Phases and Steps in the Access to Data in Information Tools

Research output: Research - peer-reviewJournal article



  • Henning Bergenholtz
  • Theo Bothma
    Theo BothmaDepartment of Information Science, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South AfricaSouth Africa
  • Rufus Gouws
    Rufus GouwsDepartment of Afrikaans and Dutch, University of Stellenbosch, South AfricaSouth Africa
In the information society, it is much easier for someone to find relevant data if s/he has an information need because of the availability of databases and electronic information tools. In information science this topic normally is treated under the topic “information behaviour”. In lexicography the term “access process” is used (Bergenholtz and Gouws 2010). It can be shown that this process beginning with the “origin of the problem” leading to an “information source usage situation” contains different parts, and that each part can contain different steps. The most important terms here are access route and access time, but not access structure. This term is not only ill defined – it is less relevant, because each user has different access routes, and also the same user makes use of different routes in different cases.
We describe four experiments in a case study with one test person how the different access processes in different user situations take place. This test person is trying to solve different accounting information needs in different user situations.
The aim of this paper is to compare and contrast the access process terminology of lexicography and information science, to systematize the terms in a logical structure and to show how these disciplines complement one another by providing clearer definitions to describe the different access processes.
Original languageEnglish
Book seriesLexikos
Pages (from-to)1-30
Number of pages30
StatePublished - 23 Nov 2015

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