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Friday, September 9, 2011

Searching Expectations

Have you ever considered how you search for information? I know I try to narrow my Google searches with precise terms and think about exactly what I want the results to display. If what I expected does not materialize in the list, I re-evaluate those search terms and try to reword them to get closer to my desired results. Then I might read something I consider reputable, hoping to find additional resources that support my inquiry process.

In the latest issue of Continuum from the University of Minnesota Libraries, editor Marlo Welshons outlined almost that exact process as being typical of many searchers. "The search process," she said, "is where the learning happens; the journey ias as important as the destination." She also addressed the increasing need for librarians as guides in the information search process. In one study she reviewed, she noted that "users 'expect discovery and delivery to coincide.'" Librarians provide the guidance for users to get to those expected results.

My research question of the day: Is there really such thing as a milk-fed pumpkin like the one Almanzo grew in Farmer Boy?

1 comment:

  1. there really is such a thing as a milk-fed pumpkin, isn't there.
    i loved the journey through the old card catalog drawers as much as I appreciated arriving at my destination (the subject i'd set out to find). that is an experience this generation will never have.