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 Patrick Lo and Christopher Chan.

Published by The International Journal of the Book

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

1. Purpose — the aim of this research study was designed to measure the potentials and the effects of the online
Audio-book resources in fostering young children — reading. The research study involved 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 292 plus participants (students from 2 different international elementary
schools (Bradbury & Kingston Elementary School) in Hong Kong were invited to take part in this study. Students — motivations,
their reading comprehension, their attitudes and experiences with the online audio-books were 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 helped identify the characteristics of these elementary
school children, e.g., their reading habits, interests; what sorts of books, what kind of reading materials attracted them;
and most importantly, to find out whether the online audio-book resources really had the potentials to make a difference,
i.e., what attracted these young students to the pleasures of reading, and turned them into avid readers, etc.
4. Research limitations — some limitations included a small sampling size, and the data gathered from questionnaires were essentially quantitative in nature, hence, they did not provide opportunity to probe individual respondents/students to elaborate an
answer. The time and manpower constraints might not have permited the researchers to perform regular onsite observations
and recordings of the children engaged in the use of the online audio-books. There were relatively little important contemporary
fiction/stories available inside the online audio-book resource chosen for this research, i.e., Naxos Spoken Word
Library. It was also difficult in obtain an informed consent when studying students at this age, as they were vulnerable to
manipulation. It was also difficult to ensure that all the students had 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 aim to fill the gaps in the subject of how elementary school students relate to, and learn from the electronic and online audiobooks. This research was 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 received formal approval from both the Bradbury Elementary School and Kingston Elementary School to
conduct the study in their school libraries. Respondents/students — identities are fully protected so that the information
the researchers collect will not embarrass or in other ways harm them. The researchers also promised not to intrude the
students — normal learning, as well as their lives outside the research. In addition, the disruption of classes was kept to

Keywords: Purpose, Design/Methodology/Approach, Findings, Research Limitations, Originality/Value, Ethical Issues

The International Journal of the Book, Volume 5, Issue 2, pp.1-66. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.397MB).

Dr. Patrick Lo

Cataloguing Librarian, Assistant Librarian, Cataloguing Section, University of Bristol, Bristol, UK

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. 1996-2007, Mr Lo was seving as Cataloguing Librarian at Lingnan University Library (Hong Kong). 2003-06, Mr. Lo was also serving as the Coordinator of the Library as Cultural Centre activities at Lingnan University Library. Mr. Lo's professional affiliations include the following: 1. 1999-2006 - Secretary of JULAC-HKCAN (Hong Kong Chinese Name Authority) Workgroup. 2. 2003-2006 - Representative of Lingnan University Library (Hong Kong) for the Hong Kong JULAC-BSC (Bibliographic Services Committee). 3. 2004 - present - Member of CALIS (China Academic Library and Information System) Unicat Expert Group. Mr. Lo has presented close to 40 research papers and project reports focusing on humanities, education, and library science at different local and international workgroup meetings, seminars, conferences, including: Mainland China, Hong Kong, Germany, Austria, France, Italy, Japan, United States, Korea, and Sweden; including presenting at: 1. The Library of Congress (U.S.), 2. Austrian National Library (Vienna), 3. University of Vienna, 4. National Library of France (Paris), 5. National Institute of Informatics (Japan), etc. Mr. Lob's recent professional activity includes presenting 'Using Outsource Data of Digital Resources in Creating Our Own Bibliographic Records: Lingnan University Libraryb's Experience in Converting Naxos Music Library and Spoken Word Library Online Titles to MARC Recordsb' at the 72nd IFLA (International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions) Conference in Seoul, Korea, in August 2006: http://www.ifla.org/IV/ifla72/papers/123-Tam_Lo-en.pdf 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. Award(s): Most Active Presenter Award of HKIUG (Hong Kong Innovative Users Group) Annual Meeting in December 2006. Recent Activity: serving as Reporter of Recent Serials Publications in China of Fontes Artis Musicae Journal.

Christopher Chan

Librarian, School Library, Bradbury School, 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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