Sunday, January 30, 2011

E-journals: their use, value and impact - final report

Published by the Research Information Network in January was this report, E-journals: their use, value and impact: final report "This two-part report takes in-depth look at how researchers in the UK use electronic journals, the value they bring to universities and research institutions and the contribution they make to research productivity, quality and outcomes." As well as the reports from phase one and two, there are working papers on journal spending, use and research outcomes, on bibliometric indicators, on citation practice, and on information usage and seeking behaviour.
Researchers are accessing journals a lot via gateways (e.g. Google or PubMed) and tend not to use advanced search. There are disciplinary variations in e-journal use. A lot of e-journal use takes place at evenings and weekends. Also "UK researchers are producing more articles, with more references, from a wider range of sources than they were two decades ago."
Photo by Sheila Webber: Dusk in the allotments, Hellingly, January 2011

Netskills worshops

Exploring Digital Storytelling 10 March 2011 in Edinburgh, Scotland "Once you've mastered the tools you can apply digital storytelling techniques to a range of contexts: presentations, meetings, classrooms, lectures."
Collaborative Tools to Support the Learning Experience 9 March in Edinburgh and 24 March in Birmingham, UK. "how you can use collaborative tools to achieve greater levels of student satisfaction, engagement and retention and enhance communication between learners and their lecturers and tutors. and
Essentials of Training Skills: BTEC Certificate. 22-24 March, Newcastle, UK. "Learn the skills and expertise needed to design, develop, deliver, assess and evaluate the whole training process"
Photo by Sheila Webber: Birch branch, January 2011

Friday, January 28, 2011

Courses on Google, and Mobile access

31st March in the Netskills Training Suite, University of Newcastle, UK: All about Google: regain control of search (Course presenter: Karen Blakeman)
13 April, CILIP, London, UK, Mobile access to information resources (Course presenter: Martin White)
Photo/shopped by Sheila Webber: from the train

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Journal club on 2nd Feb: IL strategy

The next meeting of the journal club that takes place in the virtual world Second Life (SL) is on 2nd February 2011, at 12 noon SL time (see for times elsewhere). We will be discussing
Corrall, S. (2007). "Benchmarking strategic engagement with information literacy in higher education: towards a working model". Information Research, 12 (4) (open access article, free to all). Discussion will be led by Pancha Enzyme. It's helpful if you have read the paper but Pancha will start by highlighting key points. The venue is on Infolit iSchool in SL (you need a SL avatar and the SL browser installed, to participate)
This is a short video about the last Journal Club meeting.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

NFAIS resources

The website of the (US) National Federation of Advanced Information Services is a useful resource. This used to be the National Federation of Abstracting and Indexing Services: you can see why they changed the name, but old name gives more of a clue what the association is, i.e. a well-established trade association for database producers. It has always run interesting conferences, and they have some other resources. Notable are:
- Library Training and Educational Resources (links to videos, reference sheets etc. from some of their members, e.g. covering Refworks, Proquest and NLM products)
- Text of the annual Miles Conrad lectures (e.g. 2009 one was "Challenges for great libraries in the age of the digital native" from Lynne Brindley)
- Presentations from conferences e.g. from:
- - Improving The User Experience - Part I (May 2010)
- - Improving the User Search Experience Part II: Leveraging Content to Improve Discoverability and Use (October 2010)
- - Assessing The usage and Value of Scholarly and Scientific Output: An Overview of traditional and emerging metrics (November 2010)
Photo by Sheila Webber: first sign of spring

Monday, January 24, 2011

Royal College of Nursing IL standards

The UK's Royal College of Nursing has just published: Finding, using and managing information: Nursing, midwifery, health and social care information literacy competences. "These competences complement the RCN's clinical competence framework, helping nurses, midwives, health care assistants and nursing students develop their skills in using information and knowledge and apply this to their practice. Finding, using and managing information is relevant for practitioners and managers involved in evaluating professional standards, for students, tutors and for information managers in higher education and the workplace. They are also intended to inform team and individual learning and development." You can download them at The RCN has also signposted some relevant resources at: (look at the links under "Learning guides and training" in the menu on the left side, the links in the middle are for RCN members)
Photo by Sheila Webber: in Regent Court after graduation: the graduation ceremonies for postgraduate students were a week ago

If you are interested in freedom of information issues, particularly if you work in the higher education sector, you might be interested in, "Investigating UK Universities through Freedom of Information". They are using the powers of the Freedom of Information Act and the Information Commissioner's Office to get information from UK universities on issues like bullying and freedom of academics to speak to the press.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Research supervisor research commissioned

In December 2010, the Research Information Network "commissioned a study investigating the place and role of PhD supervisors in the drive to ensure that research students possess the necessary level of information literacy to pursue their careers successfully in academia and beyond." The work is being done by Curtis+Cartwright Consulting and Cardiff University between January and June 2011. If you would like to be involved (you would need to be a supervisor or student in Britain, I think) please contact
More info at
Photo by Sheila Webber: coffee, the foundation of all research

Friday, January 21, 2011

Eisenberg videos on information literacy

There are four Mike Eisenberg videos on the ABC-CLIO website, each of which is 12-15 minutes long, published last September. "Each vodcast is set up in a format where Mike answers questions that he has collected from students and colleagues around the country on various Information Literacy topics."

1. What is information literacy? Not surprisingly, he explains it (here, and in the other videos) in relation to the "Big 6" concept of IL that he has developed, and he also refers to the simplified "Super 3". He also stresses the ongoing relevance of IL

2. How to Implement an Information Literacy Program for example by working with a classroom teacher.

3: Accountability in the Information Literacy Program. He thinks of accountability in terms of comprehensiveness (should be IL at each level), predictable (same skills should be expected of learners), measuring IL success and being reported (e.g. on a report card).

4. The role of the teacher-librarian and the school library program which advocates the value of information literacy in schools.

Thanks to Mark Jones (who posted about this on the ALIApathways discussion list).
Photo by Sheila Webber: Sheffield University Information Commons at dusk.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Information handling training - Yorkshire and the North East

On 14 February 2011 in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, UK, there is an event Information handling training - Yorkshire and the North East. A regional network which is being launched, endorsed by the Research Information Network and by Vitae (which has a remit for developing research student/staff skills). "The network aims to connect professionals from a range of sectors such as academia, data management, graduate training programmes, information policy and librarianship. It will promote communication on a virtual basis; provide a forum to meet in person and discuss relevant issues, reports and research; present examples of good practice in researcher development; and facilitate collaboration on training for both professionals and researchers. There is no charge, but you need to book at Unfortunately I am elsewhere that day, but (being a research supervisor at a University in Yorkshire) I aim to keep in touch with it.
Photo by Sheila Webber: sprouts and sprout top at the market.

Information literacy : the case for strategic engagement

Think I missed this video previously: Information literacy : the case for strategic engagement, presented by Sheila Corrall at Trinity College, Dublin in 2009.
mms:// (the video) and (with links to the video and the pdf of the slides)
Photo by Sheila Webber: Bread stall

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

IL and KM in NHS24 & other articles

A few articles from the Journal of documentation:
- O'Farrill , R.T. (2010) "Information literacy and knowledge management at work: Conceptions of effective information use at NHS24." Journal of documentation, 66 (5), 706-733
"The purpose of this paper is to explore theoretically and empirically the concept of workplace information literacy (IL) and its connections to knowledge management (KM), and to examine the applicability of the mainstream institutional IL frameworks (...) to the workplace environment." This was a phenomenographic study of staff working in the medical advice telephone service in Scotland, NHS24. "The paper highlights the importance of developing organization-specific guidelines for IL development, endorsing views of learning and information use grounded in socio-constructive perspectives and a consideration of context as situated practice. "
- Yu, L. (2010) "How poor informationally are the information poor?: Evidence from an empirical study of daily and regular information practices of individuals." Journal of documentation, 66 (6), 906 - 933.
- Robinson, L. and Mason, H. (2010) "The information-related behaviour of emerging artists and designers: inspiration and guidance for new practitioners", Journal of documentation, 67 (1). (not yet paginated) "Reports an empirical study of the information-related behaviour of emerging artists and designers." They used an online questionnaire with 78 artists. " The group have generally the same information practices as more established artists. They place reliance on internet and social networks, while also using traditional printed tools and libraries. Browsing is important, but not a predominant means of accessing information. Inspiration is found from a very diverse and idiosyncratic set of sources, often by serendipitous means. Their status as emergent practitioners means that their information behaviour is governed by cost factors, and by needs for career advice and interaction with peers."
Picture taken by Sheila Webber in Second Life

