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E-Texts in Research Projects in the Humanities

Advances in Librarianship

ISBN: 978-0-85724-755-1, eISBN: 978-0-85724-756-8

ISSN: 0065-2830

Publication date: 25 February 2011


This research paper explores the roles of electronic texts in research projects in the humanities and seeks to deepen the understanding of the nature of scholars' engagement with e-texts. The study used qualitative methodology to explore engagement of scholars in literary and historical studies with primary materials in electronic form (i.e., e-texts). The study revealed a range of scholars' interactions with e-texts during the whole research process. It uncovered a particular pattern of information-seeking practices in electronic environments called netchaining and the main types of uses and contributions of e-texts to research projects. It was found that e-texts play support and substantive roles in the research process. A number of influences from electronic environment are identified as challenges and aids in working with e-texts. The study does not have statistical significance. It indicates a need for further research into scholarly practices, training requirements, and new forms of service provision. Study results are relevant for the development of digital collections, information services, educational programs, and other forms of support for the use of technology in research. The results can be also used to inform approaches to text encoding and development of electronic information systems and have implications for organizational and industry policies. The study found a range of scholars' interactions and forms of intellectual engagement with e-texts that were not documented and analyzed by earlier studies. It provides insights into disciplinary variations in the humanities and contributes to the understanding of scholarly change catalyzed by information technology.


Sukovic, S. (2011), "E-Texts in Research Projects in the Humanities", Woodsworth, A. (Ed.) Advances in Librarianship (Advances in Librarianship, Vol. 33), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 131-202.



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