Faculty Use of the World Wide Web: Modeling Information Seeking Behavior in a Digital Environment Page: 36
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perceptions and an individual's ability to discriminate and evaluate these stimuli to one's
senses. The "context" referred to the individual's role and the organization or discipline
within which the individual belonged or practiced. The "process" involved the various
stages of seeking information as depicted in a flow chart. The "interaction" between
"conditions," "context," and "process" affected the flow within the model and the
direction of how information was found and used by the information seeker. The fifth
element in Brown's model was represented by the various "barriers" to the search
process. These "barriers" could include "self," "role," and the "environment" ("context")
and in turn they could inhibit the flow within the model. "Barriers to the seeker's
(patron's) information-seeking behavior can occur at multiple time location[s] in the
process, can arise from multiple sources, and may not be recognized as barriers to the
seeking behavior; rather, as boundaries of that behavior" (p. 13). Brown hoped her model
would produce information to aid administrators of information providing services in
designing new services and improving the delivery of information to their users.
Downs (1997) provided a practical application of developing web-based, access
features to the holdings and resources of a research library. He designed these access
features from his research of how scholars used Web-based resources. These features
could assist scholars in their use of the electronic library.
Olaisen (1984) developed a model similar to Brown in his study of information
seeking behavior of Norwegian scientists and scholars. Olaisen's model included
"cognitive," "affective," and "physiological" motivational factors that depicted the
individual's behavior in the information seeking process. Olaisen's model also included
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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/m1/43/: accessed June 26, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .