Faculty Use of the World Wide Web: Modeling Information Seeking Behavior in a Digital Environment Page: 29
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actions, but rather a study of communicating behavior. "The central activities of sense-
making are information seeking, processing, creating, and using. Sense-making is a
process; sense [sic] is the product of this process" (Savolainen, 1993, p. 16).
The predominant areas of research for social science information researchers
involve studying individual users' behaviors and what use they make of information
(Ellis, 1986, p. 86). In conjunction with using traditional quantitative research
methodologies, increasingly researchers are employing qualitative methods as well (Ellis,
1990b). In the following sections, reviews of the prevailing information seeking models
are reviewed and summaries are given for the more general survey descriptions of
information seeking activities by higher education faculty members and related groups.
The behavioral model for describing the information seeking process for higher
education faculty members developed by Ellis (1993, 1989a, & 1989b; Ellis & Haugan,
1997; & Ellis, Cox, & Hall, 1993) was detailed in Chapter 1 of this paper. His eight-stage
model was originally intended to help with designing new retrieval systems. Ellis and his
colleagues extended this model and the associated research methodology to study
different types of faculty members and professionals to determine the adaptability of the
Wolcott (1998) adapted Ellis' behavioral model and associated research
methodology to the study of seventh grade students' searching behavior on the Internet.
His findings indicated that Ellis' model and the "classification scheme from [Wolcott's]
study frames the protocols and produces an analysis that shows no overriding differences
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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/m1/36/: accessed February 19, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .