15 November 2008

Information Management and graduate students

There has never been such a wealth of free and low cost tools for personal and research information management, but students still struggle to achieve an effective routine to get them through the research and writing process.

"All the students we interviewed struggle to achieve proficiency in both traditional and digital technologies. We did not interview a single student who had settled into a satisfactory routine in either. Graduate students change their work processes over the course of their projects and most complain that they have not found adequate ways to organize information and retrieve it later on. We found enormous variety in the way they approach these and other tasks, including communication with peers and advisors."

Ryan Randall, Jane Smith, Katie Clark, & Nancy Fried Foster. (2008). The next generation of academics : a report on a study conducted at the University of Rochester. University of Rochester. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/1802/6053. Accessed 15 November 2008

This paper looks at what authoring tools could be integrated into institutional repositories to meet the needs of individual and collaborative writing and to make it easy to move completed documents into the repository. It also calls for librarians to take on a mentoring role with students as information management experts. Section B. Implications of findings for our software outlines the challenges that students face.

A good read for academic librarians and institutional repository managers.