Information retrieval and electronic information sources


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Information retrieval and electronic information sources for EUMASLI students 23.9.2013

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Information retrieval and electronic information sources

  1. 1. Information retrieval and electronic information sources Pirjo Kangas 23.9.2013 EUMASLI
  2. 2. Presentation plan • Introduction to information seeking • General information searching tools and methods • Some electronic informations sources • Exercises in information seeking
  3. 3. Information seeking • Always based on a need • Information needs often divided into two types – Professional information needs – Non-professional information needs • Type of information need determines the sources that can be used to solve the problem – Studying / work vs. free time
  4. 4. Information seeking as a process 1) Initiation 2) Selection 3) Exploration 4) Formulation 5) Collection 6) Closure (Carole Kulthau)
  5. 5. Different kind of information sources • Different kinds of information sources are suitable for different situations – Electronic (internet) – Printed (books, magazines) – Informal (friends, colleagues) – Official documents (records of meetings etc.) • Sometimes it is necessary to use more than one type of information source
  6. 6. Information searching tools • Things you can do to improve your search results • Central ways to do that are – Choosing your search terms carefully – Combining search terms – Using different ways to limit the search results: • full text only, • limiting date, type of publication, language
  7. 7. Information searching tools: search terms • Terms most likely to be used in the text covering your topic • Thesauri, vocabularies help you to find search terms – Synonyms • Pearl diving method – books and articles about the topic are also useful in finding new search terms
  8. 8. Broader and narrower terms Narrower terms Related terms Broader terms Languages Sign language American sign language Finnish sign language Special languages Legal language Official languages ”Main term”= sign language
  9. 9. Formulating search statements: Boolean logic • Helps in limiting or expanding your search results • Three operators – AND / OR / NOT • Most of the databases use this logic
  10. 10. Boolean logic
  11. 11. Boolean logic: AND • Poverty AND crime • Retrieves records where both two terms are present • ”with all of the words” • The more terms combined with AND, the fewer results • Google: automatic
  12. 12. Boolean logic: OR • College OR university • ”any of my search terms” • The more terms combined with OR, the more results • Useful when searching for synonyms • Google: OR
  13. 13. Boolean logic: NOT • Cats NOT dogs • Retrieves records where one of the terms is present but the other one not • Excludes results from your search list • Be careful with using NOT • Google: cats -dogs
  14. 14. Boolean logic
  15. 15. Information seeking strategies • The hoped result defines the best strategy – For a quick search, combine a few terms ”sign AND language AND acquisition” – For a wider range of material, use synonyms ”sign AND language AND (acquisition OR learning) • If you can’t find any or enough sources, reconsider your strategy – Search terms, sources that you use, the way you have combined search terms
  16. 16. Research Tools ”A lost link is a useless link” • Reference Managers – Mendeley: – Zotero: • Other kinds of programs: – Evernote (”remember everything”): – Instapaper (web pages): – Others?
  17. 17. Plagiarism detection • Humak uses a plagiarism detection software called Urkund – thesis – Sometimes for other course work too – Students know when a software like this is used – The lecturers tell you the details if the system is used
  18. 18. Discuss • Discuss (5 mins!) in a group of 2-3 students the topics talked about in class – Does the information seeking process make any sense? – Was there anything new to you in different information seeking strategies? – How do you arrange your work / references?
  19. 19. Electronic resources provided by libraries • 3 institutions, 3 different systems • University libraries have subscriptions to different kinds of databases – Databases work in the institution IP range • walk-in users – Sometimes it is possible to use them even from home for the students/staff • systems vary
  20. 20. Open access sources • Thesis: – – A few thesis of the previous EUMASLI program available online: /2068 • DOAJ (Directory of Open Access Journals): – • DOAB (Directory of Open Access Books): –
  21. 21. Academic Articles • Examples of databases you can use to search academic content, full-text might not be available for free – Google Scholar: – Eric: – Sage Journals Online: – Humak also subscribes to EBSCO & ProQuest
  22. 22. E-books • Google Books – – Full text in its entirety/at all might not be available • Subscription e-book databases – Ebrary, Dawsonera etc. – Depends on your institution
  23. 23. Social information seeking • Online networks • Main idea: ”someone I know probably already has the information I need” – Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, blogs • social elements in Google search: personalized results based on earlier search behaviour – Filter bubble?
  24. 24. In-class exercises • A few exercises about the electronic resources • You can work in pairs if you prefer that • The exercises can be found online: • You don’t need to hand in the exercises
  25. 25. Share information! • Don’t forget to share information and useful sources with each other! • Questions, comments: