Saturday, June 30, 2012

Powerpoint on "Contract Cheating"

Interesting ppt from a recent conference, The New Challenges Of Contract Cheating by Thomas Lancaster and Robert Clarke (Birmingham City University). Contract cheating is putting up details about the assignment you want written for you, and people bid to do the work. The ppt explains the process and ways in which it might be detected.
Photo by Sheila Webber: Millennium sculpture and pontoon outside 02 dome on the Thames, from cable car, June 2012

Friday, June 29, 2012

cfp COLIS 2013

CoLIS 8, the Conference on Conceptions of Library and Information Science will take place at the Royal School of Library and Information Science in Copenhagen, Denmark, August 19-22, 2013. There is a call for papers (research papers, short papers, panels, workshops, alternative events and posters) in any area of Information Science. Deadline for submissions is March 1 2013, and research paper submissions have to be the full paper. Full info at (Unfortunately this clashes with the 2013 IFLA conference in Singapore.)
There is an associated Doctoral Forum on 18th August at Lund University, Seweden, with submissions due by April 1 2013:: details at
Photo by Sheila Webber: New cable car over the Thames, London, June 2012

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Report on launch of Scottish information literacy online community of practice

There is a report from John Crawford on the workshop held to launch and promote the Scottish information literacy online community of practice (CofP), Information Skills for a 21st Century Scotland, held at the conference of the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals in Scotland (CILIPS) on Monday 11th June 2012 in Dundee at
Video by Sheila Webber: A summer day in Sheffield, today.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Information Literacy education!

Anthony Beal's page on Information Literacy education is a useful source to monitor. It's at
With Scoop.It you create a newspaper-like layout for your topic, and accept ScoopIt's suggestions or add items as you come across them, using a bookmarklet. Visitors can also suggest content (though I imagine that needs a lot of filtering if your becomes at all popular)
Photo by Sheila Webber: This is yesterday's photo, turned into a collage by using a free app at - being pedantic, this isn't really Hockney's technique, he tends to use a lot of photos to build up a picture, but anyway it is fun

#crai2012 conference 28-29 June

If you are a Spanish speaker, you can follow the 10th Jornadas CRAI (major annual academic library conference in Spain) using the Twitter tag #crai2012 on 28-29 June. The programme looks at results of implementing information and digital literacy (IL2)(which I hope is ok as a translation of las competencias informacionales e informáticas (CI2) in Spanish universities. The programme etc. is at

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Grassian Information Literacy keynote and survey

Lots of material from Esther Grassian's keynote to the LOEX of the West conference this month (entitled Occupy Their Minds! The Politics of Information Literacy) is available. There is a link to her talk on Youtube, the powerpoint, the handout, links to various related documents and the full results of a survey she did of academic librarians, asking about assessment of information literacy, whether there were credit courses etc.
Photo by Sheila Webber: poppy, Sheffield Station, June 2012

UKLibChat on Information Literacy and Needs 6.30 pm today

Today's #UKLibChat at 6.30-8.30pm UK time (that's starting 1.30 pm US Eastern time, see for times elsewhere in the world) is on Information Literacy and Needs. The chat is hosted on Twitter by @UKLibChat. Everyone is welcome to follow #UKLibChat to see the discussion and to participate. They have put up some discussion questions at and you can add your own questions too.
Photo by Sheila Webber: "Sheila" rose, June 2012.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Continuing Professional Development: #CPD23

I'm following the CPD23 (Continuing Professional Development) course this time around. I'm mostly doing it on my own reflective blog which is here: However today I also did a post on the main blog, about CPD later in your career, here: CPD definitely isn't just for new professionals, so I will be interested to know whether many other course members are in the not-new category. Comments are welcome on the CPD23 blog, or here...
Photo by Sheila Webber: I'm keeping well out of the way, bah humbug

Saturday, June 23, 2012

German study in web-skill differences when looking for health info

Feufel, M. and Stahl, S. (2012) "What do web-use skill differences imply for online health information searches?" Journal of Medical Internet Research, 14 (3). This was a German study (undertaken by 2 researchers at the Harding Center for Risk Literacy, Center for Adaptive Behavior and Cognition, Max Planck Institute for Human Development, Berlin) involving 10 people under 30 who were more skilled in web search, and 12 people aged 50 and over who were less skilled. Participants did a digital literacy test as well, and education was another demographic factor. The researchers observed participants doing 3 web searches "to identify health information seekers’ cognitive strategies and attitudes". There were differences between less skilled and skilled users e.g. before going online the less skilled were worried about overload and their ability, whilst more skilled expressed awareness of quality issues, but interestingly "although people voice concerns about data quality issues, once they access a website, even skilled Web users are preoccupied with processing website contents" (i.e. once they actually found something that seemed relevant, the quality issue faded to the background).
Image is a Tagxedo of the article.

