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Three Mindsets of Search: Answer Me Educate Me Inspire Me

Posted by Editor on October 3, 2011

From LIS News  and

Are these the same for in person reference questions in a library?

According to a survey by, people do it for one of three reasons. They want answers, they want to be educated or they want to be inspired.

Study revealed three distinct search types:

  1. Answer Me (46% of all searches) – People in a “answer me” search want exactly what they ask for, and no more, delivered in a way that allows them to get to it as directly as possible.
  2. Educate Me (26% of all searches) – People in an “educate me” search want 360 degrees of understanding, and multiple perspectives on critical topics. They will search until their goal is achieved – this may stretch over long periods of time and through related topics.
  3. Inspire Me (28% of all searches) – The fun “browsy” type of search, where people are looking for surprises, have open minds and want to be led.

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