Information Literacy, Research Self-Efficacy, and Research Productivity of Doctoral Students in Universities in Ogun State, Nigeria
The main purpose of the study was to find out the influence of information literacy and research self-efficacy on the research productivity of doctoral students in universities in Ogun State, Nigeria.
The prosperity of any nation is inextricably tied to its research productivity in both quality and quantity. Hence, doctoral education, among others, is meant to sustain research productivity by training students that will possibly assume the role of researchers in the future. However, despite the importance of research productivity to the prosperity of a nation and the sustenance of scholarship, evidence from the literature has shown that doctoral students globally and in the study’s locale do experience low research productivity, manifested as low publication count, underdeveloped strategies for thesis writing, and unusually prolonged doctoral education. This study, therefore, examined the influence of information literacy and research self-efficacy on research productivity of doctoral students in universities in Ogun State, Nigeria.
The study used a survey research design. The population of the study was 1,418 doctoral students from six universities in Ogun State already undertaking doctoral programs out of nine licensed by the National Universities Commission (NUC). The Research Advisor’s table was used to select a sample size of 306. A structured and validated questionnaire was used for data collection. Cronbach’s alpha reliability coefficient for the constructs ranged from 0.72 to 0.98. The response rate was 92%. Data were analyzed using descriptive and inferential (simple and multiple regression) statistics.
To the best of the researcher’s knowledge, this is the only study that has combined information literacy with research self-efficacy as predictors of doctoral students’ research productivity. Therefore, it has added to the existing literature on information literacy, research self-efficacy, and research productivity by shedding light on the influence of information literacy and research self-efficacy on research productivity.
The findings of this paper are the following.
1. Research productivity of doctoral students in universities in Ogun State, Nigeria was low as majority of the respondents scored below the criterion mean in all the measured items.
2. This low research productivity was notable in publication count, presentations at conferences and thesis writing, leading to unusually prolonged doctoral education for most of the respondents.
3. The study showed that doctoral students in universities in Ogun State, Nigeria possessed a high level of information literacy.
4. There was a positive and significant relationship between information literacy and research productivity (R2= 0.076, F(1,282) = 4.582, p <0.05) of doctoral students in universities in Ogun State, Nigeria.
5. There was a positive and significant relationship between research self-efficacy and research productivity (R2= 0.060, F (1, 282) = 17.218, p<0.05) of doctoral students in universities in Ogun State, Nigeria.
6. Findings revealed that the level of research self-efficacy of doctoral students in universities in Ogun State, Nigeria was high
Faculty should ensure that every doctoral student have access to a faculty advisor or mentor who is approachable and accessible. This will provide doctoral students with a roadmap for practice and constructive feedback. By strengthening doctoral students-faculty relationships, more opportunities arise for aspiring researchers to learn the general practices and procedures for conducting and designing studies, collecting, and analyzing data, and writing a well-organized manuscript.
The resultant model could be adopted by researchers to undergird related studies. Moreover, subsequent research can build on the findings of the empirical study to broaden the scope of research productivity of scholars
The study has accentuated the primacy of research and its continued production to the growth and development of every stratum of the nation. Consequently, it has become incumbent for the government and other stakeholders to promote its continued productivity by creating an enabling environment for doctoral students in Nigeria.
To further broaden this area of research, the following are suggested for fur-ther studies.
Qualitative/focus group investigation of information literacy, research self-efficacy and research productivity of doctoral students. This may reveal more in-depth data not captured in the current study.
The study can also be replicated in other states of the nation and other parts of the world as research productivity and its predictors cut across nations.
Further studies can investigate other combinations of research productivity predictors.