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Library and Information Science Paper (ID LIS079109)

The Relationship between Knowledge and Practice in Assignment Reporting among College Students
No.79, p.109-135
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Purpose: This paper analyzes the whole process in which college students completed assignment reporting from within an integrated framework. The framework consists of three layers: acts, contexts and knowledge. The students decided the topics, searched information, and wrote reports in the process of assignment reporting. This study hypothesized that the students' acts were successfully completed by finding contexts and that finding context was facilitated by having knowledge. This paper aimed to clarify how college students act, how contexts are found, and what kind of knowledge is required in carrying out assignment reporting.

Methods: Semi-structured interviews were conducted with Hitotsubashi University students on assignment reporting in their first or second year of university, and 27 responses were collected. Assignments were classified into three types: text summarization, argumentation, and hypothesis verification. Criteria of success and failure were established for each type. The typical patterns of success and failure were extracted from the interview results. To clarify the difference between success and failure, the relationship among acts, contexts and knowledge was analyzed.

Results: The big picture context, which enables to grasp a complete understanding of assignments, had the most influence toward success or failure. Knowing what a good report is and what is expected from the assignment contributed highly to establishing the big picture context. Skills to think logically and structure information had a big influence on success. To practice such knowledge and skills successfully, students' understanding and experience of doing assignments were required. In the instruction on assignment reporting, paying attention to the whole process and students' difficulties was important.

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