Faculty Use of the World Wide Web: Modeling Information Seeking Behavior in a Digital Environment Page: 17
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By July 2000, Perlman and Johnson (2000) estimated that the Intemrnet had grown
to contain "2.1 billion unique, publicly available [home]pages." The rate of growth was
approximately seven million homepages a day. For additional information on the history
and development of the Intemrnet and the Web, see Arnold and Arnold (1997), Cartwright
(1996), Green (1996), "Revolution@alma" (1996), Roberts (1994), and Shade (1995).
With its availability to higher education beginning in the late 1980s and early
1990s, the Intemrnet has now become essential to higher education's teaching, research,
and service roles. The president of Harvard University (Rudenstine, 1997) believed the
Internet had a key role to play in the higher education process. He felt that the Intemrnet
could provide students and scholars with access to essential information beyond that of
the traditional research library. Students and scholars would no longer be tied to the
resources of the local library or information obtainable through interlibrary loan or
expensive research trips. In turn, faculty members would use the Intemrnet to create
"unusually rich course materials," as well as enable distant students to receive instruction
from any teacher at any campus. As more faculty members adopted an active learning
approach in the classroom, the Intemrnet would enhance the "conversational" aspects of
information exchange between students and between students and the instructor.
Rudenstine concluded his opinion piece with "In short, the Intemrnet has distinct powers to
complement, reinforce, and enhance traditional approaches to university teaching and
learning" (p. A48).
Increasingly, scholars, and researchers use the Intemet in place of more traditional
venues to offer their thoughts, research findings, and theories for review by their peers.
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Fortin, Maurice G. Faculty Use of the World Wide Web: Modeling Information Seeking Behavior in a Digital Environment, dissertation, December 2000; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc2723/m1/24/: accessed June 28, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .