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Open Access
Article
Publication date: 2 December 2022

Noora Hirvonen

The study examines how the technical features and associated social practices of an anonymous, text-based online forum intended for young people make it a unique platform for…

1028

Abstract

Purpose

The study examines how the technical features and associated social practices of an anonymous, text-based online forum intended for young people make it a unique platform for acquiring and sharing health information among peers.

Design/methodology/approach

The features and content of a young people's section of a popular Finnish discussion forum were examined with a focus on health-related threads. Observational notes and thread content were analysed with a focus on the forum's affordances for health information practices.

Findings

The findings indicate that the forum's affordances including anonymity, persistence, searchability, cohesion and tolerance enabled the pooling of peer experiences, opinions and experience-based advice on health, rather than sharing factual information or embracing reciprocal discussion. As such, instead of competing for a cognitive authority position with medical authorities or offering emotional support like tight online support communities, the anonymous forum served as a platform for young people to gain information on others' experiences and opinions on sensitive, mundane and disnormative health issues and for reflecting their own lived experiences to those of others.

Originality/value

The study is original in its approach to examining the affordances of an online platform for health information practices. It helps in understanding young people's ways of using different resources to meet their diverse health information needs and the value of gaining access to experiential health information.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 78 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

Keywords

Open Access
Article
Publication date: 16 January 2024

Ville Jylhä, Noora Hirvonen and Jutta Haider

This study addresses how algorithmic recommendations and their affordances shape everyday information practices among young people.

Abstract

Purpose

This study addresses how algorithmic recommendations and their affordances shape everyday information practices among young people.

Design/methodology/approach

Thematic interviews were conducted with 20 Finnish young people aged 15–16 years. The material was analysed using qualitative content analysis, with a focus on everyday information practices involving online platforms.

Findings

The key finding of the study is that the current affordances of algorithmic recommendations enable users to engage in more passive practices instead of active search and evaluation practices. Two major themes emerged from the analysis: enabling not searching, inviting high trust, which highlights the how the affordances of algorithmic recommendations enable the delegation of search to a recommender system and, at the same time, invite trust in the system, and constraining finding, discouraging diversity, which focuses on the constraining degree of affordances and breakdowns associated with algorithmic recommendations.

Originality/value

This study contributes new knowledge regarding the ways in which algorithmic recommendations shape the information practices in young people's everyday lives specifically addressing the constraining nature of affordances.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 80 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

Keywords

Open Access
Article
Publication date: 31 May 2021

Anna-Maija Multas and Noora Hirvonen

This study examines the information literacy practices of young video bloggers, focusing on the ways in which they construct their cognitive authority through a health-related…

2534

Abstract

Purpose

This study examines the information literacy practices of young video bloggers, focusing on the ways in which they construct their cognitive authority through a health-related information creation process.

Design/methodology/approach

This study draws upon socially oriented information literacy research and nexus analysis as its methodological framework. Data, including YouTube videos, theme interviews and video diaries, were collected with three Finnish video bloggers and qualitatively analysed using nexus analytical concepts to describe the central elements of social action.

Findings

The study shows that video bloggers employ several information practices during the information creation process, including planning, information-seeking, organization, editing and presentation of information. They construct their cognitive authority in relation to their anticipated audience by grounding it on different types of information: experience-based, embodied and scientific. Trustworthiness, emphasized with authenticity and genuineness, and competence, based on experience, expertise and second-hand information, were recognized as key components of credibility in this context.

Originality/value

This study increases the understanding of the complex ways in which young people create information on social media and influence their audiences. The study contributes to information literacy research by offering insights into the under-researched area of information creation. It is among the few studies to examine cognitive authority construction in the information creation process. The notion of authority as constructed through trustworthiness and competence and grounded on different types of information, can be taken into account in practice by information professionals and educators when planning information literacy instruction.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 78 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 15 December 2020

Tuula Nygård, Noora Hirvonen, Sari Räisänen and Riitta-Liisa Korkeamäki

This article describes how Finnish health education teachers verbalise and construct their teacher identity based on their lifestyle, subject area and relationships with their…

Abstract

Purpose

This article describes how Finnish health education teachers verbalise and construct their teacher identity based on their lifestyle, subject area and relationships with their students.

Design/methodology/approach

Narrative interviews were conducted amongst eight secondary and upper secondary school teachers. The nexus analysis was used to analyse teachers' methods of teaching students information-seeking, evaluation and critical thinking skills.

Findings

The teachers' historical bodies – their skills, interests, information-seeking habits and familiar sources – impacted the chosen teaching methods. The results indicate that teacher identity is constructed along different paths and is constantly performed and transformed in the classroom through interactions with students.

Originality/value

The study illustrates the reconstruction of teacher identity through interaction in interviews. Teachers act as role models, information gatekeepers and trustees who guide students to choose credible health information sources.

Details

Health Education, vol. 121 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0965-4283

Keywords

Open Access
Article
Publication date: 24 May 2021

Laura Palmgren-Neuvonen, Karen Littleton and Noora Hirvonen

The purpose of this study is to examine how dialogic spaces were co-constituted (opened, broadened and deepened) between students engaged in divergent and convergent collaborative…

1894

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to examine how dialogic spaces were co-constituted (opened, broadened and deepened) between students engaged in divergent and convergent collaborative learning tasks, orchestrated by teachers in Finnish primary and secondary schools. The concept of dialogic space refers to a dynamic, shared resource of ideas in dialogue and has come to represent an ideal form of educational interaction, in the contexts of collaborative learning, joint creative work and shared knowledge-building.

Design/methodology/approach

A socio-cultural discourse analysis of video-observed classroom dialogue, entailing the development of a new analytic typology, was undertaken to explore the co-constitution of dialogic space. The data are derived from two qualitative studies, one examining dialogue to co-create fictive video stories in primary-school classrooms (divergent task), the other investigating collaborative knowledge building in secondary-school health education (convergent task).

Findings

Dialogic spaces were opened through group settings and by the students’ selection of topics. In the divergent task, the broadening of dialogic space derived from the heterogeneous group settings, whereas in the convergent task, from the multiple and various information sources involved. As regards the deepening of dialogic space, explicit reflective talk remained scarce; instead the norms deriving from the school-context tasks and requirements guided the group dialogue.

Originality/value

This study lays the groundwork for subsequent research regarding the orchestration of dialogic space in divergent and convergent tasks by offering a typology to operationalise dialogic space for further, more systematic, comparisons and aiding the understandings of the processes implicated in intercreating and interthinking. This in turn is of significance for the development of dialogic pedagogies.

Details

Information and Learning Sciences, vol. 122 no. 5/6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2398-5348

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 8 October 2018

Noora Hirvonen, Alisa Tirroniemi and Terttu Kortelainen

The purpose of this paper is to examine the role of one particular online discussion forum as a potentially authoritative health information source for its users. The concept of…

1047

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the role of one particular online discussion forum as a potentially authoritative health information source for its users. The concept of cognitive authority is used as a starting point for understanding information evaluation in this context. The focus is placed on the types of information users seek for from this forum, the ways they assess the credibility of information obtained, and their views on the impact of this information.

Design/methodology/approach

The empirical data were collected with a questionnaire survey from the users of a Finnish online forum for girls and young women (n=290). The data were analyzed qualitatively with content analytic techniques and quantitatively by using descriptive analysis.

Findings

The forum was found to offer girls and young women the possibility to receive health information from peers. It was viewed as an appropriate source for experiential rather than factual health information and used to find information on sexuality, bodily functions and diets, for example. Author-related cues, argumentation and tone, veracity and verification were recognized as means to evaluate information credibility. Credibility evaluation was found to be linked with conceptions of the forum and the type of information sought. A share of the respondents recognized the information obtained to have influence on their thinking or behavior.

