Saturday, July 30, 2011

Technology & web use

Beth Black has blogged about a study at her university, Ohio State (USA), that forms part of Project Information Literacy. This part of the project concentrates on examining what technologies and websites students use at the "crunch time" when assignments are due and exams coming up. Black, who interviewed 100 students, reports a few preliminary findings: I shouldn't copy all of them so I'll just quote one "Overall, early trends from the total survey sample (n=560, at 10 institutions) indicate that the students were not using the same small collection of web sites. In fact, preliminary findings suggest that college students create highly individualized information spaces that support many kinds of activities, from communication to course work to entertainment when they are using the campus library during crunch time." Her blog post is here: http://digitalunion.osu.edu/2011/07/28/project-information-literacy-at-ohio-state/.
Photo by Sheila Webber: Onions, Farmers Market, Blackheath, July 2011.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Ranganathan, and Godwin's day

I'm a little blogged out after liveblogging on Tuesday, so today a couple of unconnected items I happened across. Firstly, a librarian identifies how she thinks Ranganathan's Five Laws of Library Science apply to a college library (information literacy is mentioned!):
Tracy, C. (2011) "On Mistakenly Shredding a Prized Collection." Chronicle of higher education, 25 July. http://chronicle.com/article/On-Mistakenly-Shredding-a/128366/
Secondly, Peter Godwin has blogged his day (which includes a good deal of information literacy) as part of the librarians' day-in-the-life project: his post is at http://infolitlib20.blogspot.com/2011/07/day-in-life-project-round-7-26-july.html
Photo by Sheila Webber: Tomatoes, Farmers Market, July 2011

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

DELILA discussion

Another report from the Developing Educators Learning and Information Literacies for Accreditation (DELILA) project dissemination day in London, UK.
I'm just going to highlight some of the issues that came up in the discussion at end of this event. Some of these are questions, not answers!
- whether takes as much time to adapt something to your context as to start from scratch (it can do!)
- information overload: may take time to sift through potential resources
- creating a culture/ attitude for creating reusable material
- are you "re-using" something if you are using it as inspiration and source of ideas? And if that is how it is being used, then has it been a waste of time making it fully and legally reusable?
- what types of open educational resource are useful - a quick show of hands showed that people were more interested in worksheets, lesson plans, activities and videos than powerpoints.
- value of having more coordination about where to find/ where to get advice about open educational resources about information literacy
- there was an interesting suggestion about making the paradata (the texts etc. about open educational resources, in this case) more easily identified/ searchable
- different terminologies and research areas (new literacies, digital literacies etc.)
- value of having information literacy identified as such as part of teacher education courses (whilst recognising challenges), including librarians role as teachers if they have taught on the course
- issue of how librarians can acquire teaching expertise (e.g. via librarianship, via experience, exchange of experience, through a PG certficate at your workplace (if it's a university).
So, finally, this was an interesting day, and thanks for the DELILA team for organising it.
Photo by Sheila Webber: Bread at the farmers' market (ran out of DELILA-related pictures)

PG Certficate in education perspective #delila

Another report from the Developing Educators Learning and Information Literacies for Accreditation (DELILA) project dissemination day in London, UK.
Elizabeth Cleaver (University of Birmingham/ Newman College) and Claire Gordon (LSE) talked about OERs : A PGCert Perspective. After an introduction highlighting different approaches to developing skills within a course (identified as bolt-on or embedded), Gordon then went on to talk more about the LSE context: a postgraduate Certificate taken by about 100 Graduate Teaching Assistants a year, comprising of six modules. A decision had been taken to integrating educational technologies, and the initial approach was to add new sessions, but aiming for full integration in due course. Within this, academic and digital literacies are a small element. They are addressed particularly in the context of reflecting on student learning; discusing whether there is a "net generation", introducing models of information and digital literacies, and debating of how these literacies should be developed within courses.
Some challenges or lessons from this experience were:
- Importance of collaboration across departments;
- need for institutional (and departmental) buyin;
- constraints of the PG Certificate: since the digital and information literacy elements were quite small;
- also since the course was mostly taken by GTAs, they didn't have that much power over what happened in the curriculum.
Photo by Sheila Webber: conference freebies

Info Skills website at UEL #delila

Another report from the Developing Educators Learning and Information Literacies for Accreditation (DELILA) project dissemination day in London, UK.
Ella Mitchell and Cathy Walsh (University of East London) gave an Introduction to InfoSkills. They talked about a resource they developed at their university, Info Skills: the website is at http://infoskills.uelconnect.org.uk/. An inspiration was UEL's Get that job website http://employability.uelconnect.org.uk/.
Info Skills is aimed at level one learners. The focus is information skills and academic integrity. To give an impact, they have included student voices, as videos, talking about why they thought it had been important to use the library or not plagiarise. Academics have also contributed. They used Captivate to create tutorials etc.
They were presenting at the DELILA seminar because the Info Skills website was open to everyone to use, and some individual resources are available (e.g. videos on Youtube, see http://www.youtube.com/user/UELconnect). Spinoff benefits have included that pre-entry students (in further education) and international students have found the site useful, so it aids transition into higher education. The initiative has fitted in with skills initiatives within the university, and the speakers also felt that the site could help "address the expectations gap for academic staff" (helping academics understand teh support that the students needed).
The website has four key sections "What information do you need", "What are the best tools and ways of searching" "How do you decide what to use" and "What are the rules on naming your sources". If you look at the website you can see they have used a good deal of carefully selected graphics (e.g. of other students), to draw people in.
One of the resources the speakers mentioned was an academic talking about using Wikipedia http://infoskills.uelconnect.org.uk/pages/videos/97/using_wikipedia.html
The speakers also talked about the planning and development process. They are aiming to improve the mobile aspect of the site (e.g. so quizzes work on phones).
Photo by Sheila Webber: A busy bee at the station this morning

CPD4HE: Digital Literacies in disciplinary learning & teaching #delila

Another report from the Developing Educators Learning and Information Literacies for Accreditation (DELILA) project dissemination day in London, UK.
Jane Hughes (an Educational Developer/ Technologist at University College London) talked about her project CPD4HE: Digital Literacies in disciplinary learning & teaching. The website is at http://www.ucl.ac.uk/calt/cpd4he/.
Similarly to DELILA they wanted to convert material into open educational resources. These came from a variety of modules, and were divided into 10 topic headings including: Quality, Values in Higher Education, Designing the Curriculum, Academic Literacies. In terms of the way in which digital literacies were addressed (since the topics are mostly not directly about digital literacies): in some cases the subject coverage included digital literacies (e.g. concerning e-learning, or inquiry based learning), in other cases (if I understood correctly) the teaching, learning & assessment strategies included a digital literacy element.
Four elements that are important in their Postgraduate Certificate in Education for Higher Education course, that the material is of part of, are:
- "Disciplinarity addressed both explicitly and through experiential learning"
- "Digital literacies and e-learning addressed both explicitly and through experiential learning."
- "The individual's experience of teaching is viewed as a resource central to learning
- "The HE teacher viewed as part of a community: interaction with this community is part of learning."
Hughes talked about (my interpretation) the various problems of decontextualising an educational resource, when it starts as part of a carefully designed course. The experiential aspects are ones which the speaker felt became more problematic when you were thinking about making educational resources open. As well as this contextual issue, another issue is the way in which particular resources will be used within a specific tool (e.g. Moodle, a wiki) which has been selected because it is suited for that particular outcome/place in the course.

Therefore they have added some text and audio commentaries to say what the original context was, to help others contextualise the resource into their own course design and practice. In the end, a good number of the resources that they have made open are textual, but they may be textual items describing/ supporting an interactive intervention that involves use of technology (for example, an activity which develops use of networks and mailing lists).

I would say that this decontextualisation/ recontextualisation issue is vital (and challenging) when you are an educator. As well as the website linked above, there is also a blog http://www.ucl.ac.uk/calt/cpd4he/ and they can be followed on twitter at CPD4HE
Photo by Sheila Webber: Waiting for the train this morning

DELILA dissemination day #delila

Today I'm attending the Developing Educators Learning and Information Literacies for Accreditation (DELILA) project dissemination day in London, UK. This project focuses "on converting existing content to ensure that it is openly licensed and adaptable by other users." In its second phase it aimed to "extend the range of materials openly available, document benefits offered by OER [Open Educational Resources] to those involved in the learning process, and promote collections of OER materials."

