Dissertation Information for Dara Lee Howard
- Dara Lee Howard
- Library and Information Science
- University of Hawaii (USA) (1994)
- Carol Tenopir
- Martha E. Crosby
- Miles Merrill Jackson
- W. Wesley Peterson
- Ann Marie Peters
MPACT Status: Fully Complete
Title: Interacting with information: Constructing personal knowledge using written text
Abstract: This dissertation explores one aspect of solving information problems: the problem solver's transformation of information into personal knowledge. The primary goal of this work is to move toward describing this information problem solving interaction.
Verbal and action protocols provide the data to describe the activity of personal knowledge construction as executed in the context of a student using public written literature to develop a short written text in response to an externally generated information problem. The constant comparative method of data analysis is used to uncover the categories and transformation operators that comprise the activity. A model that depicts both events and operations is presented using the framework of problem solving and schema theories.
Interacting with information is placed within its encompassing environment of information problems and information problem solving. Using the simultaneous verbal reports and the action reports of the participants, the structures and operators of the problem solvers are identified and described in a frame model with three major branches. Two of the three branches represent the problem solvers' knowledge structures relating to the available information and to the problem solver's personal knowledge base. The structures in these branches were developed to show the various aspects and types of a structure that occurred in the data. The third branch represents operators which are used to bring about changes to the structures. Eleven operators were developed and eighteen knowledge structures which were related either to the information made available in the documents or to the problem solver's previous or developing knowledge base about the problem.
The interaction of the branches is demonstrated in three extended examples drawn from the data. The interactions which were found in the verbal and action reports are discussed and are used to demonstrate the model. The interactions, depicted graphically in a display grid, show the available information the problem solvers used, the behaviors that implemented changes, and the kinds of transformations that were made.