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Trial and error - student responses to different approaches of embedding information literacy education across five departments. Haerkoenen

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Presented at LILAC 2009

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Trial and error - student responses to different approaches of embedding information literacy education across five departments. Haerkoenen

  1. 1. Trial and error Sonja Haerkoenen Stephen Thornton Cardiff University Student responses to different approaches of embedding information literacy education across five departments
  2. 2. Sonja Haerkoenen, Stephen Thornton, Cardiff Overview School of European Studies IL setup Politics assessment  Research trail  Integrated assignment General student feedback  Themes  Data analysis Future developments
  3. 3. Sonja Haerkoenen, Stephen Thornton, Cardiff School of European Studies 5 sections  French  German  Hispanic Studies  Italian  Politics 5 separate library representatives 5 different organisational structures 5 varying pedagogical approaches
  4. 4. Sonja Haerkoenen, Stephen Thornton, Cardiff IL setup Dept Setup 2007 Student nos 2007 Setup 2008 Student nos 2008 A Lect + Sem (reading week, mid Nov) 64 Lect + Sem (additional, mid Oct) 22 B Lect + Sem (end Oct) 40 Lect + Sem (end Oct) 27 C Sem only (additional, end April) 5 Lect + Sem (mid Oct) 95 D Lect + Sem (end Oct) 58 Sem only (end Oct) 45 E Lect + Sem + Research Trail (end Nov) 130 Lect + Sem + Integrated Assessment (beg Nov) 120
  5. 5. Sonja Haerkoenen, Stephen Thornton, Cardiff Politics/IL assessment 2007: Research trail to accompany a standard Politics essay 2008: Integrated assessment
  6. 6. Sonja Haerkoenen, Stephen Thornton, Cardiff Reflective research trail (2007/08) 1. Attach answers to the following questions to your essay. Remember, this part of the assignment is worth as much as the essay itself. There is no word limit. 2. In preparing for essays, in addition to using work identified on the reading list in the Introduction to Government course-kit, you have been encouraged to find relevant items that are not on this reading list. Identify three items from your bibliography that were not on this reading list. There will be more marks available to those who display a variety of sources of information used. (Different sources of information include journal articles, chapters in an edited volume, websites, textbooks, newspaper articles, e-books, etc.) 3. Taking the list you have created in response to Question 1, explain how you discovered the existence of each of these items. 4. You have been encouraged to use databases such as Web of Knowledge, JSTOR and ASSIA. Identify one item from the three already listed as one you discovered on a database. Explain the steps you took to locate a full text version of this item, noting any keywords used. 5. Identify an item of information you thought had the potential to be useful when researching this essay, but, in the end, you decided not to cite in your essay. Explain what factors led you to make this decision. 6. Reflect on each of the three items you identified in response to Question 1. In particular, explain what each added to your essay.
  7. 7. Sonja Haerkoenen, Stephen Thornton, Cardiff Typical feedback  …it forced me to use other sources such as journals and e-books which otherwise I probably wouldn’t have used  [I] found myself backtracking after my essay to artificially justify/change my sources to ‘fit’ the criteria Summary Many suggested that the exercise was useful, but a minority were less convinced, a number suggesting that the time and effort involved meant a ‘sacrifice’ in the ‘far more relevant’ activity of writing an academic essay.
  8. 8. Sonja Haerkoenen, Stephen Thornton, Cardiff Integrated assignment (2008/09) A Choose one topic from this list: a) the role of the state b) direct democracy c) political culture B i) Locate an article from a reputable journal that is relevant to your topic (N.B. it should not be an article on your reading list). ii) Provide a full reference for this article using the Harvard referencing system. iii) Explain why this source of information is reputable, backing responses with evidence. iv) Summarize the main points and arguments made in this article. C i)Locate a different article from a reputable journal that is relevant to your topic (N.B. as before, it should not be an article on your reading list). ii) Provide a full reference for this article using the Harvard referencing system. iii) Explain why this source of information is reputable, backing responses with evidence. iv) Summarize the main points and arguments made in this article. D i) Locate an article from a reputable online news source or organisation that is relevant to your topic (N.B. again, it should not be an article on your reading list). ii) Provide a full reference for this article using the Harvard referencing system. iii) Explain why this source of information is reputable, backing responses with evidence. iv) Summarize the main points and arguments made in this article. E i)Make a case to support what you consider to be the most convincing argument made in the articles you have reviewed (this case should include evidence, elements of comparison, and references).
