypothesized by Tversky (1977). Tversky's (1977) contrast model based upon a combination of two methods for measuring common and distinctive features, and two methods for measuring similarity produced statistically significant structural coefficients between the independent latent variables (common and distinctive features) and the dependent latent variable (similarity). This model fit the data well for a sample of 30 (435 pairs of) images and 150 participants (χ2 =16.97, df=10, p = .07508, RMSEA= .040, SRMR= .0205, GFI= .990, AGFI= .965). The goodness of fit indices showed the model did not significantly deviate from the actual sample data. This study is the first to test the contrast model in the context of information representation and retrieval. Results of the study are hoped to provide the foundations for future research that will attempt to further test the contrast model and assist designers of image organization and retrieval systems by pointing toward alternative document representations and similarity measures that more closely match human similarity judgments.
- The Impact of Predisposition Towards Group Work on Intention to Use a CSCW System
- Groupware packages are increasingly being used to support content delivery, class discussion, student to student and student to faculty interactions and group work on projects. This research focused on groupware packages that are used to support students who are located in different places, but who are assigned group projects as part of their coursework requirements. In many cases, students are being asked to use unfamiliar technologies that are very different from those that support personal productivity. For example, computer-assisted cooperative work (CSCW) technology is different from other more traditional, stand-alone software applications because it requires the user to interact with the computer as well as other users. However, familiarity with the technology is not the only requirement for successful completion of a group assigned project. For a group to be successful, it must also have a desire to work together on the project. If this pre-requisite is not present within the group, then the technology will only create additional communication and coordination barriers. How much of an impact does each of these factors have on the acceptance of CSCW technology? The significance of this study is threefold. First, this research contributed to how a user's predisposition toward group work affects their acceptance of CSCW technology. Second, it helped identify ways to overcome some of the obstacles associated with group work and the use of CSCW technology in an academic online environment. Finally, it helped identify early adopters of CSCW software and how these users can form the critical mass required to diffuse the technology. This dissertation reports the impact of predisposition toward group work and prior computer experience on the intention to use synchronous CSCW. It was found that predisposition toward group work was not only positively associated to perceived usefulness; it was also related to intention to use. It also found that perceived ease of use, at least in this study, had a direct and positive impact on intention, and was not mediated through perceived usefulness. These findings hold implications for academia and how it uses complex collaborative software. Avenues for further research are identified.
- A Comparative Analysis of Style of User Interface Look and Feel in a Synchronous Computer Supported Cooperative Work Environment
- The purpose of this study is to determine whether the style of a user interface (i.e., its look and feel) has an effect on the usability of a synchronous computer supported cooperative work (CSCW) environment for delivering Internet-based collaborative content. The problem motivating this study is that people who are located in different places need to be able to communicate with one another. One way to do this is by using complex computer tools that allow users to share information, documents, programs, etc. As an increasing number of business organizations require workers to use these types of complex communication tools, it is important to determine how users regard these types of tools and whether they are perceived to be useful. If a tool, or interface, is not perceived to be useful then it is often not used, or used ineffectively. As organizations strive to improve communication with and among users by providing more Internet-based collaborative environments, the users' experience in this form of delivery may be tied to a style of user interface look and feel that could negatively affect their overall acceptance and satisfaction of the collaborative environment. The significance of this study is that it applies the technology acceptance model (TAM) as a tool for evaluating style of user interface look and feel in a collaborative environment, and attempts to predict which factors of that model, perceived ease of use and/or perceived usefulness, could lead to better acceptance of collaborative tools within an organization.
- Information Needs of Art Museum Visitors: Real and Virtual
- Museums and libraries are considered large repositories of human knowledge and human culture. They have similar missions and goals in distributing accumulated knowledge to society. Current digitization projects allow both, museums and libraries to reach a broader audience, share their resources with a variety of users. While studies of information seeking behavior, retrieval systems and metadata in library science have a long history; such research studies in museum environments are at their early experimental stage. There are few studies concerning information seeking behavior and needs of virtual museum visitors, especially with the use of images in the museums' collections available on the Web. The current study identifies preferences of a variety of user groups about the information specifics on current exhibits, museum collections metadata information, and the use of multimedia. The study of information seeking behavior of users groups of museum digital collections or cultural collections allows examination and analysis of users' information needs, and the organization of cultural information, including descriptive metadata and the quantity of information that may be required. In addition, the study delineates information needs that different categories of users may have in common: teachers in high schools, students in colleges and universities, museum professionals, art historians and researchers, and the general public. This research also compares informational and educational needs of real visitors with the needs of virtual visitors. Educational needs of real visitors are based on various studies conducted and summarized by Falk and Dierking (2000), and an evaluation of the art museum websites previously conducted to support the current study.
