Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Students Use What They Know

When your search skills consist of Googling and Browsing, you must make the most of them.

There are other search skills, of course, but you can't use what you don't know.

Try this, for example: who is the registered owner of General Delivery University (easy)? And what is the address of the registered owner (not so easy)?

This is a Deep Web search, if you use Google as your starting point. Google can access the information, but the owner has two addresses. One is easy to find by googling. The other is easy to find using a Deep Web search (searching a different database).

This is an item I included in the current version of Information Researcher. When students give me the wrong answer, I know they've been googling. When they give me the 'right' address, I know they got it from a different database. Students find the wrong address by fact checking the copyright holder's name. Students find the address registered to the domain using something else.  Hopefully, they learn there's more to searching than Google along the way.

I leave this as a Challenge. I'll be changing the assessment item in Information Researcher soon, because the registered owner is 1) now deceased and 2) his ownership of the domain is due to expire within a year.

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