The development of young people's information needs

Andrew Shenton, Pat Dixon

Abstract


This paper draws on findings from recent research to examine the types of information young people require in their lives and how these needs develop during childhood. It became apparent in the study that first schoolers are heavily dependent on adults for advice and emotional support. Young children often want subject-based information on matters of which they have personal experience. For middle schoolers, academic generic skills may become important and their needs for subject knowledge in support of curriculum subjects are diverse. High schoolers typically require advice on their futures and material to inform decisions. Many of their academic needs emerge from homework and revision. The article concludes by discussing the implications for educators and school librarians of the developmental picture that is presented, and highlights the need for further investigation into young people's information needs.

Keywords


information needs; childhood; school librarians;

Full Text: PDF

CILIP Registered Charity no 313014

ISSN 1756-1086 (Online)