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[Review] Intellectual Freedom Manual

Description: This article reviews the book "Intellectual Freedom Manual," compiled by the Office for Intellectual Freedom (OIF) of the American Library Association. The manual is designed to answer practical questions that confront librarians in applying the principles of intellectual freedom to library service.
Date: 2007
Creator: Cleveland, Ana D.
Partner: UNT College of Information

The Role of Tasks in the Internet Health Information Searching of Chinese Graduate Students

Description: The purpose of the study was to examine the relationships between types of health information tasks and the Internet information search processes of Chinese graduate students at the University of North Texas. the participants' Internet information search processes were examined by looking at the source used to start the search, language selection, use of online translation tools, and time spent. in a computer classroom, 45 Chinese graduate students searched the Internet and completed three health information search tasks: factual task, interpretative task, and exploratory task. Data of the Chinese graduate students’ health information search processes were gathered from Web browser history files, answer sheets, and questionnaires. Parametric and non-parametric statistical analyses were conducted to test the relationships between the types of tasks and variables identified in the search process. Results showed that task types only had a statistically significant impact on the time spent. for the three tasks, the majority of Chinese graduate students used search engines as major sources for the search starting point, utilized English as the primary language, and did not use online translation tools. the participants also reported difficulties in locating relevant answers and recommended ways to be assisted in the future when searching the Internet for health information. the study provided an understanding of Chinese graduate students' health information seeking behavior with an aim to enrich health information user studies. the results of this study contribute to the areas of academic library services, multilingual health information system design, and task-based health information searching.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Pan, Xuequn
Partner: UNT Libraries

Graduate Students' Perceptions of the Effectiveness of a Two-Way Audio/Video Distance Learning Session and of Its Effects on Graduate Students' Comfort Level

Description: The purposes of this study were to (a) determine graduate students' perceptions of the effectiveness of the delivery system and their level of comfort with the delivery system, (b) determine graduate students' perceptions of the effectiveness of the delivery system and their level of comfort with the teacher, (c) determine graduate students' level of comfort with the delivery system and their level of comfort with the teacher, (d) determine differences in graduate students' ratings of the effectiveness of the delivery system before a distance education session and after a distance education session, and (e) determine differences in graduate students' level of comfort with the teacher before a distance education session and after a distance education session.
Date: December 1995
Creator: Bangpipob, Savanee
Partner: UNT Libraries

Detecting the Presence of Disease by Unifying Two Methods of Remote Sensing.

Description: There is currently no effective tool available to quickly and economically measure a change in landmass in the setting of biomedical professionals and environmental specialists. The purpose of this study is to structure and demonstrate a statistical change-detection method using remotely sensed data that can detect the presence of an infectious land borne disease. Data sources included the Texas Department of Health database, which provided the types of infectious land borne diseases and indicated the geographical area to study. Methods of data collection included the gathering of images produced by digital orthophoto quadrangle and aerial videography and Landsat. Also, a method was developed to identify statistically the severity of changes of the landmass over a three-year period. Data analysis included using a unique statistical detection procedure to measure the severity of change in landmass when a disease was not present and when the disease was present. The statistical detection method was applied to two different remotely sensed platform types and again to two like remotely sensed platform types. The results indicated that when the statistical change detection method was used for two different types of remote sensing mediums (i.e.-digital orthophoto quadrangle and aerial videography), the results were negative due to skewed and unreliable data. However, when two like remote sensing mediums were used (i.e.- videography to videography and Landsat to Landsat) the results were positive and the data were reliable.
Date: May 2002
Creator: Reames, Steve
Partner: UNT Libraries

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
Partner: UNT Libraries

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
Partner: UNT Libraries

A Model of Information Therapy: Definition and Empirical Application

Description: This study involves the investigation of the basis and validity of considering health information as therapeutic, the definition of Information Therapy, and whether the therapeutic nature of information can be measured empirically. The purpose of the study is to determine if there are any significant differences in the therapeutic effect of Information Therapy through the different delivery modes of support groups communicating face-to-face and those utilizing computer-mediated communication on the Internet. The comparison of these groups revealed no significant differences on three measures of health: physical, mental, and social support. Because one communication medium is not found to be advantageous over the other, the use of the computer can extend the benefits of Information Therapy to the home-bound, to those in remote areas, to people with time restraints, and those who may be shy. The validity of the therapeutic nature of information was verified by participant report of the effect of a health information search. Results demonstrated that the primary source for information is the physician, followed by the Internet, and 77% of participants reported a positive or therapeutic effect when health information was found. These results are significant because individuals who are in positions to deliver Information Therapy can better meet needs by identification of the sources to which people look for information and can have a major impact on patient care and the general health of the population. Providing people with information can empower them to take an active role in their health, can increase confidence in self-care, and should provide coping and disease management skills thus decreasing the utilization of healthcare resources and preventing costly acute and chronic health complications.
Date: August 1999
Creator: Mitchell, Donna J.
Partner: UNT Libraries

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
Partner: UNT Libraries

An Integrative Model of eHealth Communication: a Study of 18-30 Year Old College Students

Description: eHealth is commonly defined as health services and information provided through the Internet and related technologies. Health educators have taken advantage of Internet and social media venues to disseminate health information essential to health risk management, disease prevention, and disease management and did not have a validated theoretical model to explain their experiences. The goal of this study was to create and test an integrated model of eHealth communication specific to 18-30 year old college students based on five research questions that identified and confirmed the factors most highly correlated with the presentation of health information on Internet or social media venues that improve eHealth literacy and provoke eHealth behavioral intention among college students. A sample of over 1400 18-30 year old college students was surveyed about their general and health information related use of the Internet and social media. As a result of exploratory factor analysis and subsequent structural equation modeling, the proposed theoretical model was revised and tested for statistical power. Two revised integrative models of eHealth communication, one for Internet and one for social media, were developed and validated. The model for social media shows statistically significant paths throughout the model; however, the model for the Internet reveals that the path between two constructs and Online Health Behavior are not statistically significant and is worthy of further examination. This study has important practical implications for eHealth educators, organizations dedicated to informing the public about specific diseases or health promotion techniques, health practitioners seeking improved strategies for effective eHealth message design, and to health information professionals.
Date: August 2014
Creator: Prybutok, Gayle
Partner: UNT Libraries

Using Financial Rankings to Identify Characteristics of Libraries Serving Highly Profitable Private Law Firms

Description: This purpose of this study was to develop evidence of a relationship between law libraries and private law firm profitability for law library administrators to use when making strategic decisions that influence the value of their libraries. The highest ranked administrator at each private law firm listed on the 2008 Am Law 200 was invited to complete an online benchmarking survey. The adjusted sample population totaled 179 firms. Fifty-one valid surveys were completed for a 28.5% response rate. Descriptive and statistical analyses were conducted using 26 independent variables (law library characteristics) and a single dependent variable, Revenue per Equity Partner, developed from data published for the Am Law 200. The most significant contributions of this study are: development of important law library financial and return on investment benchmarks; a listing of characteristics that have been empirically shown to impact law firm productivity; identification of optimum reporting structure for the law library administrator. Six characteristics positively impact Revenue per Equity Partner: to whom the library Administrator reports, number of library staff per library, number of Library staff per library, range in hourly bill rate for library staff time, practice areas most often supported. Two monetary measures were also established. The cost benefit of an Am Law library to its firm is $1.00 : $1.68. Each Am Law Library staff member is worth $295,000 in Revenue per Equity Partner to a firm. Law library practitioners can use the results to support evidenced-based strategic decision making in the administration of any private law firm library. Faculty and students in law librarianship programs will have a greater understanding of how to manage law libraries and collections to provide maximum value to their law firms. Benefits to library and information science research include validation of the research design and benchmarking as a theoretical framework for ...
Date: August 2010
Creator: Carroll, Margaret Aby
Partner: UNT Libraries

Knowledge synthesis in the biomedical literature: Nordihydroguaiaretic acid and breast cancer.

