Skip to Main Content
Accessibility Information

Getting Started with Research at Shapiro Library

This guide discusses understanding information sources, formulating a topic and search phrase, where and how to search the library for information, how to evaluate sources, how to cite sources, and more.

Ask a Librarian

Understanding Information

What is Information?

"1. knowledge communicated or received concerning a particular fact or circumstance; 2. knowledge gained through study, communication, research, instruction, etc." (

Information includes both facts and opinions. We are constantly bombarded by information through television, the Internet, newspapers, billboards, conversations, etc. What is important is how we use information and how it becomes meaningful to us. Check out the video below for more on this topic:

The Information Cycle

When events occur or news stories come out, information about the event or story are created and change over time. The Information Cycle refers to the process by which information is created, disseminated, and changed over time--from the time of the event or story to the next day, week, or years to come. Understanding the information cycle is critical to recognizing the accuracy, authoritativeness, currency, etc. of the information you find and may help you understand what information is available on a particular topic. Check out the video below for more information: