Friday, December 30, 2011

How Americans find local information: study

On Dec 14 Pew Research Center published a report in their Internet & American Life Project, looking at how Americans find details of local businesses. The survey was carried out in January 2011 via telephone interview of 2,251 adults in the USA, aged 18 and over.
When it came to restaurants, bars and clubs, 51% relied on the internet (especially search engines), 31% on newspapers (mostly print rather than online), 23% on word of mouth and 8% on local television. The results were not wildly different for information on other types of business. The thing that got picked up in the press coverage of this report was the low usage of social media (including Twitter), which was 3% for restaurants etc. and 1% for other businesses.
The report includes analyses of which demographic was most likely to use each medium e.g. those using local broadcast TV were most likely to be over 65, non internet users, earning less than US$30,000.
Rainie, L. et al (2011) Where people get information about restaurants and other local businesses. Pew Research Center.
Photo by Sheila Webber: Branches against the sky, Lewes, December 2011 (photoshopped)

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Cfp: Journal of Research on Libraries and Young Adults

The (American)Young Adullt Library Services Association's peer-reviewed, open-access journal, the Journal of Research on Libraries and Young Adults, has a call papers for its Spring 2012 issue on the theme of Twenty-First Century Literacies. "The issue will feature articles focusing on different twenty-first century literacies. Possibilities include information literacy, traditional literacy, multicultural literacy, transliteracy, visual literacy, media literacy, civic literacy, or economic literacy, to name a few. Contributors are invited to submit articles that focus on literacies from different theoretical, pedagogical, practical, policy and research perspectives. Guidance can also be found in YALSA’s National Research Agenda. Please contact Sandra Hughes-Hassell, editor, at to discuss submissions and use the author guidelines." Papers are due by February 13, 2012. The journal website is at
Photo by Sheila Webber: Canary Wharf, December 2011

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Reference Services Review latest

The latest issue of Reference Services Review (volume 40 issue 1) is available online. Articles include:
- Demystifying the Data Interview: Developing a Foundation for Reference Librarians to Talk with Researchers about their Data by Jake Carlson
- Training Millennials: A practical and theoretical approach by Kathleen Langan
- Video lectures help enhance online information literacy course by Ed Hahn
- Research skills development through collaborative virtual learning environments by Adrian Stagg and Lindy Kimmins
- Digital Games in Academic Libraries: A Review of Games and Suggested Best Practices Mary Julia Broussard
- Empowered Library e-Learning: Capturing Assessment and Reporting with Ease, Efficiency, and Effectiveness by George Peter Germek
It's a priced publication, the home page is at
Photo by Sheila Webber: Late flowering scabious, December 2011, Hailsham.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Alfabetización Informacional en Iberoamérica wiki

This wiki on Information Literacy in South America (an initiative from Alejandro Uribe Tirado) covers articles, books, dissertations, past events, videos, courses etc. from each South American country: the majority of items are in Spanish or Portuguese. Alfabetización Informacional en Iberoamérica: estado del arte
Photo by Sheila Webber: White Hart Inn, Lewes, December 2011

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to all readers of the Information Literacy Weblog!
Photo by Sheila Webber: the Christmas wreath I made this year.

Friday, December 23, 2011

News snippets: Malaysia; Dilgital illiteracies; Social media literacies

Firstly, several places have picked up a news release today on, which announced that The National Library Malaysia has launched a Malaysia Information Literacy Module "in an effort to enhance information searching skill more effectively, accurately and correctly. The launching ceremony was performed by Deputy Minister of Information, Communications and Culture Senator Datuk Maglin Dennis D'Cruz at Sekolah Kebangsaan Padang Luit" "Speaking to reporters later, Maglin said the module was an effort by the National Library to provide guidance to the public in terms of skill in searching and choosing information to be read. It is important because it will determine the quality of information to be stored in our mind."

Secondly, I noticed a short item about the need for digital literacy (and also, mentioned in passing, information literacy) in those teaching English as a second language:
Dudeney, G. (2011) "No place in class for digital illiterates." Guardian weekly, 6 December.

Finally, there is a guest blog post on the Scientific American site. A researcher discusses what the digital divide might consist of now in the 21st century; as well as social inequalities she describes various skills in using information and social media (i.e. saying that it is not just about access to technology/internet).
Radovanovic, D. (2011) "Digital Divide and Social Media: Connectivity Doesn’t End the Digital Divide, Skills Do." Scientific American blogs, 14 December.

