• Karen Tølbøl Sigaard
Speciale, Kandidatuddannelsen
This thesis addresses the inuence of cognitive motivation on information seeking. In information science, motivation to seek information is often explained with reference to an information need. Savolainen (2012c) argues that adapting
theories from the psychology eld of cognitive motivation could expand on this understanding of information seeking. A central part of the information seeking process revolves around source choice. Taking a theoretical starting point in expectancy-value theory, this thesis carries out an empirical investigation of the source choice behaviour in connection to work-related information seeking by seven consultants working in four Danish municipalities. The objectives of the study are to empirically verify Savolainen's application of a cognitive motivational theory in an information seeking context, to propose a way of operationalizing expectancy value theory, and to establish if this motivational approach can expand on the existing understanding of information seeking. The analysis is based on logbook data about the participants' work-related information seeking and semi-structured interviews which elaborates on the participants' motivation regarding a sample of the recorded work tasks. These work tasks are categorised according to six motivational factors related to expectancy and value. The analysis concludes that work task motivation inuences source use in various ways, for example, the number of sources used and the preference for interpersonal and internal sources increases when the task has high value motivation or low expectancy motivation or both. Furthermore the data are analysed according to Byström's concept of complexity to investigate if the two approaches overlap. It is found that motivation expands the understanding of task related information seeking proposed by the concept of complexity. Based on the analysis, the thesis argues that expectancy-value theory is a valid and interesting starting point for studying information seeking behaviour.
Udgivelsesdato1 jul. 2013
Antal sider75
Udgivende institutionDet Informationsvidenskabelige Akademi, Københavns Universitet


  • motivation, arbejdsopgave, kildevalg, forventning-værdi, opgave, kognitiv motivation, kilder, informationssøgning, information, søgeadfærd