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

Description: Examining human interaction networks contributes to an understanding of factors that improve and constrain collaboration. This study examined multiple network levels of information exchanges within a public service model designed to strengthen community partnerships by connecting city services to the neighborhoods. The research setting was the Neighbourhood Integrated Service Teams (NIST) program in Vancouver, B.C., Canada. A literature review related information dimensions to the municipal structure, including social network theory, social network analysis, social capital, transactive memory theory, public goods theory, and the information environment of the public administration setting. The research method involved multiple instruments and included surveys of two bounded populations. First, the membership of the NIST program received a survey asking for identification of up to 20 people they contact for NIST-related work. Second, a network component of the NIST program, 23 community centre coordinators in the Parks and Recreation Department, completed a survey designed to identify their information exchanges relating to regular work responsibilities and the infusion of NIST issues. Additionally, 25 semi-structured interviews with the coordinators and other program members, collection of organization documents, field observation, and feedback sessions provided valuable insight into the complexity of the model. This research contributes to the application of social network theory and analysis in information environments and provides insight for public administrators into the operation of the model and reasons for the program's network effectiveness.
Date: December 2007
Creator: Schultz-Jones, Barbara Ann
Partner: UNT Libraries

Assessing Perceived Credibility of Web Sites in a Terrorism Context: The PFLP, Tamil Tigers, Hamas, and Hezbollah

Description: The purpose of the study was to contribute to the overall understanding of terrorist organizations' use of the Internet and to increase researchers' knowledge of Web site effectiveness. The methodological approach was evaluation of the perceived credibility of Web sites based on existing criteria derived from information users. The Web sites of four terrorist organizations were assessed: two secular nationalist groups, the People's Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) and Liberation Tigers of Tamil Elam (LTTE or Tamil Tigers); and two religious nationalist groups, Hamas and Hezbollah. The findings of this analysis showed differences in perceived credibility factors among terrorist organizations' Web sites and positive levels of perceived credibility for the Web sites. These findings indicate the potential for positive impressions of the organizations' Web sites by information users, which would help empower the organizations with the capacity to reach their objectives. By using Web sites, these groups can effectively increase their support base through disseminating information, improving recruiting, and attracting monetary contributions, and can establish themselves as legitimate components of society.
Date: May 2009
Creator: Spinks, Brandon Todd
Partner: UNT Libraries

Graduate Students' Collaborative Information Seeking in a Group-based Learning Setting

Description: Working with others within an organization can have a variety of positive effects, and the benefits of collaboration have been discussed in various disciplines. In information science, interest in collaborative information seeking, including collaborative information seeking by students in an online learning environment is expanding. This study was aimed at understanding graduate students' collaborative information seeking behaviors through the process of a group project, including factors that affected students' perceptions of collaborative work and their difficulties during the collaborative process. The research was based on Yue and He's model, which describes information users' collaborative communication and information behaviors, and Kuhlthau's model, which describes users' individual information seeking behaviors. The participants were 43 students enrolled in a master's level course delivered primarily online. The students were required to work together in groups to complete a research project. Data were collected through a background survey, behavior survey, and online communication texts and analyzed using descriptive statistics, statistical tests, and content analyses. The results showed significant changes in collaborative and information seeking behaviors and perceptions across three stages of the project during the semester. Theoretical, practical, and methodological implications for future research are discussed.
Date: May 2013
Creator: Lee, Jisu
Partner: UNT Libraries

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
Partner: UNT Libraries

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
Partner: UNT Libraries

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
Partner: UNT Libraries

Factors Affecting Faculty Use Of Learning Object Repositories: An Exploratory Study Of Orange Grove And Wisc-online

Description: The purpose of this study was to identify factors that motivate or impede faculty use of learning object repositories (LORs). The unified theory of acceptance and use of technology (UTAUT) served as the theoretical framework for this study. Both quantitative and qualitative approaches were used in the study to explore two research questions relating to factors affecting faculty use of LORs. Research subjects were faculty and instructional staff users from two LORs: Orange Grove and Wisc-Online. This study was a two-phase design study. In Phase I, I conducted 13 interviews and analyzed data by a content analysis method. Phase II of the study was designed based on the results of Phase I. I collected data by a survey instrument from 38 respondents and analyzed the data by descriptive statistics and analysis of variance in Phase II. The results of the study indicated 22 factors as motivators for faculty use of LORs and 13 factors as barriers for faculty use of LORs. The study is the first to identify factors affecting faculty use of LORs from actual faculty users’ perspectives based on UTAUT. The study’s findings contribute to understanding the reasons that faculty use or do not use LORs and provide foundations for designing strategies to increase faculty use of LORs.
Date: December 2011
Creator: Xu, Hong
Partner: UNT Libraries

Self-Perceived Information Seeking Skills and Self-Esteem in Adolescents by Race and Gender

Description: The purpose of this study was to explore the correlation between self-perceived information seeking skills and self-esteem in adolescents and, further, to determine whether this correlation varied according to race and gender. Tenth-grade students from three public high schools in a Midwestern city were given two instruments. Self-perceived information seeking skills were measured using a modified version of the Information Skills Checklist from High Plains Regional Technology in Education Consortium's Profiler website. Self-esteem was measured by the Tennessee Self-Concept Scale, which is designed for students 12 years of age and over. The scale has six separate measures of self-esteem: physical, moral-ethical self, personal self, family self, social self and academic self. These six measures are used to determine overall level of self-esteem. The results showed a statistically significant correlation between self-perceived information seeking skills and at least one facet of self-esteem for all groups measured, with one exception. African American males were the only adolescents to show no correlation between scores from these two instruments. It is hoped that this research will ultimately be used to develop policies regarding the development of information seeking skills in disenfranchised groups.
Date: May 2009
Creator: Simpson-Scott, Lynne
Partner: UNT Libraries

Factors Associated with Behavioral Intention to Disclose Personal Information on Geosocial Networking Applications

Description: Information privacy is a major concern for consumers adopting emerging technologies dependent on location-based services. This study sought to determine whether a relationship exists among factors of personalization, locatability, perceived playfulness, privacy concern and behavioral intention to disclose personal information for individuals using location-based, geosocial networking applications. Questionnaire responses from undergraduate students at a 4-year university provide insight into these relationships. Multiple regression results indicated that there was a statistically significant relationship between the four significant predictor variables and the dependent variable. Analysis of beta weights, structure coefficients, and commonality analysis shed light on the variance attributable to the predictor variables of the study. Findings provide understanding of the specific factors examined in the study and have implications for consumers, businesses, application designers, and policymakers. The results from this study contribute to an understanding of technology acceptance theory and offer insight into competing beliefs that may affect an individual’s behavioral intention to disclose personal information. Knowledge gained form the study may be useful for overcoming challenges related to consumer adoption of location-based services that require disclosure of personal information.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Cox, Trissa
Partner: UNT Libraries

Tsunami disaster response: A case analysis of the information society in Thailand.

Description: The December 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami wrecked thousands of lives, homes, and livelihoods - losses that could have been avoided with timely and better information. A resource such as information is needed at a fundamental level much like water, food, medicine, or shelter. This dissertation examines the development of the Thai information society, in terms of the share of information workforce and the level of diffusion of information and communication technologies (ICT), as well as, the role of the Thai information society in response to the tsunami disaster. The study combined the historical and political economy analyses in explaining factors influencing the growth of information workforce and the development of ICT in Thailand. Interviews conducted in 2007-08 revealed the Thai information society responded to the 2004 Tsunami - the first global internet-mediated natural disaster - in two areas: on-site assistance in collecting and recording identification information of tsunami disaster victims and on-line dissemination of disaster relief information. The effectiveness of ICT institutions in providing the tsunami disaster relief efforts and increasing the development of the information society were assessed using statistical procedures analyzing the perceptions of the Internet-based survey respondents. The disaster effects on survey respondents were also assessed. The study's findings include: (1) the Thai information sector development pattern confirmed a key difference between development patterns of information sectors in developed and developing countries, (2) the increasing number of Thai information workers was due more to the expansion of government than the expansion in the manufacturing and service sectors during the 1997-98 Asian financial crisis, (3) Thailand's expansion of ICT infrastructure was influenced not only on the basis of economic profitability but also by political desirability, and (4) volunteers were crucial in humanitarian aid and disaster relief.
Date: December 2009
Creator: Aswalap, Supaluk Joy
Partner: UNT Libraries

