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A Complex Systems Model for Understanding the Causes of Corruption: Case Study - Turkey

Description: It is attempted with this dissertation to draw an explanatory interdisciplinary framework to clarify the causes of systemic corruption. Following an intense review of political sciences, economics, and sociology literatures on the issue, a complex systems theoretical model is constructed. A political system consists of five main components: Society, interest aggregators, legislative, executive and private sector, and the human actors in these domains. It is hypothesized that when the legitimacy level of the system is low and morality of the systemic actors is flawed, selected political, social and economic incentives and opportunities that may exist within the structure of the systemic components might -individually or as a group- trigger corrupt transactions between the actors of the system. If left untouched, corruption might spread through the system by repetition and social learning eventually becoming the source of corruption itself. By eroding the already weak legitimacy and morality, it may increase the risk of corruption even further. This theoretical explanation is used to study causes of systemic corruption in the Turkish political system. Under the guidance of the complex systems theory, initial systemic conditions, -legacy of the predecessor of Turkey Ottoman Empire-, is evaluated first, and then political, social and economic factors that are presumed to be breeding corruption in contemporary Turkey is investigated. In this section, special focus is given on the formation and operation of amoral social networks and their contribution to the entrenchment of corruption within the system. Based upon the findings of the case study, the theoretical model that is informed by the literature is reformed: Thirty five system and actor level variables are identified to be related with systemic corruption and nature of the causality between them and corruption is explained. Although results of this study can not be academically generalized for obvious reasons; the analytical framework ...
Date: August 2005
Creator: Yasar, Muhammet Murat

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

A Conceptual Map for Understanding the Terrorist Recruitment Process: Observation and Analysis of Turkish Hezbollah Terrorist Organizations.

Description: Terrorism is a historical problem; however, it becomes one of the biggest problems in 21st century. September 11 and the following Madrid, Istanbul and London attacks showed that it is the most significant problem threatening world peace and security. Governments have started to deal with terrorism by improving security measurements and making new investments to stop terrorism. Most of the governments' and scholars' focus is on immediate threats and causes of terrorism, instead of looking at long-term solutions such as root causes and underlying reasons of terrorism, and the recruitment style of terrorist organizations If terrorist recruitment does not stop, then it is safe to say terrorist activities cannot be stopped. This study focused on the recruitment process by observing two different terrorist organizations, DHKP/C and Turkish Hezbollah. The researcher brings 13 years of field experience and first-person data gathered from inside the terrorist organizations. The research questions of this study were: (i) How can an individual be prevented from joining or carrying out terrorist activities?; (ii) What factors are correlated with joining a terrorist organization?; (iii) What are the recruitment processes of the DHKP/C, PKK, and Turkish Hezbollah?; (iv) Is there any common process of being a member of these three terrorist organizations?; and (v) What are the similarities and differences these terrorist organizations? As a result of this analysis, a terrorist recruitment process map was created. With the help of this map, social organizations such as family and schools may be able to identify ways to prevent individuals from joining terrorist organizations. Also, this map will also be helpful for government organizations such as counterterrorism and intelligence to achieve the same goal.
Date: August 2007
Creator: Teymur, Samih

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.

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.

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

CT3 as an Index of Knowledge Domain Structure: Distributions for Order Analysis and Information Hierarchies

Description: The problem with which this study is concerned is articulating all possible CT3 and KR21 reliability measures for every case of a 5x5 binary matrix (32,996,500 possible matrices). The study has three purposes. The first purpose is to calculate CT3 for every matrix and compare the results to the proposed optimum range of .3 to .5. The second purpose is to compare the results from the calculation of KR21 and CT3 reliability measures. The third purpose is to calculate CT3 and KR21 on every strand of a class test whose item set has been reduced using the difficulty strata identified by Order Analysis. The study was conducted by writing a computer program to articulate all possible 5 x 5 matrices. The program also calculated CT3 and KR21 reliability measures for each matrix. The nonparametric technique of Order Analysis was applied to two sections of test items to stratify the items into difficulty levels. The difficulty levels were used to reduce the item set from 22 to 9 items. All possible strands or chains of these items were identified so that both reliability measures (CT3 and KR21) could be calculated. One major finding of this study indicates that .3 to .5 is a desirable range for CT3 (cumulative p=.86 to p=.98) if cumulative frequencies are measured. A second major finding is that the KR21 reliability measure produced an invalid result more than half the time. The last major finding is that CT3, rescaled to range between 0 and 1, supports De Vellis' guidelines for reliability measures. The major conclusion is that CT3 is a better measure of reliability since it considers both inter- and intra-item variances.
Date: December 2002
Creator: Swartz Horn, Rebecca

