compiled by Sergey Zherebchevsky, Elizabeth Milonas and Richard P. Smiraglia*


1.0 Nursing Information Behavior


As the global Covid-19 pandemic ( began its grip it became increasingly apparent that health care in all forms would be better enabled by new and dynamic knowledge organization systems.


Observations concerning the role of home health-care nurses in major cities, including New York City, lead IKOS to the ethnographic research of Edmund Pajarillo (2005) that tracked the information behavior of home health-care nurses in the New York region leading to the theory concerning the “nub of nursing information behavior (NIB).” In brief, the nub is:


-(325-6 emphasis added): The NIB constitutes this nub of steps and techniques, defined as the crux of information searching and knowledge organizing demonstrated by the home care nurses. This NIB nub consists of uncovering, discovery and recovery.

-(332): In the nub of NIB, the nurse is identifying leads and conduits, thinking of questions to ask sources, determining search terms or keywords, and drawing up courses of actions.

-(350 emphasis added): This interaction between the nurse and the patient takes place right in the nub of NIB. The various information searching and knowledge organizing steps and processes are subsumed in three dynamic and interrelated core processes-uncovering, discovery and recovery.


To begin our contribution IKOS invited the consent and collaboration or Dr. Pajarillo. The 2005 dissertation was analyzed using the Provalis ProSuite ( ) to generate frequency distributions of terms and phrases from the text, which were then sorted and disambiguated to generate the list of “phenomena” found in the core taxonomy below. The WordStat ( ) module was used to conduct co-word analysis and to generate three-dimensional visualizations of term and phrase co-occurrence. These visualizations, in turn, were used to suggest regions that might constitute the facets and sub-facets in the core taxonomy. The team then used Spiteri’s (1998) facet analysis model to generate the names and content of the facets and sub-facets. We then linked as many terms as possible to the glossary in Pajarillo (2005). We will, in future versions of the taxonomy, link to LOD via other health care KOSs.


The core taxonomy is being made available to the general public on 12 May 2020. It is our hope at IKOS to use it to generate further ethnographic research to understand and inform the special challenges of home health-care nursing in the pandemic. We want to emphasize how knowledge organization is, in this case as in many, a critical applied skill of front-line first-responders.


2.0 Core Taxonomy


Facets Subfacets Phenomena Glossary Definitions 
interaction negative correlation
nurses agreed
information encountering Information encountering – an information behavior model defined as a memorable experience of an unexpected discovery of useful or interesting information  (p. 473).
interaction between the nurse
interpersonal relations
patient interaction
correlated positively
nurse and the patient
behavior behavior of home care nurses
nursing information behavior (NIB) Nursing information behavior (NIB) – is the collective and encompassing term specifically used to describe how nurses are driven to seek and search for and use information. It includes the information wellspring leads and conduits used by nurses, usual information roadblocks, and the models and processes that best explain this behavior (p. 476). behavior.
perception of personal and family
information behavior Information behavior – is the collective and encompassing term that includes the three components of information searching, information seeking and information use behavior. It entails all the behavior involved with active and passive information, including its conceptualization, formulation, use and application (P. 472).
home care experience
patient care home care Home health care – refers to the range of health care services rendered in the client’s home or place of residence (p. 472).
nursing care
patient care
home visits
treatment medication
occurance instances
skill practice of home care nursing
professional practice
clinical specializations
comfort and skill level
comfortable and skillful
expertise in other clinical
nursing experience
professional competence
professional experience
searching skills
information information question See information driver.
search outputs
contextual background
data gathering
frequently occurring information
patient logs
drug reference
resource information leads Information wellspring leads – may be actual sources of information or those information clues that provide direction to the user towards acquiring the information needed. Examples include reference manuals, books, clinical experts, peers, the Internet, and electronic databases (p. 474).
resources personally owned
information resources
information sources See information wellspring leads.
community resources
network of resources
personal resources Personal network – relates to sources and resources that are within and around immediate reach for the home care nurse such as her personal reference books and manuals, journals, tablets and other similar materials (p. 477).
internet access
tool electronic mail
information adjuncts
information tools
internet search engines
search engines
domain information technology
knowledge organization Knowledge organization – field of study in Information Studies that deals with the histolry, development and use of concepts and tools to organize information systematically for easy and effective retrieval and understanding (p. 475).
professional nursing
health care
nursing practice
home care nursing
information studies
entity agency
hospitals and clinics
information centers
staff full-time nurses
registered nurse population
care nurses
health professionals
home care nurses Home care nurses – nurses who practice in the sub-specialty of community health nursing, providing home health care services to clients in their homes (p. 472).
patient lifestyle orientation (*of patient)
family members
personal and family
influencers personal and family demands
daily stressors
information drivers Information driver (aka information need, information question) – pertains to factors that trigger the information-seeking process for the home care nurse; circumstances, individuals, or conditions that provoke an information question or need, or those which motivate and drive the home care nurse to pursue finding needed information to bridge information gaps. Information drivers may be internally or externally driven (p. 473).
information roadblocks Information roadblocks (aka information barriers) – are those individuals, factors, or situations that present as stumbling blocks to the home care nurse’s pursuit of needed information. Information roadblocks may be classified as intemal, intangible and tangible (p. 473).
information conduits Information lead conduits – are those existing services and systems in the environment, surroundings and communities where home care nurses work which may serve as a physical portal available to assist in obtaining information. Examples include libraries, information intermediaries (librarians or information specialists), and local government workers (police, fire and postal staff) (p.473).
computer issues
governance regulatory issues
clinical practice
health insurance
processes environmental scanning Environmental scanning – refers to an information behavior model defined as observing, obtaining, and analyzing pertinent events, trends and relationships in an organization’s external environment, wIth the purpose of increasmg the effecttveness of future courses of action made by its management (p. 471).
information seeking Information seeking behavior – is the purposive seeking for information as a consequence of a need to satisfy some goal. In the course of seeking, the individual may interact with manual information systems (such as a newspaper or a library), or with computer-based systems (such as the World Wide Web) (p. 474).
information search Information search episode – is considered one particular information search process, beginning from the point of need identification to information need satisfaction (p. 474).
information searching Information searching – pertains to the systematic process of looking for information (p. 474)
search episodes
care planning
core processes
critical thinking Critical thinking – an important component of nursing practice involving cognitive skiUs in analyzing, applying standards, discriminating, information seeking, logical reasoning, predicting and transforming knowledge (p. 471).
information science models
information search process Information search process – is a term to describe steps used by a user when attempting to find needed information. These steps include information need and leads identification, transforming this information need into a question appropriate to the information lead at hand, actual querying or browsing the infromation lead, filtering the most relevant search outcomes, and actually picking out the most useful and pertinent to the original information need (p. 474).
nursing process Nursing process – a systematic and organized approach to processing, managing and using information derived from patients and their presenting signs and symptoms to be able to develop, implement and evaluate a plan of care that addresses clients’ nursing care needs (p. 476).
processes involved
search process
seeking process
location geographic health
professional environmental space Professional environmental space (PES) – pertains to the nurse’s professional space, where the locus and focus of nursing practice take place. The professional space is where the knowledge, skills, competence and attitude of the horne care nurse come into critical play. The nature, status and condition of this professional space make it possible for nursing care to be delivered promptly and appropriately whenever a client has a need (p. 477).


