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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.
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Date: December 2006
Creator: Stedman, Joseph B.

Coyote Ugly Librarian: A Participant Observer Examination of Lnowledge Construction in Reality TV.

Description: Reality TV is the most popular genre of television programming today. The number of reality television shows has grown exponentially over the last fifteen years since the premier of The Real World in 1992. Although reality TV uses styles similar to those used in documentary film, the “reality” of the shows is questioned by critics and viewers alike. The current study focuses on the “reality” that is presented to viewers and how that “reality” is created and may differ from what the participants of the shows experience. I appeared on two reality shows, Faking It and That's Clever, and learned a great deal as a participant observer. Within the study, I outline my experience and demonstrate how editing changed the reality I experienced into what was presented to the viewers. O'Connor's (1996) representation context web serves as a model for the realities created through reality television. People derive various benefits from watching reality TV. Besides the obvious entertainment value of reality TV, viewers also gather information via this type of programming. Viewers want to see real people on television reacting to unusual circumstances without the use of scripts. By surveying reality TV show viewers and participants, this study gives insight into how real the viewers believe the shows are and how authentic they actually are. If these shows are presented as reality, viewers are probably taking what they see as historical fact. The results of the study indicate more must be done so that the “reality” of reality TV does not misinform viewers.
Date: May 2007
Creator: Holmes, Haley K.

Discovering a Descriptive Taxonomy of Attributes of Exemplary School Library Websites

Description: This descriptive study examines effective online school library practice. A Delphi panel selected a sample of 10 exemplary sites and helped to create two research tools--taxonomies designed to analyze the features and characteristics of school library Websites. Using the expert-identified sites as a sample, a content analysis was conducted to systematically identify site features and characteristics. Anne Clyde's longitudinal content analysis of school library Websites was used as a baseline to examine trends in practice; in addition, the national guidelines document, Information Power: Building Partnerships for Learning, was examined to explore ways in which the traditional mission and roles of school library programs are currently translated online. Results indicated great variation in depth and coverage even among Websites considered exemplary. Sites in the sample are growing more interactive and student-centered, using blogs as supplemental communication strategies. Nevertheless, even these exemplary sites were slow to adopt the advances in technology to meet the learning needs and interests of young adult users. Ideally the study's findings will contribute to understanding of state-of-the-art and will serve to identify trends, as well as serving as a guide to practitioners in planning, developing, and maintaining school library Websites.
Date: August 2007
Creator: Valenza, Joyce Kasman

The Effect of Personality Type on the Use of Relevance Criteria for Purposes of Selecting Information Sources.

Description: Even though information scientists generally recognize that relevance judgments are multidimensional and dynamic, there is still discussion and debate regarding the degree to which certain internal (cognition, personality) and external (situation, social relationships) factors affect the use of criteria in reaching those judgments. Much of the debate centers on the relationship of those factors to the criteria and reliable methods for measuring those relationships. This study researched the use of relevance criteria to select an information source by undergraduate students whose task it is to create a course schedule for a semester. During registration periods, when creating their semester schedules, students filled out a two-part questionnaire. After completion of the questionnaire the students completed a Myers-Briggs Type Indicator instrument in order to determine their personality type. Data was analyzed using one-way ANOVAS and Chi-Square. A positive correlation exists between personality type as expressed by the MBTI and the information source selected as most important by the subject. A correlation also exists between personality type and relevance criteria use. The correlation is stronger for some criteria than for others. Therefore, one can expect personality type to have an effect on the use of relevance criteria while selecting information sources.
Date: December 2002
Creator: Sims, Dale B.

