The Big 6

The Big6™ Skills

The Big6™ is a process model of how people of all ages solve an information problem. From practice and study, it has been found that successful information problem-solving encompasses six stages with two sub-stages under each:

  1. Task Definition
    1. Define the information problem
    2. Identify information needed in order to complete the task (to solve the information problem)
  2. Information Seeking Strategies  
    1. Determine the range of possible sources (brainstorm)
    2. Evaluate the different possible sources to determine priorities (select the best sources)
  3. Location and Access 
    1. Locate sources (intellectually and physically)
    2. Find information within sources
  4. Use of Information  
    1. Engage (e.g., read, hear, view, touch) the information in a source
    2. Extract relevant information from a source
  5. Synthesis  
    1. Organize information from multiple sources
    2. Present the information
  6. Evaluation  
    1. Judge the product (effectiveness)
    2. Judge the information problem-solving process (efficiency)

A modified version of the Big6™, called the Super3, has been developed for younger students.

Big6™ Links for Kids

Big6™ Links for Parents

  • Helping With Homework: A Parent's Guide to Big6 Information Problem-Solving: “The Big6 Skills can help parents effectively deal with information to guide their youngsters through school assignments.”

Big6™ Links for Educators

  • The Big6™ Home Page
  • Applying the Big6™ and Information Literacy Standards to Internet Research: “Janet Murray has created an amazing chart that uses the Big6™ and the national AASL/AECT Information Literacy Standards to organize an introduction to research on the Internet. Janet uses the power of the Web to integrate activities, standards, and the Big6™.”
  • Nuts and Bolts of the Big6™: “This web site provides resources for teachers interested in learning more about and applying the Big6™ approach.”
  • Super3 - The Early Childhood Version of the Big6™ Skills: “Tami Little explains the Eisenberg and Berkowitz early childhood version of The Big6™ Skills: The Super 3.”
  • Teaching Information Literacy: The Big6™ Skills Approach to Information Problem Solving: “This is a great resource for teachers who are new to the Big6™, and are not quite sure how to get started teaching it.”

The "Big6™" is copyright © (1987) Michael B. Eisenberg and Robert E. Berkowitz. For more information, visit: