Many IR researchers believe training in system use would improve end-user searching and search results (Fidel et al., 1999, p. 34; Halcoussis, Halverson, Lowenberg, & Lowenberg, 2002, p. 154; Lancaster, Elzy, Zeter, Metzler, & Low, 1994, pp. 383–384; Lazonder, Biemans, & Wopereis, 2000, p. 581; Mead et al., 2000, p. 121; Hölscher & Strube, 2000, p. 345; Nash & Wilson, 1991, p. 90; Outsell Inc., 2000; Peters, 1991, pp. 127-141; Wolfram & Xie, 2002, p. 644). They make this recommendation despite research findings that demonstrate end users avoid training opportunities, for example, end users hardly use the instructions systems post[ed] online (Bond, 2004, p. 258; Borgman, 1986, p. 396; Cooper, 2001, p. 146; Jones et al., 2000, p. 167; Markey, 1984, p. 129; Mischo & Lee, 1987, p. 247), they tell us that they search too infrequently to be motivated to seek training (Sewell & Teitelbaum, 1986, p. 240), and they think they already know what they would learn from formal training (Fidel et al., 1999, p. 27; Lancaster et al., 1994, p. 382).

Karen Markey. 2007. Twenty-Five Years of End-User Searching, Part 1: Research Findings. JASIST Volume 58 ,  Issue 8  (June 2007) Pages: 1071 – 1081.

Enough said.


One thought on “training”

  1. That reminds me of something I once read in a book about software development. If you are a project manager, as the suggestion goes, and your developers come to you saying, “It will work great if we could only train our users to…” — stop them right there and tell them to rethink their design until they eliminate that phrase.

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