Information Literacy

My first official instruction duties here at UTC will be to do a talk to the incoming Faculty Fellows about Information Literacy and the library’s role in educating their students.

I’m preparing by going over tons of the online literature concerning IL, as well as doing the standard sorts of database searches for articles on the subject. I’ve only got an hour or so with them, so I can’t do any terribly in-depth exercises (although I am going to do something active). I can talk about how IL is effectively learning how to learn, and that we’re trying to prepare the student to evaluate more than just scholarly information, and all that rot. But I’m trying to decide how far to push the evaluation of information stuff, since I don’t agree at all with some of the canon on the subject. I’m thinking of doing the following:

  • Presenting the canon
  • Showing how collaborative works break down the reliance on authority (aka the wikipedia effect) and have a discussion of how new media sources and the remix culture of the current student body are challenging our presuppositions about authorship
  • Conclude with a short discussion of how these things can/will pop up in each of the participant’s fields of study, and how we at the library can help them get these concepts across to their students



Seems harmless enough, right? I’m only concerned because my central issue coming into the library, at least in my own head, is the rate of change that I can effect. How much radicalism is too much?


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