On 8 June 2011 I was an invited participant in the EMPATIC (Empowering Autonomous Learning through Information Competencies) project seminar on Information Literacy (IL) in the Schools Sector, held at the Jagiellonian University in Krakow, Poland. This project is funded by the European Commission. The EMPATIC website is at http://empat-ic.eu/. It already has a number of reports, and they will be mounting presentations from the seminar on the website in due course.
The workshop was held in English and Polish, with simultaneous translation. The day started with an introduction to the project from Maria Prochnicka and Sabina Cisek (Jagiellonian University). The project is managed by the Education, Audiovisual ad Culture Executive Agency of the European Commission, and is seen as being relevant to lifelong learning. It is a 2 year project, finishing December 2011, with 5 partners. The company MDR (http://www.mdrpartners.com/) from the UK, academic partners from Italy, Poland, Greece, and the Turkish Librarians Association. They aim to identify existing IL initiatives which could be seen as best practice, and also to look at the literature to survey practice and theory. They aim to convince decision makers in Europe that IL is very important and that action is needed in this area, since without it you cannot have an information society. In particular they hope to influence strategy and policy, and convince decision makers that a planned strategy is needed on education of citizens for information culture and information literacy.
The aims of the workshop I attended were to discuss strategies, models and methods of IL development in the school learning sector across the EU and to share experiences and opinions on the development of information competencies in the schools sector. I will do several blog entries about the sessions.
Photo by Sheila Webber: Horse carriages in market square, Krakow, June 2011