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Title: Collaborative information seeking: An investigation of community members' behavior
Author: WU Dan; XIANG Xue
Source: Chinese Journal of Library and Information Science
Issued Date: 2015-03-25
Volume: 8, Issue:1, Pages:21-36
Keyword: Collaborative information seeking (CIS) ; Information seeking behavior ; Community ; Task difficulty ; Community type
Subject: 新闻学与传播学 ; 图书馆、情报与文献学
Indexed Type: 其他
Corresponding Author: Dan Wu(Email:woodan@whu.edu.cn)
DOC Type: Research Papers
Abstract: Purpose: This article reports on an experiment that tested community members' collaborative information seeking (CIS) behavior, with an emphasis on how community type and task difficulty can affect user behavior and user awareness in collaboration.


Design/methodology/approach: We carried out a laboratory study with 18 participants in 9 pairs using an experimental CIS system. Data were collected from questionnaires, Web logs and semi-structured interviews. Descriptive statistics and two-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) were used for data analysis.


Findings: Compared with non-community members, community participants had a better understanding of search tasks and were aware of the ways of completing tasks successfully. They did not depend on the information retrieval system when constructing search queries and would adopt diversified cooperation strategies. They were more likely to recommend information to their partners. However, no significant difference was found between subjectbased community and interest-based community in CIS practices and user awareness in collaboration. In addition, task difficulty only influenced user preference of issuing queries and confidence of completing search tasks.


Research limitations: Our work was limited by the community type we chose and the small group size, which could affect the generalizability of our findings and should be addressed in future studies.


Practical implications: The study results will help inform information system designers as they design collaborative systems to facilitate social communication in the information seeking process.

Originality/value: Few studies have investigated community participants' information seeking practices. This study provides insights into community-based CIS behavior. The findings will help us understand social interactions among community members during their information seeking process.
English Abstract: Purpose: This article reports on an experiment that tested community members' collaborative information seeking (CIS) behavior, with an emphasis on how community type and task difficulty can affect user behavior and user awareness in collaboration.


Design/methodology/approach: We carried out a laboratory study with 18 participants in 9 pairs using an experimental CIS system. Data were collected from questionnaires, Web logs and semi-structured interviews. Descriptive statistics and two-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) were used for data analysis.


Findings: Compared with non-community members, community participants had a better understanding of search tasks and were aware of the ways of completing tasks successfully. They did not depend on the information retrieval system when constructing search queries and would adopt diversified cooperation strategies. They were more likely to recommend information to their partners. However, no significant difference was found between subjectbased community and interest-based community in CIS practices and user awareness in collaboration. In addition, task difficulty only influenced user preference of issuing queries and confidence of completing search tasks.


Research limitations: Our work was limited by the community type we chose and the small group size, which could affect the generalizability of our findings and should be addressed in future studies.


Practical implications: The study results will help inform information system designers as they design collaborative systems to facilitate social communication in the information seeking process.

Originality/value: Few studies have investigated community participants' information seeking practices. This study provides insights into community-based CIS behavior. The findings will help us understand social interactions among community members during their information seeking process.
Funder: This work is supported by the National Program for Support of Top-notch Young Professionals.
Related URLs: 查看原文
Language: 英语
Content Type: 期刊论文
URI: http://ir.las.ac.cn/handle/12502/7663
Appears in Collections:Chinese Journal of Library and Information Science-2015_期刊论文

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description.institution: School of Information Management, Wuhan University, Wuhan 430072, China

Recommended Citation:
WU Dan,XIANG Xue. Collaborative information seeking: An investigation of community members' behavior[J]. Chinese Journal of Library and Information Science,2015,8(1):21-36.
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