Description: This dissertation refines knowledge synthesis from publicly accessible databases, based on the model of D.R. Swanson. Knowledge synthesis endeavors bring together two or more non-interactive literatures to create combinatorial research data on a specific topic. In this endeavor the biomedical literature was searched on the anti-neoplastic agent nordihydroguaiaretic acid (NDGA) for its potential role as a functional food in the chemoprevention of breast cancer. Bibliometric cocitation was utilized to identify complementary but non-interactive literatures in the disciplines of biomedicine and dietary science. The continuing specialization and fragmentation of the cancer literature degenerates the potential usefulness of cross-disciplinary research and information. As the biomedical sciences become more specialized the potential increases for isolation of discoveries and for failures to connect science to the needs of the people. Within the information science discipline several techniques are available to bridge the isolation between discoveries recorded in different sets of literatures. Electronic database searching with combinatorial keyword entries, syllogistic modeling and bibliometric author cocitation analysis are the principle techniques applied in this endeavor. The research questions are addressed to the absence or presence of human in vivo research on breast cancer with the potentially chemopreventative functional food NDGA. Utilizing a syllogistic model the literatures of functional foods, nordihydroguaiaretic acid and breast cancer were searched with designated combinatorial keywords. The documents retrieved were subjected to author cocitation analysis to demonstrate disjointness or connectivity of the two complementary literatures. The results demonstrated a possible preventative relationship between breast cancer in women and nordihydroguaiaretic acid, a phytochemical antioxidant and potential functional food. The results of this study are consistent with D.R. Swanson's pioneering work in knowledge synthesis. Swanson's methods can be used to identify non-interactive, disjoint literatures. Continuing support for his techniques has been demonstrated.
Date: December 2003
Creator: Sneed, Wanda A.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Factors Related to the Professional Progress of Academic Librarians in Louisiana

Description: Three groups of Academic librarians in Louisiana were surveyed to determine what factors other than job performance influenced professional progress (Salary increases, promotion and tenure) for them. Staff development activities were also investigated to determine if they played any significant role in influencing professional progress. Three opinion questions were also asked in this investigation about the feasibility of using an index that was developed to assess quantitatively staff development activities.
Date: May 1991
Creator: Brazile, Orella Ramsey, 1945-
Partner: UNT Libraries

Social Context of Human Computer Interaction : An Examination of User Adoption of Electronic Journals

Description: This study sought to determine whether or not factors such as relative advantage, compatibility, result demonstrability, ease of use, image, visibility, and voluntariness were involved in users' adoption of a refereed Web-based journal for informational, citation, and publication purposes. In addition, the study tested whether or not exposure to a prototype of a refereed Web-based journal would change users' perceptions concerning how well they would interact with the journal.
Date: December 1997
Creator: Scannell, Janette Bradley
Partner: UNT Libraries

MEDLINE Metric: A method to assess medical students' MEDLINE search effectiveness

Description: Medical educators advocate the need for medical students to acquire information management skills, including the ability to search the MEDLINE database. There has been no published validated method available to use for assessing medical students' MEDLINE information retrieval skills. This research proposes and evaluates a method, designed as the MEDLINE Metric, for assessing medical students' search skills. MEDLINE Metric consists of: (a) the development, by experts, of realistic clinical scenarios that include highly constructed search questions designed to test defined search skills; (b) timed tasks (searches) completed by subjects; (c) the evaluation of search results; and (d) instructive feedback. A goal is to offer medical educators a valid, reliable, and feasible way to judge mastery of information searching skill by measuring results (search retrieval) rather than process (search behavior) or cognition (knowledge about searching). Following a documented procedure for test development, search specialists and medical content experts formulated six clinical search scenarios and questions. One hundred and forty-five subjects completed the six-item test under timed conditions. Subjects represented a wide range of MEDLINE search expertise. One hundred twenty complete cases were used, representing 53 second-year medical students (44%), 47 fourth-year medical students (39%), and 20 medical librarians (17%). Data related to educational level, search training, search experience, confidence in retrieval, difficulty of search, and score were analyzed. Evidence supporting the validity of the method includes the agreement by experts about the skills and knowledge necessary to successfully retrieve information relevant to a clinical question from the MEDLINE database. Also, the test discriminated among different performance levels. There were statistically significant, positive relationships between test score and level of education, self-reported previous MEDLINE training, and self-reported previous search experience. The findings from this study suggest that MEDLINE Metric is a valid method for constructing and administering a performance-based test to identify ...
Date: May 2000
Creator: Hannigan, Gale G.
Partner: UNT Libraries

