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Article
Publication date: 5 August 2022

Matthew Pointon, Geoff Walton, Martin Turner, Michael Lackenby, Jamie Barker and Andrew Wilkinson

This paper intends to explore the relationship between participants' eye fixations (a measure of attention) and durations (a measure of concentration) on areas of interest within…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper intends to explore the relationship between participants' eye fixations (a measure of attention) and durations (a measure of concentration) on areas of interest within a range of online articles and their levels of information discernment (a sub-process of information literacy characterising how participants make judgements about information).

Design/methodology/approach

Eye-tracking equipment was used as a proxy measure for reading behaviour by recording eye-fixations, dwell times and regressions in males aged 18–24 (n = 48). Participants' level of information discernment was determined using a quantitative questionnaire.

Findings

Data indicates a relationship between participants' level of information discernment and their viewing behaviours within the articles' area of interest. Those who score highly on an information discernment questionnaire tended to interrogate the online article in a structured and linear way. Those with high-level information discernment are more likely to pay attention to an article's textual and graphical information than those exhibiting low-level information discernment. Conversely, participants with low-level information discernment indicated a lack of curiosity by not interrogating the entire article. They were unsystematic in their saccadic movements spending significantly longer viewing irrelevant areas.

Social implications

The most profound consequence is that those with low-level information discernment, through a lack of curiosity in particular, could base their health, workplace, political or everyday decisions on sub-optimal engagement with and comprehension of information or misinformation (such as fake news).

Originality/value

Ground-breaking analysis of the relationship between a persons' self-reported level of information literacy (information discernment specifically) and objective measures of reading behaviour.

Details

Online Information Review, vol. 47 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1468-4527

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 6 September 2021

Geoff Walton, Matthew Pointon, Jamie Barker, Martin Turner and Andrew Joseph Wilkinson

The purpose of this paper is to determine to what extent a person’s psychophysiological well-being is affected by misinformation and whether their level of information discernment…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to determine to what extent a person’s psychophysiological well-being is affected by misinformation and whether their level of information discernment has any positive or negative effect on the outcome.

Design/methodology/approach

Participants (n = 48) were randomly and blindly allocated to one of two groups: control group participants were told a person they were working with was a student; experimental group participants were additionally led to believe that this other participant had extreme religious views. This was both stigmatising and misinforming, as this other person was an actor. Participants completed a pre-screening booklet and a series of tasks. Participants’ cardiovascular responses were measured during the procedure.

Findings

Participants with high levels of information discernment, i.e. those who are curious, use multiple sources to verify information, are sceptical about search engine information, are cognisant of the importance of authority and are aware that knowledge changes and is contradictory at times exhibited an adaptive stress response, i.e. healthy psychophysiological outcomes and responded with positive emotions before and after a stressful task.

Social implications

The findings indicate the potential harmful effects of misinformation and discuss how information literacy or Metaliteracy interventions may address this issue.

Originality/value

The first study to combine the hitherto unrelated theoretical areas of information discernment (a sub-set of information literacy), affective states (positive affect negative affect survey) and stress (challenge and threat cardiovascular measures).

Details

Global Knowledge, Memory and Communication, vol. 71 no. 8/9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2514-9342

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 10 July 2017

Geoff Walton and Jamie Cleland

The purpose of this paper is to present a qualitative investigation into whether online textual postings, produced by undergraduate students as part of an undergraduate module…

3287

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to present a qualitative investigation into whether online textual postings, produced by undergraduate students as part of an undergraduate module, can demonstrate their information literacy (IL) capabilities as a discursive competence and socially enacted practice. It also asks whether these online postings embody power relations between students, tutors and librarians.

Design/methodology/approach

Foucault’s notion of discursive competence and the separate but complementary concept of practice architectures (specifically focussing on “sayings”) devised by Lloyd were used as thematic lenses to categorise online discussion board postings from a formative online peer assessment exercise created for first-year UK undergraduate students. Online postings were the node of analysis used to identify patterns of language across online conversation. These postings were inductively analysed through manual content analysis. Subject’s responses were initially categorised using open coding.

Findings

Postings appeared to embody student’s discursive competence and information practice in IL, especially their level of information discernment and what constituted a quality “reference” for an assignment. However, they also demonstrated that the notion of “references” (information artefacts such as a journal article) perform a certain function in reproducing the discursive practices of an academic discipline as an agreed construct between tutor, student and librarian.

