Friday, December 30, 2005

UNESCO sponsored IL projects

UNESCO has announced sponsorship of a number of information literacy projects. In one, involving 8 secondary schools and libraries in Tamale, in the northern region of Ghana, "10 students, 2 teachers and a librarian from each school will receive training in computer and Internet skills, in order to enhance the mastery of computer use in the study of subjects such as mathematics, English, science and social studies."

Another is aimed at higher education in Vietnam: " Within 12-month period, the project activities will include four phases:

1. Selection of appropriate key information professionals from about 10 major academic libraries in various Vietnamese regions;

2. Development of pre-course readings and exploration of information literacy practice in other academic environments;

3. Organization of a round table meeting at the Hanoi University of Foreign Studies;

4. Report by the participants on their individual and networking activities.

In addition to basic training, the project will produce a variety of Guidelines, in particular on the information literacy concept, competencies, framework and practical plan, applicable to academic library communities in Vietnam."

A further project is taking place in Nigeria.
There is news on the UNESCO IFAP page at: ev.php-URL_ID=1627&URL_DO=DO_TOPIC&URL_SECTION=201.html

Photo by S. Webber: Blackheath pond, Dec. 2005.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005


There are a few websites that we remind people about periodically. One of them is the LOEX website that has some material freely available (notably links to some material to do with training people in information literacy - tutorials etc.). There are further services for LOEX members and a long-running conference (usually held in the USA, where LOEX is based)

Photo by S. Webber. Venice, Dec 2005.

Monday, December 26, 2005

Happy festive season

A happy Christmas and holiday time to all our blog readers!

Photo: the Christmas wreath I made.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Some recent Information Literacy articles

Catts, Ralph (2005). "Confirming the relational model of information literacy." International Information and Library Review, 37 (1), 19-24.

Fields, A.M. (2005) "Self-Efficacy and the first-year university student’s authority of knowledge: an exploratory study." Journal of Academic Librarianship, 31 (6), 539–545

Gratch-Lindauer, B. (2005) "Information Literacy behaviors: potential items for the National Survey of Student Engagement." College and research library news, 66 (10). crlnews/backissues2005/november05/infolitbehavior.htm
Johnson, A. M. and Jent, S. (2005) "Library instruction and information literacy – 2004." Reference services review, 33 (4), 487-530. (This is the *big* annual annotated listing of information literacy articles, though it does miss quite a lot of things outside the USA)

McDermott, D (2005) "Library instruction for high-risk freshmen: Evaluating an enrichment program." Reference services review, 33 (4), 418-437.

Ondrusek, A. et al (2005) "A longitudinal study of the development and evaluation of an information literacy test." Reference services review, 33 (4), 388-417.

Snavely, L. (2005) "Visual Images and Information Literacy." Reference and user services quarterly, 45 (1), 27-32.

(Photo by S. Webber: Copper beech, Sheffield, Dec. 2005)

Learning about Learning course, London

There is a CILIP workshop on Learning about learning, being held on 7 February 2006 in London, UK ; and workshops on Teaching skills on 14 February and 16 March 2006. More details from:

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Presentations from day on elearning and IL in health libraries

There was a joint study day held by Information for the Management of Healthcare and Libraries for Nursing on 14 November 2005 in Leeds, UK: E-learning and information literacy: initiatives and challenges. You can find most of the PowerPoint presentations on the conference webpage, including:

Peter Godwin (Academic Services Manager, London South Bank University) Information literacy: present and future challenges.
Alison Lahlafi (Faculty Team Librarian, Leeds University Library) and David Clarke (School of Healthcare, Leeds University) Implementing an information literacy audit in the School of Healthcare, Leeds University

Webpage at:
(Photo by S. Webber: Copper beech leaves, Dec. 2005)

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Short IL articles

Some articles relevant to information literacy are in the latest issue of the SCONUL newsletter, SCONUL focus, no. 35, Summer/autumn 2005, namely:

Infoteach: developing an online community of practice of librarians who teach by Chris Powis

Learning and information services support for international students at the University of Hertfordshire by Helen Singer

E-learning at the University of Exeter Library by Jessica Gardner, Michelle Allen, Dominic Prosser, and Helen Hanson.

plus some relevant book reviews, and a number of other interesting articles (e.g. a survey of cafes in university libraries). The articles are all linked from the title page at
(Photo by S. Webber: autumn leaves on a sunny day in Sheffield, Dec. 2005)

2nd call for WILU

There is a Second Call for Proposals, deadline Monday January 9, 2006, for the 35th Annual Workshop on Instruction in Library Use (WILU) to be held at Acadia University in Wolfville, Nova Scotia May 10-12, 2006. This was an excellent conference in 2005, with interesting sessions and discussions. The theme of next year's conference is Charting a Course for Instruction. See for more info. (Photo by S. Webber: Chipmunk spotted during the 2005 conference. Not actually in the conference room, obviously)

French information literacy articles

Thanks to Sylvie Chevillotte for alerting us to as special issue of Bulletin des Bibliotheques de France on Information Literacy ( or rather "Formation des usagers" - user training).