Photo by Sheila Webber: Mistletoe, December 2011

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Webcast of talk by Alison Head

On January 10 2012 Alison J. Head, Berkman Center Fellow, will have her talk on Searching for Context: Modeling the Information-Seeking Process of College Students in the Digital Age webcast live and then archived. The talk will be at 12.30 pm US eastern time (see for times elsewhere)
"What is it like to be a college student in the digital age? In this talk, I present a working typology of the undergraduate information-seeking process, including students’ reliance on and use of Web sources. Since 2008, as part of our ongoing study at the University of Washington’s Project Information Literacy, we have surveyed more than 10,000 students at 40 colleges and universities (including undergraduates enrolled at Harvard College). We have investigated how college students find information and conduct research—their needs, strategies, and workarounds—for solving information problems that occur during course-related research and in their everyday lives. We have found the large majority of students we have studied across all types of higher-education institutions in the U.S. still attend college to learn, but many are lost in a thicket of information overload. They struggle with managing the IT devices that permeate their lives. Our findings indicate that nearly all students intentionally use a small compass for navigating the ever-widening and complex information landscape they inhabit. These and other findings of Project Information Literacy have profound implications for teaching, learning, work, and play in the 21st century." Instructions at
Photo by Sheila Webber: "Let's gater with good friends" - sign outside Starbucks, Camrose, Canada, November 2011

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Redefining the Academic Library

Just published, the USA's University Leadership Council's report Redefining the Academic Library: Managing the Migration to Digital Information Services
This has lots of short sections giving key messages and examples of what is seen as good practice, and what it sees as trends for the future. Google is identified as a key competitor. Key sections are:
- Leveraging Digital Collections
- Rethinking the Scholarly Publishing Model
- Repurposing Library Space (get rid of those open stacks and print journals, seems to be the message)
- Redeploying Library Staff (including to information literacy work. The report says that "Though information literacy is a growing presence in student learning outcomes and general education requirements, most institutions currently offer little more than a brief introduction to the campus library and its website." Surely that's not true any more?)
Full text at
Photo by Sheila Webber: Seasonal items in Second Life.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

ECAR National Study of Undergraduate Students and Information Technology

The 2011 ECAR National (USA) Study of Undergraduate Students and Information Technology gathered stratified data from "3,000 college students from 1,179 colleges and universities" via an opt-in invitation-only online questionnaire, in June 2011.
As usual, I have only skimmed through it, but it has interesting material. This is a sample of snippets, biased towards my interests.
"58 percent of all students say that online-only courses do not provide the same educational value as courses that blend face-to-face and online components, compared to 30 percent who say they believe they do provide equal value."
"Twelve percent of students say Facebook is “extremely valuable” to their academic success—and one in four students (25 percent) consider it “valuable” or “extremely valuable.” On the other hand, more than half of students (53 percent) think its academic value is limited or nonexistent."
"Nearly onethird of students (32 percent) say their skills using a course or learning management system, which is intended to facilitate academic life for students and instructors, aren’t where they believe they should be."
" .. the average student spends at least some time engaging in about 21 different kindkinds of software applications and activities out of 40 they were asked about.."

There is discussion around the importance of academics using technologies effectively, and how this influences students and their perception/use of technology "Projectors, Wi-Fi, laptops, desktops, and document cameras or digital overhead projectors are devices that instructors use “extremely effectively” to teach, mentor, or communicate, students report—and they’re generally technologies students also value highly. More personal technologies, such as e-readers, iPads, smartphones, and student response systems (clickers) are not used as effectively, students say."

Dahlstrom, E., de Boor, T., Grunwald, P. and Vockley, M. (2011) The ECAR National Study of Undergraduate Students and Information Technology. Boulder: EDUCAUSE Center for Applied Research.
Photo by Sheila Webber: Angel on my bookshelves, December 2011

Monday, December 19, 2011

Journal of Information Literacy

Volume 5, issue 2 (2011) of the Journal of Information Literacy is online.
There are a number of book reviews and the following articles:
- Information literacy in United Kingdom schools: by David Streatfield, Sue Shaper, Sharon Markless, Simon Rae-Scott
- Information Literacy and the Skunk Ape: Assessing the Impact of Online Library Learning Modules on Student Writing in English Composition Courses: by Randall McClure, Rachel Cooke, Anna Carlin
- Students’ Behaviour Playing an Online Information Literacy Game: by Karen Markey, Chris Leeder
- Tailoring Information Literacy Instruction and Library Services for Continuing Education: by Jessica Lange, Robin Canuel, Megan Fitzgibbons
- Is There a Difference Between Critical Thinking and Information Literacy? by John M Weiner
Photo by Sheila Webber: festive squah (photoshopped), December 2011

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Libguide on lesson planning & Poll Everywhere

There is a nice Libguide on lesson planning resources for trainee teachers at from Michelle Costello, Milne Library, State University of New York. This was mentioned by her in the context of an ili-l discussion about using Poll Everywhere as a tool in information literacy sessions; she uses it on this site to get ideas (not, in this case, about information literacy). The majority of people in the ili-l discussion felt that using Poll Everywhere was better than using "clickers" (personal response devices), but that you couldn't assume that all students had mobile phones, so you needed to enable those without mobiles to access the poll in other ways.
Photo by Sheila Webber: Festive items in Second Life

Friday, December 16, 2011

Practice and Evidence of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education

There's a new issue, 6 (3), 2011, of Practice and Evidence of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education (PESTHE) at Articles include:
- Group role-play as a method of facilitating student to student interaction and making theory relevant
- Click happy?: an analysis of the use of an Electronic Voting System (EVS) in large group lectures to improve interaction and engagement
- Creative professionals for a world of complexity, change and competition.
The Tagxedo of the PESTLE homepage is meant to be a snowman shape...

