BogieLand: Information Architecture FAQ
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Information Architecture FAQ


This list of Frequently Asked Questions is a valuable resource if you are not familiar with the field of information architecture or its vocabulary.

What is information architecture?

There are many available definitions of information architecture. The AIfIA defines it as "(1) the structural design of shared information environments; (2) the art and science of organizing and labeling web sites, intranets, online communities and software to support usability and findability; (3) an emerging community of practice focused on bringing principles of design and architecture to the digital landscape."

What does an information architect do?

Information architects help create innovative, usable information solutions for clients. They work with clients to understand their business models and goals and to define strategies and approaches for reaching them. They work with a design team to create solutions that will communicate effectively and usable with their intended audiences.

What is the competence of an information architect?

Design and communication skills are essential for the information architect. The ability to create the organizational structure of a web site, and the ability to explain and illustrate that structure are key. The IA is able to ensure ease of navigation, simplicity of design and communicate the site design to the client as well as to the development team. The levels of complexity, functionality, plasticity, and impact in digital technology are much higher than in most other media. This means that the information architect draws expertise from established disciplines, such as HCI practices, library and information science practices, social science practices, and business practices.

What kind of deliverables does an information architect produce?

Typical deliverables from an information architect are documents such as site maps, wireframes, navigation models, metadata schemas, controlled vocabularies, and taxonomies.

What to do when I do not find my IA question in this list?

If you have a specific question related to the field of Information Architecture, please do not hesitate to contact us at We will answer your question immediately.

Classification: Assigning pre-defined labels to information objects for retrieval and information management purposes.

Controlled vocabulary: A list of terms and synonyms that provide optimal consistency within a website.

Metadata: Data about data. Examples are date, author, keywords, abstract, and last modification date.

Navigation: The way to identify the current location, available target locations, and the path to follow from a current location to a target location within an information space.

Site map: A diagram illustrating various pages and/or page types throughout the site, and the user paths to and from them.

Task flow: A chronological description of actions people must follow in order to achieve a predetermined objective.

Taxonomy: A structure that provides a way of classifying things.

Wireframe: A diagram representing the information structure of a single page (type). Synonym: Page schematics