Evaluation criteria relevant to judge the electronic space

Document Type : مقالات پژوهشی



The present research was designed to identify the subjective and objective relevance criteria used by graduate students of Ferdowsi university and to compare these criteria with the document elements used by search engines ranking algorithms for ranking the retrieved documents. The statistical universe included the graduate students enrolled in the university in the years 2002-2004. 335 students were chosen as the sample by using the randomized proportional classified sampling method. The needed data were collected by two types of questionnaires. The findings indicate that students pay attention to certain document elements (relevance categories) and assess the retrieved documents by search engines through attributing defined qualifications and specifications to them (relevance criteria). The results suggest that students in addition to having certain subjective and objective criteria, consider special priorities to the document elements while assessing the relevance of documents in the subjective situation. Based on the findings students use different criteria in subjective situations and in a real information seeking situation (searching session). There are also significant differences between the students of four disciplines (humanity, science, engineering and agriculture) (intergroup and intragroup) in paying attention to the relevance assessment criteria in subjective and real conditions of assessing the relevance of documents. Also the results showed that the elements: title, abstract, language and content are the most referred to by the students.