An Observational Investigation of On-Duty Critical Care Nurses' Information Behavior in a Nonteaching Community Hospital

Description: Critical care nurses work in an environment rich in informative interactions. Although there have been post hoc self-report survey studies of nurses' information seeking, there have been no observational studies of the patterns and content of their on-duty information behavior. This study used participant observation and in-context interviews to describe 50 hours of the observable information behavior of a representative sample of critical care nurses in a 20-bed critical care hospital unit. The researcher used open, in vivo, and axial coding to develop a grounded theory model of their consistent pattern of multimedia interactions. The resulting Nurse's Patient-Chart Cycle describes nurses' activities during the shift as centering on a regular alternation with the patient and the patient's chart (various record systems), clearly bounded with nursing "report" interactions at the beginning and the end of the shift. The nurses' demeanor markedly changed between interactions with the chart and interactions with the patient. Other informative interactions were observed with other health care workers and the patient's family, friends and visitors. The nurses' information seeking was centered on the patient. They mostly sought information from people, the patient record and other digital systems. They acted on or passed on most of the information they found. Some information they recorded for their personal use during the shift. The researcher observed the nurses using mostly patient specific information, but they also used some social and logistic information. They occasionally sought knowledge based information. Barriers to information acquisition included illegible handwriting, difficult navigation of online systems, equipment failure, unavailable people, social protocols and mistakes caused by multi-tasking people working with multiple complex systems. No formal use was observed of standardized nursing diagnoses, nursing interventions, or nursing outcomes taxonomies. While the nurses expressed respect for evidence-based practice, there clearly was no time or opportunity for reading research ...
Date: May 2004
Creator: McKnight, Michelynn
Partner: UNT Libraries

Using Diffusion of Innovations to Explore Digital Gaming in Undergraduate Library Instruction

Description: Digital games and simulations are receiving considerable notice within the Library and Information Science (LIS) community. This study adds to the depth of knowledge in this area by providing research on the likelihood a hypothetical digital game delivery method for library instruction achieves sufficient adoption to justify its development. Furthermore, this knowledge will assist decision making processes for individuals debating the current or potential role of digital gaming at their institutions. In this mixed methods study, over 300 undergraduates were surveyed about their technology preferences, including digital gaming, for delivery of two forms of academic library instruction. The two forms of library instruction were (a) providing users with spatial information on physical library layout, and (b) educating users on information literacy topics and skills. Observational data was collected during the survey sessions, occurring at face-to-face library instruction sessions. Self-selected survey participants were also interviewed to further probe their survey responses. Rogers' Diffusion of Innovations was the theoretical foundation to this research. The primary innovation of study was the digital game delivery method. Detailed analysis of the survey-based data set included three nonparametric scaling methods: 1) rank-sum scaling; 2) circular triad analysis; and 3) multidimensional preference mapping. Content analysis of the observations and semi-structured interviews also occurred. Major outcomes were 1) the digital game delivery method achieved mediocre preference across both questions; 2) the audiovisual delivery method received the highest overall preference ranking; and 3) overall preference for the audio-only delivery method was remarkably low. The most important theme across the observational data was the participants' waning attention during the face-to-face library instruction sessions. The most important outcome from the semi-structured interviews was interviewees' stated appreciation for useful technologies. Over 95% of participants were so-called digital natives, that is, born post-1980. Rogers' assertion that age plays a minor role in predicting ...
Date: August 2009
Creator: Robertson, Michael James
Partner: UNT Libraries

Evaluating e-Training for public library staff: A quasi-experimental investigation.

Description: A comparative evaluation framework of instructional interventions for implementation of online training for public library staff would enable a better understanding of how to improve the effectiveness, efficiency and efficacy of training in certain training environments. This dissertation describes a quasi-experimental study of a two-week, asynchronous online training course that was provided at four levels of instructional intervention to public library staff in the United States. The course content addressed the complex issues of difficult patron policy development and situational coping techniques. The objective of the study was to develop and demonstrate a theoretically grounded, evidence-based impact evaluation framework. The framework was used to assess the relative impact of an online course for public librarians at four levels of instructional intervention. The researcher investigated the relationships between the type of e-Training instructional interventions and the short- and long-term impacts on participants' knowledge, self-efficacy, and workplace performance. The study used a longitudinal, quasi-experimental design that included a pretest, posttest and three-month delayed posttest with follow-up survey. 194 participants completed all three phases of the study. The evaluation tools measured course content related knowledge and self-efficacy at all three phases (pretest, posttest, and delayed posttest) and assessed workplace application of training at 3-month follow-up. The results of this study contributed to evaluation theory and learning theory literature applied to the online learning environment and informed public library staff online training practices and evaluation methodologies.
Date: August 2009
Creator: Dalston, Teresa
Partner: UNT Libraries

Fair balance? An analysis of the functional equivalence of risk and benefit information in prescription drug direct-to-consumer television advertising.

Description: Prescription drug direct-to-consumer advertising (DTCA) has been a subject of controversy in recent years. Though government regulations require equivalent prominence of risks and benefits, there is concern about the ability of consumers with limited health literacy to fully comprehend the risks and benefits associated with drug use. Evaluating the images in DTCA is important because individuals may rely on the visual message if the wording is overly complex. Using semiotics, this study aims to evaluate whether there is functional equivalence in the presentation of risk and benefit information in prescription drug direct-to-consumer television advertising. A new analytical method is created and used to assess the consistency between the messages contained in the voice track, the primary visual images, and the superscript/ subscript text. The results indicate that risk and benefit messages in this DTCA sample lack functional equivalence. However, it is important to properly frame these findings as the study does not evaluate viewer comprehension of the various message structures.
Date: August 2009
Creator: Baird-Harris, Kay
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Validity of Health Claims on the World Wide Web: A Case Study of the Herbal Remedy Opuntia

Description: The World Wide Web has become a significant source of medical information for the public, but there is concern that much of the information is inaccurate, misleading, and unsupported by scientific evidence. This study analyzes the validity of health claims on the World Wide Web for the herbal Opuntia using an evidence-based approach, and supports the observation that individuals must critically assess health information in this relatively new medium of communication. A systematic search by means of nine search engines and online resources of Web sites relating to herbal remedies was conducted and specific sites providing information on the cactus herbal remedy from the genus Opuntia were retrieved. Validity of therapeutic health claims on the Web sites was checked by comparison with reports in the scientific literature subjected to two established quality assessment rating instruments. 184 Web sites from a variety of sources were retrieved and evaluated, and 98 distinct health claims were identified. 53 scientific reports were retrieved to validate claims. 25 involved human subjects, and 28 involved animal or laboratory models. Only 33 (34%) of the claims were addressed in the scientific literature. For 3% of the claims, evidence from the scientific reports was conflicting or contradictory. Of the scientific reports involving human subjects, none met the predefined criteria for high quality as determined by quality assessment rating instruments. Two-thirds of the claims were unsupported by scientific evidence and were based on folklore, or indirect evidence from related sources. Information on herbal remedies such as Opuntia is well represented on the World Wide Web. Health claims on Web sites were numerous and varied widely in subject matter. The determination of the validity of information about claims made for herbals on the Web would help individuals assess their value in medical treatment. However, the Web is conducive to dubious ...
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Date: May 2000
Creator: Veronin, Michael A.
Partner: UNT Libraries