I, as many other teachers, especially in medium-high and high education, have seen young students search in a sea of books and photocopies the information they require to put together a paper they need to hand in –by general rule- on the following day. Distressed and desperate, they pick up a book, and then another, and another, and they glance through them from beginning to end and vice versa, or they keep randomly opening it, with the hope that, at a given point they will turn the page and Oh! Surprise!, just there all the information they were looking for is found.
This situation (which can be due to a failure in the teacher’s planning), evidences a serious failure in the methodology of searching for information. Many students wander the hallways or archives looking for something that they do not clearly know what it is; they bump into a title that has a word related to the work at hand; and with the idea that “there must be something here”, they start to go through it waiting for a miracle.
In order to effectively find information, an adequate search needs to be conducted. This reduces the time, effort, and stress involved in the task. Before reading the contents, it is necessary for the student to assess the book, to look at it, value it, and analyze it carefully and thoroughly.