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Transforming information into deep knowledge and deep understanding: A Guided Inquiry approach – the school library and the Victorian Essential Learning Standards. Based on the work of Ross Todd and Carol Gordon . Introduction.

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based on the work of ross todd and carol gordon

Transforming information into deep knowledge and deep understanding:A Guided Inquiry approach – the school library and the Victorian Essential Learning Standards

Based on the work of Ross Todd and Carol Gordon

introduction
Introduction

An examination of the Victorian Essential Learning Standards, identifies inquiryas central to their structure and philosophy:

  • the student as an “inquiring learner,” and
  • the emphasis on “inquiry” in the discipline-based domains.

Inquiry, of course, is also central to the role of the library- where the teacher-librarian provides the student with the skills to become a successful, independent inquirer.

slide3

With this heavy emphasis on inquiry and the integration of the personal, social and discipline-based strands, a number of questions arise for the teacher-librarian:

  • How does the library target its program and services to support the strands?
  • How do we assess the interdisciplinary and personal learning standards?
  • How does the library provide leadership for bringing all this together?
information literacy and victorian essential learning standards
Information Literacy and Victorian Essential Learning Standards

The Victorian Essential Learning Standards (VELS) are student centered and inquiry based.

The VELS encourage students to think, reflect and develop deep knowledge and skills in the same way as historians, artists,mathematicians, and scientists do.

The VELS acknowledge that each discipline has its own mode of inquiry.

This, of course, is information literacy by another name.

the vels is based on an understanding of how students learn
The VELS is based on an understanding of how students learn.

Recent research has provided new understanding of the learning process and the development of competent performance in different intellectual domains, with the result that teaching and learning is focusing on student understanding and the application of knowledge to different contexts.

Of particular importance as far as the Standards are concerned, is the way in which students progress from being novice to more expert learners as they move through school.

research suggests the development involves
Research suggests the development involves:

・noticing features and meaningful patterns of information;

・acquiring relevant content knowledge that is organised in ways which reflect a deep understanding of the subject matter;

・applying the knowledge in ways appropriate to context, rather than merely exercising one's memory;

・retrieving important aspects of knowledge with a degree of automaticity;

・and approaching new situations in flexible ways.

VELS introduction http://vels.vcaa.vic.edu.au/about/overview.html#intro

constructivist learning and guided inquiry
Constructivist Learning and Guided Inquiry

VELS calls for a constructivist approach to learning through the school library:

Inquiry, not Information Literacy

constructivist learning occurs when
Constructivist learning occurs when:
  • learners construct deep knowledge and deep understanding rather than passively receiving it;
  • learners are directly involved and engaged in the discovery of new knowledge and development of new skills, attitudes and experiences;
  • learners transfer new knowledge and skills to new circumstances;
guided inquiry
Guided Inquiry:

“is carefully planned, closely supervised targeted intervention by an instructional team of teacher- librarians and teachers to guide students through curriculum-based inquiry units that build deep knowledge and deep understanding of a curriculum topic, and gradually lead towards independent learning.

Guided Inquiry is grounded in a constructivist approach to learning, based on the Information Search Process for developing students’ competence with learning from a variety of sources while enhancing their understanding of the content areas of the curriculum.”

Carol Kuhlthau

implementing guided inquiry key strategies
Implementing Guided Inquiry: Key Strategies
  • Initiated though compelling situations which provide challenge and opportunity.
  • Focus on identifying and solving intellectual and/or real-world problems
  • Learning activities closely resemble the ways that students will be expected to use their knowledge and skills in the real world
  • Exercise some choice over the specific questions they want to answer and how to present their new understandings.
implementing guided inquiry key strategies continued
Implementing Guided Inquiry:Key Strategies (continued)
  • Attempt is made to connect with students’ background knowledge.
  • Instructional activities involve the students in thinking, acting, and reflecting, discovering and linking ideas
  • Instructional activitiesmodel and provide opportunity to experiencethe knowledge construction process.
  • Opportunities for sustained dialogue and feedback
slide12

In our school library programs

  • The starting point for inquiry is not:

- “let’s do Dewey”

- “Here are some good web sites”