Monday, January 17, 2011

Digital literacies

I think I have mentiioned these authors before, but not for a while ... for those interested in digital literacies, there are substantial resources from established researchers in this field, Colin Lankshear and Michele Knobel. There are two books which can be accessed as complete pdfs: A New Literacies Sampler and Digital Literacies: Concepts, Policies and Practices. These can both be accessed from here: Lankshear and Knobel's blog is Everyday literacies at A recent post highlights the open-access Nordic journal of digital literacy which has English language articles as well as ones in Nordic languages.
Photo by Sheila Webber: Botanic gardens, Sheffield, January 2011

Friday, January 14, 2011

Esther Grassian presentation in Second Life 19 January

Dream a Little Dream of US... United for Success! A presentation from Esther Grassian (Alexandria Knight in Second Life, shown right in this picture, chairing a session in SL) in SL It is at 12 noon SL time, which is the same as US Pacific time, and is 8pm UK time (for times elsewhere see on Infolit iSchool, Second Life,
You need the SL browser on your computer and a SL avatar, to participate. No registration required, just come along if you are interested!

Esther Grassian is very well known in the information literacy field, and is the
author of numerous publications, including Information Literacy Instruction: Theory and Practice (ACRL Instruction Section, Publication of the Year 2004)

Description: "Are you feeling off-balance? Overworked and underfunded? How can you keep up with all of your responsibilities, not to mention new technologies, apps, mobile environments, and social networking, when email alone takes up hours of time, while budgets, staff and open hours are cut, and class sizes keep getting bigger? How can you tell if what you are doing is effective when you have no time for reflection, and no time to develop assessment instruments, analyze the results, and make revisions? Collaborative partnerships, small and large, could help! Get insight into your institution's current partnership level, as well as ideas for expanding existing partnerships or developing new ones within and beyond your institution. Learn about big and little dreams of partners and partnerships, and how you can jump in to make it happen."

Esther's presentation will be in voice, with discussion in text chat.
Part of the Centre for Information Literacy Research series on Infolit iSchool, home of Sheffield University's iSchool in Second Life

Thursday, January 13, 2011

COLIS proceedings

The Proceedings of the Seventh International Conference on Conceptions of Library and Information Science, London 21-24 June, 2010 were published online in two parts as part of the open access journal Information Research. I blogged from this conference, you may recall.
Part 1:
Example papers: Annemaree Lloyd "Corporeality and practice theory: exploring emerging research agendas for information literacy"; Brendan Luyt and Intan Azura "The sigh of the information literate: an examination of the potential for oppression in information literacy"
Part 2:
Example papers: Jela Steinerová "Ecological dimensions of information literacy"; Anna Lundh "Studying information needs as question-negotiations in an educational context: a methodological comment"
Photo by Sheila Webber, January 2011

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Information Literacy conference in India

The National Conference on Information Literacy Skills For Librarians In Digital Environment takes place February 26-27, 2011 in Aggarwal College,Ballabgarh, India. The deadline for full papers is February 3rd 2011. For more info go to:
Photo by Sheila Webber: Botanic Gardens, Sheffield, Jan 2011

LIBER 40th Annual General Conference

The call for papers for the LIBER conference ends on 31 Jan 2011. The conference takes place at the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya, Barcelona 29 June-2 July 2011 and the theme is Getting Europe ready for 2020: the library’s role in research, education and society. Information literacy is one of the suggested topics. For more info go to:

Affective Learning Outcomes for Library Instruction

This is a 2 page briefing for a session that was held last Saturday at the American Library Association conference: Affective Learning Outcomes for Library Instruction – should we, could we, and how would we? It addresses the issue of how learners' emotions and attitudes need to be taken into account, rather than looking at learning and information literacy as being purely cognitive. It has a short introduction and a reference list.
Photo by Sheila Webber: snow in the garden before Christmas

Monday, January 10, 2011

Don't make it easy for them

An interesting post for academic librarians on the ACRL blog (with thoughtful comments on it too): Don't make it easy for them. Andy Burkhardt addresses the perennial talking point of when you stop actually doing the work for the student and start telling/teaching them how to do it for themselves
Photo by Sheila Webber: winter tree (photoshopped)

