Foundations of Information Science


Provide the fundamentals of Information Science (CI) that allow the student / to acquire basic knowledge and develop skills that allow him / her to later acquire a deeper understanding of the themes. At the end of this UC you should:

  • Understand the main concepts and theories of CI.
  • Identify and reflect on the main issues that arise in the processes of creation, treatment and use of information.
  • Know the main knowledge organization tools.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Maria Leonor Borralho Gaspar Pinto


Weekly - 3

Total - 280

Teaching language



Available soon


Booth, A.; Brice, A. (Eds.) (2004). Evidence-Based Practice for Information Professionals: A Handbook. London: Facet.
Carlsson, U. & S.H. Culver (eds.) (2013) Media and Information Literacy and Intercultural Dialogue. (pp.175-189) Göteborg: The International Clearinghouse on Children, Youth and Media.
Case, D. O. (2007) - Looking for information: a survey of research on information seeking needs and behaviour. Boston: Academic Press.
Kulthau, C.C. (2004) Seeking meaning: a process approach to library and information services. Westport: Libraries Unlimited.
Smiraglia, R.P. (2001). The nature of “a work”: implications for the organization of knowledge. Lanham, Md; London: Scarecrow Press.
Svenonius, E. (2000). The intellectual foundation of information organization. Cambridge (Massachusetts): The MIT Press.
Taylor, A.G.; Joudrey, D.N. (2008). The Organization of Information. 3rd ed. Libraries Unlimited.

Teaching method

The seminar will be developed through presential classes and independent work by students. The face-to-face classes will have a theoretical-practical character, consisting of moments of theoretical exposition of the themes, practical exercises, oral presentations and debates participated by the students. Students should read the material that is suggested before each class. The autonomous work of the students must complement and deepen the knowledge transmitted in the classroom, promoting autonomous learning by the students. Simulation exercises can also be performed in class or in an organizational context.

Evaluation method

Método de Avaliação - Attendance and Participation(10%), Group work (oral presentation)(15%), Group work (written presentation)(45%), Individual text commentary(30%)

Subject matter

1. Information science: history, epistemology and main theories.
2. Knowledge organization: theoretical foundations:
2.1 Condensation; indexing; Cataloguing; metadata.
3. Knowledge representation: principles, concepts, norms:
3.1 Content representation instruments: schemes and classification systems; ontologies; taxonomies; thesaurus; vocabulary control;
3.2 Resource representation instruments: bibliographic standards (ISBD; RDA); data communication standards (MARC formats; Dublin Core; Bibframe);
3.3 Potentials and limitations of the instruments of representation in the context of the WWW.
4. Information cultures. Informational behavior. User needs and typology. Information literacies:
4.1 Dissemination and use of information. The line of investigation based on evidence;
4.2 Inter and transdisciplinary studies.


Programs where the course is taught: