Research

Information Literacy

Developing independent, self-sufficient and smarter users and producers of information

Information is ubiquitous, but to use it effectively, you need to define what problem you want to solve, how best to find the information you need and what to do with the information once you find it. Many people, including students, working professionals, and those seeking employment, struggle to identify their requirements and then search for information that will solve their information problem.

The iSchool’s Mike Eisenberg co-authored the Big6 method for helping people of all ages become information literate which includes these elements: task definition, information seeking strategies, location and access, use, synthesis and evaluation. This process can be applied to a wide variety of situations to help information users be more efficient and generate better results.

Applicability

The iSchool’s expertise and research in information literacy can assist organizations in the following ways:

  • Developing more effective education resources for employees
  • Creating smart help-desk systems for customer service
  • Integrating inquiry tools on websites for better customer search outcomes
  • Providing personal information management tools and skills for employees
  • Integrating information literacy into the design of products/services to make them more effective
  • Meeting user needs by using technology wisely with limited budgets
  • Designing instructional strategies for information professionals
  • Developing strategies for effective management of ideas and information

Projects and Research

Project Information Literacy
A national study about early adults and their information-seeking behaviors and competencies, as well as challenges they face when conducting research in the digital age.

Applying the Big6 Methodology
Big6 information problem-solving model is applicable whenever people need and use information. The Big6 integrates information search and use skills along with technology tools in a systematic process to find, use, apply, and evaluate information for specific needs and tasks.

Creating Teaching Opportunities
Helping an organization build a network of partners and affiliates who would benefit from instruction or institutional learning.

Faculty Experts

Lorraine Bruce
Mike Eisenberg
William Jones
Helene Williams