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Information encountering and sharing behaviour of research students in an online environment

Information encountering and sharing behaviour of research students in an online environment Information behaviour exists in two forms: first when information is sought with a clear purpose and second, when we encounter it accidentally or serendipitiously. The purpose of this paper is to estimate the information encountering (IE) and encountered information sharing (EIS) behaviour of research students in an online environment.Design/methodology/approachThe quantitative research approach was applied to carry out this research. The authors selected 120 MPhil and PhD research students (who research information as a part of their assignments) from six departments as sample for the study. Out of 120 research students, 93 returned the filled questionnaires. The collected data were analysed in SPSS version 22. First, descriptive statistics to estimate the IE and sharing behaviour; and later one-way ANOVA and post hoc comparisons using the Tukey HSD tests were applied to investigate the EIS based on the frequency of internet usage.FindingsThe findings indicate that the mean scores of the responses remain between “sometimes” and “often”, in all the behavioural sub-constructs of the model of IE, i.e. noticing, stopping, examining, capturing, storing (keeping), sharing and returning. The extended model proved to be valid in an online environment in the context of Pakistani culture. While estimating EIS, the results indicated significantly higher sharing and large effect size among the research students who used the internet from 11 to 15 h a week than those who used it between 6 and 10 h.Practical implicationsKeeping in view the results the research students and parent organisations (universities) working for the improvement of research ranking and research students’ better performance, should know that research information is not only actively acquired but also huge amount of information is accidentally encountered and shared. Therefore, the universities should train their research students to enhance the information sharing of encountered information. That will promote the research culture and may enhance the speed of learning, research work and ultimately result in competitive advantage, without any extra effort.Originality/valueThis is the first study of its type in Pakistan to measure the IE behaviour of research students in an online environment. Moreover, it is the first study which investigates the extended model of IE using a quantitative approach in the Pakistani research environment, which originated in Japan via qualitative research approach. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Aslib Journal of Information Management Emerald Publishing

Information encountering and sharing behaviour of research students in an online environment

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References (42)

Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
© Emerald Publishing Limited
ISSN
2050-3806
DOI
10.1108/ajim-10-2018-0232
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Information behaviour exists in two forms: first when information is sought with a clear purpose and second, when we encounter it accidentally or serendipitiously. The purpose of this paper is to estimate the information encountering (IE) and encountered information sharing (EIS) behaviour of research students in an online environment.Design/methodology/approachThe quantitative research approach was applied to carry out this research. The authors selected 120 MPhil and PhD research students (who research information as a part of their assignments) from six departments as sample for the study. Out of 120 research students, 93 returned the filled questionnaires. The collected data were analysed in SPSS version 22. First, descriptive statistics to estimate the IE and sharing behaviour; and later one-way ANOVA and post hoc comparisons using the Tukey HSD tests were applied to investigate the EIS based on the frequency of internet usage.FindingsThe findings indicate that the mean scores of the responses remain between “sometimes” and “often”, in all the behavioural sub-constructs of the model of IE, i.e. noticing, stopping, examining, capturing, storing (keeping), sharing and returning. The extended model proved to be valid in an online environment in the context of Pakistani culture. While estimating EIS, the results indicated significantly higher sharing and large effect size among the research students who used the internet from 11 to 15 h a week than those who used it between 6 and 10 h.Practical implicationsKeeping in view the results the research students and parent organisations (universities) working for the improvement of research ranking and research students’ better performance, should know that research information is not only actively acquired but also huge amount of information is accidentally encountered and shared. Therefore, the universities should train their research students to enhance the information sharing of encountered information. That will promote the research culture and may enhance the speed of learning, research work and ultimately result in competitive advantage, without any extra effort.Originality/valueThis is the first study of its type in Pakistan to measure the IE behaviour of research students in an online environment. Moreover, it is the first study which investigates the extended model of IE using a quantitative approach in the Pakistani research environment, which originated in Japan via qualitative research approach.

Journal

Aslib Journal of Information ManagementEmerald Publishing

Published: Jul 8, 2019

Keywords: Encountered information sharing; Information behaviour of research students; Information encountering; Information encountering behaviour; Information sharing behaviour; Serendipitous information retrieval

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