Magazine article The Times Higher Education Supplement : THE

Going beyond Google Again: Strategies for Using and Teaching the Invisible Web

Magazine article The Times Higher Education Supplement : THE

Going beyond Google Again: Strategies for Using and Teaching the Invisible Web

Article excerpt

Going Beyond Google Again: Strategies for Using and Teaching the Invisible Web. By Jane Devine and Francine Egger-Sider. Facet Publishing, 192pp, Pounds 49.95. ISBN 9781856048385. Published 23 October 2013

Studies show that the "invisible web", the internet's deeper layers of content, is poorly exploited by university students, who continue to rely primarily on general-purpose search engines and "surface" resources. Like the fabled 90 per cent of an iceberg lurking below the ocean's surface, the invisible web hides a vast expanse of scholarly resources within subscription databases, library websites and information deep within subject gateways, all of which require multiple and often advanced tools or knowledge to locate.

Survey data collected by Jane Devine and Francine Egger-Sider are at the heart of this discussion of the theory and practice of teaching the invisible web, which builds on their 2009 book, Going Beyond Google. Informed by research about how students engage in online information- seeking, they have surveyed educators and librarians in several countries with the aim of finding out which, if any, strategies information professionals and teachers are using to teach the invisible web. They also sought the views of experts on whether teaching the invisible web was necessary. After revealing that the majority of their respondents support the idea of teaching the invisible web to improve students' research skills, the authors go on to offer practical suggestions to educators and librarians about methods of teaching it, whether in informal, one-to-one or classroom settings.

Devine and Egger-Sider make a convincing case in arguing that educators and librarians need to hammer home the importance of using a toolbox of search techniques rather than simply relying on one or two that only skim the web's surface. …

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