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Osborne - Learning from the learners: the student voice in information literacy
 

Osborne - Learning from the learners: the student voice in information literacy

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  • Quite often, we have our own set way of delivering IL sessions. The tried and trusted ways. Why is that?. Primarily because it is familiar to us and we are comfortable delivering it. It is geared to our thoughts and expectations on what the students already know and what they need to know. However, we have lots of tools and our disposal, so we don’t have to treat everyone as if they were a nail. Why not ask them what they would find it useful to know and how?
  • They are paying to learn (Customer insight)Your contribution forms part of their overall learning experience It can prevent you experiencing the “Information literacy session from hell” (Chatting, head on desk, asleep, giggling, disengaged, Library anxiety, learning from peers)It helps you to find out if what you are doing actually works and “engages” them. After all, we want them to be enthused about what they are doing Each person has a different background with past experiences, educational perspectives and relationships to study. Additionally, librarians have tried to evaluate the usefulness of their sessions from their own viewpoint rather than from that of the students themselves. To base our work on reality and see things from their perspective
  • ObjectivesTo explore BSc Nursing students’ conceptions of information literacy and its perceived value as part of their overall learning experience during the three year period of their university course. To examine the value and relevance of information literacy in searching for evidence-based materials within their placements as an indicator of its place in the ‘real world’ of the nurse To evaluate the usefulness of information literacy currently taught on this course in the light of the results of the research and make recommendations as to how it should be taught in the future
  • In our everyday lives, we made numerous assumptions about other people, many of which are unconsious. For example, accent can denote where we are from, perceived social class, family background. Hobbies and likes can also give people a clue about the type of person we are or even our age. Recent research both in the USA & University of Cambridge showed that Facebook likes can be accurate indicators of things like Political leanings, orientation, intelligence etc. e.g Mozart and curly fries.
  • Young people have excellent IT & information skills, older people don’t, The importance of the assumptions made by library and academicstaff has again become very relevant in dealing with the ‘Google Generation.’Secker and Coonan are critical of the literature in that area in feeling that it:Has vastly over‐rated info skills of young people, and also they may thinkthey have better skills than they do. At the same time you have toappreciate that some students will be highly skilled online and anyintroduction that begins at too basic a level will put them off.(Secker and Coonan, 2011:18)  They’re learning to be a nurse so they realise how important research is. I would never have put this with nursing. Never. [my emphasis] I’d havethought they would have given you the basics of nursing and then researchin the second and third year. When I go on placement and somebody says:‘ooh my arm’s aching here do you think it could be this’, I’d feel like saying‘well I don’t know but I can tell you how to search for research paper”! Idon’t feel anything like a nurse at all.  If they listen to me, then have a practice they’ll be fine There were huge groups of us in two classrooms of computers. I’m fine inlearning in smaller groups and one to one, but you put me in a large groupand it just goes straight over my head. They go rushing along, you’ve gotpeople nodding and they think that everybody’s ok with it. There wasn’tenough time for (librarian) to get round everyone to see if they were ok.The sessions were far too big, so smaller groups would have given peoplethe chance to ask for further clarification. I went away thinking “I’ve not gota bloody clue what I’m doing here”. Also it was very early on, and we didn’tknow each other. Librarians are not that scary “I can remember the sessions and they gave us some confidence to come tothe library because it seems like quite a scary place. It’s not the staff butpeople all seem to know where they are going. It’s big and you haven’t aclue what you are doing. We knew where the nursing books were and wefound it wasn’t scary. A lot of people do keep away from the library as theyfeel quite intimidated”Lack of confidence felt by a number ofparticipants in their information searching and library skills as identified by Mellon(1986). Coupled with this is the perceived pressure of expectation from peers,library staff, and academic staff. First year students specifically were trying toadjust to a new environment and found that the library seemed to be especiallyforbidding. Those who exhibited lower self-confidence experienced higher levelsof library anxiety while those who were able to deal with the new skills andenvironment experienced an increase in confidence  “The assumptions drawn and expectations created maybe the work of a single academic librarian, a team of academic librarians, ora team of academic librarians and teaching faculty. Despite the fact that theterm “life-long learning” is often associated with information literacy there isa surprising lack of dialogue between those developing information literacyprograms at colleges and universities”.

Osborne - Learning from the learners: the student voice in information literacy Osborne - Learning from the learners: the student voice in information literacy Presentation Transcript

  • Learning from the Learners: Student voice inInformation Literacy “It is tempting, if the only tool you have is a hammer, to treat everything as if it were a nail.....” Abraham Maslow Dr Antony Osborne, LILAC. March 2013
  • Why should we listen to students?• They are paying to learn• Customer Service Excellence Award• Your contribution forms part of their overall learning experience• It can prevent you experiencing the “Information literacy session from hell”• It helps you to find out if what you are doing works for them
  • The Value of Information Literacy: Conceptions of BScNursing Students at a UK UniversityTo explore BSc Nursing students’ conceptions ofinformation literacy and its perceived value as part of theiroverall learning experience during the three year period oftheir university course. Anon: German Postcard 1888 (Wikimedia)
  • Let’s make some assumptions• What music do I like?• What job did my father do?• “Strictly” or “X Factor?”
  • What about assumptions?“Assumptions are dangerous things to make, and like alldangerous things to make -- bombs, for instance, orstrawberry shortcake -- if you make even the tiniest mistakeyou can find yourself in terrible trouble. Makingassumptions simply means believing things are a certainway with little or no evidence that shows you are correct,and you can see at once how this can lead to terribletrouble”.Lemony Snicket: The Austere Academy (2000)
  • What assumptions do we make?• Young people have excellent IT & information skills, older people don’t.• They’re learning to be a nurse so they realise how important research is.• If they listen to me, then have a practice they’ll be fine.• Librarians are not that scary.• They’ll come and see us if they need help.
  • How can we hear their voice?• Ask but listen to the answer (informal as much as formal)• Beware the smiley face syndrome. They may be saying what they think you want to hear• Don’t have a “one size fits all “ approach• Focus groups• Follow up later (or via the lecturer)• Social media
  • Students as consultants projectProject aims:• to promote authentic student engagement in the enhancement of teaching and learning and explore the nature and construct of inspirational teaching.• to create opportunities for student and staff to engage in reflection and dialogue around teaching and learning approaches• offer academic staff a qualified student perspective (at points of need) that goes beyond the typical end of module evaluation response or NSS survey.
  • Questions and/or discussion?