Authorities in science, engineering, and technology traditionally rely on evidence-based, reproducible research using the scientific method. However, it’s important to recognize authority’s constructed nature and be able to use critical thinking and information skills to dissect claims to authority to assess whether they are well founded, and that authority in one area does not necessarily convey authority on every subject or in every context.
In the sciences, format denotes many things to an experienced user, including authority, stage of project, process, and credibility. While the dominant format in science remains the published peer-reviewed research article, scientists have taken advantage of the digital age to challenge traditional publishing practices, resulting in new processes and format
The production, dissemination, and application of scientific information is a complex ecosystem, in which power, monetary resources, and social capital influence how that information is accessed, used, and shared.
The iterative nature of research mirrors that of the scientific process, in which new inquiries are scaffolded upon existing research, and the questions raised through this work leads to even more questions to explore.
Science communities engage in conversation giving rise to new discoveries across scholarly, research, and industry applications, using both prior and emerging discourses from a diversity of disciplines and approaches.
The nonlinear and iterative aspect of searching for information is an essential aspect of many models of inquiry in STEM and requires not only selecting the best sources from a range of options, but also an understanding of the information structures within STEM fields across knowledge systems.
For more details, see the Science and Technology Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education