Originality/value

Based on the findings, it can be argued that the members of the online forum – individually or collectively – can act as cognitive authorities for other users. The findings cannot be generalized beyond this online forum, to Finnish girls or young women, or even the users of the online forum. However, they provide insights into the ways young people evaluate user-generated information in a particular online setting and domain of knowledge and as such contribute to research on cognitive authority, credibility evaluation and information literacy.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 75 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 18 February 2020

Aira Huttunen, Noora Hirvonen and Lotta Kähkönen

This study aims to increase the understanding of the early-stage identity-related information needs of transgender people.

1128

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to increase the understanding of the early-stage identity-related information needs of transgender people.

Design/methodology/approach

This study draws on social constructivism, queer theory and information practice research. In accordance with the queer phenomenological approach which emphasises lived experiences, data was collected by interviewing 25 individuals who identified as transgender. The data was analysed with a focus on how early-stage information needs are formed into conscious information needs.

Findings

The formation of early-stage information needs were conceptualised as a chain including a trigger for information seeking, finding the right words and understanding the experience. Especially the bodily changes starting at puberty were strong causes of discomfort causing friction between the subjects' own gendered body and their gender experience, even leading to gender dysphoria. Finding words to describe the experience played an important role in the process of identity formation. In many cases this was difficult because of the lack of accurate and relevant information.

Social implications

Providing information especially of varying transgender experiences is vital for individuals trying to understand and verbalise their gender identity.

Originality/value

This study provides an understanding of the early-stage information needs described by transgender people and the process of building identities through disorientation. This study suggests that early-stage information needs are a valid concept to help understand how embodied experiences and the friction between the lived experience and the social world can lead to information seeking.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 76 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

Keywords

Open Access
Article
Publication date: 19 February 2021

Isto Huvila, Åsa Cajander, Jonas Moll, Heidi Enwald, Kristina Eriksson-Backa and Hanife Rexhepi

Data from a national patient survey (N = 1,155) of the Swedish PAEHR “Journalen” users were analysed, and an extended version of the theory of technological frames was developed…

3313

Abstract

Purpose

Data from a national patient survey (N = 1,155) of the Swedish PAEHR “Journalen” users were analysed, and an extended version of the theory of technological frames was developed to explain the variation in the technological and informational framing of information technologies found in the data.

Design/methodology/approach

Patient Accessible Electronic Health Records (PAEHRs) are implemented globally to address challenges with an ageing population. However, firstly, little is known about age-related variation in PAEHR use, and secondly, user perceptions of the PAEHR technology and the health record information and how the technology and information–related perceptions are linked to each other. The purpose of this study is to investigate these two under-studied aspects of PAEHRs and propose a framework based on the theory of technological frames to support studying the second aspect, i.e. the interplay of information and technology–related perceptions.

Findings

The results suggest that younger respondents were more likely to be interested in PAEHR contents for general interest. However, they did not value online access to the information as high as older ones. Older respondents were instead inclined to use medical records information to understand their health condition, prepare for visits, become involved in their own healthcare and think that technology has a much potential. Moreover, the oldest respondents were more likely to consider the information in PAEHRs useful and aimed for them but to experience the technology as inherently difficult to use.

Research limitations/implications

The sample excludes non-users and is not a representative sample of the population of Sweden. However, although the data contain an unknown bias, there are no specific reasons to believe that it would differently affect the survey's age groups.

Practical implications

Age should be taken into account as a key factor that influences perceptions of the usefulness of PAEHRs. It is also crucial to consider separately patients' views of PAEHRs as a technology and of the information contained in the EHR when developing and evaluating existing and future systems and information provision for patients.

Social implications

This study contributes to bridging the gap between information behaviour and systems design research by showing how the theory of technological frames complemented with parallel informational frames to provide a potentially powerful framework for elucidating distinct conceptualisations of (information) technologies and the information they mediate. The empirical findings show how information and information technology needs relating to PAEHRs vary according to age. In contrast to the assumptions in much of the earlier work, they need to be addressed separately.

Originality/value

Few earlier studies focus on (1) age-related variation in PAEHR use and (2) user perceptions of the PAEHR technology and the health record information and how the technology and information–related perceptions are linked to each other.

Details

Information Technology & People, vol. 35 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-3845

Keywords

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