3.0 Alphabetical list of Phenomena


Phenomena Facets Subfacets
adjuncts agents staff
agency agents entity
behavior of home care nurses actions behavior
care nurses agents staff
care planning processes processes
client agents patient
clinical practice agents governance
clinical specializations care skill
comfort and skill level care skill
comfortable and skillful care skill
community resources resources resource
components resources resource
computer issues agents influencers
conduits agents influencers
contextual background care information
core processes processes processes
correlated positively actions interaction
critical thinking processes processes
daily stressors agents influencers
data gathering care information
discharge care occurrence
discovery care information
drug reference care information
education care information
electronic mail resources tool
environmental scanning processes processes
expertise in other clinical care skill
factors agents influencers
family members agents patient
figure care information
findings care information
framework processes processes
frequently occurring information care information
full-time nurses agents staff
geographic health place location
health care resources domain
health insurance agents governance
health professionals agents staff
home care care patient care
home care experience actions behavior
home care nurses agents staff
home care nursing resources domain
home visits care patient care
hospitals and clinics agents entity
information adjuncts resources tool
information behavior actions behavior
information centers agents entity
information conduits agents influencers
information drivers agents influencers
information encountering actions interaction
information leads resources resource
information question care information
information resources resources resource
information roadblocks agents influencers
information science models processes processes
information search processes processes
information search process processes processes
information searching processes processes
information seeking processes processes
information sources resources resource
information studies resources domain
information technology resources domain
information tools resources tool
instances care occurrence
interaction between the nurse actions interaction
internet access resources resource
internet search engines resources tool
interpersonal relations actions interaction
knowledge organization resources domain
leads resources resource
lifestyle orientation (*of patient) agents patient
medical resources domain
medication care treatment
medications care treatment
members agents staff
negative correlation actions interaction
network of resources resources resource
nurse and the patient actions interaction
nurses agreed actions interaction
nursing care care patient care
nursing experience care skill
nursing information behavior (NIB) actions behavior
nursing practice resources domain
nursing process processes processes
oasis processes processes
observation actions behavior
patient care care patient care
patient interaction actions interaction
patient logs care information
perception of personal and family actions behavior
personal and family agents patient
personal and family demands agents influencers
personal resources resources resource
physicians agents staff
practice of home care nursing care skill
processes involved processes processes
professional competence care skill
professional environmental space place location
professional experience care skill
professional nursing resources domain
professional practice care skill
proficiency care skill
recovery care occurrence
registered nurse population agents staff
regulatory issues agents governance
resources resources resource
resources personally owned resources resource
respondents agents staff
search engines resources tool
search episodes processes processes
search outputs care information
search process processes processes
searching skills care skill
seeking process processes processes
sense actions behavior
situations care occurrence
structure processes processes
tablet resources tool
team agents staff
telephone resources tool
terms care information
treatment care treatment


4.0 References

Pajarillo, Edmund J.Y. 2005. “Contextual Perspectives of Information for Home Care Nurses: Towards a Framework of Nursing Information Behavior (NIB).” PhD diss. Long Island University.

Spiteri, Louise. 1998. “A Simplified Model for Facet Analysis: Ranganathan 101.” Canadian Journal of Information and Library Science 23:1-30

*Sergey Zherebchevsky is PhD candidate, Long Island University and Associate Fellow of IKOS. Elizabeth Milonas is Assistant Professor, City Tech (CUNY) and Associate Fellow of IKOS. Richard P. Smiraglia is Senior Fellow, Institute for Knowledge Organization and Structure, Inc. The team is grateful to Dr. Pajarillo for consultation concerning the structure and content of the taxonomy. We also wish to thank our IT manager Kalix Zee for assistance with content analysis.


Version 1.0. Published 12 May 2020.

©2020 Institute for Knowledge Organization and Structure, Inc. All rights reserved.

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