Plans for Establishing and Developing the Social Research Studies and Information Center Libraries in Saudi Arabia

Description: The problem was to define the present status of the Social Research Studies and Information Center libraries in Saudi Arabia and to suggest ways in which they could be improved. The purposes of the study were two-fold: (1) to analyze and evaluate the current status of these libraries and to develop and improve the role and functions of these libraries; and (2) to consider the possibility of cooperation between these libraries.
Date: August 1990
Creator: Kahtani, Abdullah S. Mossa (Abdullah Salem Mossa)

The Cluster Hypothesis: A Visual/Statistical Analysis

Description: By allowing judgments based on a small number of exemplar documents to be applied to a larger number of unexamined documents, clustered presentation of search results represents an intuitively attractive possibility for reducing the cognitive resource demands on human users of information retrieval systems. However, clustered presentation of search results is sensible only to the extent that naturally occurring similarity relationships among documents correspond to topically coherent clusters. The Cluster Hypothesis posits just such a systematic relationship between document similarity and topical relevance. To date, experimental validation of the Cluster Hypothesis has proved problematic, with collection-specific results both supporting and failing to support this fundamental theoretical postulate. The present study consists of two computational information visualization experiments, representing a two-tiered test of the Cluster Hypothesis under adverse conditions. Both experiments rely on multidimensionally scaled representations of interdocument similarity matrices. Experiment 1 is a term-reduction condition, in which descriptive titles are extracted from Associated Press news stories drawn from the TREC information retrieval test collection. The clustering behavior of these titles is compared to the behavior of the corresponding full text via statistical analysis of the visual characteristics of a two-dimensional similarity map. Experiment 2 is a dimensionality reduction condition, in which inter-item similarity coefficients for full text documents are scaled into a single dimension and then rendered as a two-dimensional visualization; the clustering behavior of relevant documents within these unidimensionally scaled representations is examined via visual and statistical methods. Taken as a whole, results of both experiments lend strong though not unqualified support to the Cluster Hypothesis. In Experiment 1, semantically meaningful 6.6-word document surrogates systematically conform to the predictions of the Cluster Hypothesis. In Experiment 2, the majority of the unidimensionally scaled datasets exhibit a marked nonuniformity of distribution of relevant documents, further supporting the Cluster Hypothesis. Results of ...
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Date: May 2000
Creator: Sullivan, Terry

Creating a Criterion-Based Information Agent Through Data Mining for Automated Identification of Scholarly Research on the World Wide Web

Description: This dissertation creates an information agent that correctly identifies Web pages containing scholarly research approximately 96% of the time. It does this by analyzing the Web page with a set of criteria, and then uses a classification tree to arrive at a decision. The criteria were gathered from the literature on selecting print and electronic materials for academic libraries. A Delphi study was done with an international panel of librarians to expand and refine the criteria until a list of 41 operationalizable criteria was agreed upon. A Perl program was then designed to analyze a Web page and determine a numerical value for each criterion. A large collection of Web pages was gathered comprising 5,000 pages that contain the full work of scholarly research and 5,000 random pages, representative of user searches, which do not contain scholarly research. Datasets were built by running the Perl program on these Web pages. The datasets were split into model building and testing sets. Data mining was then used to create different classification models. Four techniques were used: logistic regression, nonparametric discriminant analysis, classification trees, and neural networks. The models were created with the model datasets and then tested against the test dataset. Precision and recall were used to judge the effectiveness of each model. In addition, a set of pages that were difficult to classify because of their similarity to scholarly research was gathered and classified with the models. The classification tree created the most effective classification model, with a precision ratio of 96% and a recall ratio of 95.6%. However, logistic regression created a model that was able to correctly classify more of the problematic pages. This agent can be used to create a database of scholarly research published on the Web. In addition, the technique can be used to create a ...
Date: May 2000
Creator: Nicholson, Scott

A Theory for the Measurement of Internet Information Retrieval

Description: The purpose of this study was to develop and evaluate a measurement model for Internet information retrieval strategy performance evaluation whose theoretical basis is a modification of the classical measurement model embodied in the Cranfield studies and their progeny. Though not the first, the Cranfield studies were the most influential of the early evaluation experiments. The general problem with this model was and continues to be the subjectivity of the concept of relevance. In cyberspace, information scientists are using quantitative measurement models for evaluating information retrieval performance that are based on the Cranfield model. This research modified this model by incorporating enduser relevance judgment rather than using objective relevance judgments, and by adopting a fundamental unit of measure developed for the cyberspace of Internet information retrieval rather than using recall and precision-type measures. The proposed measure, the Content-bearing Click (CBC) Ratio, was developed as a quantitative measure reflecting the performance of an Internet IR strategy. Since the hypertext "click" is common to many Internet IR strategies, it was chosen as the fundamental unit of measure rather than the "document." The CBC Ratio is a ratio of hypertext click counts that can be viewed as a false drop measure that determines the average number of irrelevant content-bearing clicks that an enduser check before retrieving relevant information. After measurement data were collected, they were used to evaluate the reliability of several methods for aggregating relevance judgments. After reliability coefficients were calculated, measurement model was used to compare web catalog and web database performance in an experimental setting. Conclusions were the reached concerning the reliability of the proposed measurement model and its ability to measure Internet IR performance, as well as implications for clinical use of the Internet and for future research in Information Science.
Date: May 1999
Creator: MacCall, Steven Leonard

An Experimental Study of Teachers' Verbal and Nonverbal Immediacy, Student Motivation, and Cognitive Learning in Video Instruction

Description: This study used an experimental design and a direct test of recall to provide data about teacher immediacy and student cognitive learning. Four hypotheses and a research question addressed two research problems: first, how verbal and nonverbal immediacy function together and/or separately to enhance learning; and second, how immediacy affects cognitive learning in relation to student motivation. These questions were examined in the context of video instruction to provide insight into distance learning processes and to ensure maximum control over experimental manipulations. Participants (N = 347) were drawn from university students in an undergraduate communication course. Students were randomly assigned to groups, completed a measure of state motivation, and viewed a 15-minute video lecture containing part of the usual course content delivered by a guest instructor. Participants were unaware that the video instructor was actually performing one of four scripted manipulations reflecting higher and lower combinations of specific verbal and nonverbal cues, representing the four cells of the 2x2 research design. Immediately after the lecture, students completed a recall measure, consisting of portions of the video text with blanks in the place of key words. Participants were to fill in the blanks with exact words they recalled from the videotape. Findings strengthened previous research associating teacher nonverbal immediacy with enhanced cognitive learning outcomes. However, higher verbal immediacy, in the presence of higher and lower nonverbal immediacy, was not shown to produce greater learning among participants in this experiment. No interaction effects were found between higher and lower levels of verbal and nonverbal immediacy. Recall scores were comparatively low in the presence of higher verbal and lower nonverbal immediacy, suggesting that nonverbal expectancy violations may have hindered cognitive learning. Student motivation was not found to be a significant source of error in measuring immediacy's effects, and no interaction effects were detected ...
Date: May 2000
Creator: Witt, Paul L.

Empowering Agent for Oklahoma School Learning Communities: An Examination of the Oklahoma Library Improvement Program

Description: The purposes of this study were to determine the initial impact of the Oklahoma Library Media Improvement Grants on Oklahoma school library media programs; assess whether the Oklahoma Library Media Improvement Grants continue to contribute to Oklahoma school learning communities; and examine possible relationships between school library media programs and student academic success. It also seeks to document the history of the Oklahoma Library Media Improvement Program 1978 - 1994 and increase awareness of its influence upon the Oklahoma school library media programs. Methods of data collection included: examining Oklahoma Library Media Improvement Program archival materials; sending a survey to 1703 school principals in Oklahoma; and interviewing Oklahoma Library Media Improvement Program participants. Data collection took place over a one year period. Data analyses were conducted in three primary phases: descriptive statistics and frequencies were disaggregated to examine mean scores as they related to money spent on school library media programs; opinions of school library media programs; and possible relationships between school library media programs and student academic achievement. Analysis of variance was used in the second phase of data analysis to determine if any variation between means was significant as related to Oklahoma Library Improvement Grants, time spent in the library media center by library media specialists, principal gender, opinions of library media programs, student achievement indicators, and the region of the state in which the respondent was located. The third phase of data analysis compared longitudinal data collected in the 2000 survey with past data. The primary results indicated students in Oklahoma from schools with a centralized library media center, served by a full-time library media specialist, and the school having received one or more Library Media Improvement Grants scored significantly higher academically than students in schools not having a centralized library media center, not served by a ...
Date: August 2000
Creator: Jenkins, Carolyn Sue Ottinger

An Examination Of The Variation In Information Systems Project Cost Estimates: The Case Of Year 2000 Compliance Projects

Description: The year 2000 (Y2K) problem presented a fortuitous opportunity to explore the relationship between estimated costs of software projects and five cost influence dimensions described by the Year 2000 Enterprise Cost Model (Kappelman, et al., 1998) -- organization, problem, solution, resources, and stage of completion. This research was a field study survey of (Y2K) project managers in industry, government, and education and part of a joint project that began in 1996 between the University of North Texas and the Y2K Working Group of the Society for Information Management (SIM). Evidence was found to support relationships between estimated costs and organization, problem, resources, and project stage but not for the solution dimension. Project stage appears to moderate the relationships for organization, particularly IS practices, and resources. A history of superior IS practices appears to mean lower estimated costs, especially for projects in larger IS organizations. Acquiring resources, especially external skills, appears to increase costs. Moreover, projects apparently have many individual differences, many related to size and to project stage, and their influences on costs appear to be at the sub-dimension or even the individual variable level. A Revised Year 2000 Enterprise Model is presented incorporating this granularity. Two primary conclusions can be drawn from this research: (1) large software projects are very complex and thus cost estimating is also; and (2) the devil of cost estimating is in the details of knowing which of the many possible variables are the important ones for each particular enterprise and project. This points to the importance of organizations keeping software project metrics and the historical calibration of cost-estimating practices. Project managers must understand the relevant details and their interaction and importance in order to successfully develop a cost estimate for a particular project, even when rational cost models are used. This research also indicates ...
Date: May 2000
Creator: Fent, Darla

Elementary School Climate Factors and Personality and Status Variables Associated with School Library Media Specialists Chosen by Classroom Teachers for Cooperation on Instructional Problems

Description: This study investigated relationships between the extent to which elementary classroom teachers tend to choose school library media specialists for cooperation on instructional problems and several school climate and faculty related characteristics including the general academic effectiveness of the school, the overall cohesion and cooperativeness of the teaching faculty on instructional matters, and the propensity of the group and individual faculty to seek cooperation to solve instructional problems. The instructional choice status of the school library media specialist was also studied in relation to various individual personality factors, as measured by Cattell's 16 Personality Factor Questionnaire, as well as school media specialist status variables including degreed or non-degreed status, total years of experience as a school library media specialist, years of experience on campus as a school library media specialist, and total number of years of experience in the field of education. The instructional status of the school library media specialist was also examined in relationship to the size of the school served. The study included 1,079 elementary classroom teachers and thirty-nine school library media specialists from thirty-nine Texas elementary schools similar in important wealth, size, and student demographic characteristics. Twenty of the schools ranked in the bottom 25% of all schools in the state as to how well their students performed on the 1988 Texas Educational Assessment of Minimum Skills (TEAMS) test. Nineteen schools ranked among the top 25%of all schools in the state in academic effectiveness. As compared to the low academic schools, the high academic schools were found to be significantly more instructionally cohesive, and classroom teachers in those schools were significantly more disposed to choose the school library media specialist to cooperate with them on instructional problems. No significant relationships were discovered between the instructional choice status of the school media specialist and his or her ...
Date: December 1990
Creator: Bell, Michael David, 1943-

Identifying At-Risk Students: An Assessment Instrument for Distributed Learning Courses in Higher Education

