Presentation by Jenny Foreman, Information Literacy Librarian, Scottish Government on the why, how of creating an information literacy strategy and what is in the draft strategy and what they are doing and hope to do in the future.
1. The SG 2. The IL Strategy that I’ll be referring to was co written with my former colleague, Lesley Thomson. .
Quote from Fiona Hyslop, MSP. 2007 from the foreword of Skills for Scotland. A Lifelong Skills Strategy. Although IL not mentioned explicitly, the relevant skills are there in the document. 2. As an organisation and workforce, information, skills and learning are at the heart of the Scottish Government. One of the key strengths of the Scottish Government is the knowledge we hold and our ability to analyse it and apply it to the business of government . Our decisions, advice and activities should be based on considerations of the best available research evidence, best practice examples, most current information and the experience and expertise of those involved.
The right time for skills – Skills for Scotland Develop strategies to overcome challenges – research findings Overall picture to work from – training, linking into organisations training programme Advocacy / Raise the profile – IL and / plus the work of the library Also we have the support of our Head of Information Services in this project.
Challenges: The workplace research undertaken by John Crawford and Christine Irving examined the information literacy skills of a sample of SG staff and revealed the following main conclusions. So too did our own information use survey of over 1000 staff. 1. Information seeking skills were identified as a key skills deficit amongst many SG staff 2. Introverted information culture – people search internally for information rather than a mixture of both internal and external sources. Many didn’t know that there was a Library Service to help them. 3. Searching for information is a major activity – SG staff spend a lot of time and not all of it successfully finding information. One interviewee said that 20% of his time was spent searching for information. New ref: Managing Information vol 16 issue 2 22nd May 2009 p.29 “ Thirty six per cent of employees are unable to find the right information when using search engines Even something as simple as learning advanced search tools would be productive and make it more efficient and effective in finding information.
1.The SG Information Strategy has led in turn to our writing of an IL Strategy. This strategy aims to set out the skills and training required to enable the SG become more information literate. Quote from the Information Strategy? “ An organisation that understands its information needs and obligations and how to embed them in its business activities and processes can be decribed as “ information literate”. The Scottish Government will seek to develop information literacy within its workforce and its business practices.” 2. Target decision makers - the SG senior management. We would like to secure their ‘buy in.’ 3. Linked into other strategies e.g aforementioned Economic Strategy, the Skills for Scotland: A Lifelong Learning Strategy, Digital Strategy – an internal document published by our Communications Unit.
There’s a fashion for using the word literacy. Ross Finnie used the words physical literacy yesterday am on the radio. Diagram produced to help senior managers to understand the interlinking of the different literacies. It’s a way of joining up all the literacies and is primarily to explain the interlinking of the literacies. One of the remits of the SG’s Digital Strategy is to pilot the use of Web 2.0 social media. We have linked in with this by developing a Web 2.0 Workshop, an interactive session to enable SG staff to set up social media tools in the workplace. Managers need to recognise that just because staff are able to use the technology efficiently doesn’t mean that they can find information efficiently, or having found it use it effectively.
1. Purpose of the document and explanation of what IL is 2. Key outcomes: ensure the inclusion and integration of IL skills into the SG workforce to improve efficiency 3. Drivers: Recommendations of John and Christine’s research as well as our own Information Use Survey To create a IL skills framework within the SG so that To raise the profile of IL in line with other organisations 4. Where are we now 5. Where do we want to be? 6. How do we get there?
Just outline the key points We’ve raised our profile in a number of ways. Within the SG we’ve Given a short presentation on IL for our division head . Linked up with our Writing articles (one published so far) 2. New services/facilities Library Services are delivering their service in two other main buildings which means that they are near their users. We’re organising training in different buildings eg. Atlantic Quay, Glasgow – up till now all our training has been done in Edinburgh Training We’re updating our course material to reflect the changes in technology and feedback to encourage all types of users with different needs and interests. Revising the course content is an ongoing process.
On our Intranet, we’ve revamped our eLibrary pages. Less cluttered and now link up to other learning pages on the intranet. We’ve written separate IL pages which explain what IL is and what IL skills training we provide. We now have links to the Learning pages which are the pages of our corporate learning service. This means that users who are looking for training can easily find the IL courses on 3 different but linked sites. (eLibrary pages, the Learning pages and the online event booking system.)
We introduced a federated search engine – known as Webfeat but rebranded as K and E or Kande = Knowledge and Evidence. Think this is an easy way for users to search more than one database at a time in the same way that Google does. It’s being quite widely used now and only requires a bit more promotion – something that we’ll be doing in our IL skills training courses.
[Have put an image of an iphone as Peter Godwin and others mention that the future lies in mobiles re: searching, training etc.] Library Services run a variety of courses to improve information literacy skills We’re extending and developing a flexible programme of IL training. Fun hour long seminars e.g Google Treasure Hunt Bespoke or tailored searching training for researchers, etc such as Research into Evidence Drop-ins or Borrow a librarian at people’s desks for an hour so they don’t need to move! 2. Training is now being implemented in different buildings 3. eLearning modules are being developed using Moodle as our platform .
1. Investigate the information needs and existing skills of particular users groups (e.g analysts, policy makers, lawyers, senior civil servants, finance teams) and develop tailored information skills training 2. We are developing our training packages with a view to embracing Web 2.0 technologies. Web 3.0 the semantic web – Gnizr and Compendium We’re developing online tutorials to capture a wider audience than classroom based IL skills training. 3. Evaluate and measure our success. This is a difficult task especially as there are no real examples to follow within the workplace but Library Services are compiling statistics and comments for all the training courses and events 4. Possibly incorporate IL skills training as part of the induction programme. At present staff have to undergo mandatory training in the electronic records management system but perhaps in future all new starts will also be encouraged to undergo some form of IL skills training?
1. Elearning programme – Moodle as our platform 2. Support information specialists/librarians in enhancing their role as IL skills educators. This means that with the emphasis on additional IL training, we need to ensure that librarians are proficient as information skills educators and trainers. 3. And outwith the SG, as partners in the Project we’d like to continue to develop this partnership as well as find out what other workplaces are doing re: IL. One of the ways to go about this is by setting up the Community of Practice: Creating an information literate Scotland . [Lesley will be going into this further.] The SG could be an example of best practice or a benchmark on how an information literate workforce is of benefit to the organisation. Saving the organisation time and resources, thus providing tangible return on investment, then we can help other organisations do the same.
Any questions? The parrot is used in our Google Treasure Hunt It would be great to have your comments on what we’re trying to achieve re: IL in our workplace. Thank you.
Scottish Information Literacy Project Open Meeting 16 September 2009 Draft (2)
Developing an organisation’s Information Literacy Strategy Jenny Foreman September 2009
A smarter Scotland is at the heart of everything we want to achieve for this country. We can only build a Scotland that is wealthier and fairer, one that is healthier, safer, stronger and greener, if people are equipped with the skills, expertise and knowledge for success. Fiona Hyslop, MSP. 2007. Skills for Scotland: A Lifelong Skills Strategy. .
Why create an information literacy strategy? <ul><li>The right time for skills </li></ul><ul><li>Develop strategies to overcome challenges </li></ul><ul><li>Structure to work from </li></ul><ul><li>Advocacy / Raise our profile </li></ul>
Challenges <ul><li>Inward looking information culture </li></ul><ul><li>Key IL skills deficit in the SG </li></ul><ul><li>Library Services’ low profile </li></ul><ul><li>Searching for information is a major activity </li></ul>
How do you create an information literacy strategy? <ul><li>Hooks to hang on </li></ul><ul><li>Target decision makers </li></ul><ul><li>Link into other key strategies </li></ul>
What is in the strategy? <ul><li>Purpose of the document </li></ul><ul><li>Key outcomes </li></ul><ul><li>Drivers </li></ul><ul><li>Where are we now? </li></ul><ul><li>Where do we want to be? </li></ul><ul><li>How do we get there? </li></ul>
Things we have done <ul><li>Raised profile </li></ul><ul><li>New services / facilities </li></ul><ul><li>New training </li></ul>
Information Literacy Skills Training <ul><li>Internet Skills </li></ul><ul><li>Web 2.0 Workshops </li></ul><ul><li>Google Treasure Hunt </li></ul><ul><li>Tailored sessions. </li></ul>
In Progress <ul><li>Investigate the information needs of users </li></ul><ul><li>Develop our information literacy skills training </li></ul><ul><li>Measure and evaluate our success </li></ul><ul><li>Information literacy skills as part of CPD . </li></ul>
Future <ul><li>eLearning </li></ul><ul><li>Support SG information professionals in their role as IL skills educators </li></ul><ul><li>Scottish Information Literacy Project and Creating an information literate Scotland (IDeA). </li></ul>