Information literacy in modernization of university education ; Informacinis raštingumas modernizuojant universitetines studijas
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Information literacy in modernization of university education ; Informacinis raštingumas modernizuojant universitetines studijas


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VYTAUTAS MAGNUS U NIVERSITYVilhelmina VaičiūnienėINFORM ATION LITER AC Y IN MODE RNIZATI ON OF UNI VERSIT Y ED UC ATIONSu mma ry of Docto ral Disse rta tionSocial Sciences, Education Science (07 S)KAU NAS, 20071The dissertation wa s prepared during the period of 2003 – 2007 at Vytaut as Magnu s University in Kaunas, LithuaniaScientific supervisor:A ssoc. Prof. Dr. Genutė Gedvilienė (Vy ta utas Magnu s Universit y, Social Sciences, Education Science 07S)The dissertation is defended at the Board of Social Sciences, Branch of Ed ucation Science at Vytautas Magn us Universit y.Chairperson:Prof. Habil. Dr. Margarita Teresevičienė (Vytaut as Magnu s Universit y, Social Sciences, Education Science 07S)Members:Prof. H abil. Dr. Rimantas Laužackas (Vytau tas Magnus University , Social Sciences, Education Science 07S)A ssoc. Prof. Dr. A uksė Balčytienė (Vy ta utas Magnus Universit y, Human ities, Comm unication and Informa tion 06 H)A ssoc. Prof. Dr. Irena Žemaitaitytė (M ykolas Romer is Universit y, Social Sciences, Education Science 07S)Prof. Habil. Dr. Aleksan dras Targamadzė (Kaunas Universit y of Technolog y, Technical Sciences, Engineering Informat ics 07 T)Opponents:A ssoc. Prof. Dr. (H P) Valentina Dagienė (Phy sical Sciences, Informa tics 09P, Social Sciences, Education Science 07S)A ssoc. Prof. Dr.



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Published 01 January 2007
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Vilhelmina Vaičiūnienė
Summary of Doctoral Dissertation Social Sciences, Education Science (07 S)
KAUNAS, 2007
The dissertation was prepared during the period of 2003 – 2007 at Vytautas Magnus University in Kaunas, Lithuania Scientific supervisor: Assoc. Prof. Dr.Genutė Gedvilienė Magnus University, Social Sciences, (Vytautas Education Science 07S) The dissertation is defended at the Board of Social Sciences, Branch of Education Science at Vytautas Magnus University.
Chairperson: Prof. Habil. Dr. Margarita Teresevičienė (Vytautas Magnus University, Social Sciences, Education Science 07S) Members: Prof. Habil. Dr.Rimantas Laužackas Magnus University, Social Sciences, (Vytautas Education Science 07S) Assoc. Prof. Dr.Auksė Balčytienė (Vytautas Magnus University, Humanities, 6 ACsosmocm. uPnriocfa.t ioDnr .a InrdeInnaf oŽremmatiaoitna i0tytHėnces, ai lcSeiti,yS c)oni Ursveom RiserkyM(salo Education Science 07S) Prof. Habil. Dr.Aleksandras Targamadzė (Kaunas University of Technology, Technical Sciences, Engineering Informatics 07 T) Opponents: Assoc. Prof. Dr. (HP)Valentina Dagienė (Physical Sciences, Informatics 09P, Social Sciences, Education Science 07S) Assoc. Prof. Dr.Aušra Kazlauskienė Pedagogical University, Social (Šiauliai Sciences, Education Science 07S)
The dissertation will be defended in an open sitting of the Board of Social Sciences, Education Science Branch in the room 622 at Vytautas Magnus University at 10 a.m. on the 5thof October 2007. Address: Donelaičio 52-603, LT-44244 Kaunas Phone +370 37 327 845 The summary of the dissertation was distributed on the 5thof September 2007. The dissertation is available in the library of Vytautas Magnus University and in the Lithuanian National M. Mažvydas Library.