Practical implications

Students were engaged in the process of becoming good scholars by using appropriate online postings to create valid arguments through assessing other’s work, but what they did not do was question received meanings regarding the quality of information they used as evidence. Far from exhibiting the desired outcome of critical thinking (a cornerstone of IL) students who appeared most articulate in discussion tended to emulate the “strong discourse” put forward by their tutors and librarians.

Originality/value

This research uses practice architectures and discourse analysis to analyse students’ IL capabilities and the context in which they are developed. An approach not employed hitherto. This has practical implications for the ways in which academics and librarians introduce students to the academic discourse of their discipline and the ways in which the production, communication and exchange of information in academic contexts is characterised.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 73 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 26 February 2019

Huyen Thi Ngo, Alison Jane Pickard and Geoff Walton

This study aims to identify the ways in which information literacy (IL) in-practice initiatives are framed for Vietnam’s upper secondary students and to suggest an appropriate IL…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to identify the ways in which information literacy (IL) in-practice initiatives are framed for Vietnam’s upper secondary students and to suggest an appropriate IL teaching model for schools in the country.

Design/methodology/approach

The research used a qualitative multiple case study approach, including two phases of data collection. The first phase gathered data from semi-structured student interviews. The second phase included semi-structured professional interviews and an analysis of documents.

Findings

The research found that time pressure, teaching method, resource issues, students’ awareness of IL and support from family are challenges for the development of IL programmes. These factors impinge upon the development of an IL teaching model for Vietnam’s upper secondary schools.

Research limitations/implications

The focus of this study was limited to two schools to gain the depth of data needed to provide a holistic picture of the practice of IL teaching in Vietnam’s upper secondary schools.

Practical implications

This study could provide some guidance to the Ministry of Education and Training in the development of educational policies and initiatives through identifying the possible contributions of IL to Vietnam’s education system.

Originality/value

The study provides an understanding of the development of IL in the education system in transition, from a didactic to a constructivist approach.

Details

Global Knowledge, Memory and Communication, vol. 68 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0024-2535

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 23 August 2019

Huyen Thi Ngo, Alison Jane Pickard and Geoff Walton

This paper aims to focus on investigating information literacy (IL) capabilities and IL self-assessment of Vietnam’s upper secondary students.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to focus on investigating information literacy (IL) capabilities and IL self-assessment of Vietnam’s upper secondary students.

Design/methodology/approach

The investigation was conducted in two upper secondary schools in the country using a multiple-choice questionnaire. The questionnaire was based on the IL competency-level assessment toolkit of high schools in the USA, the tool for real-time assessment of IL, to measure students’ IL in terms of developing search strategies, evaluating information sources, using information ethically and using English to engage with information effectively.

Findings

The findings reveal that students’ IL has not been well equipped. There is a real need to work toward improving the IL capability of Vietnam’s upper secondary students. The findings also reveal gender differences in IL capabilities.

Research limitations/implications

The research used a closed-response questionnaire, which is considered appropriate to engage with Vietnamese high-school students, to explore students’ lower-level IL skills and their self-assessment rather than higher-level thinking competencies.

Practical implications

This research may help Vietnam’s educators understand high-school students’ IL competency and raise their awareness of the importance of IL to encourage the implementation of an IL programme.

Originality/value

This study contributes to the existing knowledge by adding substantially to current understanding of IL level of Vietnamese upper secondary students – a context which has not been explored to date. It also indicates gender inequality in IL capabilities.

Details

Global Knowledge, Memory and Communication, vol. 68 no. 6/7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2514-9342

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 10 July 2017

Biddy Casselden, Geoff Walton, Alison Pickard and Julie Mcleod

The purpose of this paper is to consider the preliminary findings arising from two case study library authorities in the North East of England, examining current volunteer use in…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to consider the preliminary findings arising from two case study library authorities in the North East of England, examining current volunteer use in Public Libraries. Specific reference to quality and professionalism will be discussed, to identify key trends and ways forward.

Design/methodology/approach

This research involved a series of interviews with key staff, a staff survey, user survey and volunteer focus groups.

Findings

The early-stage results of the qualitative analysis are reported, including key emergent themes relating to quality and professionalism. Triangulation of the key stakeholder opinions will be carried out.

Research limitations/implications

This research relates to an area that is a key factor of modern public library provision, and helps to illustrate the complex environment that exists.