Friday, June 22, 2012

New report on "evolving value for academic libraries"

Creaser, C and Spezi, V. (2012) Working together: evolving value for academic libraries. Sage. This newly-published report is the outcome of a project for Sage (the publishers) undertaken by LISU at Loughborough University, UK. The report is fairly short (16 pages). The findings are based on investigating some "best practice" at 8 universities: 2 in Nordic countries, 2 in the UK and 4 in North America, plus a questionnaire which was publicised via discussion lists etc. and got 630 responses. There are short sections on "embedding information literacy", "integrated teaching", "other support services", and "integrated research services". There is also a chapter on marketing issues. Recommendations are made for individual librarians (including developing teaching skills), library managers, and the wider institution. I'm not sure there is anything startlingly new here, but the report and the examples it gives could be useful when planning or putting together a case about services. The report is free (you have to give your contact details before downloading the report), downloaded from the "Report" tab on the project blog at
Photo by Sheila Webber: poppies, by the Sheffield tram stop, June 2012

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Interesting article about a teaching/technology course for librarians

At the Second Life journal club on Wednesday, Prof Diane Nahl (Hawaii University) led discussion on: Pegrum, M. and Kiel, R. (2011) "'Changing the Way We Talk': Developing Librarians’ Competence in Emerging Technologies through a Structured Program." College and Research Libraries, 72 (6), 583-598. This is open accesss at I forgot to advertise this in advance through the blog, but this is an article worth reading, as it concentrates on talking about the evaluation and outcomes of a course that has been run several times at the University of Western Australia, mainly for librarians. That means you get an insight on how people applied their learning to real projects in the library, for example, with some interesting examples. At the journal club we agreed that the barriers to applying the pedagogical and technical skills etc. were pretty universal (they were identified as time limitations, constraints imposed by the IT department (so you couldn't be as innovative as you want), lack of reward and institutional support, and working with faculty/colleagues who had more limited ideas about teaching and learning).

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Information literacy in employability training: The experience of Inverclyde Libraries

Crawford, J. and Irving, C. (2012) "Information literacy in employability training: The experience of Inverclyde Libraries." Journal of Librarianship and Information Science, 44, 79-89. This is a priced publication. The abstract reads "The study is an evaluation of an employability training programme provided by Inverclyde Libraries in West Central Scotland and the role of information literacy within the training programme. Inverclyde is an area with high unemployment and pockets of multiple deprivation. Modern, applicable skills are also lacking. The findings are based on interviews with five learners and also one with an adult literacies tutor. The interviews were conducted in August 2009 and a Learning Life Histories methodology was used. Interviewees had mainly previously worked in the service industries and none had post-school qualifications, despite which all the interviewees were highly motivated. Information literacy was found to between 30% and 60% of course content depending on learner needs. Family influence was found to be the main motivation to enrol on the course and the learners sought personal social development as well as employability skills. There was found to be a lack of appropriate, relevant training materials and a lack of collaboration between the LIS sector and Community Learning and Development in developing them. The article concludes with a number of recommendations including the need to improve recruitment and course scheduling and planning."
When announcing the publication of the article, John Crawford added that last week "at the CILIPS conference in Dundee, Sean McNamara, who is in charge of Digital participation initiatives with Inverclyde Council gave an excellent presentation on his work there and it was clear that he has been able to incorporate the recommendations into service improvement, a good example of how evaluation in information literacy can contribute to service development."
Photo by Sheila Webber: convolvulus and grass blade, June 2012

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Horizon Report 2012 K12 (schools) edition

The New Media Consortium, the Consortium for School Networking (CoSN), and the International Society for Technology in Education just released the NMC Horizon Report 2012 K-12 Edition (i.e. the edition focused on school-level education, rather than higher education). "This fourth edition in the annual K-12 series of the NMC Horizon Project examines emerging technologies for their potential impact on and use in teaching, learning, and creative expression within the environment of pre-college education." As usual it identifies what it sees as key trends and applications. It sees cloud computing, collaborative environments, mobiles and apps, and tablet computing as the immediate adoption technologies. It forecasts that digital identity, game-based learning, personal learning environments and learning analytics will have a time-to-adoption horizon of 2 to 3 years. With a time-to-adoption horizon of 4 to 5 years are: Augmented Reality; Natural User Interfaces; Semantic Applications; Tools for Assessing 21st Century Learning Skills.
You need to register (free) to download the report from the NMC site.
Photo by Sheila Webber: wild rose, Hailsham, June 2012

Leeds (UK) TeachMeet 31st July

The Yorkshire and Humber branch of the Academic and Research Library Group have organised a TeachMeet at the Headingley campus of Leeds Metropolitan University, UK, 31 July 2012. It is free. More info and booking at
Photo by Sheila Webber: "Sheila" rose, June 2012.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Workshop: Beating Google into submission, 28 June

On 28 June Karen Blakeman, at Reading University, UK, runs a workshop Beating Google into submission. Topics include: how Google works - what Google tells us and what we have to guess; latest developments at Google; how Google customises your results and can you stop it (etc.) Includes hands-on sessions. Cost: £150 +VAT (Total £180). A limited number of places for unwaged and students. Info at
Photo by Sheila Webber: professorial inaugural lecture of Aki Tsuchiya, 13 June 2012, Sheffield.