Thursday, December 15, 2011

cfp: Critical Thinking & Library Instruction

There is a call for proposals for the Library Instruction Roundtable (LIRT) Conference Program, Critical Thinking & Library Instruction: Fantasyland or Adventureland? during the 2012 American Library Association Annual Conference in Anaheim, USA, which takes place 21-26 June 2012. The deadline for submissions is January 15, 2012.
"As librarians move beyond "how to" instruction sessions, understanding and incorporating educational principles and practices, such as critical thinking, will help leverage their collaborations with user communities." "Successful proposals will:
- Include at least one learning objective
- Effectively engage the audience for a 15-minute presentation
- Offer practical applications/examples of incorporating critical thinking (CT) in library instruction
- Suggested topic areas: collaboration with faculty on CT, teaching methods for CT, CT in the “one-shot session,” collaborating on CT in general education courses"
Four 15-minute presentations will be selected and must be presented in person at the session (on June 24. Please include the following information in prposlas on 2 pages:
1. A cover sheet with your name(s), title(s), institutional affiliation(s), mailing address(es), fax number(s) and email address(es).
2. A second page without any personal identifying information. This page must include: the presentation title, a brief abstract (250 words), learning objective(s), and a paragraph describing how you will deliver the presentation (e.g., PowerPoint, learning activity, etc.).
Send submissions by email to: Arianne Hartsell-Gundy,
Photo by Sheila Webber: spiderwebs on rosemary bush, November 2011

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Reflecting on 23 Things: using 23 Things in an Information literacy class

Today I gave a presentation given in the virtual world, Second Life: Reflecting on 23 Things: using 23 Things in an Information literacy class. Firstly, I describe what is meant by a "23 Things" initiative, and identify some characteristics and examples. Secondly, I describe a "23 Things" initiative I have used in a Masters-level class in the Information School, University of Sheffield (Information Resources and Information Literacy). There are references at the end of the presentation. This is it on Slideshare.

Monday, December 12, 2011

How to make Google behave: techniques for better results

A seminar on 8 February 2012, to be held at the University of Birmingham, UK, is How to make Google behave: techniques for better results, organised by UKEIG and run by Karen Blakeman "Course Outline: Having problems with Google? Fed up with it ignoring your search terms and giving you something completely different? Or confused by irrelevant tweets from complete strangers appearing in your results? Personalisation, localisation, social networks and semantic search are all being used by Google in an attempt to improve relevance but it can all go horribly wrong. Austria suddenly becomes Australia and Google decides that coots are really lions! Nevertheless, just one really good result in the top five is often enough to persuade us to return to Google again and again. There are many tricks we can use to make Google return better results and this workshop will look in detail at the options that are currently available to us." For more info go to

Friday, December 09, 2011

Old information literacy videos: online

Jodi Kearns, University of Akron, has made available online some newly digitised information literacy videos from the 70s to early 90s. She acknowledges the work of Lorelei Hoover, an LIS student, on this project. They are definitely interesting from a "then and now" point of view (including the hairstyles!).
Welcome to Eureka:
Library Research Methods:
Touring Goleman Library:
Library Music Research (embedded below):
Surfin' Safari:
Library Collections and Services:
A Guide to Business Research:

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Information literacy meets E-learning: Let's talk about interconnections and outcomes: cfp

There is a call for papers for a session at the World Library and Information Congress: 78th IFLA General Conference and Assembly, which will be held 11-17 August 2012 in Helsinki, Finland.
The session is organised by IFLA's Information Literacy Section and the E-learning Special Interest Group and is titled Information literacy meets E-learning: Let's talk about interconnections and outcomes.
They invite papers that address a number of questions of research and practice:
- Is there any evidence to show that E-learning effectively promotes self-paced and sustainable learning in the area of information literacy skills?
- Has E-learning enabled libraries to extend their reach to new populations, or provided their existing population with new services and fresh possibilities for learning?
- While online tutorials are mainly used in the academic environment for large populations of students, what strategies have been introduced in public libraries to encourage lifelong E-learning?
- Are there any advantages in teaching information literacy skills using a virtual learning environment (VLE) or course management systems (such as Moodle, Blackboard, WebCT) in a blended learning context?
- Can information literacy education benefit from collaborative learning through forum, chat and distance learning class experiences?
- What aspects of information literacy (eg information skills instruction, research process education…) are significantly enhanced by the E-learning experience? What elements of the E-learning have the greatest value in information literacy training?
- Many tutorials focus specifically on information seeking and citing sources; can E-learning go beyond this to address a wider range of information literacy outcomes?
Proposals should include an abstract of paper approximately 500 words, and the author'(s) details (name, institution, position) and brief biographical statement of no more than 50 words. Proposals should be sent to no later than February 5, 2012 and indicate “IFLA proposal” in the subject line
The successful presenters will be expected to submit final versions of their papers by May 14, 2012. Papers should be in English (or in one of the official IFLA languages, with an English translation attached). For more information, please contact : or
Photo by Sheila Webber: sage leaves, photoshopped, November 2011