- Cognitive playfulness, innovativeness, and belief of essentialness: Characteristics of educators who have the ability to make enduring changes in the integration of technology into the classroom environment.
- Research on the adoption of innovation is largely limited to factors affecting immediate change with few studies focusing on enduring or lasting change. The purpose of the study was to examine the personality characteristics of cognitive playfulness, innovativeness, and essentialness beliefs in educators who were able to make an enduring change in pedagogy based on the use of technology in the curriculum within their assigned classroom settings. The study utilized teachers from 33 school districts and one private school in Texas who were first-year participants in the Intel® Teach to the Future program. The research design focused on how cognitive playfulness, innovativeness, and essentialness beliefs relate to a sustained high level of information technology use in the classroom. The research questions were: 1) Are individuals who are highly playful more likely to continue to demonstrate an ability to integrate technology use in the classroom at a high level than those who are less playful? 2) Are individuals who are highly innovative more likely to continue to demonstrate an ability to integrate technology use in the classroom at a high level than those who are less innovative? 3) Are individuals who believe information technology use is critical and indispensable to their teaching more likely to continue to demonstrate an ability to integrate technology use in the classroom at a high level than those who believe it is supplemental and not essential? The findings of the current study indicated that playfulness, innovativeness, and essentialness scores as defined by the scales used were significantly correlated to an individual's sustained ability to use technology at a high level. Playfulness was related to the educator's level of innovativeness, as well. Also, educators who believed the use of technology was critical and indispensable to their instruction were more likely to be able to demonstrate a sustained high level of technology integration. Further research is recommended to investigate numerous personality traits, such as playfulness, innovativeness, creativity, and risk-taking that might relate to technology adoption. Doing so may lead to modifications of professional development, assisting individuals in adapting better and faster to systemic change.
- Wayfinding tools in public library buildings: A multiple case study.
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Wayfinding is the process of using one or more tools to move from one location to another in order to accomplish a task or to achieve a goal. This qualitative study explores the process of wayfinding as it applies to locating information in a public library. A group of volunteers were asked to find a selection of items in three types of libraries-traditional, contemporary, and modern. The retrieval process was timed and the reactions of the volunteers were recorded, documented, and analyzed. The impact of various wayfinding tools-architecture, layout, color, signage, computer support, collection organization-on the retrieval process was also identified. The study revealed that many of the wayfinding tools currently available in libraries do not facilitate item retrieval. Inconsistencies, ambiguities, obstructions, disparities, and operational deficiencies all contributed to end-user frustration and retrieval failure. The study suggests that failing to address these issues may prompt library patrons-end users who are increasingly interested in finding information with minimal expenditures of time and effort-may turn to other information-retrieval strategies and abandon a system that they find confusing and frustrating.
- A Mythic Perspective of Commodification on the World Wide Web
- Capitalism's success, according to Karl Marx, is based on continued development of new markets and products. As globalization shrinks the world marketplace, corporations are forced to seek both new customers and products to sell. Commodification is the process of transforming objects, ideas and even people into merchandise. The recent growth of the World Wide Web has caught the attention of the corporate world, and they are attempting to convert a free-share-based medium into a profit-based outlet. To be successful, they must change Web users' perception about the nature of the Web itself. This study asks the question: Is there mythic evidence of commodification on the World Wide Web? It examines how the World Wide Web is presented to readers of three national publications-Wired, Newsweek, and Business Week-from 1993 to 2000. It uses Barthes' two-tiered model of myths to examine the descriptors used to modify and describe the World Wide Web. The descriptors were clustered into 11 general categories, including connectivity, social, being, scene, consumption, revolution, tool, value, biology, arena, and other. Wired articles did not demonstrate a trend in categorical change from 1993 to 2000; the category of choice shifted back and forth between Revolution, Connectivity, Scene, and Being. Newsweek articles demonstrated an obvious directional shift. Connectivity is the dominant myth from 1994 to 1998, when the revolution category dominates. Similarly, Business Week follows the prevailing myth of connectivity from 1994 to 1997. From 1998 on, the competition-related categories of revolution and arena lead all categories. The study finds evidence of commodification on the World Wide Web, based on the trend in categories in Newsweek and Business Week that move from a foundational myth that presents a perception of cooperation in 1994 to one of competition in 1998 and later. The study recommends further in-depth research of the target publications, a review of articles in less-developed countries, and content analysis and ethnography online.
