PROJECTS

Credibility Assessment in the Participatory Web Environment

The purpose of the Credibility 2.0 Project was to investigate the new sets of credibility assessment heuristics and strategies that people develop to interact with information in the digital environment. Rather than directly asking people about their perceptions of the credibility of online information, we took an approach in which we examined people’s credibility assessments in the context of their everyday life information activities. Multiple research methods were used for this project, including an online information activity diary survey, interviews with participatory Internet users, experimental study with Internet users, and interviews with expert bloggers. The major findings of this study include: (1) people’s credibility judgments were more strongly affected by their goals and intentions than the types of information activities; (2) People’s credibility assessment heuristics are fast and frugal information evaluations based on their experience, knowledge, and beliefs derived from their past interviews with information; (3) Information searchers tend to make more effort in making credibility judgments than content creators do;(4) Expert bloggers have developed a multi-dimensional construct of audience-aware credibility which serves as a driving factor influencing and shaping content creation activities.

BiblioBouts Information Literacy Games

The BiblioBouts project investigated how to design, develop, deploy, and evaluate the online information literacy games that students want to play. The objectives of this project were to determine the effectiveness of games for information literacy instructions. The evaluation results showed that students learned the library research process, literacy skills and concepts. They also retailed what they learned including the games’ structured research process, used professional resource discovery tools, and preferred learning about library research via the game format. The analysis of game play data also reveals what students learned as a result of playing BiblioBouts and how they benefited from game play. The book “Developing Online Information Literacy Games Students Want to Play” (2014) offers best practices for the design of online information literacy games to those who are intrigued by the potential of games for learning.

Making Institutional Repositories a Collaborative Learning Environment (MIRACLE)

The MIRACLE (Making Institutional Repositories A Collaborative Learning Environment) Project investigated the development of institutional repositories in colleges and universities in order to identify models and best practices in the administration, technical infrastructure, and access to repository collections. The MIRACLE project carried out five research activities such as surveying institutional repositories in the U.S., conducting follow-up phone interviews with institutional repository staff, surveying current and prospective repository users, conducting cases studies, and studying users’ searching behavior of institutional repository resources. The findings from the MIRACLE project suggest that both IR managers and IR users perceive IRs as complementing the present channels of scholarly communication and publishing. IR staff members had consensus that reaching a critical mass of IR content is a key factor for the success of IRs. The MIRACE Project found that IRs have enhanced the role of the academic library in higher education institutions, and IRs are increasingly considered as one of the core services of the library in research universities. The two key research questions that need to be addressed in the future work are: how can IRs evolve as a sustainable model of open access and how IRs will evolve and change as successful digital (perhaps even trusted digital) repositories.