Investigating Nontraditional First-Year Students’ Epistemic Curiosity During the Research Process: An Exploratory, Mixed-Methods Study

Michelle Keba Knecht

Abstract

The purpose of this exploratory, mixed-methods study was to investigate the relationship between nontraditional undergraduate students’ curiosity and their experiences researching a topic. The author collected and analyzed survey data and annotated bibliography rubric scores from 59 students at a private, liberal arts university and conducted in-depth interviews to gather a fuller picture of the students’ curiosity. Based on the study’s findings, librarians and professors should create opportunities for students to select research topics to which they have a personal connection while intentionally offering supportive feedback to students as they refine their topics to reduce anxiety and frustration.

Keywords

Curiosity, Research Process

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