The day started with an introduction from Ruth Stubbings, representing the CILIP Information Literacy Group. She highlighted some of the open educational resource projects that they have supported.
Then Jane Secker (LSE; DELILA Project manager) led off the main proceedings with Why, why, why DELILA? . The project is funded by JISC and the Higher Education Academy. The project partners are the University of Birmingham, the CILIP IL Group and the Londone School of Economics. The project is paired with the CPD4HE project at University College London.
The aims of DELILA are "To provide a model of embedded digital and information literacy support into teacher training at higher education level", to release some learning objects, and also to do work on making repositories for these resources more usable. They are hoping to develop a model for developing information literacy of new/trainee teachers.
They took account of the UKPSF (so they could identify which skills for teaching were being addressed) and the CORRE framework (which guides you through conversion from an item like a ppt to an Open Educational Resource).
One of the things they had noticed was that the resources were not very easy to find in repositories, just on the retrieval level. Therefore they decided to use the SCONUL 7 Pillars as a basis for tagging information literacy resoiurces, and FutureLab's digital literacy model (included in this document)as a basis for tagging digital literacy resources.

The project partners started with an audit of the resources they already had in their institutions, which were candidates for conversion to educational resources. They created some worked examples of the converted objects and put them on the DELILA website. In the process they discovered there were even more intellectual property issues than they had thought: in particular, there tend to be a lot of screenshots in these resources. Also Microsoft clipart cannot be used under a Creative Commons license. On the whole the decision was to take out screenshots (as, e.g., someone might want to update them anyway). They have developed a sheet for evaluating the educational resources, too.
One thing I didn't know was that you could include licence information in the properties of a Word or PowerPoint document (which is useful if the statement in the text of the document gets removed). As already noted, they also worked on the interface to the repository, e.g. so it includes a thumbnail of the resource.
I should also mention that the idea is that, as well as local repositories, items should also be submitted to the national repository JORUM.
Photo by Sheila Webber: Checking details of the workshop and having a coffee in Pret this morning.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Recent IL articles from the Journal of Academic Librarianship

JAL is a priced journal, the home page is at http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/journal/00991333. Recent articles (mostly from last 2 issues) include:

Snavely, L. and Dewald, N. (2011) "Developing and Implementing Peer Review of Academic Librarians' Teaching: An Overview and Case Report." Journal of academic librarianship, 37 (4), 343-351. (They draw on experience at Penn State University)

Daugherty, A. and Russo, M. (2011) "An Assessment of the Lasting Effects of a Stand-Alone Information Literacy Course: The Students' Perspective." Journal of academic librarianship, 37 (4), 319-326. "The authors wished to measure the degree to which a library information literacy course establishes a foundation for life-long learning. A web-based survey was administered to 2147 currently-matriculating Louisiana State University students who had taken the one-credit information literacy course, Library and Information Science (LIS) 1001 (Research Methods and Materials). Though the response rate was relatively low, the survey revealed clear evidence that students continue to use the materials and skills taught in the course throughout their college careers for both course work and personal research."

Du, J. and Evans, N. (2011) "Academic Users' Information Searching on Research Topics: Characteristics of Research Tasks and Search Strategies." Journal of academic librarianship, 37 (4), 299-306. "This project investigated how academic users search for information on their real-life research tasks. This article presents the findings of the first of two studies. The study data were collected in the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) in Brisbane, Australia. Eleven PhD students' searching behaviors on personal research topics were observed as they interacted with information retrieval (IR) systems. The analysis of search logs uncovered the characteristics of research tasks and the corresponding search strategies."

Karshmer, E. and Bryan, J. (2011) "Building a First-Year Information Literacy Experience: Integrating Best Practices in Education and ACRL IL Competency Standards for Higher Education." Journal of academic librarianship, 37 (3), 255-266.

Stewart, C. (2011) "Measuring Information Literacy: Beyond the Case Study." Journal of academic librarianship, 37 (3), 270-272. (I think he really means "beyond the small-scale survey"; he advocates linking to larger scale surveys like the USA's National Survey of Student Engagement).

From an earlier issue, the following comes recommended by Peter Godwin
Bobish, G. (2011) "Participation and Pedagogy: Connecting the Social Web to ACRL Learning Outcomes." Journal of academic librarianship, 37 (1), 54-63.

