iKnow: Information skills in the 21st Century workplace

Katharine Reedy, Elizabeth Mallett, Natasha Soma


The iKnow (Information and Knowledge at Work) project at The Open University (OU) set out to explore and articulate the information skills requirements of the 21st century workplace. Although some existing research had highlighted the costs of ineffective information searching in the workplace, there appeared to be little online material to remedy this. The project was run in three phases, which involved identifying the key competencies, developing some prototype ‘bite-size’ materials and piloting them for their effectiveness in a variety of workplaces. The results of the study show that participants not only perceived the skills as relevant and useful, but also found that the bite-size model made training easier to schedule into a working day. The project team found that these materials could potentially be an important link between informal and formal learning, of particular relevance in the current economic climate.


information literacy; skills; employability; workplace; learning materials; online


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