Vilhelmina Vaičiūnienė
Daktaro disertacija Socialiniai mokslai, edukologija (07S)
Kaunas, 2007
Disertacija rengta 2003 -2007 metais Vytauto Didžiojo universitete. Mokslinis vadovas: Doc. dr.Genutė Gedvilienė (Vytauto Didžiojo universitetas, socialiniai mokslai – edukologija 07S) Disertacija ginama Vytauto Didžiojo universiteto Socialinių mokslų srities edukologijos krypties taryboje. Primininkas: Prof. habil. dr.Margarita Teresevičienė (Vytauto Didžiojo universitetas, socialiniai mokslai, edukologija 07S) Nariai: Prof. habil dr.Rimantas Laužackas Didžiojo universitetas, socialiniai (Vytauto mokslai, edukologija, 07 S) Doc. dr.Auksė Balčytienė (Vytauto Didžiojo universitetas, humanitariniai mokslai, informacija ir komunikacija 06 H) Doc. dr.Irena Žemaitaitytė Romerio universitetas, socialiniai mokslai, (Mykolo edukologija, 07 S) Prof. habil.dr.Aleksandras Targamadzė technologijos universitetas, (Kauno technologijos mokslai, informatikos inžinerija, 07 T)
Oponentai: Doc. dr. (HP)Valentina Dagienė (Matematikos ir informatikos institutas, fiziniai i a 07 S) Dmoock.s ldar.,  iAnfuošrrmaatKikaaz,l a0u9sPk,i esnoėPedalių Šiau (reisnuviin sogigatets ,saicoinil maislok, aiiai mokscialinkulogojial,i  de edukologija, 07 S)
Disertacija bus ginama viešame Socialinių mokslų srities edukologijos krypties tarybos posėdyje 2007 m. spalio mėn. 5 d. 10 val. Vytauto Didžiojo universiteto 622 auditorijoje. Adresas: Donelaičio 52-603, LT-44244 Kaunas Telefonas (8 37) 327 845 Disertacijos santrauka išsiųsta 2007 m. rugsėjo 5 d. Disertaciją galima peržiūrėti Vytauto Didžiojo universiteto ir Lietuvos nacionalinėje M. Mažvydo bibliotekose.
INTRODUCTION Education in Lithuania is undergoing great transformations that are affecting all types of education: formal, non-formal, and informal. The debate among Lithuanian scholars rests on shift in the education paradigm that is going in line with great transformations in other areas of the state. Today’s education at large experiences challenges caused by new technologies, abundance of information sources, thus being forced to search for new and effective methods of teaching/learning delivery. Since the last decade of the 20th the application of ICT as a driving force in century higher education implying fundamental changes in the area of educational technologies has been discussed. Information, its content, accessibility, scope and diversity of formats with emphasis on the knowledge society values has occurred in the focus of researchmarking the shiftof interest from theuse of technologies in educationtowards information as the resource in the construction of knowledge, its use for learning purposes, building on the relation of information and knowledge during intellectual processes happening in information seeking process. Modernization a contemporary university is viewed as an inevitable phenomenon of caused by changes in the society where a university is committed to the mission of lifelong learning. A new content of education encourages to view the study process anew, searching for ways and means for its development. Information literacy appears to be one of the means that allow implementing innovations at university studies. The concept of information literacy phenomenon has been comprehensively discussed by Ch. Bruce (1997); C. Kulthau (1994); S. Behrens (1994); L. Limberg (1997); B. Johnston and S. TheWebber (2000, 2003) and others. width of the term and its multi–faceted conceptualization have been analyzed in Ph. Candy (2003, 2004); A. Bundy (1998, 1999, 2004); Ch. Bruce (1997, 2000, 2002); M. Lupton (2002); B. Johnston and S. Webber (2003); S. Breivik (2003); C. Doyle (1991, 1992); M. Eisenberg and D. Johnston (1996); M. Eisenberg, C. Lowe, L. Spitzer (2004) studies. Information literacy in higher education has been standardised in USA, Australia, Great Britain and other countries. The standards being an efficient tool for improvement of studies, serve as guidelines for assessment of students’ competence. The issue of information literacy at university level in Lithuania has not been researched in more depth so far. Integration of information literacy into the curriculum of higher education is a key question closely related to the shift in the idea of the university mission and to the transformations of functioning principles in the knowledge-based society. Experience in many countries has proved that acquisition of information literacy abilities has a positive impact on the study process and increases students’ competitive potential in the labour market. Theresearch probleminvolving several questions is defined with reference to modernization issue and pursuit of quality in university studies: How does integration of information literacy change students learning? Does integrated development of students’ information literacy competencies make a positive impact on students’ progress? Is standardization of information literacy in higher education essential (imperative)?
