INFORMATION SEARCH BEHAVIOR OF STUDENTS AT POSTGRADUATE

information-seeking habits of postgraduate students
The purpose of this assignment is to develop skills in the following areas: • Refining a topic or question; • Acquiring information from specific sources using planned strategies; • Correctly citing various types of material; • Evaluating and presenting material; • Writing in various modes, including critical summary (in annotations) and reflective writing.
• To improve both your personal and conceptual understanding of information literacy.

A reflective report and a personal annotated bibliography make up the coursework. You must submit both pieces. The reflective report and the annotated bibliography each receive 50% of the final grade for this project.
Conducting a literature search on a subject is part of the coursework. According to the list at the end of this document, Sheila Webber or Pam McKinney have been assigned to you. Beginning with the session in week 2, you will discuss the subject with Sheila or Pam. The individual who is assigned to you will be the one who grades the assignment.
You will negotiate a narrower (more specific) topic within the following topics from a list of wider topic categories that they have identified. The more general issues up for discussion are:
1. Using Web 2.0/Web 3.0 (such as blogs, social media, and microblogs) in marketing (to concentrate on a specific industry, nation, or form of Web 2.0; note that this may concentrate on marketing libraries, but it needs not)
2. Constant Professional Development (in any chosen career)
3. Educating others in information literacy (in a chosen field, such as engineering, or to a particular audience, such as senior folks)
4. Information behavior (of a certain population, such as children, academics in the humanities, or lawyers)

Note: • No two people can perform a certain task exactly the same way.

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Information about the two works
1. A bibliography with notes that is presented as if it were for a client (Pam or Sheila). With the annotations outlined below, you should give 12 things (no more, no less) that you believe together best answer your search question. This section is exempt from word counts and abstract requirements.
Even though the proportion of each type of publication in your bibliography will vary depending on the subject, it should include at least one book, one academic journal article, and one website.
Please be aware that one of the search engines you should use is the online Dialog Proquest service. Using Dialog and the other methods mentioned in the reflective report (below), you should assess your plan. This does not require you to use the information sources listed in Dialog, but you must explain how and why Dialog was not helpful. Dialog will be covered later in the semester. 2

Each annotation should describe why the source is pertinent to the search query and what, specifically, it adds to the bibliography. There shouldn’t be more than a few phrases in each annotation.
2. A reflective report on your experience with and growth in information literacy while completing this exercise, focusing on the “Identify,” “Plan,” and “Evaluate” pillars of the SCONUL’s “7 pillars of information literacy.”
750 words total, excluding the title, the reference list, and the appendices. Abstracts are not necessary.
You must consider important elements of the search task needed for this Inf6350 assignment. When applicable, use examples. For the “Plan” pillar, for instance, you might detail your precise search strategy across several search engines and databases. The “Identify,” “Plan,” and “Evaluate” pillars should all be covered, although the sections do not need to be equally long. You must be able to show that you: • comprehend the SCONUL 7 Pillars model of information literacy; • can recognize your strengths and weaknesses; • can evaluate your information literacy development since the beginning of the Inf6350 module; and • can support your opinions and evaluations with facts and examples.

The pertinent pillars are stated below, along with some suggested questions you might answer:
“Identify”
• How did you choose a topic for this assignment within the subject areas that were assigned by your tutor?
• How did you communicate with your instructor to discuss the subject and ensure your progress was on track? Do you know if the tutor was happy with this exchange?
• Over the course of the task, did your estimation of the knowledge you needed vary in any way? If so, how and why?

“Plan”
Note that as proof of what you performed, you should provide specific instances of your search technique from at least two separate information sources, one of which should be Dialog (for instance, Google and Dialog). Include them in the appendices (see below). Focus on describing your planning process, why you chose specific strategies, how you compared your methods to other sources, and what the evidence (in the Appendices) says about your planning and strategy skills. What preparations did you make for precisely how you intended to search the various sources, for example?
• How did you turn the “information need” into search tactics? Did these vary depending on the search engine you used?
• How well did your approach work with each source? How could it have been made better?
• Did you make plans to gather information other than through search (such as through monitoring and encountering)?

“Evaluate”
• How did you go about sifting through the sources you found to find the pertinent information? How did you choose what to keep and what to discard?
• How did you deal with concerns about potential bias in your sources?
3

Information literacy progress
The conclusion of your report should include the following: • a summary of your accomplishments and areas for improvement; • a determination of whether this assignment has improved your information literacy.
• Make note of any development priorities for your IL in the future.

Reference list (word count does not include it) Please be aware that there isn’t a high expectation for your reference list for this assignment.
The word count does not include appendices.
Examples of your strategy from at least two distinct sources should be included in the appendices. For instance, you might include a few comments that describe what is on the screenshots and a few crucial screenshots that demonstrated how you searched. The examples don’t have to be digital; for instance, if one of the sources is a library, you may detail the steps you took to find pertinent content there, including looking through the selected book(s).

 

 

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