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Drafting: what’s information literacy got to do with it? . Salom ón Dávila, Pasadena City College, Engineering and Technology Division and Hema Ramachandran, Access Services Librarian, PCC (now Engineering Librarian at Cal State-Long Beach)

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Drafting what s information literacy got to do with it l.jpg

Drafting: what’s information literacy got to do with it?

Salomón Dávila, Pasadena City College, Engineering and Technology Division


Hema Ramachandran, Access Services Librarian, PCC (now Engineering Librarian at Cal State-Long Beach)

Please see http://tinyurl.com/ypkd3k for a copy of this presentation, examples of orientation handouts, survey results, evaluation of assessment, pretest and Lab 10 library assignment (posttest)

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  • Drawing, drawing and more drawing and never reaching program objectives of spatial visualization and sketching graphical solutions.

  • Underestimating work and time required for assignment completion.

  • Presentation of course material separate from its contextual use

  • Relying mostly on demonstrations and lectures for material presentation.

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Initial Contact

  • Email to coordinators in Engineering Program (November 2005)

  • Response from the Coordinator of the Drafting program

  • January 2006 (Winter Intersession):

  • Discussions on scope of library resources

  • Incorporating information literacy assignments into the Drafting classes (8A, 8B, 8C 117)

    But HOW to incorporate IL into Drafting?

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First Library assignment


  • Introduction and overview of library information tools

  • Perform searches in the online catalog, periodical databases etc.

  • Introduction to other library services (e.g. Inter-Library Loan)

  • Preparation and delivery of a professional presentation

  • Share industry knowledge with colleagues

    Student Learning Outcomes:

  • At the end of this course, students will be able to use a variety of library and information tools to support research assignments and deliver a professional presentation


  • Prepare and deliver a 5 minute professional presentation

  • Cite at least three different sources of which one has to be a recent periodical article

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Content of orientations

  • Searching online catalog for books

  • Searching periodical databases: highlighting the significance of trade journals for assignment and professional development

  • Use of encyclopedias, dictionaries and handbooks

  • Use of internet resources including critical evaluation

  • Citing resources


    Students had difficulty narrowing topics for their presentation (Examples: stereolithography, history of the metric system, parametric solid modeling, nanotechnology, CAD/CAM)

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Summer 2006: Discussions

  • Lengthy discussions lead to redesign of classes to incorporate more information literacy seamlessly into design projects for 8A, 8B and 17

  • 8C: New Product Development: major redesign over the summer to incorporate more non-engineering aspects (marketing and business focus)

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Fall 2006

  • Each library orientation was targeted towards the specific projects/assignments

  • Demonstrations, examples and handouts reflected the projects

  • Handouts included online databases, print resources, internet and other libraries

  • Relevant print sources (mostly handbooks) were brought into the classroom

  • Added as “Designer” to the course management system (WebCT) but did not fully exploit this

    Some things we discussed but didn’t implement:

  • Mandatory appointments with librarian/research clinics/virtual consultation

  • Research logs/portfolios

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8C: New Product Development

  • Problem Statement: Noise in the library

  • Possible solution: “A bubble” that can be checked


  • Explored the concept (types of materials, design considerations, existing products, manufacturers…)

  • Used this idea as a springboard to explore resources

  • Three orientations plus added some material to WebCT

    Please see http://tinyurl.com/ypkd3k for Powerpoint



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  • Has someone already come up with a solution?


  • Are there similar products on the market?


  • Who would use such a product?


  • The market for the product?


  • Who are the major competitors?


  • Finding manufacturers


    Please see http://tinyurl.com/ypkd3k for handouts


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Present the development of a product justifying design methods through information research and prototyping

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Fall 2006: Design Projects (8A, 8B, 17)

  • Incorporated IL into design projects (mousetrap vehicle, robotic arm, dorm room, prefabricated housing)

  • Students collaborated in teams

  • Final deliverables included: model, graphical representation of design/product, a report and a presentation

    Please see http://tinyurl.com/ypkd3k for examples of handouts


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Spring 2007

  • Continued with the program that was developed in Fall

  • Incorporated results from an industry survey: added more instruction on codes, standards and handbooks

  • Experimented with pre and post tests (library assignment)

  • Developed survey to elicit info on IL component of class

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Library Assignments

  • Adapted some general library pretests for engineering

  • Professor Davila designed a library assignment (Lab 10) which was substituted for the post-test designed by Hema!


  • Human dimensions when sitting including seating angles (range) male vs female reach, leg space and sight line angles

  • Find the inch dimensions for a (you pick) hexagonal socket head cap screw and its drill and counterbore size. Sketch the screw.

    Please see http://tinyurl.com/ypkd3k for copy of Pretest, Lab 10 (Post Test)

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Please see http://tinyurl.com/ypkd3k

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Common themes

Each session also emphasized:

  • Information skills are useful beyond the class

  • Career resources: job seeking, preparing for the interview etc.

  • Keeping up with current developments in the field

  • Using information resources on the job to solve problems

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Beyond the classroom

  • Assessing Lifelong Learning is a challenge

  • Alumni Surveys

  • Industry/Employer surveys

  • Longitudinal survey is the only complete way to


  • Create the environment conducive to lifelong learning (information literacy)

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Did we succeed?

  • Each student will hopefully recognize the need for information literacy/lifelong learning

  • Anecdotal: we observed as behavior and habits changed

  • Requirements for the course, demanded that students had to engage in information literacy

  • Embedding IL into the curriculum reinforces these skills in their real-life context

  • Alumni survey would be the only way to study long term effects

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  • Benefits for librarian – obvious!

  • Benefits for engineering faculty member?

  • Collaboration takes time

  • Would we have done anything differently?

    (Salomon: Hema shouldn’t have left PCC!)