Effect of the Provision of Online Audio-Book Resources on Reader Motivation in a Primary School Library Setting: A Comparative Study Between Two International Schools in Hong Kong

By:
Dr. Patrick Lo,
Christopher Chan
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1. Purpose – the aim of this research study is to measure the potentials and the effects of the online audio-book resources in fostering young children’s reading. The research study will involve comparing 2 groups of 5th and 6th-grade elementary school students – measuring their reading motivation, understanding, and learning from an online audio-book resource, Naxos Spoken Word Library (NSWL), under a school library setting in Hong Kong.

2. Design/Methodology/Approach – approximately 260 plus participants (students from 2 different international elementary schools (Bradbury & Kingston Elementary School) in Hong Kong will be invited to take part in this study. Students’ motivations, their reading comprehension, their attitudes and experiences with the online audio-books will be recorded, and measured with a set of questionnaires, designed together by the researcher, and the 2 school/teacher- librarians from Bradbury and Kingston Elementary.

3. Findings – the findings will help identify the characteristics of these elementary school children, e.g., their reading habits, interests; what sorts of books, what kind of reading materials attract them; and most importantly, to find out whether the online audio-book resources really have the potentials to make a difference, i.e., to attract these young students to the pleasures of reading, and turn them into avid readers, etc.

4. Research limitations – some limitations include a small sampling size, and the data gathered from questionnaires will be essentially quantitative in nature, hence, they do not provide opportunity to probe individual respondents/students to elaborate an answer. The time and manpower constraints might not permit the researchers to perform regular onsite observations and recordings of the children engaged in the use of the online audio-books. There are relatively little important contemporary fiction/stories available inside the online audio-book resource chosen for this research, i.e., Naxos Spoken Word Library. It is also difficult in obtain an informed consent when studying students at this age, as they are vulnerable to manipulation. It also difficult to ensure that all the students have a good understanding of the nature of the study, and the young students’ might feel pressured to lie on the questionnaire.

5. Originality/Value – this research study aims to fill the gaps in the subject of how elementary school students relate to, and learn from the electronic and online audio-books. This research is also set up to measure the online audio-books’ potentials in attracting elementary students to the pleasures of reading. This research is of particular interest to teachers, school librarians and parents, etc.

6. Ethical issues - the study has received formal approval from both the Bradbury Elementary School and Kingston Elementary School to conduct the study in their school libraries. Respondents/students’ identities will be fully protected so that the information the researchers collect will not embarrass or in other ways harm them. The researchers have also promised not to intrude the students’ normal learning, as well as their lives outside the research. In addition, the disruption of classes will be kept to minimal.

7. Acknowledgements - the authors would like to thank Bradbury Elementary School, Kingston Elementary School, and the children who kindly agreed to participate in this research study. The authors gratefully acknowledge the cooperation and the openness the teachers and students displayed towards our research effort. Special thanks are also due to the Naxos Digital Services, Ltd., who generously sponsored a number of CD gifts/souvenirs for supporting a series of Reading Incentive Programmes implemented at the 2 school libraries, as part of this research study.


Keywords: School Libraries, International Schools–Hong Kong, Online Audio-Books, Talking Books, Naxos Spoken Word Library, Reading, Education Measure, Electronic Books, Ebooks, Interactive Books
Stream: Books, Writing and Reading
Presentation Type: Virtual Presentation in English
Paper: Effect of the Provision of Online Audio-Book Resources on Reader Motivation in a Primary School Library Setting


Dr. Patrick Lo

Cataloguing Librarian, Assistant Librarian, Cataloguing Section, Lingnan University Library
Hong Kong

Mr. Patrick Lo is currently a candidate of Doctor of Education (EdD), at Bristol University (UK). He has a Master of Arts in Design Management (MA) from Hong Kong Polytechnic University (2004), a Master of Library and Information Science (MLIS) from McGill University (Canada; 1994), and a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) from Mount Allison University, (Canada; 1992). Mr Lo is efficient in: Cantonese Chinese, Mandarin Chinese (Putunghua), English and German. Mr Lo's professional affiliations include: secretary of JULAC-HKCAN (Hong Kong Chinese Name Authority) Workgroup, representative of Lingnan University Library (Hong Kong) for the Hong Kong JULAC-BSC (Bibliographic Services Committee), member of CALIS (China Academic Library and Information System) Unicat Expert Group. Mr. LO has presented close to 20 research papers and project reports focusing on library studies (cataloguing, and name authority control), humanities, and education at different local and international workgroup meetings, seminars, conferences, including: Mainland China, Hong Kong, Germany, Austria, France, Italy, England, Japan, and United States.

Mr. Lo's research interests include: latest developments of Metadata, Chinese authority works, and cataloguing among Chinese libraries in Asia and North America; exploring potentials for resources sharing among Chinese libraries in Asia; future development and enhancement of bibliographic records; users’ interaction with the online catalogue; Western classical music, especially Italian operas, vocal music of German Post-Romantic period, Lieder (German art songs), etc.

Awards: Most Active Presenter Award of HKIUG (Hong Kong Innovative Users Group) Annual Meeting in December 2006.

Christopher Chan

Librarian, School Library, Bradbury School, Hong Kong
Hong Kong, Hong Kong (SAR), China

Mr. Christopher Chan is currently studying towards a Master of Library and Information Science (MLIS) from Charles Sturt University (Australia). He has a Bachelor of Arts in Politics and History from the University of Durham (England; 2003).

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