- Defining your needs

- The library’s research / information process

  • The starting point is

- understanding the knowledge outcomes

- understanding the disciplinary-based knowledge building process

- building interest, engagement, ownership

- managing cognitive, behavioral and affective requirements

the instructional framework
The Instructional Framework
  • This framework is based on Kuhlthau’s Information Search Process and is the only tested model in our field.
  • The simplistic models of information skills deny the complexity of the information-to-knowledge experience
  • The Information Search Process provides a research-based instructional framework for understanding students’ journey of information seeking and knowledge building, and a basis for guiding and intervening to ensure students develop deep knowledge and deep understanding.
the informaton search process
THE INFORMATONSEARCH PROCESS

Tasks Initiation Selection Exploration Formulation Collection Presentation

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------→

Feelings uncertainly optimism confusion clarity sense of satisfaction or

(affective) frustration direction/ disappointment

doubt confidence

Thoughts vague-------------------------------------→focused

(cognitive) -----------------------------------------------→

increased interest

Actions seeking relevant information----------------------------→seeking pertinent information

(physical) exploring documenting

stages of the isp
Stages of the ISP

Effective information seeking occurs in seven stages. These stages are named for the primary task to be accomplished at each point in the process.

  • Initiation: when confronted with an information need, students contemplate what they already know, what they want and need to find out
  • Selection: students identify and select general topics which will guide their information seeking to satisfy their information need.
  • Exploration: students investigate information on a general topic in order to extend personal understanding and to form a focus
stages of the isp16
Stages of the ISP
  • Formulation: students become aware of the various dimensions, issues, ramifications of the initiating question and begin to form their own focused perspective of the subject under study.
  • Collection: students gather information that defines, extends and supports the focus that they have formed. Interest and confidence commonly increases as they gain a sense of ownership and expertise in the subject.
  • Presentation:students prepare to apply / share what they have discovered.
  • Assessment: students reflect on what they have learned to discover what went well and what might be improved.

Ross Todd

mediation and intervention
Mediation and Intervention
  • Intervention centers on the way in which “mediators become involved in the constructive process of another person … in information seeking and use” (Kuhlthau, 204, p. 127).
  • Zone of Intervention: That area in which an information user can do with advice and assistance what he or she cannot do alone or can do only with great difficulty.
  • Intervention vs Independent Learning
slide18
From Information

to Knowledge

building declarative knowledge the knowledge about a topic ie content
Building Declarative Knowledge:(the knowledge about a topic, ie. content)
  • Goal: Propositional Knowledge: factual, explanatory, conclusive, predictive, reflective (VELS DISCIPLINE-BASED LEARNING)
  • Existing Knowledge (limited) 
  • Building background knowledge 
  • Encountering / investigating multiple viewpoints and perspectives, dealing with conflicting knowledge 
  • Focused knowledge building and knowledge authentication (quality arguments, use of evidence) 
  • Structuring new knowledge 
  • Representation of new, deep knowledge in meaningful structures and formats 
  • Communicating new knowledge 
  • Knowledge reflections, knowledge actions, knowledge solutions
slide20
The stages of the Information Search Process are potential zones of instructional intervention in the school library to develop deep knowledge and understanding through the school library.
  • The instructional interventions are KNOWLEDGE_BASED interventions to provide students with the necessary procedural knowledge to construct deep knowledge and understanding of their topics.
  • Specific instructional interventions are determined by the curriculum outcomes to be achieved, and the cognitive (thinking), affective (feelings), and behavioral needs of the learners to help them achieve these outcomes.
  • The starting point for the interventions is NOT information literacy skills, nor some predefined scope-and-sequence Information Literacy framework
  • The instructional interventions guide students in their inquiry and support them in their process of developing deep knowledge and understanding of their topics
slide21

Information Search Process

Tasks Initiation Selection Exploration Formulation Collection Presentation

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------→

Feelings uncertainly optimism confusion clarity sense of satisfaction or

(affective) frustration direction/ disappointment

doubt confidence

Thoughts vague---------------------------------------→focused

(cognitive) -----------------------------------------------→

increased interest

Actions seeking relevant information----------------------------→seeking pertinent information

