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- Innovation : journal of appropriate librarianship and information work in Southern Africa
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- Volume 2010, Issue 40, 2010
Innovation : journal of appropriate librarianship and information work in Southern Africa - Volume 2010, Issue 40, 2010
Volume 2010, Issue 40, 2010
Source: Innovation : journal of appropriate librarianship and information work in Southern Africa 2010 (2010)More Less
This issue has a special focus on information behaviour which Donald Case (2002: 76) described as "a term whose time has come." Information behaviour is "the totality of human behaviour in relation to sources and channels of information, including both active and passive information seeking, and information use" (Wilson 1999: 249). These activities are those "a person may engage in when identifying his or her own needs for information, searching for such information in any way, and using or transferring that information" (Wilson 1999: 249). Described succinctly information behaviour is "how people need, seek, give and use information in different contexts" (Pettigrew, Fidel and Bruce 2001: 44). Karen Fisher, Sanda Erdelez and Lynne McKechnie (2005: xx) point out that there was a "flurry of activity" in the late 1990s in theoretical activity relating to information behaviour. Case's book, Looking for information (2002) is described by Fisher, Erdelez, and McKechnie 2005: ix) as the first comprehensive textbook devoted to information behaviour. It was followed three years later by the collection Theories of information behavior, edited by Fisher, Erdelez, and McKechnie (2005). Other significant texts are identified in Christine Stilwell's contribution to this issue.
Research into information behaviour in the South African context : a preliminary exploration and bibliography : 1980 to dateSource: Innovation : journal of appropriate librarianship and information work in Southern Africa 2010, pp 1 –33 (2010)More Less
The article reports on research into information behaviour in the South African context from 1980 to date. While numerous papers have been presented at conferences and published as articles little is available in terms of an overview of the entire body of such research to date. More information is needed on the subjects and contexts of such research; which theoretical models and methods were used and where the gaps in terms of coverage of particular groups lie. This research is based on a systematic review of the literature contained in electronic databases and published proceedings of conferences. Some material from the pre-electronic database era was included. The research is still at an early stage, for example, an extensive listing of theses and dissertations has not been included but rather the focus is on outputs in the form of journal articles and conference papers.
The findings reveal an enormous growth in the number of articles and papers from 2000 onwards reflecting a wide array of subjects. Theoretical frameworks are discussed together with some of the influences on information behaviour research in this country as well as the research methods used.
Thesis supervisors should be encouraged to publish articles on completed research with their students using structured abstracts which would expedite access to, and the sharing of new research in the field. A listing of theses on information seeking behaviour would enable a more comprehensive examination of the whole body of research to identify approaches and methods in more detail.
Interpreting the information behaviour of patients and families in palliative cancer care : a practical approachAuthor Ina FourieSource: Innovation : journal of appropriate librarianship and information work in Southern Africa 2010, pp 34 –46 (2010)More Less
An exploratory study on information needs and information behaviour was conducted with patients and families in a palliative cancer care setting in 2007 in South Africa. It showed differences between information needs reported by patients and families, and healthcare professionals' perceptions thereof. This article considers how healthcare settings with the support of libraries can make a difference in supporting the information behaviour of patients and families. It discusses support with unrecognised information needs, information needs occurring at different disease stages, information on emotional and psychosocial issues, information needs that are difficult to discuss, and the need for individualisation and contextualising.
Information seeking behaviour of master's students using library electronic databases in the Faculty of Humanities, Development and Social Sciences of the University of KwaZulu-NatalSource: Innovation : journal of appropriate librarianship and information work in Southern Africa 2010, pp 47 –67 (2010)More Less
The purpose of this study was to investigate the use of electronic databases by master's students in the Faculty of Humanities, Development and Social Sciences (HDSS) at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, Pietermaritzburg (UKZNP) campus. The study which was based on a master's thesis aimed to establish which electronic databases master's students used and how frequently they were used. The conceptual framework for the study was rooted in Kuhlthau's Information Search Process. The methodological approach undertaken by the researcher was quantitative and data was collected using a questionnaire. The outcome of the study revealed that a majority of HDSS master's students at UKZN-P used the electronic databases and a number of problems were experienced when using the databases. Recommendations for the library include ensuring that training or user education is ongoing and meets all the various users' needs; improving students' access to the databases by limiting the need for passwords; improving the internet bandwidth to enhance the speed of connection, and using the internet and web-based services such as newsgroups, bulletin boards, Web 2.0 facilities to communicate with users.
Uncertainty in information seeking behaviour in the virtual playground of Generation Y students at Stellenbosch UniversityAuthor Lindall AdamsSource: Innovation : journal of appropriate librarianship and information work in Southern Africa 2010, pp 68 –81 (2010)More Less
The article investigates uncertainty in the information seeking behaviour of a small sample of Generation Y students. Generation Y students have their playground in the virtual space of the World Wide Web which is an important part of their information universe. Advances in information and communication technology and the growth of the internet have had a profound effect on the information searching behaviour of Generation Y students. Based on Kuhlthau's Information Search Process (2004), the study collected data using interviews, surveys by questionnaire and the examination of journal writings. The results showed that the Generation Y students who participated in the study experienced uncertainty. The article stresses the importance of skills to enable the evaluation of new information by Generation Y information seekers. The researcher recommends further research on the accommodation of uncertainty in the information seeking of Generation Y students. These students need to be able to complete all six stages of the Information Search Process. A higher certainty outcome is likely when the participants go through all the stages of the Information Search Process.
Source: Innovation : journal of appropriate librarianship and information work in Southern Africa 2010, pp 82 –103 (2010)More Less
This article provides a review of the information needs and information seeking patterns of the rural farmers in selected districts of Tanzania. Focus group data was triangulated with interview data in order to validate, confirm and corroborate quantitative results with qualitative findings. The findings revealed that the information needs and information seeking patterns of farmers were location and gender specific to a certain extent. Farmers relied on interpersonal and face to face communication more than explicit sources of information. Constraints on information access included internal (personal) and external barriers (unavailability of the extension officers, distant locations for consultations with public extension officers, poor responses to information requests from the government and village leaders, lack of awareness of the available information sources, inability of some experts to solve problems, and poor knowledge sharing culture). It is thus important for the government to improve access to extension services, and equip them with necessary skills and adequate information resources. Further, the public and extension services, researchers, educators, information services and other agricultural actors should conduct regular studies on information needs, map communities' knowledge and information sources, create awareness of information sources, and knowledge culture, and use multiple sources of information (such as print and ICTs) to deliver relevant information in the communities in order to meet the disparate farmers' needs.