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Article
Publication date: 9 May 2016

Sarah McNicol

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the most significant censorship issues faced by UK school librarians today and to determine what factors influence attitudes…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the most significant censorship issues faced by UK school librarians today and to determine what factors influence attitudes towards these issues.

Design/methodology/approach

A questionnaire was designed, closely based on that used for a previous survey of UK librarians in 2004. It was distributed online and 96 responses were received.

Findings

Overall, respondents were more likely to express support for intellectual freedom in theory than in practice. Statements that prompted the strongest pro-censorship responses related to access issues, namely, labelling and filtering. A number of librarians place significant emphasis on their personal ability, or right, to determine whether or not resources are included in the collection. There was evidence of a difference in practical application depending on whether librarians worked with pre-school children or were members of professional associations.

Research limitations/implications

The findings suggest a need for further research into the role of professional associations in supporting school librarians faced by censorship issues, especially those who support the youngest students.

Originality/value

The findings suggest that while school librarians hold strong pro-intellectual freedom views, they may need additional support to put these into practice. School librarians are undoubtedly in a challenging position, often being solo workers; they need support to find ways to uphold professional intellectual freedom principles within a school setting.

Details

New Library World, vol. 117 no. 5/6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 21 May 2019

Sarah McNicol

The purpose of this paper is to explore the potential of participant-created comics as a research method through a project to investigate the life stories of…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the potential of participant-created comics as a research method through a project to investigate the life stories of British–Bangladeshi women.

Design/methodology/approach

The author worked with a group of ten women through a series of workshops exploring their personal and community histories. Each of the women produced a digital comic that represented her story using text in any languages, photographs and drawings.

Findings

The experiences of the Graphic Lives project suggest there is considerable unexplored potential for the use of comics creation as a research method when working with community groups that may be considered “hard-to-reach”. A crucial difference between the comics created for the Graphic Lives project when compared to many other visual methods is that they do not seek or attempt to represent a verifiable truth. The project acknowledged and accepted the presence of fictional elements of autobiography and the difficulty in drawing boundaries between fiction and non-fiction. Indeed, this was seen as a strength of the stories as the use of imaginary elements offered participants a way to express emotional truths that they may otherwise have found difficult to convey.

Research limitations/implications

Whilst interviewing participants could be one way to analyse participant-created comics in certain circumstances, this should not simply be the default. In the Graphic Lives project, it was important to accept that participants had already voiced their story in a certain way – using words and images – during the creative process. The project needed to accept and respect their voices as they had chosen to present them and not expect the participants to transform this into something that was more aligned with what the researcher might want to hear. A limitation of this method is the time and resourcing required to undertake such a programme of in-depth work, in addition to the need for close collaboration with community partners.

Practical implications

The paper questions the appropriateness of research interviews when working with many “marginalised” groups. It suggests that alternative methods, such as the comics creation method described, may be a more effective way to engage “hard-to-reach” groups in research.

Social implications

This research has implications for the involvement of groups who, for a variety of reasons, are often excluded from research. It outlines a method that may be more socially acceptable than more established methods such as interviewing for some groups.

Originality/value

To date, exploration of the potential of comics as method of participatory knowledge construction has been limited. In addition, the use of comics to engage communities in research, especially adult groups who may be more reluctant to participate via traditional research methods, has received relatively little attention. This paper addresses these issues through a discussion of the use of comics creation as the research method adopted in a project working with a group of British–Bangladeshi women in the UK.

Details

Qualitative Research Journal, vol. 19 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1443-9883

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 10 July 2017

Sarah McNicol and Karine Aillerie

This paper aims to report the findings from a survey of secondary school students in Chile by exploring their use of social networking services for information-seeking purposes.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to report the findings from a survey of secondary school students in Chile by exploring their use of social networking services for information-seeking purposes.

Design/methodology/approach

An online survey was distributed via Chile’s Ministry of Education and 12,354 responses were received.

Findings

The results indicate that young people in Chile extensively use SNSs, but there are differences in the ways in which they use these services, specifically for information purposes. When considering school-related activities, there are differences in the use of SNSs by students in different types of schools. Those in academic-focussed institutions are more likely to use SNSs for school-related information purposes and are more likely to publish most types of information on SNSs than their counterparts in vocational schools.

Research limitations/implications

The sample was self-selecting and excluded students without online access to the survey.

Practical implications

The findings indicate more needs to be done in schools serving lower socio-economic communities to support students’ use of SNSs for information-seeking, especially for academic purposes.

Social implications

The findings suggest that school-associated social capital may have a role in shaping students’ use of SNSs for information and learning purposes and, potentially, in exacerbating digital inequalities.

Originality/value

The focus on the use of social media specifically for information-seeking distinguishes this research. The findings challenge possible assumptions about the links between social media use and social class and suggest that differences may be exacerbated by school practices.

Details

Information and Learning Science, vol. 118 no. 7/8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2398-5348

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 1 December 2004

Sarah McNicol and Pete Dalton

224

Abstract

Details

VINE, vol. 34 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0305-5728

Content available
Article
Publication date: 20 March 2009

Sarah McNicol

443

Abstract

Details

Library Review, vol. 58 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0024-2535

Article
Publication date: 20 March 2009

Lucia Cedeira Serantes

This paper addresses a gap in the analysis of the dynamic and challenging relationship between libraries, Web 2.0 and young adults, suggesting the relevance of a critical approach.

2012

Abstract

Purpose

This paper addresses a gap in the analysis of the dynamic and challenging relationship between libraries, Web 2.0 and young adults, suggesting the relevance of a critical approach.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper represents an exploratory literature review with the objective of identifying a possible gap in the way the library and information science (LIS) community is addressing the concept of Web 2.0.

Findings

Findings indicate that the research produced in other fields, such as communication or computer science; the way young adults interrelate with new technologies; and the need for collaboration between practitioners and researchers justify and support the use of a critical perspective to analyze the suggested topic.

Originality/value

The call for a critical approach to technology is certainly not a novel suggestion in the LIS scholarship; however, its resurgence is extremely relevant for the LIS field because of the significant role that technology is playing in the daily life of the library and its users.

Details

Library Review, vol. 58 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0024-2535

Keywords

Abstract

Details

New Library World, vol. 114 no. 9/10
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

Keywords

Abstract

Details

New Library World, vol. 115 no. 9/10
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

Keywords

Abstract

Details

New Library World, vol. 115 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

Keywords

Abstract

Details

New Library World, vol. 114 no. 11/12
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

Keywords

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