Internet navigation and information search strategies: how do children are influenced by their participation in an intensive ICT project

  • María Graciela Badilla Quintana
  • Meritxell Cortada Pujol
  • Jordi Riera Romaní


The aim of this study was to describe and analyze the involvement showed by 190 students who participated in an introduction to Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) project, in public schools from Spain. By means of an Internet browsing test, access and information selection processes were afforded. The purpose of the study was to explore whether students who usually worked with ICT in their classrooms, had better knowledge and management with computing tools, and if they are better prepared to research and select information. Results show that students of elementary and secondary education, who have a greater contact with ICT, but not specifically introduced to searching for information on the Internet, know how to use the technology. All these students show better knowledge and control of the computer as well as presenting better Web literacy skills. Although they found, organized, used and assessed the information better their literacy in Web information is missing key skills, especially in analyzing, assessing and summarizing information.


Internet search ICT ICT skills Web literacy Education 


  1. ACPI and Protegeles (2002). Estudio sobre Seguridad Infantil y costumbres de los menores en Internet. Retrieved from
  2. Agosto, D. E. (2002). Bounded rationality and satisficing in young people’s web based decision making. Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology, 53(1), 16–27.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. ALA. (2000). Information literacy competency standards for higher education. Chicago: Association of College and Research Libraries.Google Scholar
  4. Albion, P. (2007). Student teachers’ confidence and competence for finding information on the internet. In C. Crawford, et al. (Eds.), Proceedings of society for information technology and teacher education international conference 2007 (pp. 1244–1249). Chesapeake, VA: AACE.Google Scholar
  5. Arteixo tendrá el primer IES de España con un PC por alumno (2007). El Correo Gallego, p. 20. Retrieved from
  6. Area, M. (2005). Nuevas tecnologías, globalización y migraciones. Barcelona: Editorial Octaedro.Google Scholar
  7. Badilla, M. G. & Cortada, M. (2010). Effects of an ICT educational project on the students’ digital literacy development. International Journal of Technology Enhanced Learning, 2(4), 309–320.Google Scholar
  8. Benito, F. (2000). Nuevas necesidades, nuevas habilidades. Fundamentos de la alfabetización en información. In J. A. Gómez (Ed.), Estrategias y modelos para enseñar a usar la información (pp. 9–68). Murcia: KR.Google Scholar
  9. Bos, N. (2000). High school students’ critical evaluation of scientific resources on the world wide web. Journal of Science Education and Technology, 9, 161–173.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Brand-Gruwel, S., Wopereis, I., & Walraven, A. (2009). A descriptive model of information problem solving while using internet. Computers and Education, 53, 1207–1217.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Consell Superior d’Avaluació del Sistema Educatiu. (2004). COMPETIC. Competències bàsiques en les Tecnologies de la Informació i Comunicació [CD]. Barcelona.Google Scholar
  12. Doyle, C. S. (1992). Outcome measures for information literacy withing the National Education Goals of 1990. Final report to national forum on information literacy. Retrieved from Eric database (ED 351033).Google Scholar
  13. Eastin, M. S., Yang, M., & Nathanson, A. I. (2006). Children of the net: An empirical exploration into the evaluation of Internet content. Journal of Broadcasting and Electronic Media, 50(2), 211–230.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Fidel, R., Davies, R. K., Douglass, M. H., Holder, J. K., Hopkins, C. J., Kushner, E. J., et al. (1999). A visit to the information mall: Web searching behavior of high school students. Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology, 50(1), 24–37.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Fuentes, M. (2001). Cerca d’informació a internet: Qualitat i optimizació dels resultats. Perspectiva Escolar, 260, 72–78.Google Scholar
  16. Fundación Telefónica. (2009). 10 años sociedad de la información. La sociedad de la información en España 2009. Colección Fundación Telefónica. Barcelona: Editorial Ariel.Google Scholar
  17. Knezek, G., & Christensen, R. (2002). Impact of new information technologies on teachers and students. Education and Information Technologies, 7, 144–161.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Kuhlthau, C. C. (2007). Reflections on the development of the model of the information search process (ISP): Excerpts from the Lazerow lecture, University of Kentucky, April 2, 2007. Bulletin of the American Society for Information Science, 33(5), 32–37.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Kuiper, E., Volman, M., & Terwel, J. (2005). The web as an information resource in K–12 education: Strategies for supporting students in searching and processing information. Review of Educational Research, 75(3), 285–328. doi:10.3102/00346543075003285.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Kuiper, E., Volman, M., & Terwel, J. (2008). Students’ use of web literacy skills and strategies: Searching, reading and evaluating web information. Information Research: An International Electronic Journal, 13(3), paper 351. Retrieved from
