How Freshmen Conduct Course Research Once They Enter College

Alison J. Head, Dec 06, 2013
Commentary by Stephen Downes

I guess what surprises me most about this study is that they're still using the term 'freshmen' in 2013. What doesn't surprise me is that new college students (sometimes called 'first year students' or, if you must, 'frosh') found that they needed more than 'look it up on Google' as research skill. But it's not because it's so much more deep and complicated reserach than they've seen before. It's not because "they were unprepared to deal with the enormous amount of information they were expected to find and process for college research assignments." It's because so much of it is blocked from the open web, either buried in proprietary archives or - worse - available on paper only.

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