LIS 1001: Introduction to Research Methods & Materials Syllabus

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Course offered in Spring 2010 at Louisiana State University.

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LIS 1001: Introduction to Research Methods & Materials Syllabus

  1. 1. LIS 1001 Library Research Methods and Materials Spring 2010, Section 15 Instructor: Ms. Rebecca MillerClass Information:3/15/2010-5/7/2010; 1 credit hourONLINE: Course is available via MoodleInstructor Information:Office: Middleton Library, Room 141 (ask at the Reference Desk)Office Hours: By appointment onlyEmail: millerrk@lsu.eduCourse Description & Objectives:LIS 1001 introduces students to library resources and information organization, access, retrieval, andusage. By the completion of this course, students should be able to recognize a need for information,determine the nature and extent of information needed, access needed information effectively,evaluate information critically, incorporate selected sources, and also be able to understand many of theissues surrounding the access and use of information.Text:While there is no required text for this course, students are expected to keep up with the readingsposted in the LIS 1001 Moodle course page. Many of the readings come from the following text, whichyou may purchase if you would like (and I highly recommend as a valuable text on the research process);however, it is not required since everything that you need for this class will be posted in Moodle.George, Mary. The Elements of Library Research. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2008.Course/Technology Requirements:All of the course material will be available through Moodle. The instructors will communicate with thestudents via email; if you do not use your LSU email account, you need to let the instructors know sothat you will not miss any important information. Internet access is, of course, critical to this course. Ifyou are off campus while you are taking this course, you also need to make sure you have signed up foryour Library PIN, which will allow you to access LSU databases. For more information on Library PINs,visit: https://lsu.louislibraries.org:5203/uhtbin/cgisirsi/0/0/0/1/38/X/BLASTOFFOther software requirements are described on page 5 of this syllabus, in the section entitled “CourseMaterials.”Finally, you will most likely be required to enter the Middleton Library on LSU’s main campus. If youhave a problem with this, please let the instructor know as soon as possible.1
  2. 2. Grading:This course will use the following grading scale:A 90-100%B 80-89%C 70-79%D 60-69%F Below 60%If you are on the cusp of a higher letter grade, the score will only be rounded up IF: 1) your overallgrade is within .5 points of the minimum score for the higher letter grade (i.e., 89.5 has the potential toround up to a 90) and 2) you have participated in class discussions and assignments.Instructor’s Suggestions for Success:Although this course is 1 credit and meets for half a semester, it involves a fair amount of work; since itmeets for half a semester, the coursework assigned will equal the load of a 2 credit course for theduration of the course. It will benefit you to stay organized, don’t wait til the last minute on theassignments, and ask any questions that you have as soon as you have them and BEFORE theassignment is due.When beginning each week, it is in each student’s best interest to start with the Readings listed, thenview each of the Lessons listed, and then start to work on the Participation activities and the weeklyAssignment. Approaching each week with this schedule of activities should help the student inunderstanding and incorporating ideas discussed.When you email the instructors, make sure that you:1. Address the email to the Instructor(s) you are sending it to2. Identify yourself3. Identify the purpose of your email4. Let the instructor know if there is an attachment to your email, what the attached file is named, andwhat type of file it is (.xls, .docx, .pdf, .jpg)Course Requirements & Related Policies:Descriptions of the course requirements and their corresponding weights are described below. Late ormissed assignments will only be accepted for full credit under documented, extenuatingcircumstances, which may include: Illness or injury: Please provide a doctor’s note for documentation. Death: Please provide an obituary, funeral program, or death certificate for documentation. Other emergency: Please provide any sort of appropriate documentation.In all of these cases, it is important to let the instructors know immediately what has happened. If thereis another, less urgent conflict with an assignment or class time, please let me know as soon as possible,2
