Libraries at University of Nebraska-Lincoln


Date of this Version


Document Type



This paper has no conflict of interest


The proliferation of digital resources has continued to necessitate studies aimed at regulating students’ digital information-seeking behavior. This study investigated the knowledge of information ethics and digital information-seeking behavior of first-year undergraduates in Topfaith University, Nigeria. The study adopted the total enumeration technique as the entire population of 171 first-year undergraduates. A Questionnaire and Focus Group Discussion (FGD) were used for data collection. Results revealed that digital libraries ( =3.23; std dev. = .638), social media platforms ( =3.15; std dev. = .609) and the Internet ( =2.96; std dev. = .895) were the most common strategies adopted by first-year undergraduates in their search for information. It was equally revealed that while first undergraduates use an array of digital information sources, their knowledge of the ethical issues was moderate. Further analysis revealed that there is a relationship between knowledge of information ethics and digital information-seeking behavior (r =.4530 p < 0.05) of first-year undergraduates. The study concludes that responsible information-seeking behavior is essential for undergraduates to successfully leverage various digital information sources to complete assignments and conduct meaningful research. The study recommends, among others, that to ensure high ethical compliance in the universities in Nigeria, there is need for conscious efforts by librarians and other information professionals to teach students the ethical and legal use of digital resources.