Library Research Skills
Information Case Study
THE CASE OF KELLY
Kelly decided to do her paper on hiring of minorities in the workplace. Many of her classes had been talking about the value of diversity and a multicultural work force. She didn't really understand which groups of people were considered minorities, or what issues were involved. She proceeded to the second floor of the library to look for the most recent issues of Newsweek, hoping to find an article or two. Not finding anything, she remembered that her teacher had talked about the periodical Business Week. She looked at the current issue and found articles on employment, but nothing on minorities. She talked a friend into helping her find the older issues on paper copy and microfiche. They browsed for two hours and still didn't find anything useful. Time for lunch!
After lunch Kelly returned to the library, passed the smiling reference librarian and headed for the public catalogue. Surely she could find a book on employee hiring. Yes, this one looked good, Hiring Valuable Employees, by A. J. Mayer, Prentice-Hall, 1972. Best news yet, it had a bibliography! Maybe she could get some other information sources from the bibliography.
Before going upstairs for the book, Kelly decided to stop by World Book Encyclopaedia. Her friend had said it was at the back of the Reference Room. She could probably rely on it for a lot of information about minorities.
QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION
- Did Kelly make any errors in trying to find information? If so, what were they?
- What are the good points of her search?
- Were the information sources Kelly used appropriate? Why, or why not?
- What other sources would you have used, or what would you have done differently?
Adapted from Designs for active learning;a sourcebook of classroom strategies for information education. Fig 34.1. Gradowski, Gail. Assoc. of College and Research Libraries Instruction section Teaching Methods.