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Library Resources for Ms Lynch's FYS Class: Thinking about Information

Thinking about Information

This exercise is designed to help you develop the ability to:

1. Define information need and amount of information needed

2. Identify type of information contained in a source and recognize purpose of type of information

3. Identify the value of potential resources in a variety of formats  

Information Sources

 Review the information sources linked below and answer the following questions:

  • What type of information source is this?  Is it news, scholarly, professional, opinion, etc.?
  • Why was this source published?  What is its purpose?  Who is its audience?
  • How were you able to make the above determinations?  What specific aspects of these information sources did you look at, analyze, read, think about, etc.?  In other words, what are the clues that help you make evaluations about these information sources?

1.  "Buy Local." Sustainable Table: Serving Up Healthy Food Choices. 2006. 14 Jan 2008.

2.  Chambers, Rebecca L. "An Exploratory Study of Local Food Affordability and Factors Related to Household Food Security and Food Purchasing Decisions." Internet Journal of Health (2007): 2.

3.  Frazier, Mya. "Farmstands vs. Big Brands." Advertising Age 78.236 (4 June 2007): 16.

4.  Kingsolver, Barbara. "Local Foods that Please the Soul." New York Times 151.51945 (22 Nov 2001): F1.

5.  Mosely, William. "Farmers in Developing World Hurt By 'Eat Local' Philosophy in US." San Francisco Chronicle 18 Nov 2007. 14 Jan 2008. 

6.  Wallgren, Christine.  "Local or Global Food Markets:  A Comparison of Energy Use for Transport."  Local Environment 11.2 (Apr 2006):  233-51.

Defining Relevance and Credibility

Using the information sources you reviewed above, determine the credibility and relevance of each source based on one of the scenarios listed below.  In other words, for each source listed above, make an judgment about its appropriateness for your scenario and explain that judgment in a sentence.  (Example:  This source is not appropriate for my scenario because it is not scholarly enough.)  Be prepared to justify your evaluation by discussing the factors you considered.

Scenario 1:  You are a nutritionist who wishes to research the local food movement in order to make recommendations to your clients.

Scenario 2:  You are a journalist writing about how local foods and local eating are marketed to consumers.

Scenario 3:  You are writing a research paper for a college class, and you are researching how a person's financial means influences whether he or she buys food locally.

Scenario 4:  You and your friend are arguing about what exactly "local food" means and you want an authoritative definition.

Scenario 5:  You are a researcher for an environmental organization and you are looking for information on energy efficiency in food transport.

Scenario 6:  You are trying to decide whether to change your food shopping habits in order to buy more local food, and you want to know more about the impact your food-purchasing decisions have on the world beyond your local community.