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

11th Annual Information Literacy Summit: call for presenters

There is a call for presenters for the 11th Annual Information Literacy Summit: Transforming Information Literacy which will be held: April 24 2012 at John A. Logan College (Carterville, USA); April 30 at Illinois State University (Normal, IL, USA); May 4 at Moraine Valley Community College (Palos Hills, USA).
You may propose one or more sessions for one or more of the three Summit locations. Breakout sessions and panels will be 50 minutes long and should include audience interaction or discussion. Hands-on lessons and demonstrations (and/or practical takeaways) are encouraged. Sessions typically have 20-40 participants. Deadline for proposals is January 6, 2012. To propose a breakout session go to
Some suggested topics are: partnerships with faculty and administrators; living in a post-text world; defining media literacy; rethinking credibility in a 2.0 world; new approaches to teaching searching. The featured speaker is Dr. Sharon Weiner on Who Teaches Information Literacy in Colleges?
Photo by Sheila Webber: Neighbour's door, December 2011

Monday, December 05, 2011

Articles from SCONUL Focus

SCONUL Focus (no. 52, 2011) is full text online, and as usual contains numerous short articles. These include:
- 'If the library is the heart of the university, then information literacy is the brain': promoting 'Information literacy week' at Salford University, by Sue Barker-Mathews, and Maggie Costello
- The value of libraries for research:some themes, by Michael Jubb (He is summarising points from: The value of libraries for research and researchers report (2011), available at
- Tech tips for librarians: Twitterfeed, by Paul Stainthorp
- The SCONUL seven pillars model of information literacy: 2011 update, by Moira Bent, and Ruth Stubbings
- University Science and Technology Librarian's Group: Information Literacy event, reviewed by Jon Fletcher
The SCONUL Focus newsletter is at
Photo by Sheila Webber: first hint of snow, Sheffield, December 2011

Friday, December 02, 2011

Communications in Information Literacy (CIL): new issues

The latest issue (volume 5 issue 1) of Communications in Information Literacy (CIL) has been published. It includes:
Amy E. Mark: Format as a False Judge of Credibility: Messages from Librarians and Faculty and Student Responses
Brian Winterman, Carrie Donovan, Rachel Slough: Information Literacy for Multiple Disciplines: Toward a Campus-Wide Integration Model at Indiana University, Bloomington
Melissa A. Gains, Richard A. Stoddart: Supplementing a Librarian’s Information Literacy Toolkit with Textbooks:A Scan of Basic Communication Course Texts
Go to:
Photo by Sheila Webber: another picture of the Christmas tree in Sheffield, with photoshopped colour

Thursday, December 01, 2011

Moving on up.......School/FE/HE transition

On 19 January at Durham University (UK) the University, College & Research Group (Northern Section) has organised Moving on up.......School/FE/HE transition. "This Event is aimed at School, Further Education and University Librarians and examines the transition that most 16 -18 year olds make from School to College to Higher Education. It will consider what support there is for students making the transition and what can we do to help. There is an impressive programme of presentations delivered by respected and knowledgeable speakers who will be sharing their broad range of experiences and skills." Speakers include: Jackie Dunn and Ann-Marie Laws: "Bridging the Divide: Information Literacy the Forgotten Link"; Elizabeth Astan & Julie Archer: "Mind the [information literacy] Gap: moving from School or FE to HE".
To reserve a place, please contact Helen Ashton, Bishop Auckland College, 01388 443018,
Photo by Sheila Webber: Christmas "Tree" in Sheffield city centre, yesterday.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Teaching Faculty Award for the Support of Information Literacy

The Augustana Campus Library (Camrose, Alberta, Canada) of the University of Alberta has announced the 2011 recipient of the Teaching Faculty Award for the Support of Information Literacy. The award, which started in 2005, is an annual award given to an Augustana Campus teaching faculty member who has contributed consistently and notably to the support and promotion of information literacy at the Augustana Campus of the University of Alberta. Nominations are accepted from Augustana students, staff, faculty and administrators. The award is presented annually at the Information Literacy in Academic Libraries Workshop. (My photo shows Augustana librarian Nancy Goebel announcing the award at this event the week before last.)
The recipient of the 2011 Teaching Faculty Award for the Support of Information Literacy is Dr Neil Haave, Associate Dean of Teaching and Associate Professor of Biology on the Augustana Campus. The nomination indicates that "Neil has taken a leadership role in incorporating the information literacy skill requirement into Augustana's curriculum. He has worked closely with Augustana librarians on developing an information literacy model for biology. Neil promotes the broadening of and incorporation of information literacy skills as part of a liberal arts and sciences education".
I've mentioned this award before: I think it's a great idea, and they also have a similar award for a student. More information at

