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Title: The road to information literacy : an ethnographic investigation into the cognitive and affective characteristics of Key Stage 2 primary school children
Author: Beautyman, Wendy
ISNI:       0000 0004 2724 534X
Awarding Body: Northumbria University
Current Institution: Northumbria University
Date of Award: 2012
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This doctoral study sets out to investigate how Key Stage 2, primary school children (aged between 7 and 11 years) are being taught to develop information seeking skills and strategies that will allow them to become critical and literate users of information. The methodological approach adopted for this research study is that of interpretivist ethnography. This represents a move away from the traditional quantifiable approaches used in Library and Information Science (LIS) and focuses on gathering data in the natural setting in order to offer a rich picture of the information seeking behaviour of a small group of Key Stage 2 children. In order to become an integrated part of the natural setting it was necessary to become immersed in the school for an extended period of time, one academic school year. Taking a grounded theory approach meant that it was possible, right at the beginning of the fieldwork, to identify situations as they occurred. During the field research, a rich picture emerged of the information seeking strategies and skills of the group of children participating in the study. As the field research progressed, themes and patterns were identified which were then examined against previous research in order to identify similarities or differences in the findings of this study with other studies. The themes that unfolded from the data offered an information seeking model that was specific to the group of Key Stage 2 children. Within the model a further theoretical framework is offered that postulates that a zone of optimal learning exists. The theory suggests that there is an optimal cognitive zone that is the place where new information is assimilated so that it can become knowledge. The zone of optimal learning is the place where a child moves from incomprehension of new information to a cognitive understanding of that information. Investigatingth e influencesu pont he children'si nformations eekingb ehaviour served to highlight both strengths and weaknesses in the ways in which the children developed their information seeking skills and strategies and with this in mind a set of four suggestions are offered that aim to support the way in which information seeking strategies are delivered to Key Stage 2 children based on the children that participated in this study.
Supervisor: Pickard, Alison Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: P100 Information Services ; X200 Research and Study Skills in Education ; X900 Others in Education