"Information seeking behavior of LIS students: the case of Greece"

Aspasia Togia, Stella Korobili

Abstract


The purpose of the present study is to give an insight into the information seeking behavior of LIS undergraduate students in Greece. More specifically, the following research questions were addressed: (1) What information sources do LIS students most use in order to find course-related information? (2) What searching strategies are actually employed by students when using electronic resources, and how is the information they find evaluated? (3) How effective do students perceive their searches? (4) Are factors such as gender, year of study, or experience with computers related to students’ information seeking behavior? The majority of respondents demonstrated low to medium information seeking skills. Search engines dominated, topping the list of information sources most used to find course related information. Students also seemed to value their classmates as sources of information, while browsing library shelves was the third more frequently used strategy for locating information. With regard to searching techniques, keyword and phrase searching emerged as the most preferred method for searching electronic resources. When evaluating their search results, students tended to consider more often the title of the source, the title of the journal and the abstract of the source. Year of study, knowledge of English language, computer and internet use, and experience with bibliographic databases emerged as factors related to more sophisticated information behavior. Findings provide empirical evidence of the need for LIS faculty to refocus their teaching and introduce in their classes tasks and assignments which require students to use a variety of sources and search strategies.

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