Module Identifier IL31620  
Academic Year 2006/2007  
Co-ordinator Dr Allen E Foster  
Semester Semester 2 (Taught over 2 semesters)  
Other staff Mr Michael A Lowe, Mr Alan Wheatley  
Pre-Requisite IL10920  
Course delivery Lecture   22 Hours. 11 x 2 hour lectures distributed across the 2 semesters  
  Practical   6 Hours. 6 x 1 hour practicals  
Assessment TypeAssessment Length/DetailsProportion
Semester Assessment Project Report 2500 words - outcomes assessed 4, 5, 6, 750%
Semester Assessment Project Report 2500 words - outcomes assessed 1, 2, 350%

Learning outcomes

On completion of this module, students should be able to:

Brief description

Effective Information Retrieval is at the heart of 'rnformation society?. Beginning with the student'r experience of Internet search engines and library OPACs the course progresses through the surface level user experience through successive layers into the underlying tools and principles of IR systems. Students will develop a working knowledge of the principles of information retrieval in the information age and generate a view of how information retrieval will develop in the future.


This module substantially revises the curriculum of the existing IL31610 (10 credit) module to reflect changes in Information Retrieval and address the needs of both students and employers.
The module in its revised form takes on a fundamentally new shape. Beginning with the more familiar information retrieval systems, Internet search engines, the course will move from the user experience through successive layers of details to the underlying traditional concepts that, although repackaged and disguised within Internet technologies, remain at the heart of modern electronic retrieval systems.

Module Skills

Team work Group activities may take place in lectures.  
Information Technology Standard techniques used in current computerised and manual information retrieval systems will examined, and their influence on the behaviour of users and on the quantity of system output will be analysed.  
Personal Development and Career planning The module outcomes are of interest to many employment directions but are of particular value in Computer Science, Librarianship, Information Management, and Management disciplines.  
Subject Specific Skills * Independent project work * Writing in an academic context * Oral discussion and presentation: classroom discussion will be encouraged as a valuable part of the learning process * Self-management: coursework requires time management and working towards goals  

Reading Lists

** Recommended Background
Burke Mary A (1999) Organization of multimedia resources; principles and practice of information retrieval Aldershot: Gower
Foskett A.C (1996) The subject approach to information 5th. London: Library Association
Gredley Ellen and Alan Hopkinson (1990) Exchanging bibliographic data: MARC and other international formats London: Library Association
Large Andrew, Lucy A. Tedd and R.J. Hartley (1999) Information seeking in the online age: principles and practice London: Bowker-Saur
Nielsen Jacob (2000) Designing Web usability New York: New riders
Rowley Jennifer and John Farrow (2000) Organizing Knowledge: an introduction to managing access to information 3rd. Aldershot; Gower
Shneiderman Ben (1998) Designing the user interface 3rd. Reading, Mass: Addison Wesley Longman

Barr C.L. and L. Schamber (1998) Users? criteria for relevance evaluation: a cross-situational comparison Information processing and Management, 34(2/3), pp219-236
Bates M.J (1989) The design of browsing and berry-picking techniques for the online search interface Online Review, 13(5), pp407-431
Buckland B, B.A. Norgard and C. Plaunt (1993) Filing, filtering, and the First Few Found Information Technology and Libraries, vol.12, no.3, pp311-319
Croft W.B What do people want from Information Retrieval D-Lib Magazine, November. Online, available at:
Harter S.P and C.A. Hert (1997) Evaluation of information retrieval systems: approaches, issues and methods Annual Review of Information Science and technology (ARIST), 32, pp3-94
Travis I (1998) From storage and retrieval systems to search engines: text retrieval in evolution ASIS Bulletin, April-May
Wilson, T.D., N.J. Ford, D. Ellis, A.E. Foster and A. Spink (2000) Uncertainty and its correlates The New Review of Information Behaviour Research, 1(1), pp69-84

Web Page/Sites
Blackwell bibliographic services Tables of contents enrichment service Online, available at:
Library of Congress; Network Development and MARC Standards Office MARC 21 Concise format for bibliographic data Online, available at;
National Library of Australia Meta matters Online, available at:
Olson Hope A Between control and chaos: an ethical perspective on authority control Online, available at;


This module is at CQFW Level 6