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The challenges of information literacy in the prison environment


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Slides from a workshop led by Jo Webb at the CILIP Prison Librarians Group Annual Conference 7th October 2009

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The challenges of information literacy in the prison environment

  1. 1. Challenges of information literacy in the prison environment Prison Libraries Group Annual Conference 7th October 2009 Jo Webb
  2. 2. Some themes <ul><li>What is information literacy? </li></ul><ul><li>What does that mean within the prison environment? </li></ul><ul><li>How can we develop information literacy amongst our users/learners? </li></ul><ul><li>What knowledge and skills do we need? </li></ul><ul><li>Thinking ahead: a few innovative approaches </li></ul>
  3. 3. National information literacy awareness month, 2009 by The President Of The United States of America <ul><li>Rather than merely possessing data, we must also learn the skills necessary to acquire, collate, and evaluate information for any situation . This new type of literacy also requires competency with communication technologies, including computers and mobile devices that can help in our day-to-day decisionmaking. </li></ul><ul><li>… Over the past decade, we have seen a crisis of authenticity emerge </li></ul><ul><li>… .In addition to the basic skills of reading, writing, and arithmetic, it is equally important that our students are given the tools required to take advantage of the information available to them. The ability to seek, find, and decipher information can be applied to countless life decisions , whether financial, medical, educational, or technical. </li></ul><ul><li>… An informed and educated citizenry is essential to the functioning of our modern democratic society, and I encourage educational and community institutions across the country to help Americans find and evaluate the information they seek, in all its forms. </li></ul>
  4. 4. Information literacy <ul><li>Information literacy is knowing when and why you need information, where to find it, and how to evaluate, use and communicate it in an ethical manner. </li></ul><ul><li>CILIP, 2004 </li></ul>
  5. 5. My problems with information literacy <ul><li>Definitions and discussions focus mostly on formal education </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Especially higher education </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Often misapplied to descriptions of training courses </li></ul><ul><li>Often ignores wider learning developmental role of libraries </li></ul><ul><li>Functionalist approach </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Not enough on the affective impact on individuals </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Two different perspectives: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Information literacy as the key to all knowledge </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Information literacy as one of many different literacies </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Start with the learner <ul><li>What is learning? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Learning involves change </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>That change is permanent </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>It may be a change in consciousness or behaviour but usually both </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>‘ It comes about through some interaction with our environment – information, people, events, experiences including, but not confined to, teaching/training’ </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Squires, G. (1994 ) A new model of teaching and learning . Hull: Hull University Press </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. The learning situation? <ul><li>The person who learns </li></ul><ul><li>The process by which they learn </li></ul><ul><li>The information they learn </li></ul><ul><li>The environment in which they learn </li></ul><ul><li>Squires (1994) </li></ul>
  8. 8. Optimal Conditions of Learning <ul><li>A person who has a </li></ul><ul><li>POSITIVE SELF CONCEPT </li></ul><ul><li>OPEN MIND and the necessary </li></ul><ul><li>ABILITY who </li></ul><ul><li>PRIORITISES the </li></ul><ul><li>Process that is </li></ul><ul><li>ACTIVE </li></ul><ul><li>REFLECTIVE </li></ul><ul><li>PROCESSING of </li></ul><ul><li>INFORMATION </li></ul><ul><li>Information which is </li></ul><ul><li>PATTERNED </li></ul><ul><li>MEANINGFUL </li></ul><ul><li>EMBEDDED and </li></ul><ul><li>EMBODIED </li></ul><ul><li>In an environment which offers </li></ul><ul><li>STIMULUS </li></ul><ul><li>SUPPORT </li></ul><ul><li>FEEDBACK and </li></ul><ul><li>REWARD </li></ul>Squires (1994 )
  9. 9. The functions of a teacher <ul><li>Motivate </li></ul><ul><li>Audit </li></ul><ul><li>Orientate </li></ul><ul><li>Inform </li></ul><ul><li>Explain </li></ul><ul><li>Explore </li></ul><ul><li>Develop </li></ul><ul><li>Exercise </li></ul><ul><li>Appraise </li></ul><ul><li>Reinforce </li></ul><ul><li>Squires (1994) </li></ul>
  10. 10. Planning <ul><li>‘ In preparing for battle I have always found that plans are useless, but planning is indispensable.’ </li></ul><ul><li>General Dwight D Eisenhower </li></ul>
  11. 11. Once you’ve got them… <ul><li>Make it </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Innovative </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Varied </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Inclusive </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Active </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Challenging (but not too much) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Relevant </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Interesting </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Current trends <ul><li>Technology-enhanced learning </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Online learning environments </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Personalized learning environments </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Using the read/write web </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Podcasts, vodcasts </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Open Educational Resources (OER) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>iDTV </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Integration of information / ICT / learning / employability </li></ul>
  13. 13. Current trends <ul><li>Multi-modal approaches </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Using a wider range of strategies to match learning styles </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Peer learning and mentoring </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Toe by Toe </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Libraries as learning hubs </li></ul><ul><ul><li>‘ third space’ </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>social learning </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Training and development for teaching and the support of learning </li></ul>
  14. 14. Any questions? <ul><ul><ul><li>Jo Webb </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Head of Academic Services </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>De Montfort University </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>And thanks to </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Chris Billing, Sue Wilkinson (PrLG) </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Vic Knight and Rose Parkes (DMU) </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul>