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The American Association of School Librarians’ Standards for the 21st-Century Learner states that “Inquiry provides a framework for learning.” In order for today’s students to be successful, and to acquire lifelong learning skills, they need to be taught how to locate, evaluate, and ethically use information.  

By working together to craft lessons, school librarians and teachers combine reading and writing skills, the basic tools of learning, with inquiry skills. Using this approach, students are better prepared to extend and communicate their content area knowledge. Additionally, students learn ethical and efficient information-seeking behaviors that may be applied to course work in content areas, as well as to their personal lives.

In order to facilitate the acquisition of inquiry-based information literacy skills, the use of a research process model is essential. FINDS, Florida's model, incorporates research skills that are imbedded in the Florida Standards and also provides a framework for the application of these standards through a sequential research process.

By making use of a wide range of learning resources and the collaborative efforts of the classroom teachers and school librarian, students learn inquiry-based skills that are applicable across disciplines. Consequently, students acquire the dispositions and competencies needed to function successfully in this demanding, information-intense, technology-driven world.

The following list of student-centered questions provides an overview of the FINDS framework:

Focus on the information need

  • What is my assignment or the information problem to be solved?

  • How do I connect to this topic?

  • What are my questions and/or thesis sentence?

  • What types of information will be needed?

  • How will I organize my search plan?

  • What keywords and alternate search terms would be best for my topic?

  • What search terminology and techniques should I use?


Investigate resources to look for an answer

  • Which criteria should I use to evaluate and select the information sources?

  • Where are sources located and what information does each source provide?

  • Where is the information within each source and how do I locate it?

  • What problems am I having in finding information and how do I solve these problems?

  • How can I find what I need and respect the rights of others to equal access to information?


Note and evaluate facts

  • Which criteria should I use to evaluate the information I found?

  • Does the information I found relate to my topic and questions?

  • How do I take notes so that they are in my own words?

  • Which facts do I need to create a citation for each source?

  • Do I have facts from all points of view on my topic?

  • Do I have the information I need and is my research complete?


Develop information into knowledge for presentation

  • How should I present the information to best share what I learned with others?

  • How do I organize the notes for my final presentation?

  • Have I analyzed and used the information effectively?

  • Are my conclusions based on the research evidence?

  • How can I synthesize the information and create a new product?

  • How do I organize my citations into a bibliography and what format will I use?

  • How do I integrate technology to enrich, publish, or present my project?


Score presentation and search

  • Which criteria will I use to judge my product?

  • Did I present the information in the best way?

  • Was my research process efficient and effective?

  • How could I improve my search process next time?

  • How well did I contribute to the group project?

  • How can I apply/transfer these research skills into my career and personal life?

An Introduction to FINDS

FINDS General Info


FINDS K-12 Charts

  • Resources forthcoming


FINDS Grade Level Correlation Charts

Correlated to Florida's English Language Arts (B.E.S.T.) Standards and the American Association of School Librarians' National School Library Standards:

Information Literacy: -FINDS- Florida's Library Media Research Model (

Additional Resources

Charlotte 7.JPG
FINDS Documents
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