- An Observational Investigation of On-Duty Critical Care Nurses' Information Behavior in a Nonteaching Community Hospital
- Critical care nurses work in an environment rich in informative interactions. Although there have been post hoc self-report survey studies of nurses' information seeking, there have been no observational studies of the patterns and content of their on-duty information behavior. This study used participant observation and in-context interviews to describe 50 hours of the observable information behavior of a representative sample of critical care nurses in a 20-bed critical care hospital unit. The researcher used open, in vivo, and axial coding to develop a grounded theory model of their consistent pattern of multimedia interactions. The resulting Nurse's Patient-Chart Cycle describes nurses' activities during the shift as centering on a regular alternation with the patient and the patient's chart (various record systems), clearly bounded with nursing "report" interactions at the beginning and the end of the shift. The nurses' demeanor markedly changed between interactions with the chart and interactions with the patient. Other informative interactions were observed with other health care workers and the patient's family, friends and visitors. The nurses' information seeking was centered on the patient. They mostly sought information from people, the patient record and other digital systems. They acted on or passed on most of the information they found. Some information they recorded for their personal use during the shift. The researcher observed the nurses using mostly patient specific information, but they also used some social and logistic information. They occasionally sought knowledge based information. Barriers to information acquisition included illegible handwriting, difficult navigation of online systems, equipment failure, unavailable people, social protocols and mistakes caused by multi-tasking people working with multiple complex systems. No formal use was observed of standardized nursing diagnoses, nursing interventions, or nursing outcomes taxonomies. While the nurses expressed respect for evidence-based practice, there clearly was no time or opportunity for reading research literature (either on paper or online) while on duty. All participants expressed frustration with the amount of redundant data entry required of them. The results of this study have significant implications for the design of clinical information systems and library services for working critical care nurses.
- Knowledge synthesis in the biomedical literature: Nordihydroguaiaretic acid and breast cancer.
- This dissertation refines knowledge synthesis from publicly accessible databases, based on the model of D.R. Swanson. Knowledge synthesis endeavors bring together two or more non-interactive literatures to create combinatorial research data on a specific topic. In this endeavor the biomedical literature was searched on the anti-neoplastic agent nordihydroguaiaretic acid (NDGA) for its potential role as a functional food in the chemoprevention of breast cancer. Bibliometric cocitation was utilized to identify complementary but non-interactive literatures in the disciplines of biomedicine and dietary science. The continuing specialization and fragmentation of the cancer literature degenerates the potential usefulness of cross-disciplinary research and information. As the biomedical sciences become more specialized the potential increases for isolation of discoveries and for failures to connect science to the needs of the people. Within the information science discipline several techniques are available to bridge the isolation between discoveries recorded in different sets of literatures. Electronic database searching with combinatorial keyword entries, syllogistic modeling and bibliometric author cocitation analysis are the principle techniques applied in this endeavor. The research questions are addressed to the absence or presence of human in vivo research on breast cancer with the potentially chemopreventative functional food NDGA. Utilizing a syllogistic model the literatures of functional foods, nordihydroguaiaretic acid and breast cancer were searched with designated combinatorial keywords. The documents retrieved were subjected to author cocitation analysis to demonstrate disjointness or connectivity of the two complementary literatures. The results demonstrated a possible preventative relationship between breast cancer in women and nordihydroguaiaretic acid, a phytochemical antioxidant and potential functional food. The results of this study are consistent with D.R. Swanson's pioneering work in knowledge synthesis. Swanson's methods can be used to identify non-interactive, disjoint literatures. Continuing support for his techniques has been demonstrated.
- Testing a model of the relationships among organizational performance, IT-business alignment and IT governance.