Description: The current period of rapid technological change, particularly in the area of mediated communication, has combined with new philosophies of education and market forces to bring upheaval to the realm of higher education. Technical capabilities exceed our knowledge of whether expenditures on hardware and software lead to corresponding gains in student learning. Educators do not yet possess sophisticated assessments of what we may be gaining or losing as we widen the scope of distributed learning. The purpose of this study was not to draw sweeping conclusions with respect to the costs or benefits of technology in education. The researcher focused on a single issue involved in educational quality: assessing the ability of a student to complete a course. Previous research in this area indicates that attrition rates are often higher in distributed learning environments. Educators and students may benefit from a reliable instrument to identify those students who may encounter difficulty in these learning situations. This study is aligned with research focused on the individual engaged in seeking information, assisted or hindered by the capabilities of the computer information systems that create and provide access to information. Specifically, the study focused on the indicators of completion for students enrolled in video conferencing and Web-based courses. In the final version, the Distributed Learning Survey encompassed thirteen indicators of completion. The results of this study of 396 students indicated that the Distributed Learning Survey represented a reliable and valid instrument for identifying at-risk students in video conferencing and Web-based courses where the student population is similar to the study participants. Educational level, GPA, credit hours taken in the semester, study environment, motivation, computer confidence, and the number of previous distributed learning courses accounted for most of the predictive power in the discriminant function based on student scores from the survey.
Date: May 2000
Creator: Osborn, Viola

An Examination of Selected Product Characteristics Associated with the Sales Success of Nontheatrical Film and Video Works

Description: The purpose of this study was to test assumptions made about characteristics of nontheatrical film and video works that were thought to contribute to the frequency with which the works were purchased. This study proposed and tested three variables for which relationships to the sales success of nontheatrical film and video works were hypothesized, as well as four variables about which no hypotheses were forwarded. Nineteen film and video distribution organizations contributed unit sales data for the period 1982-1987 on 151 works copyrighted between 1982 and 1984. These data were analyzed for relationships between sales totals and 1) curricular significance of the works' subjects, 2) relevance to general reading interest in the works' subjects, 3) intensity of competition faced by the works, 4) the works' Dewey classifications as compared to the composition of typical K-12 school library book collections, 5) the series or non-series status of the works, 6) the media format(s) in which the works were available for purchase and 7) the sources of the works' production financing. Analyses of correlation and association were performed and no significant relationships were found between sales and curricular significance of the works' subjects, or their relevance to general reading interest. Some evidence was presented to suggest a significant association between the intensity of competition faced by a work and its eventual sales. None of the hypotheses about these variables was supported. However, the four remaining variables were found to be significant, or to approach significance, as correlates or associates of sales success. The best predictor of sales for works intended for the K-12 school market was the work's Dewey Decimal classification. Other important findings included associations between high sales and intense product competition, between high sales and non-series status, between high sales and availability for purchase in 16mm film and between high ...
Date: May 1990
Creator: Munde, Gail Marie

Relevance Thresholds: A Conjunctive/Disjunctive Model of End-User Cognition as an Evaluative Process

Description: This investigation identifies end-user cognitive heuristics that facilitate judgment and evaluation during information retrieval (IR) system interactions. The study extends previous research surrounding relevance as a key construct for representing the value end-users ascribe to items retrieved from IR systems and the perceived effectiveness of such systems. The Lens Model of user cognition serves as the foundation for design and interpretation of the study; earlier research in problem solving, decision making, and attitude formation also contribute to the model and analysis. A self reporting instrument collected evaluative responses from 32 end-users related to 1432 retrieved items in relation to five characteristics of each item: topical, pertinence, utility, systematic, and motivational levels of relevance. The nominal nature of the data collected led to non-parametric statistical analyses that indicated that end-user evaluation of retrieved items to resolve an information problem at hand is most likely a multi-stage process. That process appears to be a cognitive progression from topic to meaning (pertinence) to functionality (use). Each step in end-user evaluative processing engages a cognitive hierarchy of heuristics that includes consideration (of appropriate cues), differentiation (the positive or negative aspects of those cues considered), and aggregation (the combination of differentiated cue aspects needed to render an evaluative label of the item in relation to the information problem at hand). While individuals may differ in their judgments and evaluations of retrieved items, they appear to make those decisions by using consistent heuristic approaches.
Date: December 2000
Creator: Greisdorf, Howard F.

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.

