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ERIC Number: EJ935871
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Jun
Pages: 23
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 20
ISSN: ISSN-1368-1613
Contextual Factors Affecting Learning in Laos and the Implications for Information Literacy Education
Dorner, Daniel G.; Gorman, G. E.
Information Research: An International Electronic Journal, v16 n2 Jun 2011
Introduction: Laos is used as a case study of how factors such as culture and indigenous knowledge must be considered to plan for information literacy education that is culturally and contextually appropriate. Method: Data were obtained from observations during visits to four Lao schools and from interviews with fourteen teachers at these schools. The schools visited were an urban primary school, an urban secondary school, an urban vocational school, and a rural secondary school. Analysis: Hofstede's cultural dimensions are employed to understand local cultural norms in the context of the Lao education system, while indigenous knowledge and local conditions are examined to demonstrate how these factors affect information literacy education. Results: Contextual factors including local cultural norms, the lack of adequate resources, and large class sizes play an important role in how Lao teachers approach classroom teaching. Lao teachers draw upon their own indigenous knowledge to understand how the local context affects teaching and learning in their schools, and they use the indigenous knowledge held by elders, students' parents, and others within their community as a means of overcoming resource deficiencies. Conclusions: These findings have implications for developing and promoting culturally and contextually appropriate information literacy programmes in developing countries such as Laos. Local and foreign advisors alike must be aware of local cultural norms, and should call upon the teachers' knowledge of the local educational context and their own ways of incorporating indigenous knowledge from their community as a teaching resource for information literacy programmes. (Contains 4 figures.)
Thomas D. Wilson. 9 Broomfield Road, Broomhill, Sheffield, S10 2SE, UK. Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Laos