Friday, January 07, 2011

Three articles and a dissertation

I must confess that I found these when I was doing a vanity citation search on my publications:
- Kerr, P. (2010) Conceptions and practice of information literacy in academic libraries: espoused practice and theories-in-use. PhD dissertation, Rutgers University.
The complete dissertation is available from the pdf link at
- Bruce, C., and Hughes, H. (2010) "Informed learning: a pedagogical construct attending simultaneously to information use and learning." Library and information science research, 32 (4), Special Issue SI A2-A8.
There is a copy of this in the QUT eprints archive:
- Price, B. (2010) "Teaching Effective Literature Use Skills for Research Reports in Geography." Journal of geography in higher education. 34 (2), 247-264. "Results demonstrate that a relatively basic approach of explicitly teaching effective literature use can be effective and improve students' research report writing skills."
- Aharony, A. (2010) "Information literacy in the professional literature: an exploratory analysis." Aslib proceedings, 62 (3), 261-282.
Photo by Sheila Webber: a snowy campus today (former Jessop hospital, and the former church is a lecture hall and student accommodation).

Thursday, January 06, 2011

Journal of academic librarianship

Relevant articles in the latest issue of Journal of academic librarianship (volume 36 issue 6) are:
- Anderson, K. and May, F. "Does the Method of Instruction Matter? An Experimental Examination of Information Literacy Instruction in the Online, Blended, and Face-to-Face Classrooms" Pages 495-500
- -Berg, S.A., Hoffmann, K. and Dawson, D. "Not on the Same Page: Undergraduates' Information Retrieval in Electronic and Print Books." Pages 518-525
- Pinto, M. et al. "Interactive Self-Assessment Test for Improving and Evaluating Information Competence." Pages 526-538
- Mitchell, E. and Hiatt, D. "Using POGIL Techniques in an Information Literacy Curriculum." Pages 539-542 (POGIL = "Process-Oriented Guided-Inquiry Learning")
The abstracts are available here
Photo by Sheila Webber: before taking down the sponsored decorations (this hospital is next to the university campus)

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

LILAC draft programme

A draft programme for the LILAC (UK information literacy) conference taking place in April 2011 has been published: this is the parallel session programme and this is the list of posters I have had a paper accepted (Fostering health information literacy through use of a virtual world, Sheila Webber, Elizabeth Marripodi and Rossana I. Barrios) and a poster on Developing concepts of Information Literacy. I am also part of a panel session Information literacy: a tick box, skills list or a set of holistic, objective, intersubjective and enriching values? Colleagues here at the Information School at Sheffield University, Sheila Corrall and Pam McKinney, also got papers accepted.
Photo by Sheila webber: Young swan (bit too old to be called a cygnet?), Blackheath pond, December 2010

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Alfabetización y cultura informacional

There was a panel on Alfabetización y cultura informacional (information literacy and culture) during the Congreso Internacional de Información, Info'2010 held on 19-23 April 2010 in Havana, Cuba. The research presentation from Dr Meneses (mentioned in my last post) is one of the 11 powerpoints (and also, in 10 cases, papers) available (Spanish language)
Photo by Sheila Webber: Tangle of branches, Sheffield, Jan 2011

Spanish language theses

Two new Spanish-language theses related to information literacy are highlighted by the Argentinian information literacy blog in this post (in Spanish). They were presented at the University of Granada (Spain) by Cuban doctoral students. At the moment the full texts are not available. In brackets are my guesses at the English translation.
- Propuesta de un modelo teórico para un sistema de organización, procesamiento y evaluación de la información en las organizaciones” (Proposal for a theoretical model for a system to organise, process and evaluate information in an organisational context), by Ognara García García. (I found this link to a fairly recent Spanish-language article on this research here)
- ALFINEV: propuesta de un modelo para la evaluación de la alfabetización informacional en la Educación Superior de Cuba (Proposal for a model to evaluate information literacy in higher education in Cuba), by Grizly Meneses Placeres. (I found a powerpoint presented some of her results, in Spanish, here and the corresponding short paper is here)
Photo by Sheila Webber: Winter branches, Sheffield, January 2011