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

An E-government Readiness Model

Description: The purpose of this study is to develop an e-government readiness model and to test this model. Consistent with this model several instruments, IS assessment (ISA), IT governance (ITG), and Organization-IS alignment (IS-ALIGN) are examined for their ability to measure the readiness of one organization for e-government and to test the instruments fit in the proposed e-government model. The ISA instrument used is the result of adapting and combining the IS-SERVQUAL instrument proposed by Van Dyke, Kappelman, and Pybutok (1997), and the IS-SUCCESS instrument developed by Kappelman and Chong (2001) for the City of Denton (COD) project at UNT. The IS Success Model was first proposed by DeLone and McLean (1992), but they did not validate this model. The ITG instrument was based on the goals of the COD project for IT governance and was developed by Sanchez and Kappelman (2001) from UNT. The ISALIGN instrument was also developed by Sanchez and Kappelman (2001) for the COD project. It is an instrument based on the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award (MBNQA) that measures how effectively a government organization utilizes IT to support its various objectives. The EGOV instrument was adapted from the study of the Action-Audience Model developed by Koh and Balthazrd (1997) to measure how well a government organization is prepared to usher in e-government in terms of various success factors at planning, system and data levels. An on-line survey was conducted with employees of the City of Denton, Texas. An invitation letter to participate in the survey was sent to the 1100 employees of the City of Denton via email, 339 responses were received, yielding a response rate of 31%. About 168 responses were discarded because they were incomplete and had the missing values, leaving 171 usable surveys, for a usable set of responses that had a response ...
Date: December 2001
Creator: Liu, Shin-Ping

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.

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.

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

An Empirical Investigation of Critical Factors that Influence Data Warehouse Implementation Success in Higher Educational Institutions

Description: Data warehousing (DW) in the last decade has become the technology of choice for building data management infrastructures to provide organizations the decision-making capabilities needed to effectively carry out its activities. Despite its phenomenal growth and importance to organizations the rate of DW implementation success has been less than stellar. Many DW implementation projects fail due to technical or organizational reasons. There has been limited research on organizational factors and their role in DW implementations. It is important to understand the role and impact of both technical but organizational factors in DW implementations and their relative importance to implementation performance. A research model was developed to test the significance of technical and organizational factors in the three phases of implementation with DW implementation performance. The independent variables were technical (data, technology, and expertise) and organizational (management, goals, users, organization). The dependent variable was performance (content, accuracy, format, ease of use, and timeliness). The data collection method was a Web based survey of DW implementers and DW users sampled (26) from a population of 108 identified DW implementations. Regression was used as the multivariate statistical technique to analyze the data. The results show that organization factors are significantly related to performance. Also, that some variables in the post-implementation phase have a significant relationship with performance. Based on the results of the tests the model was revised to reflect the relative impact of technical and organizational factors on DW performance. Results suggest that in some cases organizational factors have a significant relationship with DW implementation performance. The implications and interpretation of these results provide researchers and practitioners' insights and a new perspective in the area of DW implementations.
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Date: May 2003
Creator: Mukherjee, Debasish

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 Evaluation of the Effect of Learning Styles and Computer Competency on Students' Satisfaction on Web-Based Distance Learning Environments

Description: This study investigates the correlation between students' learning styles, computer competency and student satisfaction in Web-based distance learning. Three hundred and one graduate students participated in the current study during the Summer and Fall semesters of 2002 at the University of North Texas. Participants took the courses 100% online and came to the campus only once for software training. Computer competency and student satisfaction were measured using the Computer Skill and Use Assessment and the Student Satisfaction Survey questionnaires. Kolb's Learning Style Inventory measured students' learning styles. The study concludes that there is a significant difference among the different learning styles with respect to student satisfaction level when the subjects differ with regard to computer competency. For accommodating amd diverging styles, a higher level of computer competency results in a higher level of student satisfaction. But for converging and assimilating styles, a higher level of computer competency suggests a lower level of student satisfaction. A significant correlation was found between computer competency and student satisfaction level within Web-based courses for accommodating styles and no significant results were found in the other learning styles.
Access: This item is restricted to UNT Community Members. Login required if off-campus.
Date: August 2003
Creator: Du, Yunfei

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

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.

An exploration of the diffusion of a new technology from communities of practice perspective: Web services technologies in digital libraries.

Description: This study explored and described decision factors related to technology adoption. The research used diffusion of innovations and communities of practice (CoP) theoretical frameworks and a case study of Web services technology in the digital library (DL) environment to develop an understanding of the decision-making process. A qualitative case study approach was used to investigate the research problems and data were collected through semi-structured interviews, documentary evidence (e.g., meeting minutes), and a comprehensive member check. The research conducted face-to-face and phone interviews with seven respondents with different job titles (administraive vs. technical) from five different DL programs selected based on distinctive characteristics such as size of the DL program. Findings of the research suggested that the decision-making process is a complex process in which a number of factors are considered when making technology adoption decisions. These factors are categorized as organizational, individual, and technology specific factors. Further, data showed that DL CoPs played an important role in enabling staff members of a DL program to access up-to-date and experienced-based knowledge, provided a distributed problem solving and learning environment, facilitating informal communication and collaborative activities, and informing the decision-making process.
Date: August 2007
Creator: Oguz, Fatih

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

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

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 gathering and use of information by fifth grade students with access to Palm® handhelds.

