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Information Skills Toolbox

Types of Information

Before you start searching for information for an assignment, a project or a thesis, it is important to know which types of information and corresponding resources are available. Do you need information about the most recent developments in your field, or do you want to find academic articles and/or figures to support your research? You will find this information in various types of information resources. You can divide information into three categories:

  • Form
  • Level
  • Content

Form of information

Full text information

In resources with full text information, you have direct access to complete publications. Academic articles are not always freely available. Therefore, Buas Library has subscribed to various relevant databases, giving you full text access. In the part Discover your Library of this Toolbox you will learn which resources are available to you via BUas Library. 

Bibliographic information

Some databases and library catalogues do not give immediate full text access to publications. Instead, you will find descriptions of publications with a reference to the location. These so-called bibliographic resources contain information on publications, such as title, author, year of publication and a reference to a location, such as a shelf mark in a library or a link to a digital publication.

Level of information

Subject-oriented information

Subject-oriented information is specialist information on a certain discipline. The content is aimed towards practical applications and is written for professionals in the field. You will find subject-oriented information in professional magazines, for example Funworld, and in subject-specific databases, such as Warc and Mintel. BUas Library gives access to specialist information in your field of study. In the part Discover your Library in this Toolbox you will get insight in the subject-oriented information that is available to you.

Scholarly information

Scholarly information is published in academic journals or books, mostly in English. The quality of these texts is always assessed by two or more members of the same academic discipline. This is known as peer review.

In the video on the left-hand side of this page, you will be shown the difference between academic journals and professional magazines.

The Buas Library collection contains various databases with scholarly information, such as ScienceDirect and Springer Journals and E-books. Furthermore, you can find databases that contain freely available academic information, such as Narcis

Popular scientific information

In addition to scholarly information, there is also popular scientific information. This information is written for people who are not particularly specialised in a certain field of study. An example of this type of information is a journal such as The Economist or The New Yorker.

General information

General information is information written for the general public, such as Time magazine and websites like http://www.bbc.com/news.  Be critical when you use this type of information. Check out the part of this toolbox on assessing information, under Evaluating Information. 

Content of information resources

Current information

Current information concerns recent developments and is intended to keep the reader up-to-date with the latest developments in a particular field. This information can be found in newspapers, magazines and on websites. Consulting these resources is a good way of keeping track of the latest developments. However, it is important to be cautious of their reliability. Check out the part of this Toolbox on evaluating information

Buas Library has subscriptions to printed newspapers, such as BN De Stem and a database with international newspapers, called LexisNexis. You can find LexisNexis in the overview of databases on the BUas Library website.

Background information

It is important to know what relevant terms, models and theories belong to a certain discipline. This concerns background information which can be found in books and manuals. BUas Library has a large collection of background information. Check out the Library Catalogue and the Metasearch to find books and manuals on the topics you are interested in. 

Factual information

Sometimes, you need facts and figures to support your research. These could be facts concerning a company, statistical facts or concrete facts. You can find this factual information in databases, encyclopediae and dictionaries. On the Buas Library website you will find databases with company info, such as LexisNexis, databases with statistical information, such as Statista and encyclopediae and dictionaries.

Research results

Research results, such as results of experiments, theoretical calculations, models andcomputer simulations, and reports on practical applications can be found in reports, PhD theses, but also in scholarly journal articles. You will find this type of information in databases such as ScienceDirect.‚Äč