Information Types

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  • can be proved
  • are concrete
  • Examples
    • There are 15 cookies on this plate
    • The United States of America was founded in 1776
  • are based on what seems to be true
  • are based on personal views and judgement
  • Examples
    • The cookies taste good
    • I loved that movie I just saw!
Objective Information
  • should present all sides of an issue
  • is usually based on facts
  • Note: often, experts in a field can speak objectively about an issue or a subject
  • Examples
    • most encyclopedia articles
    • some books and periodical articles, as long as they present all aspects/angles of an issue
Subjective Information
  • is often the opinion of an individual or a group
  • presents some kind of analysis of the facts
  • Examples
    • many books and periodical articles express one side of an issue and analyze it
    • book & movie reviews
    • Note: an event you experience that you try to explain is usually a type of subjective information
    • Example
      • "I saw The Dark Knight and I thought the costumes could have been better designed." This is your opinion; someone else who saw the movie might have a different opinion.
    • Hint: When you hear someone say "My understanding of the situation is..." or "I felt that the point of the story was...," you are about to hear subjective information.
Primary Information
  • is created at the time when something occurred
  • is the original research conducted in a field of study, along with the original documents that emanate from that research, e.g., lab report
  • is information in its original form that has not been published anywhere else and no one has interpreted it or translated it
  • Examples
    • diaries
    • novels
    • U.S. constitution
    • data and statistics that have been collected, but not analyzed
    • newspaper accounts by reporters that were at an event, e.g., a reporting in a war zone describing what s/he sees
    • transcripts from radio and TV programs and legal cases
    • testimony in a legal case
    • reporting of first research conducted in a discipline
    • original works of art
Secondary Information
  • has been removed in some way from its original (primary) source and re-packaged
  • is information that has been analyzed, interpreted, translated, or examined in some way
  • Examples
    • You get the class notes from a friend because you missed a lecture. Your friend has, in some way, interpreted your instructor's lecture and re-packaged the information in his/her own words
    • an article that critiques a film or a novel or a football or soccer game
    • an article that analyzes someone's research
    • an interpretation of every day life as reported in a personal diary
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