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Dissertation Information for Jean Armour Major

NAME:
- Jean Armour Major

DEGREE:
- Ph.D.

DISCIPLINE:
- Library and Information Science

SCHOOL:
- Indiana University (USA) (1981)

ADVISORS:
- David Kaser

COMMITTEE MEMBERS:
- August Eberle
- Bernard M. Fry
- Richard Pugh
- Clayton A. Shepherd

MPACT Status: Fully Complete

Title: THE EFFECT OF SEARCH DIALOGUE IN AN ON-LINE SUBJECT CATALOG: AN EXPERIMENTAL STUDY OF FOUR FEEDBACK MECHANISMS

Abstract: Present-day subject catalogs are constructed with extensive syndetic structures to bring together or link material on similar subjects. Techniques employed to introduce related terms include displaying terms which are alphabetically adjacent to the initial query term, a network of cross references, and indication of additional subject terms assigned to any item. These techniques constitute the feedback of the system. The present study was conceived to test ways in an on-line subject catalog for a searcher to make optimal use of the available feedback and, further, to test whether interactive dialogue would enable the undergraduate user to make more effective searches.

The purpose of the study was realized by experimenting with the contents of the dialogue of four simulated on-line catalogs and comparing the recall, precision, and cost in time of these on-line searches with the same scores achieved by using a simulated manual card catalog. A population of students enrolled in junior level biology courses was used for recruitment of experimental subjects. There were significant differences among the treatments tested. The experimental manual card catalog achieved the best results in all tests. The display of search terms related through the subject authority structure was significantly less effective than two other on-line treatments. The integrated display of search aids was not significantly more effective than adjacent terms alone or all assigned subject headings alone.

Presently, on-line catalog development is in transition and neither unanimity nor consensus exists concerning the form which the new catalog will take. The significant results of this experiment suggest that further study is worthwhile before the format of the on-line subject catalog reaches final form.

MPACT Scores for Jean Armour Major

A = 0
C = 0
A+C = 0
T = 0
G = 0
W = 0
TD = 0
TA = 0
calculated 2008-01-31 06:07:18

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Students under Jean Armour Major

ADVISEES:
- None

COMMITTEESHIPS:
- None