London Metropolitan University
My grandmother couldn't tell you what a computer
looked like, my parents can't understand why everyone
wants broadband. [..] I Google anything, [..] I know I can
go online and get the information I need. It's not a
thought process oh I have to Google, it's second nature.
[..] So my generation is the first generation, who had
that kind of access to computers, knowing that you can
find information. My nephew who is 6 emailed me this
morning, he's in kindergarten. So when I am fifty and my
kids are grown up there'll be something else. (Interview, 2007)
Implications for information literacy educators?
• The ever-changing information environment and lifelong
learning (Horton, 2008)
• Information overload and lack of quality assurance (Bundy,
• Users as ‘producers’ rather than ‘consumers’ of information
• ‘Digital natives’ but not ‘net savvy’ (Lorenzo et al, 2006)
In a familiar environment you are expected to be a
good user. But I think that the real good user the
user, with real skills and know-how to engage with
information and information systems, is the one that
can find his way through information within
unfamiliar situations. (Interview, 2006)
Context – critical factor in determining Information
Relational model of information literacy
The information goal
Applied in every-day practice
*(Andretta, 2008 in press)
• Strategy One: Start with the learner-information relationship and
develop a customised information literacy profile for each learner
(establishes the internal horizon, ie familiar, and the external
horizon, ie partially or totally unfamiliar).
• Strategy Two: Design learning outcomes that make the learners
create, rather than just find information to encourage ownership of
learning (shifting awareness from unfamiliar - external horizon to
familiar - internal horizon).
• Strategy Three: Design assessment strategies that facilitate
reflection of information literacy practice through the evaluation of
the outcome of learning (reflection “in and on action”, Hughes et al,
*(Andretta, 2008a in press)
Diagnostic strategy to establish what the learner ‘knows’ (internal
horizon - confidence) and ’doesn’t know’ (external horizon -
• Undergraduate students: Information literacy profile (IL
module – 1st
• Postgraduate students: encyclopaedia entry (Applied
Information Research – AIR)
• IL facilitators: professional development targets (Facilitating
Information Literacy Education - FILE)
Real world and problem solving learning outcomes to shift
awareness from external to internal horizons
• IL module: finding out what the question is (webliography
and database searching)
• AIR: funded research proposal (application for funded
• FILE: e-portfolio (IL programme and resources)
Formative and summative assessment to raise awareness of
the transforming impact of IL:
• IL module: Component 1: ‘how information literate am I?’;
Component 5: ‘what have I learned from the IL module?’
• AIR: Evaluation of the research through feedback on oral
presentation of the proposal.
• FILE: Reflection on practice complemented by peer, tutor
and technology enhanced feedback.
Andretta, S. (2007) ‘Information literacy: the functional literacy for the 21st
Century’. In S. Andretta
(Ed.) Change and Challenge: Information literacy for the 21st
Century (pp.1-13). Auslib Press: Adelaide.
Andretta, S. (2008 in press) ‘Facilitating Information Literacy Education (FILE)’. In A. Brine (Ed.)
Handbook of library training practice and development, 3, Gower Publishing Ltd.
Andretta, S. (2008a in press) ‘Information literacy from the learner’s perspective. A UK study’. In C.
Basilli (Ed.), Information Literacy as the crossroad of Education and Information Policies in Europe.
European Network of Information Literacy (ENIL).
Booth, A. and Fabian, C. A. (2002) ‘Collaborating to advance curriculum based Information Literacy’,
Journal of Library Administration, 36 (1): 123-142.
Bruce, C. (1997) The Seven Faces of Information Literacy. Auslib Press: Adelaide.
Bundy, A. (2004) ‘Zeitgeist: information literacy and educational change’, 4th Frankfurt Scientific
Symposium, Germany, October, 2004. [Online] Available at:
Horton, W. (2008) Understanding Information Literacy: A Primer. UNESCO: Paris.
Hughes, H., Bruce, C. and Edwards, S. (2007) Models for reflection and learning: a culturally inclusive
response to the information literacy imbalance. In S. Andretta (Ed.), Change and Challenge:
Information literacy for the 21st
Century (pp. 59-84). Adelaide: Auslib Press.
Lorenzo, G. and Dziuban, C. (2006) ‘Ensuring the Net Generation Is Net Savvy’. In Oblinger, D.G. (Ed.),
EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative, ELI3006. [Online]. Available at:
Sundin, O.; Limberg, L. and Lundh, A. (2008) ‘Constructing librarians’ information literacy expertise in
the domain of nursing’. Journal of Librarianship and Information Science, 40 (1): 21-30.
Whitworth, A. (2006) ‘Communicative competence in the information age: towards a critical theory of
information literacy education’. In S. Andretta (Ed.), Italics, 5 (1), January 2006. [Online]. Available at: