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 BIG SIX RESEARCH STEPS
Big Six Research Steps  |  Infotrac, Other Databases & Encyc  |  Search Engines Other Sources Research Guidebook

Big6 Skills Overview

Listed below are the six basic steps of the Big6 model and components of each step commonly referred to as "the little twelve." Click on each skill to see potential uses for each component.

1. Task Definition 
1.1 Define the information problem
1.2 Identify information needed in order to complete the task (to solve the information problem)
2. Information Seeking Strategies  
2.1 Determine the range of possible sources (brainstorm)
2.2 Evaluate the different possible sources to determine priorities (select the best sources)
3. Location and Access 
3.1 Locate sources (intellectually and physically) 
3.2 Find information within sources 
4. Use of Information   
4.1 Engage (e.g., read, hear, view, touch) the information in a source 
4.2 Extract relevant information from a source 
5. Synthesis   
5.1 Organize information from multiple sources 
5.2 Present the information 
6. Evaluation 
6.1 Judge the product (effectiveness) 
6.2 Judge the information problem-solving process (efficiency)

Task Definition
  • 1.1 Define the information problem 
    • Outline the steps for preparing for physical education class & note if any information is required for any step 
    • Determine whether any of the activities for a science lab have some information requirement
  • 1.2 Identify information needed in order to complete the task 
    • For each information-related activity in the same science lab, note whether it involves location and access, information use, or synthesis 
    • Realize that the assignment requires both looking around and labeling a map

     
    Information Seeking Strategies
  • 2.1 Determine the range of possible sources (brainstorm) 
    • List where to find literary criticism information 
    • Inventory all of the computer resources available in the school
  • 2.2 Evaluate the different possible sources to determine priorities (select the best sources)
    • Decide whether to ask an expert or use a reference book 
    • Decide whether it is ok to use an encyclopedia for an assignment

    Location and Access
  • 3.1 Locate sources (intellectually and physically) 
    • Find a particular book on the shelf 
    • Draw and label a map of the library media center
  • 3.2 Find information within sources 
    • Look up an article in the SIRS' Energy Series 
    • Find an article on the current rock music scene using a periodical index on CD-ROM

    Use of Information
  • 4.1 Engage (e.g.) read, hear, view, touch) the information in a source 
    • Scan a book to determine its usefulness 
    • Listen to an audio cassette of Tale of Two Cities
  • 4.2 Extract relevant information from a source 
    • Take notes on bibliographic information for later use 
    • Take notes on a magazine article

    Synthesis
  • 5.1 Organize information from multiple sources 
    • Create a database on major cities of the Midwest 
    • Put notecards (from multiple sources) in a logical order
  • 5.2 Present the information 
    • Create a printout from a database 
    • Draw and label a map of Africa

    Evaluation
  • 6.1 Judge the product (effectiveness) 
    • Set criteria for judging anti-smoking posters 
    • Determine whether the information need as originally defined is met.
  • 6.2 Judge the information problem-solving process (efficiency) 
    • Determine which notetaking techniques are working 
    • State what you would do differently next time
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    Big Six Research Steps  |  Infotrac, Other Databases & Encyc Search Engines  |  Other Sources Research Guidebook

    © 2000 by Tom Albrecht 
    Site created Aug 2000
    Last Update Aug 2000