ASIST AM 03 2003 START ConferenceManager    

Fast surfers, Broad scanners and Deep divers as users of information technology – relating information preferences to personality traits

Jannica Heinström

Presented at ASIST 2003 Annual Meeting -- Humanizing Information Technology: From Ideas to Bits and Back (ASIST AM 03 2003), Westin Long Beach, Long Beach, California, October 20 - 23, 2003


This paper will discuss the influence of personality traits and approaches to studying on students’ information-seeking behaviour, with a specific focus on their use of information technology. The results were obtained in a study of 305 university students who completed the NEO Five-Factor Inventory measuring personality, the ASSIST test measuring approaches to studying and a questionnaire regarding information seeking behaviour. Three information-seeking patterns emerged from the analyses; Fast surfers, Broad scanners and Deep divers. These patterns could be related to different personality traits and study approaches. The influence of personality and study approaches on information-seeking behaviour points to the importance of customizing information services to meet individual needs.

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