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University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

ESL Undergraduate Student Guide

A guide to support international students in ESL 112 and 115 and beyond.

Understand the Information Cycle: VIDEO

Understanding the information cycle can be particularly important when you are searching for information about recent topics. Watch the video below to learn more.

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You can see the infographic and follow the instructions below.

Information Cycle Guide: INFOGRAPHIC

Information Cycle Guide (Accessible View)

What is the Information Cycle?

The Information Cycle is the progression of media coverage of a particular newsworthy event. Understanding the information cycle will help you better know what information is available on your topic and better evaluate information sources covering that topic. 

After an event, information about that event becomes available in a pattern similar to this: 

THE DAY OF: Television, Social Media, and the Web (ex: CNN, Twitter, blogs)

THE WEEK OF: Newspapers (ex. New York Times, Chicago Tribune)

THE WEEK AFTER: Magazines (ex. Time, National Geographic)

MONTHS AFTER: Academic/Scholarly Journals (ex. The American Political Science Review, Journal of American Medical Association)

A YEAR AFTER & LATER: Books, Government Publications, and Reference Collections (Popular Titles, encyclopedias, government reports)