Sheila Webber

Senior Lecturer

BA (Kent at Canterbury), Dip Lib (London Metropolitan University), FCLIP, FHEA

Sheila Webber 2014

+44 (0)114 222 2641

My primary research interest is investigating information literacy and information behaviour in context. Contexts include different disciplines, different countries and cultures, different lifestages, and in the context of both physical and virtual environments. Examples include information behaviour in virtual worlds and in computer gaming, and information literacy of older people. To do this, I favour qualitative methods, particularly phenomenography, case study approach and autoethnography. I think it is important to connect research and teaching, by engaging students as researchers and bringing research into the physical or virtual classroom. I also think it is important to make a connection between research and practice, and this is part of the mission of the Centre for Information Literacy Research which I direct. I have been an invited keynote at doctoral forums and have run practitioner workshops on research methods (for example at the European Conference on Information Literacy, 2018). I was a member of the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) Peer Review College 2010-2017. I have been external examiner for doctoral theses at Edinburgh University, Napier University, Aberystwyth University, Warwick University, Northumbria University, Loughborough University, Strathclyde University, the University of Middlesex, and Queensland University of Technology (Australia).

I am interested in supervising PhDs in any aspects of information literacy and information behaviour, and the use of technology (e.g. virtual worlds, computer gaming) in learning.

I am head of the Libraries and Information Society Research Group


Current PhD Students

Laura Barber: The perceived efficacy of online, blended, and face-to-face teaching methods of Information Literacy within Higher Education institutions

Marc Bonne: An investigation into the use of computer games to reduce maths anxiety in undergraduate students.

Stefan P. Hodson: Investigating information literacy in the Civil Service workplace

Evanthia Tramantza: Information literacy skills teaching and its impact on the employability of engineering students in the University of Surrey.


Completed PhD Students

Pamela McKinney: Facets of Inquiry-based Learning: the role of Information Literacy, collaboration and reflection in the support and development of inquiry-based pedagogies in Higher Education.

Jessica Elmore: An exploration of the relationship between English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) learning, the information literacy of participants, and its impact on their everyday lives.

Dakhil Al-Houti: Marketing electronic information resources in Kuwaiti Higher Education Libraries.

Shaghayegh Asgari: Conceptualising cultural issues and challenges within a UK higher education blended learning context.

Joseph Essel: Information Literacy Instructions: A Tool for Promoting Distance Education Teacher Quality in Ghana.

Angharad Roberts: Conceptualising the Library Collection for the Digital World: A Case Study of Social Enterprise.

Barbara Sen: Market orientation as a strategic option for library and information services.

Syeda Hina Shahid: Exploring Information Literacy practices in primary schools: a case of Pakistan.

Kondwani Wella: Information Sources Preferences and Information Seeking Behaviour of sero-discordant couples in Malawi.

Phussadee Dokphrom: An investigation into information literacy of undergraduate studies: a case study of the Faculty of Arts, Silpakorn University Thailand.

Eva Hornung: The current state and perceptions of one-person librarians in Ireland of continuing professional development.

Yazdan Mansourian: The discovery of the hidden internet: developing essential strategies for accessibility in web environment.

Maryam Nazari: Information Literacy for online distance learning GIS programmes.

Shahd Salha: The Variations and the Changes in the School Librarians' Perspectives of Information Literacy.

Ridvan Ata: An Ethnography of teaching in Second Life.


Research Projects

UK academics' conception of, and pedagogy for, information literacy

Arts and Humanities Research Council Principal Investigator £137,351 1 September 2002 36 months