- Information Technology (IT) is often viewed as a resource that is capable of enhancing organizational performance. However, it is difficult for organizations to measure the actual contribution of IT investments. Despite an abundance of literature, there is an insufficiency of generally applicable frameworks and instruments to help organizations definitively assess the relationship among organizational performance, IT-business alignment, and IT governance. Previous studies have emphasized IT-business alignment as an important enabler of organizational effectiveness; however, the direct and indirect effects of IT governance have not been incorporated into these studies. The purpose of this study was (1) to propose a new model that defines the relationships among IT governance, IT-business alignment, and organizational performance, (2) to develop and validate measures for the IT governance and IT-business alignment constructs, and (3) to test this IT Governance-Alignment-Performance or "IT GAP" model. This study made some novel contributions to the understanding of the factors affecting organizational performance. The quest for IT-business alignment in the MIS literature has been based on the presumption that IT contributes directly to organizational performance. However, this study found that although IT-business alignment does contribute to organizational performance, IT governance is an important antecedent of both IT-business alignment and organizational performance. The major contributions of this work are the development and validation of uni-dimensional scales for both IT-business alignment and IT governance, and the confirmation of the validity of the IT GAP model to explain the hypothesized relationships among the three constructs. Future studies may improve upon this research by using different organizations settings, industries, and stakeholders. This study indicates that in order for organizations to improve the value, contribution, and alignment of IT investments they first need to improve the ways in which they govern their IT activities and the processes and mechanisms by which IT decisions are made.
- The gathering and use of information by fifth grade students with access to Palm® handhelds.
- Handheld computers may hold the possibility for a one-to-one computer: student ratio. The impact of the use of Palm® (Palm, Inc.) handhelds on information acquisition and use by 5th grade students in a North Texas school during a class research project was investigated. Five research questions were examined using observation, interviews, surveys, and document analysis. Are there differences in information gathering and use with the Palm between gifted, dyslexic, and regular learners? What relevance criteria do students use to evaluate a web site to determine whether to download the site to the Palm and afterwards whether to use the downloaded site's information in the report? How do the Palms affect the writing process? Do the animations and concept maps produced on the Palm demonstrate understanding of the intended concepts? Are there significant differences in results (i.e., final products grade) between Palm users and non-Palm users? Three groups of learners in the class, gifted, dyslexic, and regular learners, participated in the study. The regular and dyslexic students reported using Web sites that had not been downloaded to the Palm. Students reported several factors used to decide whether to download Web sites, but the predominant deciding factor was the amount of information. The students used a combination of writing on paper and the Palm in the preparation of the report. Many students flipped between two programs, FreeWrite and Fling-It, finding information and then writing the facts into the report. The peer review process was more difficult with the Palm. Most students had more grammatical errors in this research report than in previous research projects. By creating animated drawings on the Palm handheld, the students demonstrated their understanding of the invention though sometimes the media or the student's drawing skills limited the quality of the final product. Creating the animations was motivational and addressed different learning styles than a written report alone. No statistically significant difference was found in the scores of the three 6+1 Traits categories, however the Palm users didn't meet the page-length requirement for the research project but the majority of the control class did.
- An Evaluation of the Effect of Learning Styles and Computer Competency on Students' Satisfaction on Web-Based Distance Learning Environments
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This study investigates the correlation between students' learning styles, computer competency and student satisfaction in Web-based distance learning. Three hundred and one graduate students participated in the current study during the Summer and Fall semesters of 2002 at the University of North Texas. Participants took the courses 100% online and came to the campus only once for software training. Computer competency and student satisfaction were measured using the Computer Skill and Use Assessment and the Student Satisfaction Survey questionnaires. Kolb's Learning Style Inventory measured students' learning styles. The study concludes that there is a significant difference among the different learning styles with respect to student satisfaction level when the subjects differ with regard to computer competency. For accommodating amd diverging styles, a higher level of computer competency results in a higher level of student satisfaction. But for converging and assimilating styles, a higher level of computer competency suggests a lower level of student satisfaction. A significant correlation was found between computer competency and student satisfaction level within Web-based courses for accommodating styles and no significant results were found in the other learning styles.
- The physiology of collaboration: An investigation of library-museum-university partnerships.
