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Identification of Remote Leadership Patterns in Academic and Public Libraries

Description: 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 ...
Date: August 2008
Creator: Venetis, Mary Jo

Toward an Ideal Library: A Synthesis of Wilson's Library and Information Policy and Gilbert's Performance Matrix

Description: 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.
Date: August 2008
Creator: Koremura, Yuka

Networked generation youth's information seeking process: An examination of cognitive, affective and physical behaviors and problem solving techniques.

Description: 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 ...
Date: May 2008
Creator: Peterson, Janet Walker

The Effectiveness of Using Lego Mindstorms Robotics Activities to Influence Self-regulated Learning in a University Introductory Computer Programming Course.

Description: 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.
Date: May 2008
Creator: McWhorter, William Isaac

Negotiation, communication, and decision strategies used by hostage/crisis negotiators.

Description: 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 ...
Date: May 2008
Creator: Hancerli, Suleyman

A study of on-line use and perceived effectiveness of compliance-gaining in health-related banner advertisements for senior citizens.

Description: 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.
Date: December 2002
Creator: Toon, Michelle Anne

A mechanism for richer representation of videos for children: Calibrating calculated entropy to perceived entropy

Description: 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.
Date: August 2001
Creator: Kearns, Jodi

Constraints on Adoption of Innovations: Internet Availability in the Developing World.

Description: 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.
Access: This item is restricted to the UNT Community Members at a UNT Libraries Location.
Date: December 2006
Creator: Stedman, Joseph B.

News photography image retrieval practices: Locus of control in two contexts.

Description: 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 ...
Access: This item is restricted to the UNT Community Members at a UNT Libraries Location.
Date: May 2006
Creator: Neal, Diane Rasmussen

Quality Management in Museum Information Systems: A Case Study of ISO 9001-2000 as an Evaluative Technique

Description: 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 ...
Date: May 2005
Creator: Karr, Fred H.

Privacy Concerns and Personality Traits Influencing Online Behavior: A Structural Model

Description: 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.
Date: May 2005
Creator: Grams, Brian C.

The Effect of Information Literacy Instruction on Library Anxiety Among International Students

Description: 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.
Access: This item is restricted to the UNT Community Members at a UNT Libraries Location.
Date: May 2004
Creator: Battle, Joel C.

Computer Support Interactions: Verifying a Process Model of Problem Trajectory in an Information Technology Support Environment.

Description: 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 ...
Date: December 2006
Creator: Strauss, Christopher Eric

What makes a quality Ph.D. program in library and information sciences?

Description: 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 ...
Date: December 2006
Creator: Klingler, Scott Lavell

The Online and the Onsite Holocaust Museum Exhibition as an Informational Resource

Description: 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 ...
Date: December 2006
Creator: Lincoln, Margaret L.

A Framework of Automatic Subject Term Assignment: An Indexing Conception-Based Approach

Description: 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.
Date: December 2006
Creator: Chung, EunKyung

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

Description: 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.
Date: May 2006
Creator: Sheehan, Jennifer Karr

Improving Recall of Browsing Sets in Image Retrieval from a Semiotics Perspective

Description: 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 ...
Date: May 2006
Creator: Yoon, JungWon

Functional Ontology Construction: A Pragmatic Approach to Addressing Problems Concerning the Individual and the Informing Environment

Description: 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.
Date: May 2006
Creator: Anderson, Richard L.

The Adoption and Use of Electronic Information Resources by a Non-Traditional User Group: Automotive Service Technicians.

Description: 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.
Date: May 2006
Creator: Almquist, Arne J.

Sanctioned and Controlled Message Propagation in a Restrictive Information Environment: The Small World of Clandestine Radio Broadcasting

Description: 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.
Date: December 2007
Creator: Wachanga, David Ndirangu

The intersection of social networks in a public service model: A case study.

Description: 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.
Date: December 2007
Creator: Schultz-Jones, Barbara Ann

An exploratory study of factors that influence student user success in an academic digital library.

Description: 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.
Date: December 2007
Creator: Rahman, Faizur