Making it real : information literacy and student engagement. Authors: Ursula Byrne, Siobhan Dunne


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Delivered at the All Ireland Society for Higher Education Annual (AISHE) Conference, August 28 – 29, 2008, Maynooth, Ireland.

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  • Harder to fit in “library time” more to cover in shorter period of time – more assignments too, pressure of work – this approach today will give ways the library staff can be included to support the academics New approaches – more information available to students, more distractions too, emphasis on critical thinking,
  • Answer: Because users coping with information explosion – print/electronic/web ; becoming more important to Be able to evaluate information /information sources found/used – University of Google – (Tara Brabazon) 3. Key skills in terms of “graduateness” is developing critical thinking skills 4. Avoid plagiarism –important at every level from 1 st year up to PhDs 5. Develop life-long learning skills – strategic objective of the university Definition of IL And if its not a named learning outcome/objective – where /when does it happen?? It should be learning objective in each module –in that case it would be “Acquire appropriate information….” so academic can customise what is appropriate to module (PBL all info skills are front ended- at beginning of the year , in other programmes it slower approach)
  • Importance of IL as life long learning skill – how is university ensuring this skill set is achieved? IL Framework – providing an opportunity for students to develop IL skills as they progress through programme of study. NB Acknowledge slide from Lorna Dodd, presentation given in Mexico 2008
  • High level of collaboration from university team players - ‘Linking up’ with overall objectives of programme. Library involved in planning and development of module from start – not a bolt on Very brief description of what each component addressed
  • Is a university education simply something that is “done” to me, or am I seen as an individual in this process? Is there space for me as a person in the university, or am I simply a nameless cog in the machine? How important is this module? After completing this module, students will be expected to demonstrate skills and competencies in research, studying and writing in the assessment of all modules.
  • Importance of student involvement and choice and formative assessment Introduction to Library & how library sessions fit in with other sessions practical session to identify current use of information sources Demonstration of library catalogue – searching for reference material & practical session – locating material on catalogue + retrieving it on shelves Discussion on plagiarism How to cite and reference appropriately & practical session – creating references using different styles for books, journals and newspapers
  • Library works with academic to realise their LO. You tell us what you want your students to have achieved by end of session and we’ll design a programme that meets the appropriate level for them. Student focused LO Transferable skills
  • Library works with academic to realise their LO. You tell us what you want your students to have achieved by end of session and we’ll design a programme that meets the appropriate level for them. Student focused LO Transferable skills
  • Sustainability of IL training – meeting the needs of our virtual students
  • 2006
  • Wireless network built into the cart
  • Instead of the Library being “bolt on” approach ( 30 minutes at the beginning of 1 st year and never again! ) with partnership we will be more able to : ….. Plagiarism point – support academics in addressing known problems in the institution – web pages, training sessions, advice etc Sustainability point…Pool of knowledge in the Library, experts in PBL, plagiarism etc when staff turn over etc
  • Making it real : information literacy and student engagement. Authors: Ursula Byrne, Siobhan Dunne