  9. 9. Sonja Haerkoenen, Stephen Thornton, Cardiff Typical feedback  The assignment was a challenge, very different from the other essays and the skills addressed within it such as reputability of sources made me more aware of the sources I used in others essays.  The workshop was useful and extremely helpful. I enjoyed the presentations in the lectures. The assignment was fun and helpful in terms of evaluating the information. The layout of the assignment was really helpful.  The workshop was particularly useful in using the internet for research purposes. The assignment helped to introduce the types of essay needed at university.  I found the workshop to help with the assignment very useful, especially the help with researching (using journals, etc.) and instructions on how to write a bibliography.  The assignment was more useful as it gave me some ideas about why I should use sources, something which I didn’t question before.
  10. 10. Sonja Haerkoenen, Stephen Thornton, Cardiff General student feedback 1 Most students value links to assignments 2007 • Would have liked it to be linked more strongly to our essays. • Would have been more useful if able to put it in practice [with an actual essay title]. 2008 • This session [Politics] was a lot more useful than the language sessions. • The fact that we could directly talk to the lecturer so as to know what we could or couldn’t do in the assignment. • On-hand assistance from two people. • Able to start assignment. • Specifically linked to assignment.
  11. 11. Sonja Haerkoenen, Stephen Thornton, Cardiff General student feedback 2 Most students want subject specific sessions • [I liked that they] were subject specific. • New info (compared to Spanish – subject specific). • The sessions were specific to my subject areas. • I was able to find specific information for my subject + ask questions about any problems I had in finding articles etc.
  12. 12. Sonja Haerkoenen, Stephen Thornton, Cardiff General student feedback 3 Most students ask for early, embedded sessions 2007 • Put them into seminar sessions like all the other subjects – not in reading week (kind of defeats the object…). • [I disliked] the fact it’s in my free time. • Would have liked them to take place a bit earlier in the academic year (September or October). • I feel it should have been covered earlier. • Evidence from attendance records o Dept C, 2007: approx. 0.04% attendance for seminars additional to timetable at the end of the second semester o Dept C, 2008: 86% attendance for embedded lecture + seminars o Dept D, 2007: 50% attendance for lecture + seminars in reading week o Dept D, 2008: 18% attendance for seminars additional to timetable
  13. 13. Sonja Haerkoenen, Stephen Thornton, Cardiff General student feedback 4 Student opinion split regarding IL setup • [I liked the] practical work combined with lecture. • [I disliked] the theory. • Very clear. Put lecture into practice. • [I disliked the] separation of lecture and seminar. • Lecture + seminar complimented each other effectively. • Friendly, informal, very effective learning. • Evidence from student feedback for Dept. D o Feedback question: “The presenters introduced the topics covered clearly and effectively.” o 2007: 92% agree or strongly agree o 2008: 82% agree or strongly agree ⇒ No lecture in 2008 resulted in information overload in seminar.
  14. 14. Sonja Haerkoenen, Stephen Thornton, Cardiff General student feedback 5 Many students prefer structured sessions 2007 • Well structured, good feedback. • Worksheet clearly worked out, instructions given. • We went through the exercises afterwards which made things more clear. 2008 • Personal research time was a little unstructured. • They presumed a prior exposure. • A little broad – just left alone. Perhaps some examples for us to find first.
  15. 15. Sonja Haerkoenen, Stephen Thornton, Cardiff Student feedback summary Overall very positive  86% would recommend attending these sessions to colleagues (2007: 79%).  90% found the sessions useful (2007: 88%).  93% thought the topics were covered clearly and effectively (2007: 95%).  93% felt the sessions included everything they set out to cover at the beginning (2007: 91%).  98% agreed that the venues and equipment were satisfactory (2007: 97%).
  16. 16. Sonja Haerkoenen, Stephen Thornton, Cardiff Future developments Politics 2009  Lecture to be team-taught and to be used to introduce assignment  More time during seminar to be used for structured exercises Discuss potential for follow-up IL in year 2 Gather feedback from academic staff on improvements in students‘ work Investigate formalised assessments and/or collaborative teaching School-wide
  17. 17. Sonja Haerkoenen, Stephen Thornton, Cardiff Questions? Sonja Haerkoenen HaerkoenenS@cardiff.ac.uk Stephen Thornton ThorntonSL@cardiff.ac.uk

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