  21. Kuiper, E., Volman, M., & Terwel, J. (2009). Developing web literacy in collaborative inquiry activities. Computers and Education, 52, 668–680.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Large, A., Beheshti, J., & Rahman, T. (2002). Gender differences in collaborative web searching behaviour: An elementary school study. Information Processing and Management, 38(3), 427–443.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Livingstone, S. (2003). Children’s use of the internet: Reflections on the emerging research agenda. New Media and Society, 5, 147–166.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Lorenzen, M. (2001). The land of confusion? High school students and their use of the world wide web for research. Research Strategies, 18(2), 151–163.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Luconi, F., & Tabatabai, D. (1999). Searching the web: Expert-Novice differences in a problem solving context. Retrieved from Eric database (ED 429619).Google Scholar
  26. Madden, A. D., Ford, N. J., Miller, D., & Levy, P. (2006). Children’s use of the internet for information-seeking. What strategies do they use, and what factors affect their performance? Journal of Documentation, 62(6), 744–761.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. MaKinster, J. G., Beghetto, R. A., & Plucker, J. A. (2002). Why can’t I find Newton’s third law? Case studies of students’ use of the web as a science resource. Journal of Science Education and Technology, 11(2), 155–172.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Monereo, C. (2005). Internet y competencias básicas. Aprender a colaborar, a comunicarse, a participar, a aprender. Barcelona: Graó.Google Scholar
  29. Ortoll, E. (Coord.). (2006). L’alfabetització digital en els processos d’inclusió social. Barcelona: Editorial UOC.Google Scholar
  30. Pritchard, A., & Cartwright, V. (2004). Transforming that they read: Helping 11-year-olds engage with internet information. Literacy, 38(1), 26–31.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Revelle, G., Druin, A., Platner, M., Bederson, B., Hourcade, J. P., & Sherman, L. (2002). A visual search tool for early elementary sciences students. Journal of Science Education and Technology, 11(1), 49–57.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Roy, M., & Chi, M. T. H. (2003). Gender differences in patterns of searching the web. Journal of Educational Computing Research, 29(3), 335–348.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Ruiz, M. (2004). Las TIC, un reto para los nuevos aprendizajes. Usar información, comunicarse y utilizar recursos. Madrid: Narcea S. A. Ediciones.Google Scholar
  34. Schacter, J., Chung, G. K., & Dorr, A. (1998). Children’s internet searching on complex problems: Performance and process analysis. Journal of the American Society for Information Science, 49(9), 840–849.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Shenton, A. K., & Dixon, P. (2003). A comparison of youngsters’ use of CD-ROM and the internet as information resources. Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology, 54(11), 1029–1049.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Sigalés, C., Mominó, J. M., & Meneses, J. (2007). L’escola a la societat xarxa. Internet a l’educació primària i secundària Informe final de recerca (vol. 1). Projecte internet catalunya (PIC). Retrieved 11 Feb 2011 from
  37. Tsai, M. (2009). Online information searching strategy inventory (OISSI): A quick version and a complete version. Computers and Education, 53, 473–483.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Vilches, Y. (2002). La alfabetización tecnológica: un planteamiento humanista. In C. Alba (Ed.), Perspectivas de aplicación y desarrollo de las nuevas tecnologías de la educación (pp. 31–36). Murcia: Ministerio de Educación Cultura y Deporte.Google Scholar
  39. Wallace, R. M. C., Kupperman, J., Krajcik, J., & Soloway, E. (2000). Science on the web: Students on-line in a sixth-grade classroom. Journal of the Learning Sciences, 9(1), 75–104.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Walraven, A., Brand-gruwel, A., & Boshuizen, P. A. (2008). Information-problem solving: A review of problems students encounter and instructional solutions. Computers in Human Behavior, 24(3), 623–648.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Walraven, A., Brand-gruwel, A., & Boshuizen, P. A. (2009). How students evaluate information and sources when searching the world wide web for information. Computers and Education, 52, 234–246.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Willoughby, T., Anderson, S. A., Wood, E., Mueller, J., & Ross, C. (2009). Fast searching for information on the Internet to use in a learning context: The impact of domain knowledge. Computers and Education, 52, 640–648.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Wu, Y., & Tsai, C. (2005). Information commitments: Evaluative standards and information searching strategies in web-based learning environments. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 21(5), 374–385.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • María Graciela Badilla Quintana
    • 1
  • Meritxell Cortada Pujol
    • 1
  • Jordi Riera Romaní
    • 1
  1. 1.Faculty of Psychology, Education and Sport Sciences, BlanquernaRamon Llull UniversityBarcelonaSpain

Personalised recommendations