Photo by Sheila Webber: Redcurrants at the farmers' market, Blackheath, July 2011

Friday, July 22, 2011

Information Literacy in an African contex

A report on a seminar held in Gaborone, Botswana, December 2010 has been published: Strengthening Information Literacy Interventions: Creative approaches to teaching and learning SCECSAL Pre-Conference Seminar Report. "This workshop, organised by the Institute of Development Studies (IDS) and Information Training and Outreach Centre for Africa (ITOCA), discussed some of the latest innovations and approaches being used to develop information literacy across Southern Africa, and made recommendations on how to strengthen information literacy initiatives in the future." The free pdf includes summaries of presentations and round table discussions. http://blds.ids.ac.uk/global_projects/BLDS%20Botswana%20Report.pdf
Photo by Sheila Webber: Botanic Gardens, Sheffield, July 2011

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Is it really true that only librarians like to search and that everyone else wants to find? (No)

I have been irritated for a while by the statement about "librarians being the ones who like to search", as there seem to me to be several things wrong with that idea. Going back to what seems to be the original source, Tennant (2001) said "isn't it true that only librarians like to search? Everyone else likes to find".

This statement has been used by people such as Wilder (2005) to bash information literacy advocates. As usual, when you do return to the source, it is immediately apparent that the original author was not making such a straightforward statement (as has been noted already by other commentators like the Pragmatic Librarian). However, I still see this phrase quoted and paraphrased nowadays, usually when we are being told that we've got to make things simpler, shouldn't overcomplicate information literacy education etc. etc.

I would say there are three problems with this statement.

Firstly, I don't think it is literally true. For the moment I am just basing this opinion on my own experience, i.e. I have friends who are nothing to do with the information or library profession, and who don't work in education, who have talked about the process of digging out and hunting for information as something enjoyable. Some people seem to like rooting around in stuff to find things out. I'm pretty sure that if I started rooting around, then I could find something in the research literature that gives some evidence for this as well (so I will have to try that).

Secondly, the statement seems to be grounded implicitly on the idea that the best way to find stuff is to search for it. There I do know that there is research literature that shows that people often prefer to browse, and also people may use "bumping into" (or "encountering") information as a major way to acquire information. However the statement seems to be saying that if you don't like to search, then all you want to do is find. It doesn't take account of the fact that you might just prefer browsing to searching. By the way, I am not saying here that people don't like the "finding", obviously they do (unless they are patent searches hoping no-one has had their idea before). I'm just saying that you shouldn't pretend it is either/or; search/find.

Thirdly, the statement doesn't take account of the fact that you can learn through searching for information. As an educator, that is one of the things I aim people to help people discover and understand: that if you open your mind during the process of searching, you can start to learn more about what the search is all about, what the context of your search topic is, all the different ways it is being talked about, and so forth. If you pick up these clues as you go along it can feed back into your search strategy (I know I don't need to make this point for most of the readers of this blog!). Importantly, it can also deepen your understanding of the subject of your search, and (depending on what you are looking for) learn more about people, your neighbourhood, society ...

Sometimes you may just be in search/find mode (e.g. when I wanted to know the show times of the new Harry Potter film, I didn't see this as a learning journey: although it must be said I learnt what the new name of one of the cinema chains was, along the way). However, I think that people who always see information acquisition as a matter of "show me the answer" are missing out. They are going to miss out on a way of learning things; their lives may be the poorer.

I don't think this is a question of wanting to make them "mini librarians", and it is not all about getting them to use the "correct" search strategy. It is about the process of getting information being part of learning and life. Or (as it says in the Prague Declaration) about information literacy being part of the basic human right of lifelong learning.

References
Tennant, R. (2001) "Digital Libraries- Cross-Database Search: One-Stop Shopping." Library journal. 15 October. http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA170458.html

UNESCO (2003) Prague Declaration: Towards an Information Literate society. http://portal.unesco.org/ci/en/ev.php-URL_ID=19636&URL_DO=DO_TOPIC&URL_SECTION=201.html

Wilder, (2005) "Information Literacy Makes All the Wrong Assumptions." Chronicle of higher education, January 7th. http://chronicle.com/article/Information-Literacy-Makes-All/21377
Photo and article by Sheila Webber: Photo of hydrangeas, Sheffield, July 2011

IL in schools; Media Literacy

I don't think I've mentioned the Argentinian blog Alfin en la escuela (information literacy in schools) http://alfinenlaescuela.blogspot.com/. It is in Spanish.