  3. 3. and, of course, provide any appropriate documentation. Other conflicts and their effect on anassignment or participation grade will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.Late or missed assignments that do not fall within this description of extenuating circumstances willnot be accepted. If you realize that you may need more time to complete an assignment and it is beforethe assignment’s due date, you will automatically be granted an extension. However, this is only IF youcontact the instructors PRIOR TO the assignment’s due date. Contacting the instructor the day of theassignment will not result in your receiving an extension.Participation (20%)There are 14 total participation opportunities in this category. The goal of these activities is to help youinternalize the lessons and readings posted in Moodle. Instructions for specific participation activitiescan be found under “Course Instructions” in the first block of your Moodle course.Assignments (50%)There are 7 total assignments for this course. For Weeks 1-6, the assignments for each week will openat 12:00 a.m. on the Monday that the week begins with, and will close at 11:55 p.m. (which is as late asMoodle allows) on the Sunday of each week. These assignments will ask you to demonstrate what youhave learned through the readings, lessons, and participation activities each week. Assignmentinstructions can be found under “Course Instructions” in the first block of your Moodle course.The final, and seventh, assignment is a bit different. This assignment is to complete the three modulesthat make up the Tiger TAIL (LSU Libraries’ Information Literacy Tutorial:http://www.lib.lsu.edu/instruction/tigertail/index.html). Although these three modules are due to theinstructor by 11:55 p.m. on 5/7, you have the entire length of the course to complete them.Information about the Tiger TAIL is available in the first Moodle block of this course.Paper Trail Project (15%)DUE: 5/4/2010 by 11:55 p.m.This project represents a semester-long endeavor. Instructions for this project can be found under“Course Instructions” in the first block of your Moodle course, as well as in the “Paper Trail Project”Moodle block.Final Exam (15%)The Final Exam is a cumulative, open-material (open book and notes) exam that can be accessed viaMoodle. The Final Exam will become available at 7:30 a.m. on May 10 and will close at 9:00 p.m. onMay 12. Although the window of time that the exam will be open spans two days, you will only have 2hours to complete the exam, from the time that you open it. When you open the exam in Moodle, youwill have one opportunity to take the exam, and the exam will close 2 hours from the time that youopen it. The exam must be completed within this two hour time block.Extra CreditThere will be one opportunity for extra credit in this course. The extra credit assignment will replaceyour lowest Assignment grade. In order to receive credit for the assignment, it must be completed andturned in (via Moodle) by 11:55 p.m. on May 7. You will find instructions for the assignment posted inthe first Moodle block under “Extra Credit Opportunity.”3
  4. 4. Rules of Conduct & Expectations:At LSU, we expect all students to adhere to the LSU Code of Student Conduct (available:http://appl003.lsu.edu/slas/dos.nsf/$Content/Code+of+Conduct?OpenDocument). Please note that thisCode of Conduct includes a section on Plagiarism (5.1.16). At LSU, plagiarism is defined as:the unacknowledged inclusion of someone elses words, structure, ideas, or data. When a studentsubmits work as his/her own that includes the words, structure, ideas, or data of others, the source ofthis information must be acknowledged through complete, accurate, and specific references, and, ifverbatim statements are included, through quotation marks as well. Failure to identify any source(including interviews, surveys, etc.), published in any medium (including on the internet) or unpublished,from which words, structure, ideas, or data have been taken, constitutes plagiarismStudents are expected to complete the assignments individually, unless otherwise noted in theassignment description. If I discover that plagiarism (as defined above) has occurred, the instructor willreport the student(s) to the Dean of Students immediately.Drop & Retake Policies and Dates:University policy limits how many courses you can drop in a year. Before dropping any course, be sureto consult with your academic advisor. There is also a new policy concerning the retaking of courses onehas failed. The policies are on pages 75 and 76 of the course catalog, also