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Visualizing the article : an exploratory study of undergraduates' educational reactions to images in scholarly articles

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Item Summary

Title:Visualizing the article : an exploratory study of undergraduates' educational reactions to images in scholarly articles
Authors:Vornholt, Sarah Ilysa
Date Issued:May 2013
Publisher:[Honolulu] : [University of Hawaii at Manoa], [May 2013]
Abstract:The aim ofthis research is to explore undergraduate underclassmen interactions with scholarly communication and in what manner the inclusion of images impact the student's educational interests. Scholarly journals and articles are a common companion to many university courses. According to Bishop and Neumann (2000), students tend to retrieve digital scholarly journals more than their faculty. Libraries at university campuses subscribe to multiple types ofcostly educational databases to provide faculty, students, and researchers with access to scholarly materials. To provide an example, Harvard University recently performed a complete overhaul of their library subscriptions claiming these subscriptions were "fiscally unsustainable and academically restrictive" with 3.75 million dollars of their budget paid in 2011 to database providers for access to scholarly articles (Harvard Faculty Advisory Council, memorandum, April 17, 20'l2). With so much of the universities funds pouring into scholarly communication resources, the student users should feel their academic needs are met.
To begin an experimental questionnaire study was conducted at a research university on underclass undergraduate students from an introduction Information Resources and Library Science (IRLS) course. The participants were presented with brief articles on various subjects (history, business, sociology, and art) containing either an image related to the topic or text only. The participants were asked a variety of open-ended, free response questions related to their perceptions of the articles, their opinions on using them in further research, and recall information retained from the articles. The research questions center around the general impact of images in scholarly publications, but specifically (a) how will undergraduate underclassmen respond to articles with images as compared to those without images, (b) what kinds of factors influence this population's educational interests in scholarly journals, (c) how are educational interest and images linked, (d) if unprovoked, will students notice and comment on the addition of images in a scholarly article. Because the study's core is the students' unprovoked responses to images, the participants were not aware of the true nature of the study, and any references to images were spontaneous and not suggested.
This thesis is organized as such: Chapter 2 surveys the literature and experimental investigations from various related fields to information sciences. Chapter 3 details the methods and procedures adopted to study participants' relationships with images in scholarly articles, with a focus on measuring educational interests (defined as motivations behind interest in academic materials). Chapters 4-5 review and discuss the results of the experimental survey. In Chapter 6, the conclusion, it will be shown there are many different causes for students to view an article as educationally interesting, but images do appear to be a factor for many students. This indicates that images in scholarly articles can be an important enhancement to scholarly communication for students with diverse learning styles.
Description:M.L.I.S. University of Hawaii at Manoa 2013.
Includes bibliographical references.
Appears in Collections: M.L.I.S - Library and Information Science

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