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Connecting Online Search Strategies and Information Needs: A User-Centered, Focus-Labeling Approach

Lynn Kennedy, Charles Cole and Susan Carter
RQ
Vol. 36, No. 4 (SUMMER 1997), pp. 562-568
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/41241451
Page Count: 7
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Connecting Online Search Strategies and Information Needs: A User-Centered, Focus-Labeling Approach
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Abstract

When assisting an undergraduate in accessing materials,academic librarians must balance the task of conducting a reference interview with instructing the student on how to use the electronic database. This article presents a method for connecting these tasks via the construction of a search strategy which is wholly dependent on the user's information need. Using this method, the librarian assesses and explicitly labels the undergraduate's information need (using a diagnostic tool based on Kuhlthau's and Taylor's concept of "focus"), then assigns the most appropriate online search strategy for the satisfaction of this need.

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