    1. 1. Making it real:information literacy &student engagement 28th August 2008 NUI Maynooth Siobhán Dunne Ursula Byrne Humanities Librarian Head of Academic Services DCU Library Humanities & Social Sciences UCD Library
    2. 2. Overview• Changes in higher education• Information literacy & achieving learning outcomes• Case Study 1 – DCU (first years)• Case Study 2 – UCD (third years)• Partnership
    3. 3. Changes in Education• Shift toward semesterisation & modularisation• New approaches to teaching• Resulting change in the role of libraries & librarians• Inter-disciplinary approach• Development of life-long learning skills
    4. 4. Why is Information Literacy important? Is it a named learning outcome or competency in your module descriptor? – Slide adapted from presentation by Lorna Dodd, Liaison Librarian, UCD
    5. 5. Identify information need Use the Identify theinformation in an most appropriate INFORMATION source ethical way LITERACY Evaluate the reliability, Effectively relevance, retrieve relevant currency & information appropriateness of the information
    6. 6. Example of Programme – DCU Study and Research Skills School of Applied Languages & Intercultural StudiesFirst year undergraduates; Core Module4 partners:• Computer Services Department• Library• School of Applied Languages & Intercultural Studies• Teaching and Learning Unit
    7. 7. Example of Programme: DCU School of Applied Languages & Intercultural StudiesDemonstrated need for this module from studentsExplicit Learning Outcome:“The module will contribute to facilitating the transition into a third level learning environment”
    8. 8. Module Aims• introduce students to technologies and resources that will underpin their work at university• enable students to gather, interpret and present information• introduce students to academic writing skills• enable students to reflect on their work practice and progress (assessing one’s work)• foster group work by identifying common goals and working towards individual & group aims• help students become aware of motivating and organisational factors which affect learning
    9. 9. Library component• 5 x 1 hr• Diagnostic assessment• Continuous hands on element• Discussion and reflection in each session• Emphasis on collaboration & peer assessment• Module content posted on VLE• Timely feedback to guide learning
    10. 10. Hands on Session 4 Planning your Search Strategy Learning Outcome: Clarify your research topic - using mind mapping Indentify and locate scholarly & popular information sources Locate newspapers & journals – both print/online Evaluate information foundModule Aims•enable students to gather, interpret and present information•enable students to reflect on their work practice and progress(assessing one’s work)
    11. 11. Assessment• Reflective learning log (30%)• End of Semester Essay (70%) on the topic of “Academic Writing” - students required to formulate their own research question Explicit essay criteria• Employ and cite, AT LEAST three different sources• Use a keyword search in the library catalogue.• Plan your research
    12. 12. LETSDCU Library E-tutorial for Students
    13. 13. Overview: UCD, 2006 -• Where within a programme are IS skills acquired?• Approach taken : Information Skills Steering Group• Sub-Group: T&LIS : Delivery of information skills within programmes• Pick n Mix• Example : School of Economics• 30 minutes demonstration/lecture; 30 minutes worksheets• Changes in module from 2006/07; 2007/08• Year 1: Lectures 1-6 by Academics ; Lectures 7 – 14 by Library staff “Equip students with skills necessary to write a research proposal”• Year 2 : Lectures 1-9 by Library staff
    14. 14. Example of UCD Programme: School of Economics3rd year undergraduates10x 1hourLaptop trolley – Carter25 Dell D600 laptopsCompatibility in roomsData projector availabilityTrolley availability
    15. 15. Example of Programme: School of Economics – 3rd years• Create a search strategy• Identify back-round information• Use relevant print and electronic journals• Use relevant databases to locate information• Locate and evaluate relevant web resources• Alternative sources to consider – Google Scholar, Open Access publications, e-theses, Gateway sites• Evaluating information found• Ethical use of Information handout
    16. 16. School of Economics programme 2007/2008 Library component 30% marksWorkbook = 20% marks• 9 worksheets*• Demonstration /lecture + relevant worksheets filled in• EndNote Library = 10% marks• Create an EndNote Library - Week 4• Each EndNote library contains unique references for each project• Each EndNote library contains at least one of each the following: – Journal article; Book or book chapter; Newspaper article; Website; Official document; Reference• *Worksheet 9 distributed in class
    17. 17. Comparison of two years2006 – 2007 2007 – 200853 students registered 39 students registeredAverage attendance: Average Attendance:80% (Plagiarism session 60%) 76% (Plagiarism session 85%)Worksheets Worksheets92.5% average mark achieved 81% average mark achievedEndNote Library – not separately EndNote Library 66% average mark achieved marked (100% highest; 0% lowest (5 not submitted))Assessment strategies: Assessment strategies:Attendance/participation – 15% Worksheets = 20%Worksheets 40% - EndNote Bibliography 10%Detailed Project outline: 45% Final Project : 70%
    18. 18. Evaluation of Programme over 2 yearsEvaluation: Year 1 Year 2 68% Response 74.4%Of those who responded: Year 1 Year 2Worksheets 75% helpful 82.8 % 11% too difficultUse Library more effectively: 94% 89.7%Apply knowledge to other courses: 75% 89.7%
    19. 19. Making it realPartnership with Academic community – why embedding IS skills is more successful than the traditional generic approach• Appropriate learning experiences - Directly related to students’ work• Active “hands on” session• Evaluation forms• Communication
    20. 20. Student Feedback Worksheet was good for developing project topic and The library sessions … making you read up and find taught us how to make information about the topic. the most of the library and they also taught us about plagiarism More on literature The library session… reviews explained citing and referencing and I had never done this before.More in-depth analysis of databases would behelpful and Endnote would be better ifintroduced in an earlier class. Happy days, very helpful for research, wouldn’t be a bad idea doing this for 1st yearsReally good practical sessions. …. A good coming in to university mix of demonstration and practice.
    21. 21. Academic Staff “Because the skillsFeedback, 2008 were linked to credited course work, the studentsThe embedding of IS within the were more engagedEconomics module has resulted in students having “a better in the process” understanding of the range of economic resources available,and how to cite these resources correctly” “They’ll apply what they have learned to other modules they are taking in Economics, … and have also gained skills that’ll be of benefit in the workplace when they leave [university]”
    22. 22. Partnership• Achieving strategic objectives of the institution• Delivering information skills across Programmes• Supporting different forms of teaching – PBL, Large Group teaching etc
    23. 23. Questions?ContactSiobhán Dunne: 01 7008327 siobhan.dunne@dcu.ieUrsula Byrne: 01 7167025