online athttp://www.lsu.edu/catalogs/2007/pdfs/8UndergradDegreeReq.pdf.Important dates for this course:Last day to drop without a W—March 24Last day to add—March 25Last day to drop with a W—April 29This course ends on May 7, 2010The Final Exam for this course will become available at 7:30 a.m. on May 10 and will stay available until9:00 p.m. on May 12, in keeping with the official Exam Schedule for the Spring 2010 semester.Instructor Error:It is always possible that there will be problems with an assignment because of instructor error. If this isthe case, it is your responsibility to report the problem immediately, and BEFORE the assignment is due.I cannot fix anything if I am not aware of the problem before it is too late. This means that you shouldlook over the assignments before the night before, or morning of, the assignment’s due date. Whenerrors are discovered, the instructor will let everyone know, and we will proceed from there.Technical Difficulties:One characteristic of an information literate student is the ability to deal with the potential failure oftechnology. Much of this course relies on Moodle, and its functionality; likewise, much of this courserelies on the functionality of the internet. This means that you may encounter problems that are dueneither to student nor to faculty error. If you experience technical difficulties, it is YOURRESPONSIBILITY to report these issues BEFORE the assignment is due. You will be granted an extensionif you follow these instructions. Additionally, it is always smart to save, back up, or print out your work.For example, if you are unsure whether or not a Moodle assignment was submitted, keep a hard copy(printed out version) of your work, or copy it over onto a Word document that could be emailed to theinstructors.4
  5. 5. To report technical difficulties before an assignment is due, email the instructors with an explanation ofthe situation. Again, you must report technical difficulties BEFORE the assignment’s due date, or youwill not receive an extension. Remember, we will not accept late work, so you will receive a ZEROwithout an extension.On-campus computer labs:If you are experiencing technical issues, you may want to know where you can find functioningcomputers and internet access. A list of the on-campus student labs can be found here:http://www.lsu.edu/its/class/labs.htm.Access to Course Materials:As stated above, all of the course materials will be available in Moodle, which you can access via yourPAWS account. If you are having trouble with either of these accounts, you need to let the instructorknow.Course Materials: will be available in a variety of different formats, which include: Adobe Acrobat,Microsoft Word, Microsoft PowerPoint, and Adobe Flash. You can download a free version of AdobeAcrobat Reader at: http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/readstep2.html. You can downloadMicrosoft Office products via Tigerware (http://tigerware.lsu.edu/). You can download a free, updatedversion of Adobe Flash Player (http://www.adobe.com/products/flashplayer/) on the Adobe website.Let us know if you experience difficulties with any of these options.Disability Services:If you have a disability that may have some impact on your work in this class and for which you mayrequire accommodations, please see an Advisor in the Office of Disability Services (112 Johnston Hall) sothat such accommodations may be arranged. After you receive your accommodations letter, pleasemeet with me to discuss those accommodations as soon as possible. Tentative Course ScheduleThis schedule is subject to change, and may be adjusted as the course progresses; however, studentswill be notified of change with at appropriate advance notice.The course week begins on Monday at 12:00 a.m., and ends at 11:55 p.m. the next Sunday night, withthe exception of Week 7, which ends on a Friday (in keeping with the official LSU Spring 2010Academic Calendar). You will be responsible for viewing all the lessons (the lessons are all visualtutorials that you will simply watch), and completing all the readings, participation activities, andassignments by 11:55 p.m. on the end date indicated below, and in each Moodle block. Below aredescribed the specific activities that you must complete each week; it is assumed that you will watch thelessons that are posted in Moodle.5
