Presentation on theme: "Defining an information problem UDSM Library. Recognise Information Needs: Define a problem The first step in information literacy problem-solving process."— Presentation transcript:
Defining an information problem UDSM Library
Recognise Information Needs: Define a problem The first step in information literacy problem-solving process is to determine exactly what the information problem is: What the topic is about What branches of knowledge encompass or are related to the topic. The need to get information to solve the problem The second step is to determine the specific information needed to solve the problem. One should ask him/herself “What is a problem area in this research topic?” “what sort of information do I need to solve this problem?” This process is always not easy: it requires a creative mind to come up with a sound topic
Recognise Information Needs: Define a problem (cont.) Why define a problem It helps to determine what the topic is about, and the branches of knowledge that encompass or relate to a topic. It helps to provide focus for a research topic or problem It helps to determine information needs The purpose for information needed The type of information needed What is already known What is not known (information needed) It helps to plan for information seeking process It creates an opportunity for determining words/terms used to search for information
Recognise Information Needs: Determine main subject area Example: Determine the main subject area for the question below: Question: What is the role of mass media in awakening women and men against female circumcision in Tanzania? Answer: Female Circumcision Now do the same as demonstrated above for the question indicated below: Question: What should parents do to change girls' attitude towards mathematics in primary schools in Tanzania?
Recognise Information Needs: Define information needs When defining information needs, a number of aspects are to be considered: Determine the purpose of the information What is the purpose of information: Is it for the main work (such as research proposal)? Is it for answering a particular question? What sort of information are you looking for? Specific information, e.g. a fact, figure or date Quotation Information already known What do you know about a topic/question? Information not known What don’t you know about this topic/question?
Recognise Information Needs: Define information needs What is the importance of defining information needs? It helps to provide focus for a research topic or problem It helps to build the knowledge of what is already known It assists to determine the information gap (what is not known) It creates a need to explore new information It helps to avoid looking for redundant information
Sources to find background information about a topic In order to define your information needs effectively, finding background information about a topic is important. This is done by consulting various sources such as reference sources (encyclopaedias, dictionaries), index and abstract, Internet, people etc. Why? The sources assist in providing general information about a topic Definitions General knowledge They assist to shape, formulate the topic Title of your topic or research area Topic statements Questions They provide lists or links to other sources relevant to answer the question They help to create terms/words to assist in developing search queries
Recognise Information Needs: Summary In this IL session, you have learned to: recognise your need for information through determining what your topic is about, think about your topic and need through identifying what you know and what you do not know, Familiarise yourself with the topic through reading various sources such as reference materials, Internet, consult individuals etc.