The relationship of (perceived) epistemic cognition to interaction with resources on the internet

Simon Knight, Bart Rienties, Karen Littleton, Matthew Mitsui, Dirk Tempelaar, Chirag Shah

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Information seeking and processing are key literacy practices. However, they are activities that students, across a range of ages, struggle with. These information seeking processes can be viewed through the lens of epistemic cognition: beliefs regarding the source, justification, complexity, and certainty of knowledge. In the research reported in this article we build on established research in this area, which has typically used self-report psychometric and behavior data, and information seeking tasks involving closed-document sets. We take a novel approach in applying established self-report measures to a large-scale, naturalistic, study environment, pointing to the potential of analysis of dialogue, web-navigation – including sites visited – and other trace data, to support more traditional self-report mechanisms. Our analysis suggests that prior work demonstrating relationships between self-report indicators is not paralleled in investigation of the hypothesized relationships between self-report and trace-indicators. However, there are clear epistemic features of this trace data. The article thus demonstrates the potential of behavioral learning analytic data in understanding how epistemic cognition is brought to bear in rich information seeking and processing tasks.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)507-518
Number of pages12
JournalComputers in Human Behavior
StatePublished - Aug 1 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Psychology(all)


  • Collaborative information seeking
  • Epistemic cognition
  • Information processing
  • Information seeking
  • Learning analytics
  • Trace data

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