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This could get messy: critical library pedagogy in practice - Hon, Flynn, Brookbank, McCluskey Dean & Lacey


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Presented at LILAC 2019 - LILAC Closing Panel

Published in: Education
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This could get messy: critical library pedagogy in practice - Hon, Flynn, Brookbank, McCluskey Dean & Lacey

  1. 1. This could get messy: Critical library pedagogy in practice
  2. 2. Integrating critical information literacy into continuing professional development for healthcare workers YiWen Hon
  3. 3. Good news/Bad news. Good news: it’s Christmas morning. Bad news: I have to work on labour ward. Worse news: my phone goes off. It’s my registrar. I didn’t set my alarm and now they’re wondering where the hell I am. Even worse news: I’m asleep in my car. It takes me a while to establish where I am or why. Good news: it seems I fell asleep after my shift last night and I’m already at work, in the hospital car park. - Adam Kay, This is going to hurt (2017)
  4. 4. Healthcare professionals’ opportunities to engage with information literacy are hampered by lack of time and an emphasis on efficiency (Cook et al, 2013). Is there space for critical approaches to information literacy in this restrictive context?
  5. 5. Incorporating criticality into the teaching of literature searching for systematic reviews
  6. 6. “The focus is on critical thinking skills and how they can be deployed across any library platform, no matter what the interface.” (Accardi, 2013) Demonstrations are done on multiple databases to show the transferability of key concepts. In literature searching workshops, I spend more time focusing on the why instead of the how.
  7. 7. Open-ended questions to encourage critique and reflection can also be inserted at various points in the teaching session.
  8. 8. Systematic review guidelines usually stipulate that at least 2 or more databases should be searched. It can cost several thousand pounds for an organisation to purchase just one. What is the impact of this on the research landscape?
  9. 9. Promoting thinking on social justice issues in the critical appraisal of healthcare research
  10. 10. Participants are shown a newspaper report on the journal article they have critically appraised, and asked to reflect on the portrayal of the research findings
  11. 11. References and resources Accardi, M. T. (2013) Feminist pedagogy for library instruction. Sacramento, CA: Library Juice Press Cook, D. A., Sorensen, K. J., Wilkinson, J. M., & Berger, R. A. (2013). Barriers and decisions when answering clinical questions at the point of care: a grounded theory study. JAMA internal medicine, 173(21), 1962-1969. Cavanagh, A., Vanstone, M., & Ritz, S. (2019). Problems of problem-based learning: Towards transformative critical pedagogy in medical education. Perspectives on medical education, 8(1), 38-42 Fritch, M. E. (2018). Teaching as a Political Act: Critical Pedagogy in Library Instruction. Educational Considerations, 44(1), 3. Kay, A. (2017) This is going to hurt: Secret diaries of a junior doctor. London: Picador Images: Opened Glass Window by Alessio Cesario on Pexels Perspective by Anika Huizinga on Unsplash
  12. 12. Autocrat to Conductor; Embracing student autonomy in the classroom. Darren Flynn Academic Liaison Librarian (Allied Health) Coventry University Library.
  13. 13. Context 1. Embedded librarianship Control over content 2. Time to teach 3. Student-Teacher Relationship Which leads to Banking Model of Education (Freire 1970)
  14. 14. Developing Learner Autonomy in 11 simple(ish) ways
  15. 15. Lesson Planning 1. Write learning outcomes with potential for growth Instead of “students will be able to…” try “this lesson should help you to....” 2. Be realistic in class outcomes How do you expect students to feel after the class? 3. Be explicit on next steps What do students need to do next?
  16. 16. Teacher Behaviour 4. Be an authority without being authoritarian Try “this is how I do it” instead of “this is how to do it” 5. Embrace complexity and signpost it 6. Be a TV chef instead of a magician Give context to what you’re doing and why
  17. 17. Transparency in the Classroom 7. Be honest about lesson content What’s being taught, what isn’t, why? 8. Offer student-driven follow up in their prefered format 9. Be honest about your teaching choices Why you’re teaching the way you’re teaching
  18. 18. Classroom Behaviour 10. Give autonomy in activities Group, paired, individual 11. “Bake in” choice in lesson planning Topic level (what shall we cover), activity level (how shall we do it), running order (which order shall we do it) Student prioritisation (should, could, would)
  19. 19. References Freire, P., 1996. Pedagogy of the oppressed 2nd ed., London: Penguin. Image Credits Lego Dictator - ot1mo - Flickr ( Lego Maestro - Bence Kádas - Flickr ( Lego Man Tied Up - Scott Collins - Pinterest ( Lego Link - Brick 101 - Flickr ( Lego Unicorn - d97jro - Pixabay ( Lego Streaker - thom - Flikr ( Lego Punk - Brickset - Flickr (
  20. 20. Critical pedagogy at York St John University
  21. 21. Controversial Topics in Education ● The course ● My goals ● What I did ● Why?
  22. 22. Teaching critical information literacy in a library session COM 442: Communication and Social Change
  23. 23. COM 442: Communication and Social Change • Learning goals: – How authority is created and who is left out of that process – The power and impact of information, given the above – How bias manifests in search results and how we can control/counteract this
  24. 24. COM 442: Communication and Social Change Activities • Discussion • In-class activity: current event Google search, finding alternative perspectives – Source evaluation discussion: authority is constructed and contextual • Post-class assignment: choosing resources for a library display
  25. 25. COM 442: Communication and Social Change
  26. 26. COM 442: Communication and Social Change • Example searches demonstrating algorithm bias
  27. 27. COM 442: Communication and Social Change • Common arguments in discussion – Argument: The algorithm is just math, there’s only so much that Google can control. – Question: Are there examples of Google demonstrating control of search results?
  28. 28. COM 442: Communication and Social Change • Common arguments in discussion – Argument: Google is just a company trying to make money in our capitalist society. – Question: Are there examples of other companies or industries that we regulate? Why do we regulate them? Why can’t we do the same with Google/the tech industry?
  29. 29. COM 442: Communication and Social Change • Common arguments in discussion – Argument: Who cares? Why should we care? Why is this important? – Question: Do we agree with Noble that representation on Google is important in terms of reflecting and therefore deepening social values and helping people form opinions? If so, how could this be harmful for some folks?
  30. 30. References • Baer, Andrea. “It’s all relative? Post-truth rhetoric, relativism, and teaching on ‘Authority as Constructed and Contextual.’” C&RL News, vol. 79, no. 2, Feb. 2018, pp. 72-75. • Noble, Safiya. Algorithms of oppression: How search engines reinforce racism. New York University Press, 2018. • Noble, Safiya. “Google Search: Hyper-visibility as a Means of Rendering Black Women and Girls Invisible.” InVisible Culture, no. 19, Oct. 2013, visibility-as-a-means-of-rendering-black-women-and-girls- invisible/ • Noble, Safiya. “How biased are our algorithms?” YouTube, uploaded by TEDxTalks, 18 April 2014,
  31. 31. Please ask us questions!
  32. 32. Contact details YiWen Hon Knowledge Resources Manager Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust @yiwen_h Darren Flynn Academic Liaison Librarian Coventry University Clare McCluskey Dean Academic Liaison Librarian York St John University @claremcdean Sajni Lacey Learning & Curriculum Support Librarian University of British Columbia Oknaagan @LaceySajni Elizabeth Brookbank Associate Professor / Instruction Librarian Western Oregon University @elizabethbrookb