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ITI 220: Retrieving and Evaluating Electronic Information (04:547:220)

This course guide contains library research resources for the IT market sector analysis project in ITI 220.

What is a SWOT Analysis?

A SWOT analysis is an outline used to evaluate a company's competitive position and to develop strategic planning.

  • SWOT = strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. 
  • A SWOT analysis evaluates how a company addresses these four factors, both internally and externally.
  • It also highlights current and future potential in these areas.

A SWOT Analysis is designed to provide a realistic, fact-based, data-driven look at a company's strengths and weaknesses, including its initiatives and position within its industry. To keep the analysis accurate, avoid pre-conceived beliefs or gray areas and focus instead on real-life contexts. A SWOT should be used as a guide and not necessarily as a prescription.


  • SWOT analysis is a strategic planning technique that provides assessment in four key areas across an organization.
  • Identifying core strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats leads to fact-based analysis, fresh perspectives, and new ideas.
  • SWOT analysis works best when diverse groups or voices within an organization provide realistic data points rather than prescribed messaging.

Link to the SWOT Analysis Research Guide for more specifics about the various SWOT components and which library resources are most useful to build your analysis. 

SWOT Quick Guide

A SWOT analysis is typically depicted as a square segmented into four quadrants, each dedicated to a SWOT element. This visual arrangement provides a quick overview of a company’s position. The guide below outlines the four SWOT analysis areas and where to find the corresponding data at Rutgers.

SWOT Analysis Video Tutorial


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