The object of the researchis information literacy in the paradigm of modernization of university education. The aim of the research to reveal importance of information literacy as a is phenomenon of the information society in modernizing university education and to
validate the impact of integration of information literacy into university education curriculum empirically. Research tasks 1. To identify the preconditions of the emergence of the terminformation literacyand its development. 2. To analyze standardization of information literacy for higher education in other countries. 3. To determine university students’ level of information literacy abilities at nine universities of Lithuania. 4. To compare the level of information literacy abilities of exchange programme students studying in Lithuania to Lithuanian students’ level. 5. To analyze academic staff and librarians’ attitude towards information literacy and its need at university. 6. To prepare information literacy integration model into the syllabus of English for Specific Purposes (ESP). 7. To verify experimentally the efficacy of information literacy integration model into learning process. Thesis statements 1. Information literacy abilities appear to be an integral learning component that alongside to acquired knowledge determines effectiveness of learning, the quality of university studies and university education in the context of profound transformations in learning/teaching reality, where a learner is in the centre of knowledge construction process. 2. The level of information literacy abilities among university students is not appropriate and the difference in pre-university experience determines disadvantaged application of abilities at university studies, thus directly affecting acquisition of knowledge and study progress. 3. Information literacy abilities and skills are prerequisite to successful lifelong learning and form an integral background of this learning. These abilities being universal are necessary for efficient activity in academic, work, or social environment. Information literacy abilities are an enabling knowledge construction factor and a scholarly university graduate’s attribute. 4. Information literacy formation integrated into the subject syllabus has a positive impact on the advance of learning the subject. Information literacy is a tool that proves efficient with its practical application to learning process. Information literacy should be applied in all disciplines through all stages of studies. 5. The standardized framework of information literacy defines abilities instrumental for a university student in information search, processing and effective use of information in the study process. The framework is a complex, intellectual model, characterizing each ability, its area of operation, performance indicators and outcomes. Information literacy is directly linked to higher order thinking and effective use of ICT skills, deeply embedding knowledge construction in studies and for future perspective. The methodological and conceptual basis of the dissertationembraces approaches of modernsocial humanistic philosophy upon human functioning in the modern focusing society (anthropocentrism);constructivist learning theory, specificallysocial
constructivism its claims  withthat knowledge creation happens in the socially conditioned environment andconstructionist theory as the constructivist branch employed for research of information literacy level among students. The learning processes are researched from the point of view ofcognitive and constructivist theory. Research methods used in the dissertation Literature overview.Theoretical propositions and empirical research data in the areas of lifelong learning, university studies, information society and information literacy, its historic perspective, the relation of information literacy and information communication technologies, their impact on learning processes have been inspected and on this basis the research model constructed. Document analysis.EC and Lithuanian documents on education, higher education are used for the analysis of political, social and economic aspects of changes happening in the society at large and specifically higher education sector. Quantitative methods: ·Questionnaire surveyis used to identify Lithuanian university students’ information literacy level (nine universities). ·Meta-analysis techniqueis used to generalize empirical research data and findings obtained in the course of the experimental treatment. ·Expert methodis used to reveal university teachers and librarians’ information competency, their conception of information literacy, attitude towards the use of ICT and the need of information literacy course and cooperation at university studies. Qualitative methods: Phenomenography is applied as a technique to investigate information literacy conception among students – the participants of the experiment.  Experiment impact of experimental treatment of integratedis applied to research the information literacy course into the syllabus of ESP (English for Specific Purposes) at university level. Statistical methods. Statistical Software Package for Social Sciences version 12 for Windows is used to process the data obtained during each stage of the research. The significance level determined for the analysis of the data is α < 0, 05. Parametric and non-parametric statistical procedures are applied: a) descriptive statistics, frequencies, Chi-square distribution, to compare the obtained data, evaluate relations between variables; b) Student criterion, t procedure to determine differences between ANOVA and among researched groups. The internal consistency and reliability of the questionnaires is tested by Cronbach alpha. The novelty of the research is manifested in the comprehensive analysis of information literacy concept development towards its understanding as the knowledge creation construct; students’ information literacy abilities in the context of Lithuanian education, topicality of information literacy standardization in higher education sector that delineates modernization perspective of university studies. The theoretical significance of the study lies in that the comparative analysis of the information literacy models for higher education in foreign countries revealed the necessity of standardization of information literacy in Lithuania and its integration into curriculum design. Information process/management model being an inseparable
component of information literacy in learning and teaching expands the spectrum of learning empowerment means and promotes students’ learning capacity at all stages of learning experience. The practical significanceof the research is that it addresses the unsatisfactory level of students’ information literacy capacity that affects students’ efficacy of knowledge  acquisition in large and their application in the context of knowledge society and lifelong learning. The results obtained during experimental treatment of the integrated information literacy instruction model into the syllabus of English for Specific Purposes (ESP) at university validate the necessity of information literacy knowledge and skills in the study process. Innovative teaching is based on teaching material, methods and tools specially created for the experimental treatment using blended approach of virtual and traditional learning environment. Such practice is proved to be effective for students’ achievements and knowledge enrichment. The possibility to apply it to different university disciplines is estimated building on the empirical study results. The structure of the dissertation The dissertation consists of introduction, three parts, discussion, conclusions and recommendations. The research study is illustrated with 44 figures and 46 tables. The dissertation is based on 243 literature references. The instruments of the research are presented in 12 annexes. The dissertation (excluding the list of references and annexes) includes 348 052 symbols (without spaces). CONTENT INTRODUCTION MAIN CONCEPTS AND TERMS 1. INFORMATION LITERACY CONCEPTION AND ABILITIES AT UNIVERSITY EDUCATION 1.1. Development of information society and university education  1.1.1. Conceptualization and building of information society  1.1.2. University education and learning for life in the knowledge society 1.2. Information Communication Technologies (ICT) in learning  1.2.1. E-learning and technologies  1.2.2. Value aspect of ICT integration approaches into the learning process 1.3. Information literacy as a phenomenon of information society  1.3.1. Information literacy conception and its development  1.3.2. Information literacy as a research object 1.4. Standardization of information literacy  1.4.1. Information literacy abilities in learning  1.4.2. Standardization of information literacy in higher education  1.4.3. Information literacy development strategies at university  1.4.4. Information literacy abilities within lifelong learning context 1.5. Information literacy assessment 1.6. Learning environment and ICT  1.6.1. ICT application impact on learning environment  1.6.2. Virtual learning environment 1.7. Generalization of theoretical section 2. METHODS AND DESIGN OF RESEARCH INTO INFORMATION LITERACY AT UNIVERSITY EDUCATION
2.1. Methodological basis of research 2.2. Empirical research methods, stages and proceeding 3. RESEARCH INTO INFORMATION LITERACYCONCEPTION AND PERFORMANCE AT UNIVERSITY EDUCATION 3.1. Pilot research results (1st stage) 3.2. Situation research at nine Lithuanian universities (2nd stage) 3.3.Comparative analysis of information literacy abilities between exchange students (Erasmus Socrates) and Lithuanian students (3d stage) 3.4. Expert research: university teachers and librarians’ attitudes to information literacy (4th stage) 3.5 Experimental research findings  3.5.1. Analysis of pre- and post- experimental survey  3.5.2.Differences in findings in pre- and post-experimental survey (experimental group)  3.5.3. Phenomenographic study of information literacy conception  3.5.4. Comparison of students ESP achievements between/among the groups  3.5.5. Analysis of information literacy tests results  3.5.6. Research findings into the impact of virtual learning environment  3.5.7. Research findings into the skills of social communication and collaboration DISCUSSION CONCLUSIONS RECOMMENDATIONS LITERATURE ANNEXES 1 INFORMATION LITERACY CONCEPTION AND ABILITIES AT UNIVERSITY EDUCATION This section consists of six main sub-sections and generalization of the theoretical part of the dissertation. Each sub-section is discussed separately. 1.1. Development of information society and university education This sub-section presents the development of information society as it has been envisaged in the works of sociologists Masuda (1982); Castells (1983, 2002); Bell, (1973); Webster (2004) and others, and analysis of scientific literature and documents on information society stating practical its realization, conceptualization of social needs and values emphasizing the focal position of information and modern technologies necessary to get access to it. Theinformation societyqualitatively new stage of societal development that is a intensively uses, applies information in learning, work, and social life. The direction towards the value-based priorities in the information and knowledge-based society marks the shift of research interest that was attached to technologies, to content of and access to information. Changes happening in a modern university are a response to societal transformations. One of its peculiarities lies in that a university is becoming mass and this phenomenon urges to discuss the quality of studies and learning at university as the key indicator of modernization (Barnett, 1997; Zuzevičiūtė, 2005; Hannan and Silver, 2000; Kraujutaitytė 2002). Therefore, renewal and innovations are the terms frequently met in the discourse of the university role and mission.
Modernization of European universities covering educational sector, research and innovations is a cornerstone premise for realization of the Lisbon strategy towards the knowledge-based economy (EC Communiqué, 2006). The most important levers of European education systems are: 1. Focus on reforms and investments in key areas of the knowledge society; 2. Lifelong learning becoming a reality; 3. Building knowledge Europe ("Education & Training 2010" Interim Report, 2004) Lifelong learning idea as a key concept was firstly accepted in 1970 by UNESCO. Lithuanian documents on higher education emphasize coherence between university and lifelong learning (Lifelong learning strategy, 2003; Lithuanian White Paper on higher education, 1999; Lithuanian Higher Education Development Plan for years 2002 – 2006) All the concepts (information society, knowledge society, learning society) discussed in this subsection are very close in their content, adding each other, therefore discussed in one subsection trying to highlight peculiar characteristic of each. Information society is transforming into the higher stage of its evolution - the knowledge society, however, it can become as such if it becomes the learning society. 1.2. Information Communication Technologies (ICT) in learning This subsection analyses the importance of ICT in modern society and their integration into the learning process, a wide spectrum of approaches, social, value aspects, practical advantages afforded by ICT and negative aspects caused by them. The overview of the foreign and national research on ICT application and a critical viewpoint of some researchers are presented. In modern education science three paradigms of ICT integration in learning predominate: 1) technocratic; 2) reformist; 3) holist (Aviram, and Taimi, 2004). These paradigms can be differentiated by their conceptual approach to ICT and learning „convergence“. Technocrats accept ICT as inevitable phenomenon not questioning the results and consequences of it. Reformists view ICT use from revolutionary positions claiming that it supports constructivist, collaborative learning; holists discuss the question from the perspective of social and cultural aspects of understanding, stressing values, on which education and decisions related to education issues should be made. The author of the dissertation supports the latter position in the discourse on ICT application in learning. Collaboration, students’ autonomy, originality, critical approach, imaginative performance are positive characteristics of ICT use in learning (Loveless, 2002). Competencies necessary for effective and creative application of ICT, good command of digital technologies impact positively learning achievements. Among negative factors of ICT such as alienation, superficial communication, depression (less human contact) has been observed (Lemke, 2002). Information technologies provide with a variety of opportunities and forms of learning; therefore it sometimes is a highly important factor, influencing learning from the cultural, social and value perspective (Hennesy et al., 2005; Macdonald, 2004; Heemskerk, 2005). Hennesy et al. (2005) highlight significance of ICT as a „cultural artifact“ that is gradually influencing pedagogy in parallel with changes in teachers’ practice, thinking, approach, roles, and methods of technology use. It is worth mentioning that British educationalists’ approach towards ICT is much more sceptical compared to the viewpoint prevailing among American scholars. Selwyn et al. (2006) researching adult learners claim that the question of ICT use has to be based on the premise of viewing it from socio-cultural,
economic, political perspectives. Information efficient use of technologies in learning.