Investigating school pupils' information behaviour via intranet usage data

Andrew Kenneth Shenton

Abstract


Despite the popularity of electronic information resources among young people and the prevalence of organisational intranets in schools, few researchers have exploited the potential of intranet usage logs to investigate pupils' information behaviour. Nevertheless, the method is attractive on several counts. As it enables data to be collected without the participants' knowledge, it is unlikely to affect behaviour and highly objective data can be gathered. This material can lead to the use of supplementary methods allowing the elicitation of detailed qualitative data. Researchers are, however, restricted to the types of insights that the system log provides and are further constrained by the purposes for which school managers use their intranet. Ethical questions surrounding the gathering of data that participants are not aware is being generated may also be asked. Notwithstanding these issues, intranet usage logs clearly offer considerable potential for the investigation of information behaviour in a range of contexts.

Keywords


Information behaviour; intranets; young people

Full Text: PDF

CILIP Registered Charity no 313014

ISSN 1756-1086 (Online)