More than 60% of the IL literature has focused on IL in higher education libraries
A problematic and often highly contested practice, because information landscapes are socially, politically and historically constituted and this influence shapes information and the type of knowledge and information behaviours and activities that are valued.
Information landscapes are spaces shaped by the interactions of people and their shared practices they are “socially constructed”. These landscapes evolve and develop, and represent the shared values, understandings and ways of doing things of the people who inhabit them. (Lloyd, 2010a).
People can become expert in a particular information landscape, and the practices that are bound up with it.
Landscapes are different for different areas of practice, so the sources differ, people develop particular skills and practices associated with a particular landscpe. People need to develop competence in a new landscape
Becoming information literate in any landscape involves developing a rich understanding of these modalities, and of the socially constructed information practices.
A “Modality” describes the common spaces created an accessed by people
Epistemic – normative aspects e.g. rules and regulations that are necessary to operate in society & daily life.
Social – nuanced information communicated between people, unwritten norms of a particular practice
Corporeal – information about and from one’s own body, as well as
Impossible with the current size of the information universe for brarians to know everything, the focus has tobe not on telling people infprmation, but in supporting them to be able to find, use, evaluate and communicate information themselves, using sources and in ways in ways that are appropriate to them
Everyday information literacy: CILIP Public & Mobile Library Group conference October 2019
Everyday information literacy
Dr Pam McKinney
What we are going to do today
• Brief introduction to the evolution of everyday Information Literacy &
some current research
• What is an “Information Landscape”?
• Individual reflective exercise to map your landscape
• Share and discuss your information landscapes
• Whole group discussion – our developing understanding of
• What is the role of the public library in supporting citizen’s
Contrasting definitions of Information Literacy
Information literacy empowers people
in all walks of life to seek, evaluate, use
and create information effectively to
achieve their personal, social,
occupational and educational goals. It is
a basic human right in a digital world
and promotes social inclusion in all
UNESCO Alexandria proclamation 2005
Information literacy is the set of integrated abilities
encompassing the reflective discovery of information,
the understanding of how information is produced
and valued, and the use of information in creating
new knowledge and participating ethically in
communities of learning.
Information literacy is the ability to think critically
and make balanced judgements about any
information we find and use. It empowers us as
citizens to reach and express informed views and to
engage fully with society. CILIP 2018
Syrian refugees in Scotland
Sharing information with the community very important, through
technology or face-to-face. Library strategy of social wellbeing
helped develop services such Digital literacy training and peer
English teaching (Martzoukou & Burnett 2017)
Dominic Chavez http://bit.ly/2m1Ubqq
Disadvantaged new mothers in Scotland prefer leaflets and face to face
advice, lack of access to the internet and technologies was a barrier to
use (Buchanen 2018)
A study in Leeds of the use and understanding of information
among parents found differences in the behavior of people
from different socio-economic groups.
e.g. differences in the use of family and friends for advice (Walker
Family historians use a network of local and international
groups to support their research. Information sharing is
prized. They like to “give back” (Yakel 2004)
Anderson Ferreira de Deus
The information literacy of diet and fitness tracking using
mobile apps: people understood issues of data quality, but
were less aware of data privacy issues. There were sensitivities
around sharing data with friends and family. (McKinney et al. 2017, 2019)
People who do not attend postsecondary educational
institutions, which typically are mandated to provide at least a
minimum level of IL skills training for students, have few
places to turn for training in this increasingly important skill
set. If citizens are to participate fully in the digital age, in
order to efficiently access, effectively evaluate, and
appropriately use information to inform their decision making
in all aspects of their lives, then these citizens require training
in IL skills. (Julien & Hoffman, 2008, p. 39)
Conceptualisation of an Information literacy landscape (Lloyd 2017)
1) Epistemic characterized by objective, explicit, factual, often
textual information that is reproduceable
2) Social characterized as tacit information that is legitimized by
the collective, information that unwritten and refers to the norms
of social conventions
3) Corporeal, characterized by physical information drawn from the
body, and observations of the performance of a practice
An information landscape: learning how to
Social modality Corporeal modality
Talking to uni friends
(cooking for kids)
Learning how to
stir – watching and
classes in school
Reflective activity : An information landscape
in your life
• Think about an activity, pastime or life event when you have had to
develop competence in using information
• Think about the sources of information you had to learn how to use,
and identify social, epistemic and corporeal sources for the landscape
• What is distinctive about this landscape?
• Share you information landscape with your neighbours
• What are the similarities and differences in your landscapes?
• What do these landscapes tell you about becoming information
What do we now know about Information Literacy that
we didn’t know before?
Has your understanding of information literacy
Group discussion: What is the role of the public
librarian in supporting citizen’s information
• “Our role is to make sure that we help the customer find
their way and navigate through all the junk to get to
something that’s credible” (Rubenstein 2016)
• Is this how you think about your role? What else might be
included in IL development?
• Are librarians “the educators of the information society”?
• How can services be designed to respond to different
• What are you currently doing in your library to support IL
• Issues around preferences for different types of
• Characteristics of patrons – age, literacy levels,
• How to develop an approach to IL development
when IL is so contextual and individual
• How to develop information literacy support that
takes account of the 3 modalities of information
Opportunities for public libraries?
• Intergenerational engagement and learning –
learning from each other
• Raising awareness of the link between
information literacy and lifelong learning
• Librarian roles changing from transmitter of
information to facilitator of learning
• And? Over to you!
Library and information services are key actors in providing
unhindered access to essential resources for economic and
cultural advance. In doing so, they contribute effectively to
the development and maintenance of intellectual freedom,
safeguarding democratic values and universal civil rights.
They encourage social inclusion, by striving to serve all those
in their user communities regardless of age, gender,
economic or employment status, literacy or technical skills,
cultural or ethnic origin, religious or political beliefs, sexual
orientation, and physical or mental ability. (IFLA, 2003, p. 2)
• Buchanan, S. (2018) Developing health information literacy in disadvantaged and dependent circumstances:
family nurses. ECIL conference Oulu, Finland 24th-27th September 2018
• Julien, H and Hoffman, C.(2008) Information Literacy Training in Canada’s Public Libraries," The Library Quarterly
78, no. 1 19-41.
• Lloyd, A. (2017) Information literacy and literacies of information: a mid-range theory and model. Journal of
information literacy 11 (1)
• Martzoukou & Burnett (2017) New Syrian Scots information literacy wayfinding practices: phase 1 research
findings. LILAC conference 2017 https://www.slideshare.net/infolit_group/new-syrian-scots-information-literacy-
• McKinney, Cox & Goodale (2016) Food logging: an information literacy perspective. Aslib Journal of Information
Management, 69(2), 184-200.
• McKinney P, Cox AM & Sbaffi L (2019) Information literacy in food and activity tracking among three communities:
parkrunners, people with type 2 diabetes and people with IBS. Journal of Medical Internet Research.
• Rubenstein, E.L. (2016) Health Information and Health Literacy: Public Library Practices, Challenges, and
Opportunities. Public Library Quarterly 35(1)
• Walker, G (2009) Seeking Information: A study of the use and understanding of information by parents of young
children. Journal of Information Literacy 3 (2)
• Yakel, E. (2004) Seeking information, seeking connections, seeking meaning: genealogists and family historians.
Information Research 10(1)