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Foster & Buchanan - Everyday life information seeking behaviour in adolescents

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Foster & Buchanan - Everyday life information seeking behaviour in adolescents

  1. 1. Everyday life information seeking behaviour in adolescentsCatherine Foster, University of Strathclyde, catherine.foster@strath.ac.ukDr Steven Buchanan, University of Strathclyde, steven.buchanan@cis.strath.ac.ukThis research seeks to further our understanding of the everyday life informationseeking (ELIS) behaviour of adolescents: how they use or seek information forpersonal development and growth, and what role information plays in their daily lifewhen encountering various life challenges.Adolescents are amongst the most enthusiastic consumers of new digital technologyand media, but also tend to overestimate their information seeking skills, and theirability to assess credibility of information. Libraries play an important role indeveloping information literacy skills, but use of libraries has been shown to declinedramatically with adolescence. Disengagement has been attributed to negativeattitudes, and to a potential disconnect between service provision and service demand,with service design hampered by limited understanding of adolescent ELIS behaviour.This study will address this knowledge gap. Specific research questions include: Whatinformation needs do adolescents have and how do they seek to address those needs?What motivates their choice of information sources, what are their criteria forsuccess? Is there a causal relationship between attainment and ELIS? Where arelibraries used, where are they not used, and where could they be used?Significantly, this study will take an ethnographic approach, using participantobservation to gather data over an extended period, building trust to gain insight andunderstanding of the social and environmental factors, beliefs and attitudesinfluencing ELIS behaviour. The application of this methodology to observingadolescent ELIS behaviour is an important step in furthering our understanding ofadolescent ELIS behaviour. Participants will be drawn from one or more schools,from S4, a crucial point of transition for adolescents.Of significant interest to both practitioners and academic, findings will contribute toour understanding of ELIS adolescent behaviour, and guide future information servicedesign and delivery

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