Monday, November 28, 2011

Academic literacies videos

Norda Majekodunmi of York University, Canada, recently announced on the ili-l discussion list that ahe and her colleague Kent Murnaghan had a series of videos, based on student interviews, which are about academic literacies. There is a tutor guide to accompany each video which includes a summary & transcript and examples of discussion topics and lesson plans. The videos are:
1. University Life
2. Learning Skills
3. Doing Research
4. Choosing Sources
5. Google/Internet
6. Libraries
7. Writing + Citing
They are available on the York University Scott Library Learning Commons
website: and the guides at: Norda adds in her post "Although some videos are York specific (i.e. University Life, Libraries) most can be used at any institution, please feel free to use these videos in your teaching."
Photo by Sheila Webber: Information Literate cupcakes at the Augustana Information Literacy seminar at Alberta University, Canada.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

LILAC awards: IL practitioner; Digital award; Student place

There are two awards open for nomination and an opportunity for students to attend the LILAC (information literacy) conference talking place in Glasgow, Scotland in April 2012.
Information Literacy Practitioner of the Year. "A long established award recognising an outstanding individual contribution to information literacy. The winner will receive £500 for personal use and £500 for their nominated charity. Closing date: February 29th 2012. (Sponsored by the CILIP CSG Information Literacy Group)."
Credo Reference Digital Award for Information Literacy. "An exciting new award recognising a digital resource, programme or service which has made a significant impact. The winning group or individual will receive £500 for personal use and £500 for their nominated charity. Closing date: February 29th 2012. (Sponsored by Credo Reference)."
Student Sponsored Place at LILAC. "The award consists of conference registration, travel and accommodation expenses for a student registered on a UK study programme. Closing date: January 31st 2012. (Sponsored by the CILIP CSG Information Literacy Group)."
Enquiries and nominations should to Nigel Morgan:
Photo by Sheila Webber: autumn rose, October 2011

Friday, November 25, 2011

Materials from Belarus conference

Information Literacy expert Esther Grassian delivered a good deal of material at the Belarusian Library Association Conference (12-14 October), attended by library Directors and Deputy Directors from libraries in Belarus, Russia, Lithuania, Ukraine and Poland, among others. She has mounted her presentations and handouts, in English and in Russian, on her personal website. It is an interesting resource including, for example: Expected Learning Outcomes examples for undergraduate information literacy instruction, a presentation on Goals, Objectives and Expected Learning Outcomes (ELOs) for School and Public Library librarians in Belarus; a presentation on Librarians connecting and collaborating with teachers/faculty, for a Plenary session and a Bibliography for the Plenary Session; a sample workshop for graduate Teaching Assistants to help them learn how to incorporate information literacy instruction into their curricula and assignments; and a handout Esther Grassian's 'Thoughts on Transliteracy'.
Esther expressed her thanks to the U.S. Embassy in Minsk, who sponsored her visit and also to their librarians who took the photo here (which is copied with their permission).

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Sci Tech information literacy chat

On 30 November, 2011 (7pm UK time: 2PM US Eastern time; 11AM US Pacific Time) there will be the regular "Last Wednesday" Information Literacy virtual discussion, this time using tinychat. It is sponsored by the ACRL Science and Technology Section’s Information Literacy Committee. To join the discussion, go to at the appropriate time. "This month's discussion is on building and maintaining liaison relationships" (I think that means librarian-faculty professional relationships)
Photo by Sheila Webber: Mailboxes, Edmonton, Canada, November 2011

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

New articles on information literacy

Nazari, M. (2011) "A contextual model of information literacy." Journal of Information Science, 37(4): 345-359. This describes her model of IL for Geographic Information Science/Systems. An article from my former PhD student, Maryam Nazari, now teaching at the University of Malaya.

Mansour, E. and Alkhurainej, N. (2011) "Information seeking behaviour of Members of the Kuwaiti Parliament." Library Review, 60(8), 671-684. This investigated things such as why they needed the information, what sources they used, and who supported them

Salisbury, F. and Sheridan, L. 2011 "Mapping the journey: Developing an information literacy strategy as part of curriculum reform." Journal of Librarianship and Information Science, 43 (3), 185-193. Describes initiatives at La Trobe University, in Australia.

Shenton, A. and Hay-Gibson, N. (2011) "Information behaviour and information literacy: The ultimate in transdisciplinary phenomena?" Journal of Librarianship and Information Science September, 43, 166-175.

Shoeb, Z.H. (2011) "Information literacy competency of freshman business students of a private university in Bangladesh." Library Review, 60(9), 762-772. A survey was conducted to identify students' current perceptions and competence, to help prepare an IL curriculum for the future.

