Engaging Learners Through Self-Guided Tutorials: Implementing and Assessing a Flipped Classroom Model for Information Literacy Instruction

By Olivia Castello, Social Sciences Librarian
and
Alex Pfundt, Research & Instruction Librarian, & Coordinator of Information Literacy Library & Information Technology Services (LITS)
Bryn Mawr College

[Peer-Reviewed Article]

Abstract

With the help of a Curricular Development Seed Grant, funded by the Mellon Foundation, librarians from Bryn Mawr College’s Library & Information Technology Services redesigned our model for one-shot information literacy instruction. We created self-guided, interactive online tutorials that allowed us to flip traditional demonstrations of skills, such as searching the library catalog, requesting books and articles, and finding empirical research.  As a result, we were able to revise our in-class lesson plans to focus on active learning activities. We also conducted a research study in three academic courses to assess the efficacy of our flipped classroom model. This paper highlights the development of the online tutorials and instructional model, the assessment study, and ideas for future directions.

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Begin at the beginning: Library collaboration with early college high school freshmen

By Matthew Harrick
Brooklyn College
MHarrick@brooklyn.cuny.edu

[Peer-Reviewed Article]

Abstract:

Early College High Schools partner with colleges and universities to ease traditionally underrepresented and at-risk high school students into college life, increase students’ college readiness, and provide the opportunity to earn college credits while simultaneously earning high school diplomas. One such partnership is between Brooklyn College and the STAR (Science, Technology and Research) program at Erasmus High School in Brooklyn, NY. As part of their introduction to college life, small groups of freshmen receive basic college library orientations prior to enrolling in credit-bearing courses as juniors and seniors. The education and liaison librarian to Early College High School programs created a six-week information literacy, science and research-based pilot seminar to further increase the college readiness of high school students.

Keywords: Early College High Schools; Information Literacy; STEM Research; Academic Libraries; Outreach; High School Students; College; Higher Education.

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Use of Social Networking Site Consumer Training to Teach Information Literacy Threshold Concepts

By Lucinda Rush
Education Reference Librarian
Old Dominion University
lrush@odu.edu

[Peer-Reviewed Article]

Introduction

Social networking sites (SNS) have been integrated seamlessly into our everyday lives, and college students are one of their biggest consumers (Lenhart, et. al. 2010). Just as consumers of Starbucks have been trained to speak the language of the corporation, ordering “venti” instead of “large”, and consumers of smart phones have come to rely on them in their every-day lives for things like directions, instant access to email, fitness apps, and more, social media users have been trained to intuitively expect and respond to things on their SNS in day-to-day life. The skills that our students have developed through consumer-use of SNS can be incorporated into library programming to teach the threshold concepts outlined in the ACRL Framework for Information Literacy (2015). This paper reviews the skills that students have developed as consumers of SNS which were introduced by Rush and Wittkower (2014) and will introduce creative and practical approaches to teaching students in formal classroom settings as well as outside of the classroom through library outreach and engagement programming. The focus of the ideas introduced is on the consumer-trained skills developed through use of SNS and not necessarily on use of SNS itself, which will provide librarians with ideas for low-tech ways to use these skills to teach students information literacy concepts.

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Exploring Creative Information Literacy Practices via Divergent Thinking

by Joseph Hartnett
Information Services Librarian
Assistant Professor
Baruch College, City University of New York
joseph.hartnett@baruch.cuny.edu

[Peer-Reviewed Article]

Abstract

Encouraged by the ACRL Framework’s call for librarians to adopt more engaging methods to teach students, as well as for students to assume more active, creative, and reflective roles in relation to the information landscape, the author questioned whether methods put forward by creativity training proponent Edward de Bono for fostering creativity might have any potential value for of helping students to engage in divergent thinking related to developing a research strategy, or as the framework would have it “Searching as a Strategic Exploration.” In order to answer this question, the author investigated the work of Edward de Bono and conducted a small experiment where 20 students in an information literacy credit class were randomly divided into a control group and an experimental group. The experimental group was presented with a set of directed strategies offered by de Bono in addition to regular instruction, while the control group was not. Afterwards, all members of the class were given an open ended writing assignment about a vaguely worded topic where they were asked to be creative. Student responses were evaluated for indications of divergent thinking by counting the number of interested parties identified in their writing in relation to the topic. It was found that the experimental de Bono group engaged in significantly more divergent thinking than did the control group, both in terms of originality and in the total number of interested parties that were generated. As such it would appear that de Bono’s methods and other similar approaches have potential value for promoting divergent thinking, an essential capacity for creativity, and likely for helping teaching librarians develop more active, creative, and reflective classroom practices. The model used is original within the realm of library pedagogy and has the potential to help librarians apply divergent thinking strategies to information literacy programs. Continue reading

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