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School of Library and Information Studies

The School of Library and Information Studies (SLIS) is part of the Faculty of Education, and offers the only Master of Library and Information Studies program on the Canadian prairies that is accredited by the American Library Association (ALA). SLIS also offers an inter-faculty combined degree program Master of Library & Information Studies/Master of Arts in Humanities Computing, and is a home department for the Master of Arts in Humanities Computing program. We are in the process of developing a Ph.D. program, and in the meantime, in conjunction with other University of Alberta departments that house PhD programs, SLIS offers opportunities for individual interdisciplinary PhDs. The School's vision for teaching, research, and service is grounded in a multi-disciplinary focus on issues of information access and equity.
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  1. Wikipedia Edit Assignment [Download]

    Title: Wikipedia Edit Assignment
    Creator: Alyssa Woodcox
    Description: Through a publishing lens, this paper looks at the edit history of Wikipedia's webpage for the movement, "Black Lives Matter." Keeping in mind the publishing guidelines of Wikipedia, censorship is a key issue. The page's history shows users' varied points of view concerning the movement.
    Subjects: Wikipedia, Black Lives Matter, Publishing
    Date Created: 2016/10/03
  2. Journal Articles (Library & Information Studies)

    Title: Journal Articles (Library & Information Studies)
    Creator: ERA Administrator
    Description: Publications by faculty affiliated with the School of Library and Information Studies, Faculty of Education, University of Alberta.
    Subjects:
  3. Research project tasks, data, and perceptions of data quality in a condensed matter physics community. [Download]

    Title: Research project tasks, data, and perceptions of data quality in a condensed matter physics community.
    Creator: Stvilia, Besiki
    Description: To be effective and at the same time sustainable, a community data curation model needs to be aligned with the community’s current data practices, including research project activities, data types, and perceptions of data quality. Based on a survey of members of the Condensed Matter Physics (CMP) community gathered around the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory, a large national laboratory, this paper defines a model of CMP research project tasks consisting of ten task constructs. In addition, the study develops a model of data quality perceptions by CMP scientists consisting of four data quality constructs. The paper also discusses relationships among the data quality perceptions, project roles, and demographic characteristics of CMP scientists. The findings of the study can inform the design of a CMP data curation model that is aligned and harmonized with the community’s research work structure and data practices.
    Subjects: Reproducible research, Management, Data, Work, Quality, Science, Information quality, Wikipedia, Impact
    Date Created: 2015
  4. Don't Make Me Type: A Study of Students' Perceptions of Library Catalogues on Tablet Computers [Download]

    Title: Don't Make Me Type: A Study of Students' Perceptions of Library Catalogues on Tablet Computers
    Creator: Christiansen, Erik G.
    Description: The objective of this mixed methods pilot study was to ascertain university students’ perceptions of online library catalogues using tablet computers, to determine how the participants used tablets and whether or not the NEOS consortium catalogue (NEOS) played an important role in the participants’ academic research. The researcher recruited four students from the University of Alberta who were each asked to use NEOS to complete a series of simple timed usability tasks on a tablet computer of their choosing. The participants also answered a variety of semi-structured interview questions regarding their tablet usage, internet browsing habits, device preferences, general impressions of NEOS, and whether they were receptive to the idea of a mobile NEOS application. Overall, the students found the functionality and design of NEOS to be adequate. Typing, authentication, and scrolling through lists presented consistent usability problems while on a tablet. Only one participant was receptive to the idea of a NEOS application, while the other three participants said tablets were not conducive to conducting academic research and that they preferred using a web interface on a laptop or desktop computer instead.
    Subjects: tablets, usability, online library catalogues, touchscreens, information seeking
    Date Created: July 2015
  5. LIS 598 Information Policy, Winter 2017

    Title: LIS 598 Information Policy, Winter 2017
    Creator:
    Description: This collection contains the lectures/presentations for LIS 598 Information Policy (Winter 2017 online offering) and related course materials. These materials are made available in an open as manner as possible for students, lifelong or self-directed learners, and use and adaption by other educators.
    Subjects:
  6. Composition of scientific teams and publication productivity at a national science lab. [Download]