Public School Educators' Use of Computer-Mediated Communication

Description: This study examined the uses of computer-mediated communication (CMC) by educators in selected public schools. It used Rogers' Diffusion of Innovation Theory as the underpinnings of the study. CMC refers to any exchange of information that involves the use of computers for communication between individuals or individuals and a machine. This study was an exploration of difficulties users confront, what services they access, and the tasks they accomplish when using CMC. It investigated the factors that affect the use of CMC. The sample population was drawn from registered users on TENET, the Texas Education Network as of December 1997. The educators were described with frequency and percentages analyzing the demographic data. For the research, eight indices were selected to test how strongly these user and environmental attributes were associated with the use of CMC. These variables were (1) education, (2) position, (3) place of employment, (4) geographic location, (5) district size, (6) organization vitality, (7) adopter resources, and (8) instrumentality Two dependent variables were used to test for usage: (1) depth or frequency of CMC usage and amount of time spent online and (2) breadth or variety of Internet utilities used. Additionally, the users' perception of network benefits was measured. Network benefits were correlated with social interaction and perception of CMC to investigate what tasks educators were accomplishing with CMC. Correlations, SEQ CHAPTER h r 1 crosstabulations, and ANOVAs were used to analysis the data for testing the four hypotheses. The major findings of the study, based on the hypotheses tested, were that the socioeconomic variables of education and position influenced the use of CMC. A significant finding is that teachers used e-mail and for Internet resources less frequently than those in other positions. An interesting finding was that frequency of use was more significant for usage than amount of ...
Date: December 2000
Creator: Urias-Barker, Zelina

Modeling Utilization of Planned Information Technology

Description: Implementations of information technology solutions to address specific information problems are only successful when the technology is utilized. The antecedents of technology use involve user, system, task and organization characteristics as well as externalities which can affect all of these entities. However, measurement of the interaction effects between these entities can act as a proxy for individual attribute values. A model is proposed which based upon evaluation of these interaction effects can predict technology utilization. This model was tested with systems being implemented at a pediatric health care facility. Results from this study provide insight into the relationship between the antecedents of technology utilization. Specifically, task time provided significant direct causal effects on utilization. Indirect causal effects were identified in task value and perceived utility constructs. Perceived utility, along with organizational support also provided direct causal effects on user satisfaction. Task value also impacted user satisfaction in an indirect fashion. Also, results provide a predictive model and taxonomy of variables which can be applied to predict or manipulate the likelihood of utilization for planned technology.
Date: May 2000
Creator: Stettheimer, Timothy Dwight

A Mythic Perspective of Commodification on the World Wide Web

Description: 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, ...
Date: May 2004
Creator: Robinson, Glendal Paul

The Second Vatican Council and American Catholic Theological Research: A Bibliometric Analysis of Theological Studies: 1940-1995

Description: A descriptive analysis was given of the characteristics of the authors and citations of the articles in the journal Theological Studies from 1940-1995. Data was gathered on the institutional affiliation, geographic location, occupation, and gender and personal characteristics of the author. The citation characteristics were examined for the cited authors, date and age of the citations, format, language, place of publication, and journal titles. These characteristics were compared to the time-period before and after the Second Vatican Council in order to detect any changes that might have occurred in the characteristics after certain recommendations by the council were made to theologians. Subject dispersion of the literature was also analyzed. Lotka's Law of author productivity and Bradford's Law of title dispersion were also performed for this literature. The profile of the characteristics of the authors showed that the articles published by women and laypersons has increased since the recommendations of the council. The data had a good fit to Lotka's Law for the pre-Vatican II time period but not for the period after Vatican II. The data was a good fit to Bradford's Law for the predicted number of journals in the nucleus and Zone 2, but the observed number of journals in Zone 3 was higher than predicted for all time-periods. Subject dispersion of research from disciplines other than theology is low but citation to works from the fields of education, psychology, social sciences, and science has increased since Vatican II. The results of the analysis of the characteristics of the citations showed that there was no significant change in the age, format and languages used, or the geographic location of the publisher of the cited works after Vatican II. Citation characteristics showed that authors prefer research from monographs published in English and in U.S. locations for all time-periods. Research ...
Date: August 2000
Creator: Phelps, Helen Stegall