Practical implications

Volunteer use in public libraries is a feature of the hybrid model of library provision in the twenty-first century, and the need to ensure quality and professionalism to improve service provision is even more critical.

Social implications

This research considers current thinking amongst stakeholders within public libraries and attempts to move the debate about volunteer use in library service provision forward.

Originality/value

It provides initial thoughts on what features are essential for successful volunteer use in public libraries, with regard to quality and professionalism.

Details

Performance Measurement and Metrics, vol. 18 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1467-8047

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 26 April 2011

Geoff Walton and Mark Hepworth

This paper seeks to identify the changes in cognition associated with becoming information‐literate, specifically, in relation to the evaluation of information. Additionally, it…

3571

Abstract

Purpose

This paper seeks to identify the changes in cognition associated with becoming information‐literate, specifically, in relation to the evaluation of information. Additionally, it puts forward a model for a teaching and learning intervention that engages the learner and leads to higher order information literacy (IL) thinking. From a theoretical perspective the research integrates ideas from the fields of IL, teaching and learning, e‐learning and information behaviour (IB).

Design/methodology/approach

Three interventions were designed to develop the information literacies of first‐year undergraduates studying Sport and Exercise at Staffordshire University, to teach and test IL. Interventions took a blended approach and combined face‐to‐face and online social network learning (OSNL) – also referred to as social media learning (SML) – and focused on one aspect of information literacy: the ability to evaluate source material. Data were captured via interviews, focus groups and from the online discussion that was analysed thematically and categorised using task, behaviour, cognitive states, affective states, cognitive states and knowledge. This helped to evaluate the efficacy of the interventions and provided data for further analysis. This paper focuses on the cognitive data and their transitions during the interventions and, in particular, among those respondents who experienced OSNL.

Findings

The changing cognitive states, associated with IL learning were modelled and made evident key cognitive states and transitions. This is represented in the paper in diagrammatic and mathematical notation. The findings indicate the complexity of the information behaviours associated with IL including the cognitive, behavioural, cognitive and affective elements. Although the cognitive transitions are the focus of this paper, an insight is also given into an IL intervention that fosters the capability to interact critically and reflectively with information. The pedagogy that underpins these changes is indicated. The intervention, which incorporated OSNL, proved the most successful.

Research limitations/implications

Undergraduate students' IB can be changed and IL developed. Additional long‐term data would have indicated whether this intervention had a lasting impact on the undergraduates.

Practical implications

IL practitioners should consider incorporating OSNL and assessment in their interventions. Incorporating discussion, reflection and peer‐to‐peer assessment is likely to lead to deeper learning when teaching IL.

Originality/value

The research adds detail to the understanding of the cognitive, behavioural, affective and cognitive states associated with IL and makes explicit how these may change, as the learner becomes information‐literate.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 67 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 1 September 2014

Mark Hepworth and Geoff Walton

This chapter gives a general overview of the book, indicates the rich diversity of information literacy (IL) and information behaviour (IB) work carried out and is organised into…

Abstract

This chapter gives a general overview of the book, indicates the rich diversity of information literacy (IL) and information behaviour (IB) work carried out and is organised into four broad areas moving from the strategic to the highly contextualised. The four areas are specifically: strategic view; delivering information literacy education; the link between university and work; beyond higher education. The approach for each chapter is summarised. This chapter also examines the inter-related nature of the concepts of information literacy and information behaviour. It shows how these ideas are contextualised, theorised and researched. The authors argue that far from being conflicting approaches to the same problem of information capability, they are, in fact, complementary. Though these are epistemologically different both have much to offer in terms of explanation and also as tools for fostering information capability. The history of information literacy and information behaviour is overviewed and their inter-relation explored. It is argued that information literacy can be viewed as the practitioners’ model for delivering information capability whilst information behaviour, being more research focussed, explains it. A diagram is presented at the end of the chapter which helps to highlight and summarise the distinctions and similarities between IB and IL research.

Details

Developing People’s Information Capabilities: Fostering Information Literacy in Educational, Workplace and Community Contexts
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-766-5

Keywords

Abstract

Details

Developing People’s Information Capabilities: Fostering Information Literacy in Educational, Workplace and Community Contexts
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-766-5

Content available
Article
Publication date: 14 September 2015

Geoff Walton

164

Abstract

Details

Online Information Review, vol. 39 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1468-4527

1 – 10 of 62