    Title: Composition of scientific teams and publication productivity at a national science lab.
    Creator: Stvilia, Besiki
    Description: The production of scientific knowledge has evolved from a process of inquiry largely based on the activities of individual scientists to one grounded in the collaborative efforts of specialized research teams. This shift brings to light a new question: how the composition of scientific teams impacts their production of knowledge. This study employs data from 1,415 experiments conducted at the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory (NHMFL) between 2005 and 2008 to identify and select a sample of 89 teams, and examine whether team diversity and network characteristics impact productivity. The study examines how the diversity of science teams along several variables impacts overall team productivity. Results indicate several diversity measures associated with network position and team productivity. Teams with mixed institutional associations were more central to the overall network compared to teams composed primarily of the NHMFL‟s own scientists. Team cohesion was positively related to productivity. The study indicates that high productivity in teams is associated with high disciplinary diversity and low seniority diversity of team membership. Finally, an increase in the share of senior members negatively affects productivity, and teams with members in central structural positions perform better than other teams.
    Subjects: Group outcomes, Black-box, Diversity, Quantile regression, Social-structure, Organizational demography, Interorganizational collaboration, Work teams, Performance, Heterogeneous groups
    Date Created: 2011
  7. Health answer quality evaluation by librarians, nurses, and users in social Q&A. [Download]

    Title: Health answer quality evaluation by librarians, nurses, and users in social Q&A.
    Creator: Oh, Sanghee
    Description: In the second half of the 20th century, scientific research in physics, chemistry, and engineering began to focus on the use of large government-funded laboratories. This shift toward so-called big science also brought about a concomitant change in scientific work itself, with a sustained trend toward the use of highly specialized scientific teams, elevating the role of team characteristics on scientific outputs. The actual impact of scientific knowledge is commonly measured by how often peer-reviewed publications are, in turn, cited by other researchers. Therefore, how characteristics such as author team seniority, affiliation diversity, and size affect the overall impact of team publications was examined. Citation information and author demographics were reviewed for 123 articles published in Physical Review Letters from 2004 to 2006 and written by 476 scientists who used the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory's facilities. Correlation analysis indicated that author teams that were more multi-institutional and had homogeneous seniority tended to have more senior scientists. In addition, the analysis suggests that more mixed seniority author teams were likely to be less institutionally dispersed. Quantile regression was used to examine the relationships between author-team characteristics and publication impact. The analysis indicated that both weighted average seniority and average seniority had a negative relationship with the number of citations the publication received. Furthermore, the analysis also showed a positive relationship between first-author seniority and the number of citations, and a negative relationship between the number of authors and the number of citations.
    Subjects: Proximity, LIS faculty, Quantile regression, Personality psychology, Productivity, Citation, Communication, Model, Research performance, Collaborative research
    Date Created: 2013
  8. Digital Library North

    Title: Digital Library North
    Creator: ERA Administrator
    Description: This is a joint project between the University of Alberta School of Library and Information Studies and the Inuvialuit Cultural Resource Centre (ICRC). The project seeks to better understand the information needs and information seeking behaviours of the Inuvaluit people, as well as the extent and nature of the documentary hertiage of the Inuvialuit people. This information will be used to inform the development of a digital library service for the Inuvialuit Cutural Resource Centre.
    Subjects:
  9. LISAA Newsletters

    Title: LISAA Newsletters
    Creator: ERA Administrator
    Description: The official newsletters of the Library and Information Studies Alumni Association (LISAA) of the University of Alberta School of Library and Information Studies (SLIS).
    Subjects:
  10. Author team diversity and the impact of scientific publications: Evidence from physics research at a national science lab. [Download]

    Title: Author team diversity and the impact of scientific publications: Evidence from physics research at a national science lab.
    Creator: Hinnant, Charles
    Description: Health information consumers and patients increasingly take an active role in seeking health information online and in sharing their health problems and concerns in online support groups and social media venues. However, they may risk being influenced by unreliable and misleading information in such environments, as no intermediaries monitor the quality of this information. This study focuses on evaluating the quality of health information exchanged in one of the social media venues, by investigating how librarians, nurses, and users assessed the quality of health answers in Yahoo! Answers, a social question-and-answering (Q&A) service. Through statistical analysis differences among the three participant groups, how the background characteristics influenced their assessments, and the relationships between characteristics of the content of answers and quality evaluation criteria were each considered in detail. Librarians and nurses shared similar ratings of answer quality, but had differences in their level of medical knowledge and the types of services they offer, resulting in minor differences across criteria. Users perceived the quality of health answers in social Q&A to be higher than librarians and nurses for almost all criteria. Depending on the sources of information presented in health answers, librarians, nurses, and users gave different quality assessments. Implications exist for research into and practice of evaluating the quality of health information, which need to address both search and domain expertise along with the sharing of socioemotional values preferred by users.
    Subjects: Judgment, Information quality, Online, Consumer health, Internet, Trust, Advice, Web, Cognitive authority
    Date Created: 2012