Integrating and Reinforcing Information Literacy in the Classroom

If you currently require students to: Consider requiring them to: Information Literacy concept reinforced: The information literate student...
Attend library instruction session(s). Locate one or more relevant sources on their topic for the following class session. ...accesses needed information effectively and efficiently.
Prepare a bibliography. Annotate each citation with a brief paragraph explaining why they chose each source, based on their evaluation. ...evaluates information and its sources critically.

...articulates and applies initial criteria for evaluating both the information and its sources.
Write a response or research paper. Submit a working bibliography early in the process. ...determines the nature and extent of the information needed.

...identifies a variety of types and formats of potential sources for information.
Write a response or research paper. Include a variety of sources as evidence, going so far as to require specific types of sources. ...evaluates information and its sources critically.

...determines whether the initial query should be revised.

...reevaluates the nature and extent of the information need.
Write a response or research paper. Include source evaluation in their paper’s text. ...evaluates information and its sources critically.

...summarizes the main ideas to be extracted from the information gathered.

...synthesizes main ideas to construct new concepts.

...applies new and prior information to the planning and creation of a particular product or performance.
Based, with permission, on The Plattsburgh Tip Sheet: Reinforcing Information and Technology Literacy in General Education Courses, Holly Heller-Ross, Plattsburgh State University, 2003.

Please note: Assistance is always available at the Reference Desk for students who need coaching in developing their information literacy skills.

Integrating Information Literacy into the Curriculum

  • If Oesterle Library subscribes to a database specific to your discipline, require your students to use it.
  • Have students find a book on their topic, read only the preface and table of contents, and write a brief summary of what the author intends to say.
  • Make an immediate follow-up assignment after a library instruction session, requiring students to find one article on their proposed topic, write a correct citation and summary of the article, with an additional paragraph describing the elements of the article that caused them to choose it over other articles (the evaluation process).
  • Make an immediate follow-up assignment after a library instruction session, requiring students to create a bibliography of X# of resources on their proposed topic, including correct citations and summaries of the resources. An additional paragraph should either be required in this assignment or the final assignment describing their evaluation of each resource.
  • Add a requirement to your assignment specifying what types of resources should be used how many of each. Consider for at least one assignment banning Web sites.
  • Spell out the information literacy goals your assignment will address.
  • Sequence assignments blending topic with increasingly complex information literacy elements.
  • Design assignments to focus on the resource materials.
  • Require students to use at least one article from a journal to which Oesterle Library subscribes. No online full-text allowed.
  • Require that students use a reference book appropriate to their topic – can have them copy one page of article or the chart or table to prove they used it.

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