Skip to main content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

What is Information Literacy: An Example

Modes of Reasoning

If you are researching a particular neighbourhood for an urban studies course, a community design project, or even for finding inspiration for creating a painting, you could research:

DEDUCTIVELY

by conducting research on:

  • GENERAL THEORIES in urban planning, place identity, or markers of urban attachment in people BEFORE visiting the neighbourhood; this will give you the frame by which to observe and eventually analyze the
  • CONTEXTUAL behaviour of people in
  • a SPECIFIC location

PROS:

  • pre-existing urban planning theories will allow you to look for specific characteristics in case-studies that you may not have recognized without conducting prior research

CONS:

  • pre-existing urban planning theories may bias your observations and possibly make you miss out on characteristics that are specific to the case-study location and culture

 

INDUCTIVELY

where the:

  • SPECIFIC site-visit is conducted first without any prior THEORETICAL research; any observations made then becomes the impetus for researching
  •  CONTEXT and eventually identifying
  • a THEORETICAL HYPOTHESIS on people’s behaviour

PROS:

  • not knowing pre-existing urban planning theories allows unbiased observation of human behaviours that are specific to the case-study location and culture

CONS:

  • not knowing pre-existing urban planning theories may mean that you misinterpret what you observe, or miss out on human behaviours that have been previously studied in the literature