The Study of Motivation in Library and Information Management Education: Qualitative and Quantitative Research

Autores UPV
Año
Revista Journal of Information Technology Education: Innovations in Practice (JITE:IIP)

Abstract

The application of new technologies and media has changed the concept of teaching and learning, offering effective and attractive possibilities to the educational system, particularly to the learning of languages in specific contexts. Educators in general will agree on the importance of motivation as a key to success in language acquisition as it is both a condition and a result of effective in-struction. However, although research has recognized the positive effect of intrinsic motivation on learning and academic achievement, little is known about the impact of different technology-supported learning activities on students¿ intrinsic motivation, the most critical factor for success in language teaching through computers according to some scholars. In this paper we present a university course project carried out in the English class in a degree of Library and Information Management. By means of an integrated analysis which includes qualita-tive and quantitative research, we see the influence of a CMC (Computer-mediated Communica-tion) genre, that of weblogs, in learning, and the way this new learning environment enhances motivation. In the project we present, students were asked to participate in blogs dealing with top-ics of their field of studies, a fact that constitutes the authentic learning environment suggested by some scholars in the field of education. Blogging was the key activity of their writing course. Students¿ participation in blogs implied exchanging posts, making comments, agreeing and dis-agreeing on what was discussed in the posts, asking for clarification, etc., always with the hope of raising the interest of other bloggers and starting a discussion. Questionnaires administered to the students and interviews have provided insightful data to the research about the students¿ perception of the experience, in other words, their levels of involve-ment in learning, their engagement in efficient and creative thinking processes, and their use of problem-solving strategies. Language achievement tests as well as daily one minute papers supplied information on the students¿ acquisition of the content dealt with. The innovative approach of this research is that it has allowed students to partici-pate in real-world environments: blogs where students were able to apply theo-retical knowledge acquired in the degree of Information and Management Education in the medium of English. Writing for a purpose, a truly novel component of the educational application of blogs used in the present project has resulted in a positive attitude of the students and, thus, has enhanced motivation.