One publication it just highlighted is a new Portuguese-language publication, the proceedings of the First National Congress on media literacy and citizenship, held at the Universidad de Miño, Portugal, 25-26 March 2011. It includes numerous papers on media literacy, digital literacy, information literacy etc. The proceedings are at http://www.lasics.uminho.pt/OJS/index.php/lmc/issue/view/38/showToc
Photo by Sheila Webber: Botanic Gardens, Sheffield, July 2011

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

New book

Pope, A. and Walton, G. (Eds) (2011) Information literacy: infiltrating the agenda, challenging minds. Oxford: Chandos Publishing. ISBN-10: 1843346109; ISBN-13: 978-1843346104
Includes chapters by John Crawford, Bob Glass, Nancy Graham, Christine Irving, Gareth Johnson, and Andrew Whitworth, Kirsty Baker, Katharine Reedy, Jillian Griffiths, Keith Puttick, Ben Scoble and Chris Wakeman. The Amazon page is here.
Photo by Sheila Webber: Cherries, 2009 (birds got them all this year).

Monday, July 18, 2011

Libguides best practice

A number of people use LibGuides (an application that makes it easy to create portals) to produce subject information guides, Information Literacy home pages etc. A couple of months ago Emily Wood initiated a discussion (on the ili-l list) on "best practice" in producing LibGuides, and she created a page with the information that people sent her, at http://goo.gl/8ux9L One of the links is the "Best Practices" page in the LibGuide Community at http://bestof.libguides.com/bestpractices
Photo by Sheila Webber: Botanic Gardens, Sheffield, July 2011

Saturday, July 16, 2011

IL articles and links

The free online magazine of the School Library Association of New Zealand Aotearoa, called Collected, is an interesting publication of short articles and news. Issue one (August 2010) includes:
- "Information literacy or transliteracy: what's the difference" (by Donna Watts)
- Short article featuring information about a wiki page of information literacy links; the wiki page is at http://krunchd.com/IL-links
and each issue has a social media or web 2.0 section which highlights a particular tool or school library application.
The first issue of Collected is at http://issuu.com/miriamtuohy/docs/august2010 and the home page (3 issues so far) at http://issuu.com/miriamtuohy
Photo by Sheila Webber: Chestnut leaves, Krakow, June 2011

Friday, July 15, 2011

IL standards for schools

An example of local Information literacy standards for schools (US grade K8) is a document currently up for consultation by parents and the community of Community Consolidated School District 181 (which is "located about 20 miles west of Chicago", USA). There are separate standards listed for Kindergarten and each grade from 1st to 8th. "Community input is welcome and will be reviewed before the final curriculum document is brought to the Board of Education for approval on August 22." The actual document with standards for consultation is at http://www.d181.org/data/files/news/District181News/Standards_and_Comment_Form.pdf and the announcement about it is at http://burrridge.patch.com/articles/new-district-181-information-literacy-standards-on-public-display-2
Photo by Sheila Webber: Courtyard, Krakow Castle, June 2011

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Welsh Information Literacy Framework

Following consultation, the Information Literacy Framework for Wales has now been revised and is available on their website. The framework has also been reviewed by the Welsh Information Literacy project steering group, by Agored Cymru and by the Credit and Qualification Framework for Wales . It is available in English at http://library.wales.org/information-literacy/national-information-literacy-framework/ and in Welsh (Fframwaith Llythrennedd Gwybodaeth ar gyfer Cymru) at http://library.wales.org/cy/llythrennedd-gwybodaeth/national-information-literacy-framework/
Photo by Sheila Webber: wild strawberries, June 2011

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Evidence Based Library and Information Practice new issue

Volume 6 number 2 (2011) of Evidence Based Library and Information Practice has been published. There are numerous critical anayses of research articles, and original articles include:
Ping Li: Science Information Literacy Tutorials and Pedagogy
http://ejournals.library.ualberta.ca/index.php/EBLIP/issue/view/648
Photo by Sheila Webber: Hydrangea, July 2011

Monday, July 11, 2011

Heidi Julien: information literacy instruction

A podcast in 2 parts from Dr. Heidi Julien, University of , Canada is: Evidence-based Design of Information Literacy Instruction: Innovation in Pedagogy for the Library and for the MLIS [Masters in Library and Information Science] (March 30 2011). Go to http://www.slis.ualberta.ca/Podcasts.aspx
Photo by Sheila Webber: Botanical gardens, Sheffield, July 2011