It can be accessed directly at frontoffice/2005/06/sommaire.xsp or choose Feuilletage and select n°6, 2005.

There are a number of articles, with a few giving perspectives from outside France, others addressing specific examples in France, an article on the TUNE project, and also an article from Sylvie herself in her tour of US libraries and conferences.

I will pick out one small part of the article by Claire Panijel-Bonvalot, which has a note on the concept itself, and what terms are used in France"On appelle « maîtrise de l’information » un ensemble de compétences intellectuelles et instrumentales permettant, dans un objectif de connaissance, de mettre en œuvre un processus de collecte, d’évaluation, de traitement, de production et de communication de l’information. Le terme anglais Information Literacy semble plus stable que sa traduction française « maîtrise de l’information », à laquelle on préfère parfois « culture de l’information » ou « éducation à l’information ».

(Photo by S. Webber: Window in Lyon, France, June 2005)

Wednesday, December 14, 2005


A colleague here has recently reminded me about the The Plagiarism Advisory Service (PAS), run by Northumbria University and containing useful information on plagiarism:

Monday, December 12, 2005

Last chance to sign e-petition on IL!

Th e-petition to the Scottish Parliament on Information Literacy closes on December 16th. Sign up now if you haven't already! view_petition.asp?PetitionID=76

Invisible Web Weblog

One of my PhD students had, like me, a blog that was victim of technical problems this summer. Yazdan Mansourian's blog on has now also been revived on Blogger at and is still called the Invisible Web Weblog. The invisible web was the starting point for his research, although the focus has subsequently moved to focus on perceptions of failure and success in web search. You can find out more about his research on his web page at
(Photo by S. Webber: Wedding at Sydney harbour, Australia, November 2005)

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Changing students' perceptions of research

There is a PowerPoint up from the ANZIIL Symposium Series Five Information Literacy: Getting Back to Basics, which was held on the 10-11 November 2005 at the University of Otago in Dunedin, New Zealand.
Lorette Rayner (Western Institute of Technology at Taranaki) Changing students' perceptions of research: A partnership to achieve information literacy 2005/events/symposiumseriesfive/overview.htm
From the slides it seemes that the librarian organised a series of exercises that encouraged the students and librarian to take a personal journey in reflecting on what, how and why to search ... interesting.

(Photo by S. Webber: Jacaranda, Oxford Street, Sydney, Australia, Nov. 2005)

Saturday, December 10, 2005

"Digital Divide" statistics

Thanks to Michel Menou for the following: "The Eurostat publication Statistics in focus, 38/2005 is devoted to recent data regarding the so-called "digital" divide (aka internet
penetration) in the countries of the European Union ITY_OFFPUB/KS-NP-05-038/EN/KS-NP-05-038-EN.PDF "
This highlights differences between countries and also common features e.g. there is more likely to be internet access in households with children.

(Photo by S. Webber: Kofukuji temple at night, Nara, July 2005)

Friday, December 09, 2005

Rencontre FORMIST: 12 Janvier, Lyon, France

Continuant son ouverture vers les pratiques d'autres pays, le service Formist, enssib (see photo on right), propose le jeudi 12 janvier 2006, à l’enssib, une rencontre avec Jocelyne Poirier, bibliothécaire spécialisée à l’Université de Technologie de Queensland, Australie. staff/j_poirier.jsp Journée d’étude gratuite sur inscription.

Matinée (10-12.30): Présentation générale des bibliothèques en Australie, puis des réalisations des bibliothèques australiennes en matière de formation. Cette conférence s’adresse aux élèves conservateurs de l’enssib et est ouverte aux professionnels intéressés. (dans la limite des places
Après-midi (14-16.00): (réservée aux professionnels). La formation documentaire dans les bibliothèques australiennes (Queensland) et plus spécifiquement la formation des ingénieurs. Exposé suivi de débat avec les professionnels présents et intéressés par la formation des usagers.