(physical) exploring documenting

Information-to-knowledge experience

Stages of the Information Search Process represent critical Zones of Intervention

slide22

INTERVENTIONS: ISP: INITIATION

  • Understanding how a discipline builds knowledge
  • Understanding knowledge requirements of task: task analysis rubrics
  • Establishing existing / prior knowledge: novice knowledge (what I know about)
  • Mapping existing knowledge: Central concepts and relationships: concept mapping, mind mapping, Venn diagrams
  • Building engagement; Developing curiosity and motivation
  • Understand real world relevance and importance of the enquiry
  • Dealing with the affective dimensions: doubt, uncertainty
  • Task organization, time, process and effort management; Know when, where, and how to get help and guidance
interventions isp selection
INTERVENTIONS: ISP : SELECTION
  • Sources to build background knowledge: appropriateness & quality of sources - there are likely to be different sources to building deep knowledge
  • Use of technology tools to seek, access & evaluate sources
  • Read with understanding the major concepts and relationships in topics
  • Selecting content based on reading ability and content requirements: how do I know what is important?
  • Constructing a richer mental map of the knowledge terrain: systematic recording, organizing and evaluating initial ideas – not just random stockpiling of facts – graphical organizers
  • Developing openness to new ideas, diverse perspectives
  • Engaging in inquiry through reflection: I didn’t know that; I agree / disagree; I wonder that; Questions I have
  • Framing questions appropriate to the discipline of study to guide the further investigation
interventions isp exploration
INTERVENTIONS:ISP:EXPLORATION
  • Building a bigger picture, establishing interconnections
  • Encountering multiple viewpoints and perspectives;

dealing with conflicting knowledge;

  • Respecting and appreciating diverse cultural knowledges
  • Verifying and clarifying existing ideas
  • Develop self-discipline to work alone or in teams as needed
interventions isp formulation
INTERVENTIONS: ISP: FORMULATION
  • Focusing the knowledge building task
  • Developing the focus question(s) and formulating personal knowledge outcomes
  • Develop real world justifications for research choices
  • Constructing the abstract / knowledge plan of the inquiry
  • Planning the structure of the inquiry
interventions isp collection
INTERVENTIONS: ISP : COLLECTION

Knowledge building interventions

  • Selection of sources: pertinent, complex information rather than superficial information matched to specific focus;
  • Collecting data from disciplinary specific modes of inquiry: interviews, surveys, experiments, observation, journaling
  • Identification of central ideas and mapping relationships: complex relational note taking not fact gathering
  • Use of a variety of analytical methods: cause/effect; pro/con; error analysis; compare/contrast to sort, organize and structure ideas
  • Identification of arguments and evidences, counter arguments and counter evidences
  • Develop conclusions & positions; posit actions, implications and solutions; reflect on these in terms of original knowing
interventions isp presentation
INTERVENTIONS: ISP:PRESENTATION
  • Representation of new knowledge: what does “good” history, science, economics knowledge like? How is it typically presented in the real world?
  • Principles / criteria for applying modes of representation – textual, visual, graphical – discipline requirements
  • Structuring ideas into a coherent, integrated body of knowledge
  • Using ICT tools to construct appropriate representations of new knowledge
  • Using ICT tools, techniques and critical thinking skills to communicate new knowledge in appropriate ways– appropriate to the discipline
interventions isp assessment
INTERVENTIONS:ISP: ASSESSMENT
  • Develop competencies to self-evaluate and monitor one’s understanding: eg interventions which enable students to compare beginning and exit knowledge of a topic
  • Knowledge reflection: declarative and procedural knowledge gained: mapping personal learning
  • Reflections on: Knowledge depth; Knowledge structure and organization
  • Reflections on: What helped / hindered in the learning process
  • Personal insights gained
  • Sharing lessons learned
zone of intervention
Zone of Intervention

This model identifies “zones of instructional intervention” so that teacher-librarians can most effectively offer their knowledge, expertise and leadership for the achievement of the standards outlined in the VELS.

A zone of intervention can be defined as that area in which a student can do with advice and assistance what he or she cannot do alone or can only do with great difficulty.

Carol Kuhlthau http://cissl.scils.rutgers.edu/guided_inquiry/introduction.html

the teacher librarian and vels
The teacher-librarian and VELS

The challenge for teacher-librarians is to embrace the inquiry model for each of the disciplines and identify the critical “zone of intervention.”

the school library and vels
The school library and VELS

The “zone of intervention,” model identifies those areas that lend themselves to skill and knowledge development through the school library; where the expertise and instructional interventions of the teacher-librarian ensure that students reach the standards.

ross todd zones of intervention
Ross Todd: Zones of Intervention

Ross Todd highlights “zones of intervention,” across all the domains and dimensions.

These become the points at which teacher-librarians and classroom teachers can work together to develop an authentic research agenda.

