A metatheory integrating social, biological and technological factors in information behavior research

Journal Title: Webology - Year 2014, Vol 11, Issue 1


A metatheory is presented and diagrammed as an integrated conceptual framework for information seeking and use. It represents the symbiotic relationship between users and the technological environment. Receiving and adapting to information is achieved through each user’s biological satisficing procedures defined by group information practices, namely, noticing information, appraising it and evaluating it. Information use is achieved through optimizing procedures, namely, activating goal-setting intentions, constructing a plan and executing it through acting upon the technological environment to attain one’s goals. Evidence is given by listing a variety of information seeking behaviors that others have identified in their review of the literature, then showing how each element fits within the model, as well as by analyzing the interpretive discourse of college students while engaged in carrying out assigned information tasks. Each discourse segment in the samples was categorized as either an affective, cognitive or sensorimotor procedure carried out by the user, and transcribed as a string or sequence. This code sequence was then compared with the sequence produced when the model’s mapping is followed. Every discourse sample inspected contained the six categories specified by the model. The metatheory is suitable for providing a common framework for discussing various areas of information behavior research.

Authors and Affiliations

Leon James and Diane Nahl


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  • EP ID EP687729
  • DOI -
  • Views 152
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How To Cite

Leon James and Diane Nahl (2014). A metatheory integrating social, biological and technological factors in information behavior research. Webology, 11(1), -. https://europub.co.uk/articles/-A-687729