  6. 6. Week 1: March 15-21:During Week 1, we will be looking at an overview of LIS 1001, the Research Process, the LSU LibrariesWebsite, and the LSU Libraries Catalog. Readings: o Chapters 1 and 3, The Elements of Library Research (posted in Moodle) Participation Activities: o Complete the Pre-Test o Participate in the Week 1 Discussion (question posted in Moodle) o Write and upload your first Research Journal entry (prompt posted in Moodle) Assignment 1: o Complete the LSU Libraries Catalog Assignment posted in Moodle, Week 1.Week 2: March 22-28:During Week 2, we will be discussing Library Organization (Classification Systems, Call Numbers, andSubject Headings), Boolean Searching, and Evaluating Books. Readings: o Chapters 4 and 5, The Elements of Library Research (posted in Moodle) o Review the Search Strategies Diagram (posted in Moodle) o Review the Comparison of Classification Systems (posted in Moodle) Participation Activities: o Participate in the Week 2 Discussion (question posted in Moodle) o Write and upload your second Research Journal entry (prompt posted in Moodle) Assignment 2: o Complete the Controlled Vocabularies & Folksonomies Assignment posted in Moodle, Week 2.Week 3: March 29-April 4:During Week 3, we will be discussing Reference Sources, Government Documents, and SpecialCollections. Readings: o Chapter 7, The Research Process: Books and Beyond o Chapter 12, Basic Library Skills Participation Activities: o Participate in the Week 3 Discussion (question posted in Moodle) o Write and upload your third Research Journal entry (prompt posted in Moodle) Assignment 3: o Complete the Reference/Government Documents/Special Collections Assignment posted in Moodle, Week 3Spring Break: April 5-11: Enjoy your holiday!6
  7. 7. Week 4: April 12-18:During Week 4, we will be discussing the Information Cycle, Periodicals, and Periodical Indexes. Readings: o Chapter 5, The Elements of Library Research (posted in Moodle) Participation Activities: o Participate in the Week 4 Discussion (question posted in Moodle) o Write and upload your fourth Research Journal entry (prompt posted in Moodle) Assignment 4: o Complete the Periodicals & Indexes Assignment posted in Moodle, Week 4Week 5: April 19-25:During Week 5, we will be discussing the Library Databases. Participation Activities: o Participate in the Week 5 Discussion (question posted in Moodle) o Write and upload your fifth Research Journal entry (prompt posted in Moodle) Assignment 5: o Complete the LSU Libraries Databases Assignment posted in Moodle, Week 5Week 6: April 26-May 2:During Week 6, we will be discussing the World Wide Web, Evaluating Websites, and the Ethical Use ofInformation Readings: o New York Times article: “Exploring a ‘Deep Web’ that Google Can’t Gras” (posted in Moodle) o YouTube video: “What is a browser?” o U.S. Copyright Basics Participation Activities: o Participate in the Week 6 Discussion (question posted in Moodle) o Write and upload your sixth Research Journal entry (prompt posted in Moodle) Assignment 6: o Complete the Finding & Evaluating Websites Assignment posted in Moodle, Week 6Week 7: May 3-7:During Week 7, we will summarize what we have learned throughout the entire course, and take time tofocus on gathering and evaluating resources for the Paper Trail Project. Note: The Paper Trail Project is due by 11:55 p.m. on Tuesday, May 4. This is to avoid any overlap with your concentrated period of study, when you should be reviewing LIS 1001 material for the Final Exam. Readings: o Appendices A, B, and E, The Elements of Library Research (posted in Moodle) Participation Activities: o Participate in the Week 7 Discussion (question posted in Moodle) Assignment 7: o Make sure you have completed ALL sections of the Tiger TAIL by May 7. This assignment has been available since the first day of class, and you will have had the entire duration of the course to complete this summary-assignment.7
  8. 8. Final Project & Final Exam:May 4: Final Project due at 11:55 p.m. Instructions posted in Moodle Topic Block 11, and in the course’s first Moodle block.May 10: Final Exam opens at 7:30 a.m.May 12: Final Exam closes at 9:00 p.m. This Final Exam is a cumulative, open-material (open book and open notes; NOT open people) exam that is accessed via Moodle. The Final Exam will become available at 7:30 a.m. on May 10 and will close at 9:00 p.m. on May 12. Although the window of time that the exam will be open spans two days, you will only have two (2) hours to complete the exam, from the time that you open it. When you open the exam in Moodle, you will have one opportunity to take the exam, and the exam will close exactly two hours from the time that you first open it. The exam MUST be completed within this two hour time block. You cannot open it, save it, and then finish it later. Set aside a 2 hour time block to take this exam.If you have questions about anything described on this syllabus, DO NOT HESITATE to ask.8

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