These are all in priced journals.
Photo by Sheila Webber: Autumn beech tree, Sheffield, November 2011

3Ts 2012: Engaging Students with Teaching, Technology, and Transliteracy

There is a call for proposals for the 3Ts 2012 conference, which will be held in Albany, New York, USA on March 16 2012. The deadline is December 1st. "Proposals should address the following questions: * How have you drawn upon metaliteracy or transliteracy to support student learning? * How have underlying principles and theories guided your inclusion of a specific technology or technologies in the classroom? * How did teaching and technology connect to improve both technological literacy and learning? * How has your teaching style or method changed as technology is now infused into your course?
"Proposals can include any meaningful integration of technology and teaching used to support the growing number of literacies students need for learning and succeeding in today's information-rich academic and professional worlds." Conference sessions are 45 minutes speaking/workshop time with 15 minutes allocated for Q and A, or a 2 hour workshop. Further info at
Photo by Sheila Webber: Snow in Camrose, Canada, last week.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Information handling in collaborative research

Information handling in collaborative research: an exploration of five case studies is a new report from the Research Information Network (RIN). "This study, commissioned by RIN and the British Library, comprising of a set of case studies looking at how researchers access, use and disseminate information in collaborations between higher education and business, public and third sector partners." The case studies concern:
- a large multinational collaboration involving pharmaceutical companies and Higher Education Institutions (HEIs);
- a large European co-ordinated action between HEIs and public bodies involved
with end-of-life care;
- a medium sized UK based project on material engineering involving HEIs and a
mix of commercial partners including large multinational industrial organisations,
Small and Medium-sized Enterprise (SME) manufacturers and university spin-outs;
- a small knowledge transfer partnership, developing a software and hardware
package for use in residential care, involving one SME and one HEI;
- and a small exploratory collaboration involving a mix of commercial and third
sector organisations, and an HEI.
The report is available in full at:
Photo by Sheila Webber: autumn pathway, Sheffield, November, 2011

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Curriculum for Information Literacy

On 10th November we (Sheffield University Information School) hosted a seminar on an Information Literacy Curriculum, run by Jane Secker (London School of Economics), Emma Coonan (Cambridge University Library), Helen Webster (learning developer at Cambridge University) and Katy Wrathall. I must also thank Lyn Parker, who did the organisation at this end. I have already blogged about this curriculum initiative, which arose from Jane and Emma's Arcadia Fellowship from Cambridge University. There is full documentation on their new blog at This includes an explanation of the ideas behind the curriculum and recommendations on how it may be used and taught. There are 10 “strands” to the curriculum, and for each strand they propose learning outcomes, with example activities and assessments. The 10 strands are:
- Transition from school to higher education
- Becoming an independent learner
- Developing academic literacies
- Mapping and evaluating the information landscape
- Resource discovery in your discipline
- Managing information
- Ethical dimension of information
- Presenting and communicating knowledge
- Synthesising information and creating new knowledge
- Social dimension of information
At the workshop there were presentations from Emma and Jane about developing the curriculum and also from Helen and Katy about the next phase. This focuses (as the final Arcadia project) on ways of implementing the curriculum, through a teaching toolkit and institutional audit tool. The seminar at Sheffield also included a group discussion session (pictured), looking at things like barriers and enablers for developing information literscy in the curriculum.
Jane Secker has blogged about this workshop at and the powerpoint is also on their blog, under the Presentations tab.

Friday, November 18, 2011

People from the Augustana seminar: Clarence Maybee

I am just about to fly back to the UK after delivering the Augustana Information Literacy seminar with Bill Johnston in in Canada (with the theme of The Information Literate University), and will try to catch up with my blogging over the next few days. To start with, this is one of the delegates at the seminar: Clarence Maybee (pictured right). He fairly recently started a very interesting job at Purdue University, USA, where they have a definite focus on information literacy. His post is "Information Literacy Specialist" as an Assistant Professor, with a coordinating role for information literacy. This is the page on his website that describes his research and these are a couple of his publications:
Maybee, C. (2007) "Understanding our student learners: A phenomenographic study revealing the ways that undergraduate women at Mills College understand using information." Reference Services Review, 35(3), 452-462.
Maybee, C. (2006) "Undergraduate Perceptions of Information Use: the basis for creating User-Centered Student Information Literacy Instruction." Journal of Academic Librarianship, 32(1), 79-85.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Information Literacy in the snow

This is a cool photo that was produced by Nancy Goebel at the Augustana library, University of Alberta (where I am at the moment). She got student volunteers to spell out the words "information literacy" by lying in the snow. You can see that the letters are made of people more easily in the closeup of "info" at the bottom of the picture on the right.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

LOEX of the West 2012 call for papers

The LOEX of the West 2012 Conference Committee calls for proposals to be considered for presentation at the LOEX of the West (LOTW) Conference, June 6-8, 2012 at Woodbury University, Burbank, California, USA. The theme for the conference is : Creative Landscapes: Designing Information Literacy for All Terrains. More info at

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Sheffield University, Information Literacy and IBL