A Study of Graphically Chosen Features for Representation of TREC Topic-Document Sets

Description: Document representation is important for computer-based text processing. Good document representations must include at least the most salient concepts of the document. Documents exist in a multidimensional space that difficult the identification of what concepts to include. A current problem is to measure the effectiveness of the different strategies that have been proposed to accomplish this task. As a contribution towards this goal, this dissertation studied the visual inter-document relationship in a dimensionally reduced space. The same treatment was done on full text and on three document representations. Two of the representations were based on the assumption that the salient features in a document set follow the chi-distribution in the whole document set. The third document representation identified features through a novel method. A Coefficient of Variability was calculated by normalizing the Cartesian distance of the discriminating value in the relevant and the non-relevant document subsets. Also, the local dictionary method was used. Cosine similarity values measured the inter-document distance in the information space and formed a matrix to serve as input to the Multi-Dimensional Scale (MDS) procedure. A Precision-Recall procedure was averaged across all treatments to statistically compare them. Treatments were not found to be statistically the same and the null hypotheses were rejected.
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Date: May 2000
Creator: Oyarce, Guillermo Alfredo

Korean Studies in North America 1977-1996: A Bibliometric Study

Description: This research is a descriptive bibliometric study of the literature of the field of Korean studies. Its goal is to quantitatively describe the literature and serve as a model for such research in other area studies fields. This study analyzed 193 source articles and 7,166 citations in the articles in four representative Korean and Asian studies journals published in North America from 1977 to 1996. The journals included in this study were Korean Studies (KS), the Journal of Korean Studies (JKS), the Journal of Asian Studies (JAS), and the Harvard Journal of Asiatic Studies (HJAS). Subject matters and author characteristics of the source articles were examined, along with various characteristics such as the form, date, language, country of origin, subject, key authors, and key titles of the literature cited in the source articles. Research in Korean studies falls within fourteen broad disciplines, but concentrated in a few disciplines. Americans have been the most active authors in Korean studies, followed closely by authors of Korean ethnicity. Monographic literature was used most. The mean age of publications cited was 20.87 and the median age of publications cited was 12. The Price Index of Korean studies as a whole is 21.9 percent. Sources written in English were most cited (47.1%) and references to Korean language sources amounted to only 34.9% of all sources. In general, authors preferred sources published in their own countries. Sources on history were cited most by other disciplines. No significant core authors were identified. No significant core literature were identified either. This study indicates that Korean studies is still evolving. Some ways of promoting research in less studied disciplines and of facilitating formal communication between Korean scholars in Korea and Koreanists in North America need to be sought in order to promote well-balanced development in the field. This study ...
Date: December 1999
Creator: Chun, Kyungmi

Information Seeking in a Virtual Learning Environment

Description: Duplicating a time series study done by Kuhlthau and associates in 1989, this study examines the applicability of the Information Search Process (ISP) Model in the context of a virtual learning environment. This study confirms that students given an information seeking task in a virtual learning environment do exhibit the stages indicated by the ISP Model. The six-phase ISP Model is shown to be valid for describing the different stages of cognitive, affective, and physical tasks individuals progress through when facing a situation where they must search for information to complete an academic task in a virtual learning environment. The findings in this study further indicate there is no relationship between the amount of computer experience subjects possess and demonstrating the patterns of thoughts, feelings, and actions described by the ISP Model. The study demonstrates the ISP Model to be independent of the original physical library environments where the model was developed. An attempt is made to represent the ISP model in a slightly different manner that provides more of the sense of motion and interaction among the components of thoughts, feelings, and action than is currently provided for in the model. The study suggests that the development of non-self-reporting data collection techniques would be useful in complementing and furthering research to enhance and refine the representation of the ISP Model. Additionally, expanding the research to include the examination of group interaction is called for to enhance the ISP Model and develop further applications that could potentially aid educational delivery in all types of learning environments.
Date: August 1999
Creator: Byron, Suzanne M.

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.