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Dissertation Information for Colleen Cool

- Colleen Cool

- Ph.D.

- Library and Information Science

- Rutgers University (USA) (1997)

- Ronald Rice

- [Indecipherable1]
- Nicholas Belkin
- Tefko Saracevic

MPACT Status: Complete - Except Indecipherables

Title: Situation assessment in information retrieval interaction

Abstract: The information system environment in which information seeking takes place today, and will take place in the near future, is rapidly changing in two important ways: it is becoming a new searching environment, with new systems and search mechanisms; and at the same time this searching environment is creating a new interaction environment for all of the participants involved. This dissertation is concerned with better understanding the nature of information retrieval (IR) interaction in new system environments.

A model of information retrieval behavior as social interaction is presented, which takes into account two major types of information interaction goals: those which are topically driven, and those which are situationally directed, in which a person's goal is to understand various aspects of the interaction situation itself. This second type of interaction goal is labeled Situation Assessment. Four dimensions of Situation Assessment (SA) are described in the model: assessment of (1) self-performance; (2) norms of interaction; (3) communication conventions; and (4) shared meaning, or intersubjectivity.

A study was conducted to empirically investigate the nature of Situation Assessment in one new information retrieval environment. Fifty experienced online searchers were recruited to perform searches using an IR system that contained several features that were new to them. A variety of data sources were used, including: search logs; video tapes and verbal protocols of search sessions; pre- and post-search interviews with searchers; and self-administered questionnaires.

Analysis of the data indicates that Situation Assessment is an important cognitive activity in information retrieval interaction. When all four SA categories are combined, Situation Assessment expression appears more than twice as frequently as Topical Relevance assessment. Contrary to expectation, Situation Assessment is not positively related to information retrieval performance. A pattern is observed in which it appears as if interaction with new IR system features may give rise to situational uncertainty which stimulates SA expression. These results demonstrate the usefulness of social interaction theory for understanding information retrieval interaction as a process of communication between knowledge resources and system users. Implications of these findings for IR system design are discussed in the conclusion.

MPACT Scores for Colleen Cool

A = 0
C = 3
A+C = 3
T = 0
G = 0
W = 0
TD = 0
TA = 0
calculated 2008-01-31 06:10:37

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Students under Colleen Cool

- None

- Soo Young Rieh - Rutgers University (2000)
- Jeonghyun Kim - Rutgers University (2006)
- Judy H. Jeng - Rutgers University (2006)