At the moment I am in Edmonton, Canada, preparing presentations for the Augustana Information Literacy workshop at the University of Alberta, Canada. This is why there has been a couple of days gap in my blogging. It is colder here than in the UK: here is a picture from today.
One of the things I will be doing is talking about Sheffield University as an example of information literacy being advanced through a university-wide initiative concerning a pedagogic approach (in this case, Inquiry Based Learning (IBL). I've blogged some of these items before, but here is a list of resources I'm mentioning
- There is an IBL website at
- CILASS. (2008) Information Literacy. (CILASS Briefing Paper; 4)
- Case studies of IBL projects with an IL component:
- - English;
- - Human Communication Sciences;
- - Library;
- - Psychology http://;
- - Law (see also an account by two faculty in the Law School: Semmens and Taylor, 2006)

- Corrall, S. (2009) Information Literacy: The Case for Strategic Engagement. (Professor Sheila Corrall outlines the case in general, and finishes by giving Sheffield University as an example)
- McKinney, P. (2010) Inquiry-based Learning and Information Literacy: a meta-analytical study. University of Sheffield.
- Parker, L. (2009) Can't I just upload it to the VLE? Designing and embedding information literacy into online and blended learning. http// (Lyn Parker is Head of Learning and Teaching at Sheffield University Library)

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Infolit and ICT articles

A blog called International Schools and ICT has been regularly posting abstracts of research articles: an interesting mix. On the day I last looked, the item was:
Sharkey, J. and Brandt, D.S. (2008) Integrating Technology Literacy and Information Literacy. In: Rivoltella, P. (Ed) Digital literacy : tools and methodologies for information society. Hershey: IGI Publishing. pp85-97.
Photo by Sheila Webber: last windfalls, November 2011

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Information literacy in our future careers: videos

The Information literacy in our future careers exhibition is something I've done several years running with a class that is core to three of our masters programmes, the MA Librarianship, MA Information Literacy and MSc Information Management. In the first week of the exercise teams of students start creating a poster to depict how information literacy will be relevant in their future careers, and in the second week they display the posters and explain them to each other.
This year there are 115 students, the majority international (over half the class is from China). They have a variety of career aspirations, particularly the largest cohort, the Information Managers. Careers that were addressed in the posters included headhunting, farming, and human resource management, as well as different kinds of information and library jobs. 30 posters were produced and you can see them all in this Flickr set:
This is a short video that I made, asking some of the students to explain their posters.

In addition some of the teams give some very interesting accounts on their own team blogs. "Team I" did a video about their favourite poster which is embedded in this blog post (their own poster is one of the ones featured in my video, above): "Team U" also provide a nice explanation of their poster here:
We ask people to evaluate the posters, and the two most popular posters were those from Team A (pictured at the start of this post) and Team N (pictured right)

Monday, November 07, 2011

Measuring the impact of information literacy training in Africa: questionnaire

Siobhán Duvigneau (Information Literacy Manager, BLDS - British Library for Development Studies) writes "BLDS has developed an information literacy programme over the past two years which includes course materials and an online network for trainers and practitioners to share best practice.
"As part of this programme BLDS and the Research Information Network (RIN) are working together to develop a monitoring and evaluation toolkit, including practical examples, to inform the development and impact measurement of information literacy training. Much of BLDS’ work has been within an African context and so the intention is to develop a toolkit for African trainers of information literacy which will be widely disseminated through Creative Commons. This toolkit will include practical tools such as pre and post-course questionnaires, as well as case studies illustrating how these tools can be used.
"In the first instance, we are disseminating a questionnaire to get a feel for current practice in the development of information literacy interventions. We invite IL practitioners to contribute to the questionnaire, run through Survey Monkey. The questionnaire is open during the period 4 November 2011 to 25 November 2011 and should take between 15-30 minutes to complete.
"Following analysis of the responses, there will be in-depth, qualitative consultations early in 2012 in Africa at a university yet to be confirmed. Please indicate whether you would like to join these workshops and/or focus groups in the questionnaire. The formulation of the toolkit itself will follow during the first quarter of next year."
Photo by Sheila Webber: Autumn canopy, Sheffield, November 2011.

Friday, November 04, 2011

Christine Bruce: presentation recording

Dr Christine Bruce gave an online keynote at the Library 2.011 conference today. I should have flagged this up in advance, but you can see the recording (audio, powerpoint and chat from the online audience). Her topic was The experience of information literacy and learning: reflections on social media. The link to the page where you can access the conference recordings is here: A few others that caught my eye (but I haven't watched them: it's hectic at the moment and unfortunately I haven't been able to take any time to participate in the conference except for being at Christine's session)
Diane Fulkerson: Multiliteracy is the new Information Literacy
Thierry Robert: Presentation of a gamification project : an online serious game to learn information skills to 9-12 years old
Gabrielle Hayes: Tiers for Fears: QUT Library's learning and Study support service
Reneé Lyons: A Bird in the Bush: Pathfinders as a Tool for Developing Multiliteracies
Photo by Sheila Webber: Autumn leaves, Sheffield, November 2011

Thursday, November 03, 2011

“Social Life” for Information Literacy Instruction

A presentation for an online ACRL course was uploaded to Youtube by Lynn Lampert a few days ago. It is entitled Creating a “Social Life” for Information Literacy Instruction in Libraries and starts off with reference to The social life of information, a book that I have used in teaching.