Information Literacy Skills in the Workplace: A Study of Police Officers

Description: Information literacy has become more important as more information is produced and communication has become easier. Better information skills are vital for individuals working in governmental organizations as well as in the business sector. Employees are expected to be confident and competent in interacting with information in their workplaces in order to deliver better service to customers and to the public. This study examines the differences in information literacy skills (ILS), computer literacy skills (CLS), and frequencies of use of information sources (FIS) among police officers, based on their socio-demographic characteristics, namely education, departmental affiliation, ranks, and experience. Information literacy process models developed in an educational environment are combined to explore information literacy process in the workplace. Bivariate and multivariate analyses indicated significant differences of ILS and CLS based on education, departmental affiliation, and ranks but no difference for experience. In addition, there were differences of FIS for all demographic variables except departmental affiliation. The findings of the study may guide both future researchers in the process of developing new models in understanding information literacy process and the managers in police organizations in planning better training programs by considering information and computer literacy skills and use of information sources of police officers.
Date: August 2010
Creator: Kilic, Osman
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Adoption of Open Source Software in Uganda: a Pragmatist Approach to the Formation of a National Information Policy for a New Technology

Description: This exploratory research examined an information policy formation process for the adoption of open source software (OSS) in Uganda. Grounded in a pragmatist tradition, this theoretical and empirical study pursued a qualitative research approach with a triangulation of theoretical concepts, data collection, and analysis techniques in an iterative and interactive process. The design provided a powerful context to develop and conduct field activities in Kampala with a purposeful sample of 22 participants, 20 in interviews and 5 in a focus group discussion. The research design enhanced consistency in the evidence from the data, increased robustness in the results, and confidence in the findings. The results highlighted a vibrant ICT sector in Uganda, underlined the multiple stakeholders and their competing interests in the policy, revealed a lack of consensus between the government and OSS promoters on the meaning of OSS, and illuminated the benefits in the OSS model over proprietary software. The stakeholders' conflicting perceptions appear to be too far apart to allow meaningful progress and are derailing the policy. Unless their conflicting perceptions are resolved, the OSS policy will continue stagnating. The study fills critical information gaps in Uganda’s policy formation processes, provides timely and relevant information to holistically understand a complex policy formation stage to enable stakeholders to resolve their impasse and enact a law to embrace OSS. It breaks ground in information policy research in framing policy formation processes for new ICTs, such as OSS, as ideologically-oriented. The findings offer ideas to scholars and African countries to draw applicable lessons.
Date: May 2014
Creator: Muwanguzi, Samuel
Partner: UNT Libraries

Perceived features and similarity of images: An investigation into their relationships and a test of Tversky's contrast model.

Description: The creation, storage, manipulation, and transmission of images have become less costly and more efficient. Consequently, the numbers of images and their users are growing rapidly. This poses challenges to those who organize and provide access to them. One of these challenges is similarity matching. Most current content-based image retrieval (CBIR) systems which can extract only low-level visual features such as color, shape, and texture, use similarity measures based on geometric models of similarity. However, most human similarity judgment data violate the metric axioms of these models. Tversky's (1977) contrast model, which defines similarity as a feature contrast task and equates the degree of similarity of two stimuli to a linear combination of their common and distinctive features, explains human similarity judgments much better than the geometric models. This study tested the contrast model as a conceptual framework to investigate the nature of the relationships between features and similarity of images as perceived by human judges. Data were collected from 150 participants who performed two tasks: an image description and a similarity judgment task. Qualitative methods (content analysis) and quantitative (correlational) methods were used to seek answers to four research questions related to the relationships between common and distinctive features and similarity judgments of images as well as measures of their common and distinctive features. Structural equation modeling, correlation analysis, and regression analysis confirmed the relationships between perceived features and similarity of objects hypothesized by Tversky (1977). Tversky's (1977) contrast model based upon a combination of two methods for measuring common and distinctive features, and two methods for measuring similarity produced statistically significant structural coefficients between the independent latent variables (common and distinctive features) and the dependent latent variable (similarity). This model fit the data well for a sample of 30 (435 pairs of) images and 150 participants (χ2 =16.97, ...
Date: May 2005
Creator: Rorissa, Abebe
Partner: UNT Libraries