The role of the library just became even more important!

the library instructional intervention process
The library instructional intervention process
  • Identify zones of intervention where information-to-knowledge processes and knowledge outcomes are embedded and lend themselves to inquiry in the school library, leading to opportunities for developing authentic research;
  • Understand how disciplinary knowledge is constructed;
  • Frame information-to-knowledge processes (Information Literacy) in the language of the particular discipline and based on how knowledge is constructed in the discipline;
  • Establish learning outcomes as established by the VELS, using the language of the standards; and
  • Construct instructional interventions, building-in approaches to assessment and evidence-based practice.
the zone of intervention model
The Zone of Intervention Model
  • learners encounter alternative perspectives and conflicting ideas so that they are able to transform prior knowledge and experience into deep understandings;
  • learners take ownership and responsibility for their ongoing learning and mastery of essential content and skills; and
  • learners contribute to social well being, the growth of democracy, and the development of a knowledgeable society. Victorian Essential Learning Standards
the information search process
The Information Search Process

Initiation

Selection

Exploration

Formulation

Collection

Presentation

Assessment

why this model is so relevant to the victorian essential learning standards
Why this model is so relevant to the Victorian Essential Learning Standards

The Essential Learning Standards are a framework of essential learnings in two ways.

First, the framework is based on the premise that there are three components of any curriculum which are necessary to enable students to meet the demands of a modern, globalised world.

These components are:

  • the processes of physical, personal and social development and growth
  • the branches of learning reflected in the traditional disciplines; and
  • the interdisciplinary capacities needed for effective functioning within and beyond school.

In the Standards, these components become the three core strands;Physical, Personal and Social Learning,Discipline-based Learning and Interdisciplinary Learning.

slide38
Second, the Standards clarify the core elements of each component that students need to acquire if they are to succeed in further education, work and life. The traditional discipline strand is balanced in the Standards by a set of broader interdisciplinary capacities (the domains of Communication, Design, Creativity and Technology, Information and Communications Technology and Thinking), and linked to physical, personal and social development (the domains of Health and Physical Education, Interpersonal Development, Personal Learning and Civics and Citizenship), with all three strands being equally necessary.
slide39
Together, the three strands provide the basis for students to develop deep understanding

- an ability to take their learning and apply it to new and different circumstances.

VELS introduction http://vels.vcaa.vic.edu.au/about/overview.html#intro

multiple models of information literacy or disciplinary knowledge construction
Multiple models of Information Literacy or Disciplinary Knowledge Construction
  • What does the inquiry process look like in Science?
  • What do scientists do when they research?
the science knowledge construction process
The Science Knowledge Construction Process
  • Develop curiosity and use scientific methods to establish generalizations
  • Discovery of truth: what is asserted is either true or false
  • Describes the world through activity of measurement
  • Establish existing understanding – truth claims: generalisations, laws
  • To understand methods of scientific inquiry, need to understand how generalizations are obtained from data of observation
  • Formulate hypotheses / questions based on available facts
  • Design and pursue investigation related to hypothesis / question
  • Develop systematic approach to data collection
  • Record observations from sources, environment, testing
  • Generate, validate, analyse, critique and interpret evidence
  • Draw valid conclusions: aim for generality
  • Explain how scientific knowledge is used
  • Construct working models to demonstrate scientific ideas
  • Present results using data appropriate formats
what does the inquiry process look like in civics and citizenship
What does the inquiry process look like in Civics and Citizenship?
  • Establish existing knowledge and develop background knowledge
  • Draw on a range of sources
  • Explore and consider different perspectives
  • Contest different opinions
  • Articulate and justify own opinion using supporting evidence
  • Refine own opinions, values and attitudes
  • Develop an action plan which demonstrates knowledge
  • Apply knowledge and skills in a range of community based activities.
what does the inquiry process look like in mathematics
What does the inquiry process look like in Mathematics?