Lieu: enssib. 27 Boulevard du 11 novembre 1918. 69623 Villeurbanne Cedex

Inscription et renseignements auprès de Sylvie Chevillotte . 04 72 44 43 18 ou Informations sur le site de l’enssib
et sur le site FORMIST

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Market research about libraries and internet use

The company OCLC (seller of library services) has published a full report on a survey they commissioned from Harris Poll Online (a market research company) about perceptions of libraries and competing products and services (in particular bookstores and search engines). The 290 page report is available in full or section by section from:

There were 3348 respondents, 450-500 each from Canada, UK and "Australia, India and Singapore" (latter treated as one region), and the rest (i.e. over half) from the USA. The researchers claim a hugh confidence level in terms of generalisability to the internet-using populations of the respective countries, though I would want to know more about how they selected the sample and how representative Harris' database of online users was to start with. They don't compare their findings with anything much else except some general stats of what % of the population uses the internet (i.e. they don't compare their findings with other surveys about people's use and perceptions of search engines, or stats on library use in the respective countries etc.), and knowing something about UK stats makes me think that you can't generalise these findings to the whole UK population.

However, having said all that, there's some interesting stuff in there. There are questions about perceived relative trustworthiness and use of search engines & libraries, extent to which people have used/heard of search engines, libraries and bookstores, positives and negatives about libraries, and so forth. A good sized sample of free-text responses to questions like "what's the first thing you think of about libraries" is given (by the way, the answer is that most people think - "books"). The conclusion (related to this "book" dominance in perception of the library brand) is that "It is time to rejuvinate the library brand" (section 6-8) Hmmm.

de Rosa, C. et al. (2005) Perceptions of libraries and information resources: a report to the OCLC membership. Dublin, Ohio: OCLC.

(Photo by S. Webber: Rose Apple tree (flower), Sydney Botanic Gardens, Australia, Nov. 2005.)

Monday, December 05, 2005

Creating Knowledge IV: Call for papers

There is a call for abstracts of papers and presentation for the Creating Knowledge conference IV: "Empowering the Student through cross-institutional support with focus on collaboration between library and academic support" which will be held in Copenhagen, Denmark, August 16-18, 2006. My colleague Bill Johnston is one of the keynote speakers - the others are Patricia Senn Breivik, Jude Carroll, Birgitta Hansson and Hans Siggaard Jensen.

It is organised on behalf of NORDINFOlit the Nordic Association on Information Literacy, by The Forum for Library User Education under the auspices of The Association of Danish Research Libraries. Co-organizers are Danish Network for University Pedagogy (, a grassroot initiative of university teachers with intentions to develop the quality of
university education and teaching.

"The organizers of this conference would like to emphasize and support the idea of a learning conference. This indicates that participants will be engaged in networking and active participation during breaks, sessions and workshops. Traditional paper presentations are most welcome, and presentations of good practice will definitely also be valued."

Abstracts must be submitted by February 1, 2006. Chosen papers and presentations must be submitted by May 1st. Registration deadline is June 15th 2006. The conference website is at:

Photo by S. Webber: White agapanthus and blue jacaranda petals, Sydney Australia, Nov. 2005

Friday, December 02, 2005

Alexandria meeting

A couple of weeks ago I posted the web address for the Alexandria Proclamation about information literacy and lifelong learning, produced on 9 November 2005. There are now translations into a number of languages, and a 2-page press release which includes the information that "Building upon the results and outcomes of the regional meetings, a series of thematic meetings will next be held, concentrating in depth on particular socioeconomic sectors such as Business and Economic Development, Education and Learning, Health and Human Services, and Governance and Citizenship. Finally, the results and outcomes of the various sector meetings will then be consolidated and analyzed for possible worldwide consensus and prioritizing. The regional and thematic/sector meetings will then be followed by the third stage - - a major World Congress on Information Literacy and Lifelong Learning, which will be held in 2008."

The original conference website, with information about who attended and the agenda for the day is at

(Photo by S. Webber: Circular Quay, Sydney, November 2005)

Online conference blog

The annual Online conference has been taking place in the UK. As I am in Australia I haven't got there, obviously, but I can glean some experiences of the conference from the "official" conference blog at:
and there's also a blog (and swiki) from the UK Electronic Information Group blogged by assorted information luminaries at:
I learnt from this that one of my colleagues at Sheffield University, Mark Sanderson, was giving a talk (he's an Information retrieval expert)!

The actual conference website is at
and has lots of info on exhibitors.