Description: Handheld computers may hold the possibility for a one-to-one computer: student ratio. The impact of the use of Palm® (Palm, Inc.) handhelds on information acquisition and use by 5th grade students in a North Texas school during a class research project was investigated. Five research questions were examined using observation, interviews, surveys, and document analysis. Are there differences in information gathering and use with the Palm between gifted, dyslexic, and regular learners? What relevance criteria do students use to evaluate a web site to determine whether to download the site to the Palm and afterwards whether to use the downloaded site's information in the report? How do the Palms affect the writing process? Do the animations and concept maps produced on the Palm demonstrate understanding of the intended concepts? Are there significant differences in results (i.e., final products grade) between Palm users and non-Palm users? Three groups of learners in the class, gifted, dyslexic, and regular learners, participated in the study. The regular and dyslexic students reported using Web sites that had not been downloaded to the Palm. Students reported several factors used to decide whether to download Web sites, but the predominant deciding factor was the amount of information. The students used a combination of writing on paper and the Palm in the preparation of the report. Many students flipped between two programs, FreeWrite and Fling-It, finding information and then writing the facts into the report. The peer review process was more difficult with the Palm. Most students had more grammatical errors in this research report than in previous research projects. By creating animated drawings on the Palm handheld, the students demonstrated their understanding of the invention though sometimes the media or the student's drawing skills limited the quality of the final product. Creating the animations was motivational and ...
Date: December 2003
Creator: Peet, Martha Stuart Williamson

Global response to cyberterrorism and cybercrime: A matrix for international cooperation and vulnerability assessment.

Description: Cyberterrorism and cybercrime present new challenges for law enforcement and policy makers. Due to its transnational nature, a real and sound response to such a threat requires international cooperation involving participation of all concerned parties in the international community. However, vulnerability emerges from increased reliance on technology, lack of legal measures, and lack of cooperation at the national and international level represents real obstacle toward effective response to these threats. In sum, lack of global consensus in terms of responding to cyberterrorism and cybercrime is the general problem. Terrorists and cyber criminals will exploit vulnerabilities, including technical, legal, political, and cultural. Such a broad range of vulnerabilities can be dealt with by comprehensive cooperation which requires efforts both at the national and international level. "Vulnerability-Comprehensive Cooperation-Freedom Scale" or "Ozeren Scale" identified variables that constructed the scale based on the expert opinions. Also, the study presented typology of cyberterrorism, which involves three general classifications of cyberterrorism; Disruptive and destructive information attacks, Facilitation of technology to support the ideology, and Communication, Fund raising, Recruitment, Propaganda (C-F-R-P). Such a typology is expected to help those who are in a position of decision-making and investigating activities as well as academicians in the area of terrorism. The matrix for international cooperation and vulnerability assessment is expected to be used as a model for global response to cyberterrorism and cybercrime.
Date: August 2005
Creator: Ozeren, Suleyman

Human concept cognition and semantic relations in the unified medical language system: A coherence analysis.

Description: There is almost a universal agreement among scholars in information retrieval (IR) research that knowledge representation needs improvement. As core component of an IR system, improvement of the knowledge representation system has so far involved manipulation of this component based on principles such as vector space, probabilistic approach, inference network, and language modeling, yet the required improvement is still far from fruition. One promising approach that is highly touted to offer a potential solution exists in the cognitive paradigm, where knowledge representation practice should involve, or start from, modeling the human conceptual system. This study based on two related cognitive theories: the theory-based approach to concept representation and the psychological theory of semantic relations, ventured to explore the connection between the human conceptual model and the knowledge representation model (represented by samples of concepts and relations from the unified medical language system, UMLS). Guided by these cognitive theories and based on related and appropriate data-analytic tools, such as nonmetric multidimensional scaling, hierarchical clustering, and content analysis, this study aimed to conduct an exploratory investigation to answer four related questions. Divided into two groups, a total of 89 research participants took part in two sets of cognitive tasks. The first group (49 participants) sorted 60 food names into categories followed by simultaneous description of the derived categories to explain the rationale for category judgment. The second group (40 participants) performed sorting 47 semantic relations (the nonhierarchical associative types) into 5 categories known a priori. Three datasets resulted as a result of the cognitive tasks: food-sorting data, relation-sorting data, and free and unstructured text of category descriptions. Using the data analytic tools mentioned, data analysis was carried out and important results and findings were obtained that offer plausible explanations to the 4 research questions. Major results include the following: (a) through discriminant ...
Date: August 2007
Creator: Assefa, Shimelis G.