- Collaboration appears to be a magical solution for many problems when there is scarcity of resources, lack of knowledge or skills, and/or environmental threats. However, there is little knowledge about the nature of collaboration. A holistic conceptual framework was developed for the collaborative process, and the conceptualization process used systems thinking approach. The author has selectively chosen conceptualizations and/or research by a limited subset of scholars whose ideas appeared to be the most relevant and useful to explore the type of collaboration studied here. In other words, the selection of the literature was based on an eclectic selection. Multiple cases were used in this research to understand the factors that are components of collaborative effort among non-profit organizations and the relationships among those factors. This study also investigated the stages of collaborative process. Data were collected from 54 participants who were partners in collaborate projects funded by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS). Among these 54 participants, 50 answered the online questionnaire and 38 received the telephone interviews. The data collected was analyzed using cluster analysis, multidimensional scaling, internal consistency reliability, and descriptive statistics. The component factors of collaboration were grouped by the following seven concepts: trustworthiness, competence, dependency, misunderstanding and/or conflict, complexity, commitment and mechanism of coordination. This study showed twelve relationships among these factors. For instance, different points of view and partners' capacity to maintain inter-organizational relationships were found to be opposite concepts. In addition, the findings in this study indicate that 84% of participants reported the presence of the five pre-defined stages: execution, networking, definition, relationship, and common evaluation.
- Information systems assessment: development of a comprehensive framework and contingency theory to assess the effectiveness of the information systems function.
- The purpose of this research is to develop a comprehensive, IS assessment framework using existing IS assessment theory as a base and incorporating suggestions from other disciplines. To validate the framework and to begin the investigation of current IS assessment practice, a survey instrument was developed. A small group of subject matter experts evaluated and improved the instrument. The instrument was further evaluated using a small sample of IS representatives. Results of this research include a reexamination of the IS function measurement problem using new frameworks of analyses yielding (a) guidance for the IS manager or executive on which IS measures might best fit their organization, (b) a further verification of the important measures most widely used by IS executives, (c) a comprehensive, theoretically-derived, IS assessment framework, and by (d) the enhancement of IS assessment theory by incorporating ideas from actual practice. The body of knowledge gains a comprehensive, IS assessment framework that can be further tested for usefulness and applicability. Future research is recommended to substantiate and improve on these findings. Chapter 2 is a complete survey of prior research, subdivided by relevant literature divisions, such as organizational effectiveness, quality management, and IS assessment. Chapter 3 includes development of and support for the research questions, IS assessment framework, and the research model. Chapter 4 describes how the research was conducted. It includes a brief justification for the research approach, a description of how the framework was evaluated, a description of how the survey instrument was developed and evaluated, a description of the participants and how they were selected, a synopsis of the data collection procedures, a brief description of follow-up procedures, and a summary. Chapter 5 presents the results of the research. Chapter 6 is a summary and conclusion of the research. Finally, included in the appendices are definitions of terms, and copies of the original and improved survey instruments.
- Children's color association for digital image retrieval.
- In the field of information sciences, attention has been focused on developing mature information retrieval systems that abstract information automatically from the contents of information resources, such as books, images and films. As a subset of information retrieval research, content-based image retrieval systems automatically abstract elementary information from images in terms of colors, shapes, and texture. Color is the most commonly used in similarity measurement for content-based image retrieval systems. Human-computer interface design and image retrieval methods benefit from studies based on the understanding of their potential users. Today's children are exposed to digital technology at a very young age, and they will be the major technology users in five to ten years. This study focuses on children's color perception and color association with a controlled set of digital images. The method of survey research was used to gather data for this exploratory study about children's color association from a children's population, third to sixth graders. An online questionnaire with fifteen images was used to collect quantitative data of children's color selections. Face-to-face interviews investigated the rationale and factors affecting the color choices and children's interpretation of the images. The findings in this study indicate that the color children associated with in the images was the one that took the most space or the biggest part of an image. Another powerful factor in color selection was the vividness or saturation of the color. Colors that stood out the most generally attracted the greatest attention. Preferences of color, character, or subject matter in an image also strongly affected children's color association with images. One of the most unexpected findings was that children would choose a color to replace a color in an image. In general, children saw more things than what were actually represented in the images. However, the children's interpretation of the images had little effect on their color selections.
