Modelling how people find and use information has been a significant area of research in academia for decades.
Generally, the models represent – usually on an abstract level and in diagrammatic form – the circumstances in which a need for information arises in an individual’s life, the actions they take to pursue appropriate material, and how they exploit what they have found to resolve the situation that triggered the search. Barriers and other factors that affect the relevant processes may also be shown.
Such models serve a range of practical purposes. In education, teachers can draw on them to discover more about the problems students typically encounter during independent learning projects as well as to gain insights into how their skills can be developed further.
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