CONJECTURE, FORMULATION, SOLUTION, COMMUNICATION

  • Find ideas, examples, counter examples
  • Explore patterns
  • Develop conjectures
  • Test simple conjectures
  • Explain propositions
  • Analyse reasonableness of points of view
  • Develop generalisations by abstracting features
  • Test truth statements and generalisations
  • Develop models
what does the inquiry process look like in historical reasoning and interpretation
What does the inquiry process look like in Historical Reasoning and Interpretation?
  • Own knowledge and experience
  • Plan investigation
  • Make judgments about sources
  • Ascertain the facts - Fidelity of facts
  • Drawing inferences from available evidence
  • Gathering evidence from a variety of sources
  • Documenting evidence from sources
  • Critically evaluate completeness of evidence
  • Constructing historical claims / hypotheses
  • Representing values, cultures, literal and symbolic meanings
  • Dealing with multiple, conflicting, partial interpretations
  • Communicate understanding of history using conventional forms to report findings and conclusions
integrating thinking processes personal learning and ict
Integrating Thinking Processes, Personal Learning and ICT

Interdisciplinary Learning

The Interdisciplinary Learning strand identifies a range of knowledge, skills and behaviours which cross disciplinary boundaries and are essential to ensuring students are prepared as active learners and problem-solvers for success at school and beyond.

Victorian Essential Learning Standards.

thinking processes
Thinking Processes
  • Identify existing knowledge and experience
  • Explore ideas and perspectives and collect information from a range of sources to build background knowledge
  • Question validity of sources
  • Generate, predict and test ideas / claims
  • Establish points of view
  • Research to develop reasoned arguments with supportive evidence
  • Generate imaginative solutions
  • Document changes in ideas
personal learning
Personal Learning
  • Develop an understanding of preferred learning styles
  • Develop an understanding of strategies that enhance personal learning
  • Identify learning strengths and weaknesses
  • Gain and offer feedback on developing content
  • Set and monitor learning improvement goals
  • Understand how different perspectives and attitudes shape learning
  • Develop positive learning habits
  • Understand ethical frameworks
  • Respond to criteria based evaluation
information and communications technology ict
Information and Communications Technology (ICT)
  • Access, process, manage and present information
  • Model and control events
  • Construct new understandings
  • Communicate with others
  • Monitor learning patterns
  • Process data to create solutions and information products that demonstrate understanding
  • Share work with others in ethical, legal and respectful ways
pedagogy of critical thinking the process of critical thinking
Pedagogy of Critical Thinking.The process of Critical Thinking.

Observations.

From a series of observations, we can come to establish:

Facts.

From a series of facts, or from an absence of fact, we make:

Inferences.

Testing the validity of our inferences, we can make:

Assumptions.

From our assumptions, we form our:

Opinions.

Taking our opinions, we use the principles of logic to develop:

Arguments.

And when we want to challenge the arguments of others, we employ:

Critical Analysis

(through which we challenge the observations, facts, inferences, assumptions, and opinions in the arguments that we are analyzing).

Argument Analysis

guided inquiry principles instructional design and strategies
Guided Inquiry: principles, instructional design and strategies

Design Principles for Instructional Interventions

  • Interventions are initiated though compelling situations and questions
  • Instruction puts emphasis on meaningful, authentic activities; focus on identifying and solving intellectual and/or real-world problems
  • Learning activities resemble ways that students will create and use knowledge and skills in the real world
  • Students are more motivated to engage in their inquiry when they are able to exercise some choice over questions and how to present their new understandings
slide52
Inquiry learning is responsive to students’ personal, social and cultural worlds, valuing differences and cultivating an inclusive community.
slide53
Bibliography

Bendigo Senior Secondary College (2005) Researching together: Engaging minds, Carlton, School Library Association of Victoria, BSSC

Boyko, Denise, Davey, Sandy & Macdonald, Joanne (2004) Teacher Librarian Program P-6. Carlton, School Library Association of Victoria

Burgess, Lesley. & Melissas, Shirley (2003) Making a difference. Carlton, School Library Association of Victoria

Kuhlthau,Carol (2006) Information literacy through guided inquiry: Preparing students for the 21st century. Lisbon, Portugal, IASL

Manning, Mary (2006) Expert learning; It’s essential or Teacher-Librarians write new curriculum at http://www.slav.schools.net.au

Mary Manning,(2007) Inquiring minds! Approaches to the Victorian Essential Learning Standards. Conference introduction.

Todd, Ross J. & Gordon, Carol (2007) A guided inquiry approach for learning in the school library: Transforming information into deep knowledge and deep understanding. Rutgers, New Jersey, CISSL.

Todd, Ross J. (2006) ‘School libraries and the VELS: Great minds at work’ in Synergy, 4 (2) pp 5-6.

Todd, Ross J. (2006) School libraries and the VELS: Great minds at work at http://www.slav.schools.net.au

Victorian Essential Learning Standards at http://vels.vcaa.vic.edu.au/