Information Literacy Curriculum
According to the American Library Association (ALA) Committee on Information Literacy report, an information literate person is one who is “able to recognize when information is needed,” knows what information is needed to address a given problem or issue, and, beyond that, has “the ability to locate, evaluate and use effectively the needed information” (Presidential Committee, 1989).
According to the Information Literacy Competency Standards for Higher Education (2000) from Academic, College, and Research Libraries (ACRL), an information literate individual is able to:
- Determine the extent of information needed
- Access the needed information effectively and efficiently
- Evaluate information and its sources critically
- Incorporate selected information into one’s knowledge base
- Use information effectively to accomplish a specific purpose
- Understand the economic, legal, and social issues surrounding the use of information, and access and use information ethically and legally
In other words, information literacy includes knowledge of the research process, skill in using resources, critical thinking about them, and an appreciation of proper documentation of sources.
In 2015, the ACRL revised its information literacy curriculum with a new approach: the Framework for Information Literacy.
The Framework is oriented around six concepts, or frames, each of which focuses on a different aspect of the information environment.
“Information literacy is the set of integrated abilities encompassing the reflective discovery of information, the understanding of how information is produced and valued, and the use of information in creating new knowledge and participating ethically in communities of learning.” (ACRL 2015)
Here are the six frames, each with its own considerations, though all related. Use the link above to learn more about each one.
- Authority is constructed and contextual
- Information creation as a process
- Information has value
- Research as inquiry
- Scholarship as conversation
- Searching as strategic exploration
Librarians partner with faculty to teach information literacy in a variety of ways.
- SSCI 3005: The History and social science programs require a course on information literacy with embedded librarians.
- HONS 3500: Honors teaches a course with embedded librarians to prepare students for their senior Capstone Thesis.
- Other courses on request. Librarians teach on average 80 sessions per semester for department instructors. This robust program allows information literacy to be incorporated into Freshman Composition, General Education, and upper division courses when research assignments are required.
- Many graduate programs include information literacy instruction by librarians to enhance instruction in primary resources, discipline databases, correct citation, and correct formatting of the thesis.
The library instruction program is engaged in ongoing assessment.
- We regularly assess our SSCI 3005 and HONS 3500 courses through several methods.
- We carried out a multi-phase assessment of our course-integrated instruction in 2009-2010 by surveying faculty on how well the goals for our sessions were met in students' products.
- In a 2010 online collaboration for ENGL 1002, a faculty member included library instruction assessment questions on his larger assessment instrument.
- In First Year Experience library session, minute papers have been used to get immediate feedback on students' learning, and we will used a rubric to directly assess student products for writing and research skills.
- The library instruction coordinator developed an information literacy rubric to apply to general education and senior writing to assess information literacy as a campus core competency.
Library Assessment Data
Instruction Program Assessment Reports:
Library User Survey Results