75871 - Information Theory and Documentary Research

Academic Year 2021/2022

  • Teaching Mode: Traditional lectures
  • Campus: Ravenna
  • Corso: Second cycle degree programme (LM) in Library and Archive Science (cod. 9077)

Learning outcomes

The course covers the basic principles of the discipline and its historical development between theory and practice , the relationship between the science of information, and the documentation science and the library science . After completing the course the student knows and understands the issues of the information science, and he knows the history, the themes and the technologies of processing of documents.

Course contents

The course aims to clarify the object and applications of the discipline tracing its history and development. In particular, this will be conducted through the presentation of interdisciplinary areas involved and the techniques and technologies for the organization and retrieval of information in documentary systems from the beginnings of information organized to the web. Particular importance will be given to contemporary issues common to the information science, the documentation science, the bibliography and the library science.

1. Illustration of the criticality of the concept of information, the object of study of Information Science and its inter and metadisciplinarity.

2. Crucial revolutions for the birth of 'Information Science': from electrical transmissions and genetic codes, to linguistic and semiotic information and cultural information, and related implications.

3. Fundamental concepts in Information Science: code-inference, machine-document-organism, power-entelechy, entropy-negentropy, environment, interpreter, signal, representation, data and their types, document, redundancy, noise.

4. Socio-cultural metatheories of Information: Constructivism (receiving), Collectivism (social dimension), Constructionism (language).

5. Effects of the 3 metatheories in the contemporary world: social networks, user-friendly systems, thesauri and classifications. Information retrieval: Entity-relationship model, Data-metadata-application search options, Boolean and Query operators, Recall-precision.

6. Descriptive and behavioral bibliometry: bibliometric laws, citational analysis (impact factor, cocitation analysis, bibliographic coupling), performance indicators.

7. Sources and tools for the study of information: periodicals, databases, search engines, Reference Management Systems.

8. Documentation: Paul Otlet and Henry La Fontaine (Brussels 1895). Relationship between Documentation, Library Science and Information Science.


Alberto Salarelli, Introduzione alla scienza dell'informazione, Milano, Editrice Bibliografica, 2012.

Paola Castellucci, Dall'ipertesto al web: storia culturale dell'informatica, Roma; Bari: GLF editori Laterza, 2009.


For those not attending the course is to be added:

Paola Castellucci, Carte del nuovo mondo, Bologna, Il Mulino, 2017.

Maurizio Lana, Introduzione all'Information literacy, Milano, Editrice Bibliografica, 2020.

Recommended the use of:

Ferruccio Diozzi, Nuovo Glossario di biblioteconomia e scienza dell'informazione, Milano, Editrice Bibliografica, 2021.


Students who for reasons of disability or specific learning disabilities (DSA) need compensatory tools will be able to communicate to the professor their needs so as to be directed to the referents and agree on the adoption of the most appropriate measures.

Teaching methods

Frontal ad online lessons, and thematic insights with experts.

Teaching also takes place in 'blended learning'. Gradually will appear material for consolidation and deepening at e-learning page of the course; access to the page of the e-learning with the institutional credentials and a password that will be provided in class or with chat in Teams by the teacher.


"In consideration of the type of activity and teaching methods adopted, the attendance of this training activity requires the prior participation of all students in modules 1 and 2 of training on safety in the study places, in e-learning mode"

Assessment methods

The exam consists of an oral interview starting from the presentation of a topic chosen by the student.

The teacher will evaluate the mastery of the content and of bibliography of the course, the ability to synthesize and analyze the themes and concepts, the use of an appropriate language, and also the critical and methodological abilities matured by the student.

You will notice that lack of training, inappropriate language, lack of orientation within the bibliographic materials offered during the course will be evaluated negatively.

The teacher can provide the assignment of an intermediate written test to be held in the classroom or a report to be discussed it during the oral examination.

Teaching tools

Illustrative and in-depth Power Point presentations and handouts provided by the teacher, that will be uploaded on the "Virtuale" platform.

Research exercises given by teacher.

Moments of critical discussion in class.

Office hours

See the website of Fiammetta Sabba


Quality education Industry, innovation and infrastructure Reduced inequalities Partnerships for the goals

This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.