- Measuring the accuracy of four attributes of sound for conveying changes in a large data set.
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Human auditory perception is suited to receiving and interpreting information from the environment but this knowledge has not been used extensively in designing computer-based information exploration tools. It is not known which aspects of sound are useful for accurately conveying information in an auditory display. An auditory display was created using PD, a graphical programming language used primarily to manipulate digital sound. The interface for the auditory display was a blank window. When the cursor is moved around in this window, the sound generated would changed based on the underlying data value at any given point. An experiment was conducted to determine which attribute of sound most accurately represents data values in an auditory display. The four attributes of sound tested were frequency-sine waveform, frequency-sawtooth waveform, loudness and tempo. 24 subjects were given the task of finding the highest data point using sound alone using each of the four sound treatments. Three dependent variables were measured: distance accuracy, numeric accuracy, and time on task. Repeated measures ANOVA procedures conducted on these variables did not rise to the level of statistical significance (α=.05). None of the sound treatments was more accurate than the other as representing the underlying data values. 52% of the trials were accurate within 50 pixels of the highest data point (target). An interesting finding was the tendency for the frequency-sin waveform to be used in the least accurate trial attempts (38%). Loudness, on the other hand, accounted for very few (12.5%) of the least accurate trial attempts. In completing the experimental task, four different search techniques were employed by the subjects: perimeter, parallel sweep, sector, and quadrant. The perimeter technique was the most commonly used.
- An Empirical Investigation of Critical Factors that Influence Data Warehouse Implementation Success in Higher Educational Institutions
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Data warehousing (DW) in the last decade has become the technology of choice for building data management infrastructures to provide organizations the decision-making capabilities needed to effectively carry out its activities. Despite its phenomenal growth and importance to organizations the rate of DW implementation success has been less than stellar. Many DW implementation projects fail due to technical or organizational reasons. There has been limited research on organizational factors and their role in DW implementations. It is important to understand the role and impact of both technical but organizational factors in DW implementations and their relative importance to implementation performance. A research model was developed to test the significance of technical and organizational factors in the three phases of implementation with DW implementation performance. The independent variables were technical (data, technology, and expertise) and organizational (management, goals, users, organization). The dependent variable was performance (content, accuracy, format, ease of use, and timeliness). The data collection method was a Web based survey of DW implementers and DW users sampled (26) from a population of 108 identified DW implementations. Regression was used as the multivariate statistical technique to analyze the data. The results show that organization factors are significantly related to performance. Also, that some variables in the post-implementation phase have a significant relationship with performance. Based on the results of the tests the model was revised to reflect the relative impact of technical and organizational factors on DW performance. Results suggest that in some cases organizational factors have a significant relationship with DW implementation performance. The implications and interpretation of these results provide researchers and practitioners' insights and a new perspective in the area of DW implementations.
- Accessing Information on the World Wide Web: Predicting Usage Based on Involvement
- Advice for Web designers often includes an admonition to use short, scannable, bullet-pointed text, reflecting the common belief that browsing the Web most often involves scanning rather than reading. Literature from several disciplines focuses on the myriad combinations of factors related to online reading but studies of the users' interests and motivations appear to offer a more promising avenue for understanding how users utilize information on Web pages. This study utilized the modified Personal Involvement Inventory (PII), a ten-item instrument used primarily in the marketing and advertising fields, to measure interest and motivation toward a topic presented on the Web. Two sites were constructed from Reader's Digest Association, Inc. online articles and a program written to track students' use of the site. Behavior was measured by the initial choice of short versus longer versions of the main page, the number of pages visited and the amount of time spent on the site. Data were gathered from students at a small, private university in the southwest part of the United States to answer six hypotheses which posited that subjects with higher involvement in a topic presented on the Web and a more positive attitude toward the Web would tend to select the longer text version, visit more pages, and spend more time on the site. While attitude toward the Web did not correlate significantly with any of the behavioral factors, the level of involvement was associated with the use of the sites in two of three hypotheses, but only partially in the manner hypothesized. Increased involvement with a Web topic did correlate with the choice of a longer, more detailed initial Web page, but was inversely related to the number of pages viewed so that the higher the involvement, the fewer pages visited. An additional indicator of usage, the average amount of time spent on each page, was measured and revealed that more involved users spent more time on each page.