Information Literacy (IL) at StFX Librarian/Faculty Partnership February 21, 2006
Definitions Information:the communication or reception of knowledge or intelligence; knowledge obtained from investigation, study, or instruction Literate:educated; cultured; having knowledge or competence (www.m-w.com)
Definition of LITERACY in an information world… The abilities to ‘read’ a range ofprinted, electronic and visual texts;master the new communicationstechnologies via spoken and writtenlanguage; locate, manage, evaluateand use information or knowledge;and engage critically with media andother texts. (Lonsdale & McCurry, 2004)
Information Literacy: A Librarian’s Perspective A set of abilities requiring individuals to “recognize when information is needed and have the ability to locate, evaluate, and use effectively the needed information” Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL 2005)
Information Literacy Enables Learners to… • master content • transfer skills • extend their investigations • become self-directed • assume greater control over their own learning
Goals for Information Literacy • Academic success • Workforce success • Lifelong learning
Information Literacy in Education Examples from elementary/middle school curriculum: • Collect specific information from a variety of sources, including print, oral discussions, electronic media, computer technology (gr.4) • Identify viewpoints, opinions, stereotypes, and propaganda in literary, informational, and mass media communications (gr.7) • Evaluate the usefulness and reliability of various sources of information regarding drugs (NS Dept of Education, Health Education Curriculum, gr.4-6)
Information Literacy in Academia Strong focus since ~1990 Wealth of articles: • defining Information Literacy • designing instructional methods for teaching Information Literacy • designing instructional methods for assessing student achievement in Information Literacy
Standards, Performance Indicators, and Outcomes Standard Three: The information literate student evaluates information and its sources critically and incorporates selected information into his or her knowledge base and value system. Performance Indicators: The information literate student articulates and applies initial criteria for evaluating both the information and its sources. Outcomes Include: • Examines and compares information from various sources in order to evaluate reliability, validity, accuracy, authority, timeliness, and point of view or bias • Analyzes the structure and logic of supporting arguments or methods • Recognizes prejudice, deception, or manipulation • Recognizes the cultural, physical, or other context within which the information was created and understands the impact of context on interpreting the information
Library Instruction Mechanics/Tools Passive Librarian-centered Presentation Course-related University of West Florida: http://library.uwf.edu/reference/ILvsLibInstruction.ppt Information Literacy Concepts/Process Active Student-centered Outcomes Curriculum-integrated Resource-based learning Self-directed learning Critical thinking Library Instruction vs Information Literacy
Incorporating IL across curricula requires…COLLABORATORS/ALLIES • Faculty • Librarians • Administration
Faculty Role • Developing an understanding of the concept of IL • Integrating IL concepts into assignments and teaching methodology • Evaluating student progress toward IL (adapted from Leddy Library IL Policy)
Librarians Role • Providing library instruction designed to foster IL • Collaborating with faculty to embed IL concepts into assignments and curricula • Creating research guides, handouts, tutorials (online and in person) (adapted from Leddy Library IL policy)
Administrators Role • Promoting IL on campus & in university-wide committees • Assisting with planning and development • Provide ongoing resources to sustain IL (adapted from Leddy Library IL policy)
Why Faculty as Allies for Information Literacy? • Chief motivators of student use of library and information resources • Provide class time for librarian to present course integrated, research skills sessions • Directly influence attitudes that students form about the library/information and its usefulness in their courses, future careers and lives Young, R., & Harmony, S. (1999). Working with faculty to design undergraduate information literacy programs. NY: Neal-Schuman.
Evidence Based Medicine Defined as: Conscientious, explicit, and judicious use of current best evidence in making decisions about the care of individual patients. The practice of evidence based medicine means integrating individual clinical expertise with the best available external clinical evidence from systematic research. Sackett, D., Rosenberg W., Gray J., and Haynes, B. (1996). Evidence based medicine: what it is and what it isn't. BMJ, 312(7023), 71-72.
