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How college students *really* do research – findings from recent studies

How college students *really* do research – findings from recent studies

“We hear a lot about how college students “only search in Google these days” or “never look past the first page of results.”   How true are such commonly held assumptions?  Are they supported by recent examinations of student research behaviors?  For answers, I looked at seven studies published within the last three years.  Here is what I learned:

Students do use library databases – though they often start in Google

Discovery is not the problem – it’s knowing how to evaluate, analyze, and synthesize

“If I can’t find it, it must not be there” – Students perceive their search skills to be better than they really are

“What is it?”  Students have difficulty finding, using, and understanding library online resources

Students use the resources they know best – even if completely wrong for their topic

Wikipedia is more than an encyclopedia, it’s an access point

“Good enough” –  not looking past the first page of results

“I want it now” – ease and speed of access more important than quality or relevance

Need help?  Ask Facebook, not librarians”

Read more details and the bibliography here:


Posted on: December 8, 2014, 6:23 am Category: Uncategorized

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