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Children learning about media literacy #csnl2011

Another post from the Centre for the Study of New Literacies Conference which took place in Sheffield 8-9 July. Becky Parry (Institute of Education, University of London) talked about an intervention in which young children were involved in media production, as part of the project Developing Media Literacy: towards a model of learning progression. This project is funded by the Economic and Social Research Council. "The specific aim of the project is to develop a model of learning progression in media education. This model will seek to specify what children of different ages might be expected to understand about media; and how their learning could develop over time, and in the course of a sequence of learning activities". This is done through involvement of teachers and pupils in investigating what media literacy means and finding effective ways of developing media literacy. The project website is at http://www.ioe.ac.uk/study/departments/lkl/21807.html
The researchers had found that media literacy teaching often focused on looking at the different ways texts are constructed, so pupils could understand media language, with sociological aspects were not so much addressed. Traditional classroom news activities tended to be about analysing and rewriting news articles, or quizzes, fact finding exercises etc. These did not seem to be developing all the critical aspects of media literacy.
The intervention that Parry was talking about involved 9-10 year old pupils. The children gathered and presented news stories (asking who/what/when/where questions, like reporters), for a news product that was going to be seen by their peers and by their parents. Therefore it was a "real" exercise: this appeared to increase their commitment to it (Parry compared it to another activity which was just a simulation, which pupils hadn't worked so hard at).
The pupils did not just gather and present news stories, they also set and enforced regulation and bought and sold advertising. Two children were the “accountants” and two were "regulators". The 2 regulators developed rules e.g. for inaccurate reporting, swearing, bad advertising, and there were fines (Parry showed some pictures of the set of regulations and fines they developed). This again brought reality into the exercise, and it also meant the pupils had discussions about these ethical and economic issues. Partway through the exercise, the teacher introduced a picture of a “UFO”, which gave a buzz as they tried to decide whether it was “news”.
One of the issues that Parry emphasised was is that this research methodology provided an insight into the process of the pupils' learning and decision making. From a learning and teaching point of view it was giving them more real understanding and curiosity about how news is constructed.
Photo by Sheila Webber: Hydrangea, Rutland Hotel, Sheffield, July 2011

Friday, July 08, 2011

Using mobile phones for teaching in Bangladesh #csnl2011

Today and tomorrow I'm at the Centre for the Study of New Literacies Conference which is taking place in Sheffield. The Centre is based in Sheffield University's School of Education. The focus is "new methods for new literacies" and I'm speaking tomorrow on reasearching in Second Life (the video I posted a couple of days ago is for the talk). The talk I will pick out today was by Christopher Walsh (Open University): Rethinking teacher professional development: going digital on low-cost phones in Bangladesh..
He is part of the English in Action multimillion pound project funded by UKaid from the Department for International Development (DFID) in cooperation with the Government of Bangladesh. Two of the partners are the Open University and the BBC. The project aims to teach 25 million people English (!) and the initiative that Walsh was talking about is targetting 102,000 teachers and the 17 million students they teach.
Walsh talked about the "multiliteracies pedagogy for teacher professional development" that underpinned his approach. This involves situated practice (linking into the Bangladeshi national curriculum); overt instruction (to teach communicative English language teaching practices to teachers, so they then use the same methods with pupils); critical framing; and transformed practice. The problem with English teaching has been that it is textbook-based, with little pupil interaction and little use of spoken English at all, so even teachers might not be confident in speaking English.
The approach they have taken is practical and sustainable, since they are focusing on use of low-priced mobile phones, which are very common. They call them the Trainer in your pocket. Walsh observed that most schools have no electricity, and simply getting other devices charged up (devices that people do not use every day) was an issue.
There are training meetings where teachers get classroom materials and support (e.g. flashcards, figurines) and learn some new classroom practices. In their turn they should be able to teach others. At the moment the teachers are each given a mobile phone that takes an SD card, so they get set of audio files of English teaching material aligned with the Bangladeshi national curriculum. They also get portable rechargeable speakers, so they can plug their phones into these and use the audio English language material direct in the classroom. When the project is no longer giving out mobiles, they will still be able to give out memory cards to fit in teachers' own phones, and also ensure files can be downloaded cheaply.
From impact evaluations, teachers are saying that they are gaining confidence in speaking English and using different teaching practice. There is more of teachers speaking English, and and more of students speaking English in class.
The project website includes some pictures and other material such as conference papers and teacher's journal. Walsh's actual presentation, including some videos of classrooms, is on Prezi and I hope it is embedded below:

Thursday, July 07, 2011

WASSAIL videos

Tutorial videos for WASSAIL 3.0 (the latest version of this information literacy assessment software) have been produced in flash, quicktime and windows media player formats). They can be accessed from:
http://www.library.ualberta.ca/augustana/infolit/wassail/#tutorials

Photo by Sheila Webber: Long purples, Cuckoo Walk, Hailsham, July 2011

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Examples of using SL for research

Examples of how research results can be presented and explored in the virtual world, Second Life (TM Linden Lab). Filmed on Infolit iSchool, Sheffield University, by me, in June/July 2011

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

UNESCO meeting in Puerto Rico 11 August

Information Literacy Indicators and Government Action recommendations” is the name of this IFLA Off-site Session, organised by the IFLA Information Literacy Section and UNESCO Information for All Program. It takes place on August 2011 at the Universidad Politécnica de Puerto Rico 377 Ponce de León Ave. Hato Rey, PR 00918 San Juan, Puerto Rico.
The themes of this full-day meeting are: a) Information Literacy Indicators (in the morning) and b) Government Action Recommendations (in the afternoon).
To register for this important and exciting meeting, go to
http://www.ifla.org/en/events/ifla-off-site-session-information-literacy-section-unesco-ifap
Photo by Sheila Webber: after deadheading marigolds, July 2011

School to HE Transitions

The UC&R Yorkshire and Humberside has a one day training event School to HE Transitions to be held at York St John, York, UK, (Room: Skell 128) on 20 July 2011. It is aimed at school and university librarians. Cost of the event is £30 + VAT for CILIP members, £40 + VAT for non CILIP members. Contact Judy Hodgson - libraryqueries@yorksj.ac.uk with the subject line UC&R School to HE Transitions. Booking is on a first come first served basis.

Monday, July 04, 2011

Gregynog Colloquium

The annual colloquium held at Gregynog Hall (University of Wales), for IT and library staff to discuss recent developments and to exchange experiences, was held 13-17 June. The presentations, and also a few photos and video of social events, are available on the site. The presentations included:
Samuel Nikoi / Karl Drinkwater / Joy Cadwallader (Aberystwyth University) and Katrina Dalziel (Swansea University) "Making information skills interesting: gaps, beanbags and congas"
Steve Lee (University of Glamorgan) "Taking the Library to the people: Community Librarianship in Academic Institutions"
Cathie Jackson / Joy Head (Cardiff University) "Welsh Information Literacy Project: Progress and Development"
Amanda Bennett (University of Wales Institute, Cardiff) "Infomaze: an online information literacy lesson at UWIC"
The website is at http://gregynog.glam.ac.uk/page/index
Photo by Sheila Webber: Cat next door

Sunday, July 03, 2011

Rubrics

Recent discussion on the ili-l discussion list concerned "rubrics" i.e. criteria for assessment. Amongst the resources recommended by people who posted were
- RAILS project (Rubric Assessment of Information Literacy Skills) http://www.railsontrack.info.
- Megan Oakleaf's document on writing rubrics: http://meganoakleaf.info/writingrubricsright.pdf
- Collection of resources on using rubrics http://libguides.gccnj.edu/rubrics
- A book, Stevens, D. and Levi, A. (2004) Introduction to Rubrics. Stylus Publishing. ISBN-13: 978-1579221157.
I will also add that supporting students so they develop the criteria by which they are going to be assessed is something that needs adequate class time, but is tremendously valuable in helping them understand, and be motivated about, what they are supposed to achieve. It is something we do every year with one assignment (a poster) for our first year ("freshman") students, and should really do more.
Photo by Sheila Webber: Yellow rose, Hailsham, June 2011

Saturday, July 02, 2011

Have You Read a Good Picture Lately?

A webinar on 23 September 2011 will be Have You Read a Good Picture Lately? Visual Literacy Ideas and Techniques in Education. For more information go to:
http://www.ohio.edu/voinovichschool/news_info/calendar/
Photo by Sheila Webber: Valerian, Sheffield, June 2011