EBM explained in an IL “way”… • Defining a focused clinical question (the patient, population, problem) • Collecting the evidence to answer the question (literature search) • Evaluating the evidence gathered • Integrating evidence, clinical knowledge and patient factors (make and carry out decision) • Evaluation of the whole process for improvement (integration into personal knowledge base and practice) Sharon Grant “Information Literacy and Consumer Health,” July 2002, White Paper prepared fro UNESCO, the U.S. National Commission on Libraries and Information Science, and the National Forum on Information Literacy, for use at the Information Literacy Meeting of Experts, Prague, The Czech Repulbic. Available at: <http://www.nclis.gov/libinter/infolitconf&meet/papers/grant-fullpaper.pdf>
Key Characteristics of Millennial/Gen Y/Net Generation • Generally confident in large institutions • Receptive to be part of larger group efforts • Want to be independent problem solvers • Accustomed to media rich entertainment and computing • Proficient in using many kinds of media • Multi-tasking is the accepted norm for their personal, social and work activities • Slow to build trusting relationships; but • Prefer to build a wide sustained network of connections via technology Chuck Thomas and Robert H. McDonald, "Millennial Net Value(s): Disconnects Between Libraries and the Information Age Mindset" (August 15, 2005) Florida State University D-Scholarship Repository, Article #4. http://dscholarship.lib.fsu.edu/general/4
Ten Attributes of an Information Age Mindset • Computers are not technology but a given. … (Students) make the devices work without a manual, without an instruction set. • The Internet is better than TV … Many of our students do believe that everything they need to know is on the Web and it's free. • Reality is no longer real. (e-mail authorship and even photographs can be manipulated). • Doing is more important than learning … In many disciplines, the half-life of information is measured in months and years…. As our students enter the workforce, the ability to deal with complex and often ambiguous information will be more important than simply knowing a lot of facts or having an accumulation of knowledge." • Nintendo over logic. (Rephrased by Oblinger: "Nintendo symbolizes a trial and error approach to solving problems.") • Typing rather than handwriting. • Multitasking way of life. • Staying connected. • Zero tolerance for delays. • Consumer/ creator blurring. In a cut and paste world, distinctions between creator, owner, and consumer of information are fading. Jason L. Frand. "The Information-Age Mindset: Changes in Students and Implications for Higher Education." Educause Review 35.5 (200): 15-24. 1Diana Oblinger. "Boomers, Gen X's, & Millennials: Understanding the New Students," Educause Review 38.4 (2002):27-47.
Three common strategies for IL in Higher Education • Non-Integrated Instruction • Course Integrated Instruction • Full Credit Information Literacy Courses
1. Non-Integrated Instruction • Some involvement between faculty member and librarian in deciding content • Faculty member does not actively collaborate with librarian in designing or providing content • Librarian has no or very little involvement in the design or evaluation of the assignment • May include library tours, workshops, one-offs
2. Course-Integrated IL • Faculty are actively involved in the design, execution and evaluation of IL in collaboration with librarians • Instruction is curriculum based, directly related to course work and/or assignments • Students are required to participate • Student’s work is graded or credit is received for participation
3. Full Credit Information Literacy Courses Canadian examples at: • University of Lethbridge • Brock University • University of Toronto at Mississauga • University of Alberta – Augustana Campus (21 discipline specific courses)
Examples of Possible Goals for IL at StFX • To assess information literacy skills and knowledge in the curriculum • To improve information literacy skills and knowledge by embedding them in the curriculum • To increase awareness of information literacy concepts
An Inforamus is… “An inforamus is someone doing bad searches with an inadequate search engine in a morass of disorganized, incomplete, and sometimes inaccurate information, and who is perfectly happy with the results.” (Majka, David. “The Conqueror Bookworm” in American Libraries. June/July 2001, 61-63.)
Question… • How does the institution (StFX) ensure that it’s members develop the critical literacy skills needed to locate, evaluate and responsibly use information? • How does the institution (StFX) utilize the special skills of information professionals to support learning and teaching…? Western Assn. of Schools and Colleges, Handbook of Accreditation 2001, Section II The Standards, 25-26.
Discussion/Questions • Future of embedding IL (your part) • Future of librarians’ role in IL (our part) Beloit Collegewww.beloit.edu/~libhome/Infoliteracy.htm