WILU host sought

The WILU (Workshop for Instruction in Library Use) 2012 Steering Committee invites proposals from Canadian libraries to host WILU 2013. If you are interested in this exciting opportunity please see this page for more information:

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Short article on "Information Literacy 2.0"

Farkas, M. (2011) "Information Literacy 2.0". American libraries. 1st November.
Quote from the end: "it’s critical that we develop instruction that supports critical inquiry in this extremely complex information environment."
Picture is of me in Second Life with one of my 3D models of the SCONUL 7 pillars of information literacy.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Presentations from Internet Librarian International 2011

ILI 2011 took place 27-28 October and there are some presentations at
including 2 from Karen Blakeman (Visual search: Web Search Academy Internet and Searching without Google) and What's On the Technology Horizon? from Brian Kelly. The main website for the conference was
Photo by Sheila Webber: Autumnal creeper, October 2011

Thanks to Penelope Dunn, who posted this link: - you can either type in your own search words once the search box emerges (I will say no more if you haven't seen it before), or if you just wait, a variety of searches get typed in for your amusement.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Miriam Dudley Instruction Librarian of the Year Award

The ACRL Instruction Section is accepting nominations for the Miriam Dudley Instruction Librarian of the Year Award. "This award recognizes an individual librarian who has made an especially significant contribution to the advancement of instruction in a college or research library environment." Submission Deadline is December 2, 2011. There is more information at Please send your nomination to Polly Boruff-Jones at
Photo by Sheila Webber: Red devil, October 2011

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Student exhibits on Facebook, Google, Wikipedia in Second Life

On 27 October I presented at the at the M2N4SL – Midnight to Noon Conference for Second Life Educators and Researchers conference in Second Life. I gave brief details about the class "Information Literacy" that is core to the BSc Information Management programmes at the University of Sheffield Information School & which I coordinate. After giving this introduction to the pedagogic approach and design for the class, I took delegates over to our SL island, Infolit iSchool, where my students have mini-islands with their presentations about "Should Facebook users be concerned about privacy", "Is wikipedia reliable" and "Are the Google generation really bad at searching and evaluating information". If you have a SL avatar you can visit (the mini-islands will be there until February 2012)

Friday, October 28, 2011

Watch it online 2 Nov: Supporting undergraduate students of the future: developing a new curriculum for information literacy

Jane Secker and Emma Coonan will give seminar on 2 November at 2pm-3.30pm UK time (see for times elsewhere in the world) on the research they undertook as part of the Arcadia Programme at University of Cambridge to develop a "new curriculum" for information literacy. The event will be live streamed and the details are at The seminar will also be recorded and available from the website after the event.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Journal of Academic Librarianship latest

The latest issue (Volume 37, Issue 5) of Journal of Academic Librarianship (homepage includes:
Heather Sanderson: Using Learning Styles in Information Literacy: Critical Considerations for Librarians (pp376-385)
Ben Hunter, Robert Perret: Can Money Buy Happiness? A Statistical Analysis of Predictors for User Satisfaction (pp402-408)
Ellen I. Shupe, Stephanie K. Pung: Understanding the changing role of academic librarians from a psychological perspective: A literature review (pp409-415)
Photo by Sheila Webber: Farmers' market, October 2011

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

3Ts 2012: Engaging Students with Teaching, Technology, and Transliteracy

March 16 2012 is the date of 3Ts 2012: Engaging Students with Teaching, Technology, and Transliteracy. It takes place in Albany, NY, USA and co-Sponsored by CPD, FACT2, SUNY Librarians Association Working Group for Information Literacy (SUNYLA WGIL). More info at
This website also has presentations from last year.
Photo by Sheila Webber: autumn squash, October 2011

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

New articles

The latest issue of Reference Services Review (Volume 39 issue 4) includes:
- Anna Marie Johnson, Claudene Sproles, Robert Detmering: "Library Instruction and Information Literacy 2010" (this is their annual annotated bibliography)
- Li Wang: "An information literacy integration model and its application in higher education"
- Erin L Davis, Kacy Lundstrom, Pamela N. Martin: "Librarian Perceptions and Information Literacy Instruction Models" (the "models are "for-credit courses and course-integrated library instruction")
- Michelle Kathleen Dunaway: "Connectivism: Learning Theory and Pedagogical Practice for Networked Information Landscapes"
This journal is priced: the home page is here.
Photo by Sheila Webber: Ripe red devil apple, October 2011

Monday, October 24, 2011

LOEX call for posters

There is a call for posters for the LOEX (US information literacy) conference taking place in Columbus, Ohio, USA, May 3-5, 2012. The call is open to graduate students in library and information science programs and library fellows and residents. The deadline to submit poster session proposals is January 27, 2012. More info at
Photo by Sheila Webber: Autumn in Weston Park, October 2011