SEEKS – Adult Learners’ Information Seeking Strategies in the Information Society
- Learning Sector
- Vocational Education and Training
- EU Funding Programme
- Initiative Type
- Project aimed at development of IL as social objective
- Literacy Area
- Internet Literacy
- Geographical/Social Range
- Type of Institution
- Contact Details
- Barbara Jones
Project Coordinator and Partners
The SEEKS project was coordinated by the Institute of Education Research Centre at Manchester Metropolitan University, UK and was funded by the EU Socrates Minerva programme (Promotion of Open & Distance Learning - Information & Communication Technologies in the Field of Education).
The other partners were Universiteit van Amsterdam, the Institute of Applied & Computational Mathematics in Greece, Universitat de Barcelona, Spain and Universitat des Saarlandes, Germany.
Success in operating in a network environment requires having effective information search strategies. The SEEKS project aimed to elucidate the need for recognition of difference and offer guidelines to teachers and trainers, developers of educational software, educational websites and portals offering pathways into education and training which took into account different approaches to process of information seeking. The main aim of SEEKS project was therefore to examine information seeking strategies, which have been used by adult learners searching information on the internet.
The core objectives of SEEK were to:
- clarify the need for recognition of difference in information seeking behaviours and to offer guidelines of those differences to be taken into account in varied learning environments;
- develop a trans-nationally validated taxonomy of ICT related information seeking strategies among adult learners in formal and distributed learning environments based on analyzing users' seeking and searching strategies as they happen in real situations;
- produce a census mapping the transnational distribution of these strategies;
- formulate good practice guidelines for tutors, trainers and system developers to assist the development and production of appropriate curricula and training content and systems design;
In summary, the SEEKS project carried out a trans-national census of the Information Seeking Behaviours (ISBs) of some those groups of ICT users which have been less well-studied in previous ISB studies.
The taxonomy and methodology for the project were developed on the basis of a theoretical review of current models of information seeking. The same methodology and tools were used in Spain, Germany, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands and Greece with the aim of developing a trans-nationally validated taxonomy of adults’ information seeking strategies. The project team gathered comprehensive data on the Information Seeking Behaviors of adult learners and created a set of guidelines for developers of educational software and ICT-based learning instructors.
In summary, the main project outputs were:
- development of transnational validated taxonomy of information seeking strategies;
- a mapping of distribution of information seeking strategies;
- guidelines for ODL teachers and trainers to facilitate optimal use of user and student information seeking strategies;
- guidelines for ODL systems designers to facilitate optimum accommodation of varied information seeking strategies
The project was completed in 2003. However, the outcomes of the project contributed significantly to a process accelerating the integration of previously excluded groups into the Information Society.