Toward a Grounded Theory of Community Networking

Description: This dissertation presents a preliminary grounded theory of community networking based on 63 evaluations of community networking projects funded by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration’s Technology Opportunities Program (TOP) between 1994 and 2007. The substantive grounded theory developed is that TOP projects differed in their contribution to positive outcomes for intended disadvantaged community beneficiaries based on the extent and manner in which they involved the disadvantaged community during four grant process phases: partnership building, project execution, evaluation, and close-out. Positive outcomes for the community were facilitated by using existing communication channels, such as schools, to connect with intended beneficiaries; local financial institutions to provide infrastructure to support local trade; and training to connect community members to jobs. Theoretical contributions include situating outcomes for disadvantaged communities within the context of the grant process; introducing the “vulnerable community” concept; and identifying other concepts and properties that may be useful in further theoretical explorations. Methodological contributions include demonstrating grounded theory as a viable method for exploring large text-based datasets; paving the way for machine learning approaches to analyzing qualitative data; and illustrating how project evaluations can be used in a similar fashion as interview data. Practical contributions include providing information to guide community networking-related policies and initiatives from the perspectives of stakeholders at all levels, including establishing funded projects as local employment opportunities and re-conceptualizing sustainability in terms of human networks rather than technological networks.
Date: May 2014
Creator: Masten-Cain, Kathryn
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Information Politics Assessment Scale (Ipas): Developing and Testing an Instrument to Measure and Identify the Information Politics of Organizations

Description: Information politics is a concept widely acknowledged in several disciplines. However, scant empirical evidence exists in the literature that codifies or measures information politics as a construct. This exploratory study developed and tested the Information Politics Assessment Scale (IPAS), a survey instrument that measured individual perceptions of organizational information artifacts as indictors of its information politics. Data collected with the IPAS was examined to investigate the latent structure of the information politics variable, determine information politics models, and explore the relationship between information politics, strategy, and organization effectiveness. A purposive sample of 240 participants from a cross-section of organizations completed the IPAS in an online administration. Exploratory factor analysis generated three factors, labeled Behavioral Flexibility (BF), Environmental Sensitivity (ES), and Structural Autonomy (SA), suggesting three dimensions of the information politics variable. Cluster analysis of aggregate scores on the BF, ES, and SA factors together resulted in determining four distinct information politics models. Crosstab and ANOVA, respectively, enabled explaining the relationship between strategy and information politics, and how it influenced organization effectiveness. This study breaks ground by broadening the theoretical and empirical understanding of information politics in confirming the proposition that an organization’s information artifacts are measureable and reliable indicators of its information politics. Further, it supports the efficacy of the IPAS to identify the information politics model operating in a given organization.
Date: May 2014
Creator: Reed, Richard
Partner: UNT Libraries

Assessment of a Library Learning Theory by Measuring Library Skills of Students Completing an Online Library Instruction Tutorial

Description: This study is designed to reveal whether students acquire the domains and levels of library skills discussed in a learning library skills theory after participating in an online library instruction tutorial. The acquisition of the library skills is demonstrated through a review of the scores on online tutorial quizzes, responses to a library skills questionnaire, and bibliographies of course research papers. Additional areas to be studied are the characteristics of the participants enrolled in traditional and online courses at a community college and the possible influence of these characteristics on the demonstrated learning of library skills. Multiple measurement methods, identified through assessment of library instruction literature, are used to verify the effectiveness of the library skills theory and to strengthen the validity and reliability of the study results.
Date: May 2007
Creator: Watson, Dana L.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Implications of the inclusion of document retrieval systems as actors in a social network.

Description: Traditionally, social network analysis (SNA) techniques enable the examination of relationships and the flow of information within networks of human members or groups of humans. This study extended traditional social network analysis to include a nonhuman group member, specifically a document retrieval system. The importance of document retrieval systems as information sources, the changes in business environments that necessitates the use of information and communication technologies, and the attempts to make computer systems more life-like, provide the reasons for considering the information system as a group member. The review of literature for this study does not encompass a single body of knowledge. Instead, several areas combined to inform this study, including social informatics for its consideration of the intersection of people and information technology, network theory and social network analysis, organizations and information, organizational culture, and finally, storytelling in organizations as a means of transferring information. The methodology included distribution of surveys to two small businesses that used the same document retrieval system, followed by semi-structured interviews of selected group members, which allowed elaboration on the survey findings. The group members rated each other and the system on four interaction criteria relating to four social networks of interest, including awareness, access, information flow, and problem solving. Traditional measures of social networks, specifically density, degree, reciprocity, transitivity, distance, degree centrality, and closeness centrality provided insight into the positioning of the nonhuman member within the social group. The human members of the group were able to respond to the survey that included the system but were not ready to consider the system as being equivalent to other human members. SNA measures positioned the system as an average member of the group, not a star, but not isolated either. Examination of the surveys or the interviews in isolation would not have given a ...
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Date: December 2005
Creator: Macpherson, Janet Robertson
Partner: UNT Libraries

Knowledge management in times of change: Tacit and explicit knowledge transfers.

Description: This study proposed a look at the importance and challenges of knowledge management in times of great change. In order to understand the information phenomena of interest, impacts on knowledge workers and knowledge documents in times of great organizational change, the study is positioned in a major consolidation of state agencies in Texas. It pays special attention to how the changes were perceived by the knowledge workers by interviewing those that were impacted by the changes resulting from the reorganization. The overall goal is to assess knowledge management in times of great organizational change by analyzing the impact of consolidation on knowledge management in Texas's Health and Human Services agencies. The overarching research question is what happened to the knowledge management structure during this time of great change? The first research question was what was the knowledge worker environment during the time of change? The second research question was what was the knowledge management environment of the agencies during the time of change? The last research question was did consolidation of the HHS agencies diminish the ability to transition from tacit to explicit knowledge? Additionally, the study investigates how the bill that mandated the consolidation was covered in the local media as well as the actual budget and employee loss impact of the consolidation in order to better understand the impacts on knowledge workers and knowledge documents as a result of major organizational restructuring. The findings have both theoretical and practical implications for information science, knowledge management and project management.
Date: December 2005
Creator: Hall, Heather Leigh
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Information-Seeking Behavior of Digital Evidence Examiners

Description: The current research sought to gain in-depth insights into the information-seeking behavior of Turkish National Police digital evidence examiners (DEEs); to explore the information sources that DEEs use and the factors affecting their decisions about source selection. Factors that affect information source selection and use by DEEs are: accreditation, workload, type of information, time, cost, availability, reliability/scientific importance, up-to-date data, prior experience with the source, relevance, interactivity and importance. The Internet was the information source most commonly used by participants during the examination stage; other sources included forums, experts, colleagues, forensic tools/kits and books. During the analysis stage, the most frequently mentioned information source was the investigation file, containing information about the elements of the crime; other sources included: personal experience, experts, detectives, the Internet, clients, professional training, the prosecutor, evidence submission forms, in-lab manuals, forums and colleagues. During the report-writing stage, most DEEs used in-lab manuals and report templates as information sources, but previously written reports, editing software, and colleagues were also used to obtain information about the format, style and language of reports as legal documents.
Date: May 2011
Creator: Yildirim, Idris
Partner: UNT Libraries

Exploring Naming Behavior in Personal Digital Image Collections: the Iconology and Language Games of Pinterest

Description: As non-institutional digital image collections expand into social media, independent non-professional image curators are emerging, actively constructing alternative naming conventions to suit their needs in a social collecting environment. This project considers how independent user-curators are developing particular sense-making behaviors as they actively contribute names to large, unstructured social image collections. In order to capture and explore this evolving language adaptation, Pinterest names are analyzed using a matrix composed of Panofsky’s three strata of subject matter, Rosch’s levels of categorical abstraction, Shatford Layne’s image attributes and Wittgenstein’s language game constructions. Analyzing Pinterest image names illuminates previously unnoticed behaviors by independent user-curators as they create shared collections. Exploring the various language choices which user-curators select as they apply this new curating vocabulary helps identify underlying user needs not apparent in traditionally curated collections restricted to traditional naming conventions.
Date: December 2014
Creator: Sutcliffe, Tami
Partner: UNT Libraries

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.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Group Decision-Making in Computer-Supported Cooperative Work Environments

Description: Computer-Support Cooperative Work (CSCW) reflects the change in emphasis from using computers to solve problems to using computers to facilitate human interactions. Most studies, however, have focused on the use of the technology rather than on the human-human interaction (HHI) in these environments due to: the varied perspectives of the investigators; and the lack of a consistent variables. Although numerous studies exist on a variety of products, only limited research has been conducted with the most prevalent of the technologies in the marketplace, Lotus Notes™. This field study, conducted using Lotus Notes™, operationalizes a model proposed, but not tested, for the study of group decision-making in CSCW environments put forth by Kraemer and Pinsonneault (1990). This study examines the use of CSCW in the group decision-making process, the participation rate for group decision-making in CSCW environments, and the criteria for determining quality in group decisions in CSCW environments. The study also proposes a new perspective for examining technology using the human context, recommends extensions for the group study framework and explores areas for future research.
Date: August 1998
Creator: Ayala-Bush, Mary T. (Mary Theresa)
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