Developing your teaching skills: short article

The results of a brief questionnaire on activities etc. in teaching by librarians (mostly from the UK) are reported in:
Bevan, N. (2012) "Developing your teaching skills." Impact: journal of the Career Development Group. Summer.
Photo by Sheila Webber: wild strawberries in my garden, June 2012

Friday, June 15, 2012

cfp: Information Literacy - training models and best practices; Bulgaria

There is a call for papers for a Scientific Seminar Information Literacy - training models and best practices, to be held in Varna, Bulgaria, October 18-19, 2012. It is organised by the State University of Library Studies and Information Technologies (SULSIT) in collaboration with Association of University Libraries in Bulgaria (AUL), University of Economics – Varna and Konstantin Preslavsky University of Shumen. The Keynote Speaker is Dr Serap Kurbanoğlu on Planning for Information Literacy Instruction.
The theme is the role of Information Literacy in the knowledge based society of the 21st Century.
- Information literacy - research topics, issues and trends. Models of IL training programs and best practices in universities and libraries. Application of creative and innovative methods of teaching Information Literacy.
- The role of information literacy in the modern information and educational environment. PR and marketing programs in promotion of the importance of information literacy and IL programs.
Abstracts must be submitted by 1 July 2012 to or and full papers by 31 July 2012. Papers should be in English or Bulgarian, not more than 15 A4 pages, in Times New Roman, 12 pt and accompanied by an English abstract and a short (200 words) biography of the author(s). Registration opens on 5 July 2012.
The cost is 50 Euros for individuals and 160 Euros for firms, organizations etc., payment by October 1st by bank transfer to: Association of the university libraries, UniCredit Bulbank, Branch Sofia Aksakov; Address: 7, Sveta Nedelya sq.; 1000 Sofia, Bulgaria: IBAN: BG52 UNCR 7630 1475 9120 19 (EUR); BIC: UNCRBGSF
Registration, Accommodation and General enquiries: Assist. Prof. Rumelina Vasileva Department of Library Management (State University of Library Studies and Information Technologies, Sofia, Bulgaria) Email:
Submissions/Publication of Papers and for Posters, Sponsorship and PR: Assoc. Prof. Tania Todorova, Department of Library Management, Project Coordinator, (State University of Library Studies and Information Technologies, Sofia, Bulgaria) Email:
There is some information including a registration form at but at the moment I can only see it in Bulgarian.
Photo by Sheila Webber: A poster for an online site selling train tickets,with images of complex and simple searches, Doncaster station, June 2012

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Information Literacy and Summon: 18 July

Information Literacy and Summon is a free event on 18 July 2012 at Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield, UK. "Whether you're about to implement Summon, have just done so, or are an old hand at this sort of thing, you'll have thought about how using web-scale discovery impacts on your information literacy teaching. Have you hardly changed your approach or have you had a radical rethink? Or have you, like we have at Sheffield Hallam, thought about how the Buddhist concept of Shoshin applies to discovery systems?! (come along - all will be revealed ;)" More info at
Photo by Sheila Webber: Foxglove, Sheffield Botanic Gardens, June 2012

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

IL for psychology students and pre-service teachers

Some recent articles from Behavioral and Social Sciences Librarian (a priced publication at We don't subscribe to it at Sheffield, so I can only go by the abstracts.
- Gordon, L. and Bartolia, E (2012) "Using Discipline-Based Professional Association Standards for Information Literacy Integration: A Review and Case Study". Behavioral and Social Sciences Librarian, 31 (1), 23-38. "This article describes the outcome of a collaboration between a faculty member and a librarian to integrate information literacy into a graduate counseling psychology program. This collaboration used discipline-based standards from a professional association (the Association of Counselor Education and Supervision, ACES) to provide instructional goals, rather than utilizing the more traditional Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) standards. The authors discuss how using the discipline standards allows for a richer, more authentic collaboration, especially in a graduate program geared toward students who are already working in their field. Ultimately, using discipline standards could be a more effective way to promote information literacy in graduate and professional programs."

- Lee, E., Reed, B. and Laverty, C. (2012) "Preservice Teachers’ Knowledge of Information Literacy and Their Perceptions of the School Library Program." Behavioral and Social Sciences Librarian, 31 (1), 3-22. "Graduating preservice teachers were surveyed regarding their knowledge of information literacy concepts, the pedagogy of information literacy, and the role of the teacher librarian and school library programs. The preservice teachers felt poorly prepared to teach information literacy to pupils, had a limited array of information skills, and held a narrow view of the role of the school library. In response to these findings, the education librarians revised their instruction to the preservice teachers by moving the focus from information literacy skills for teachers to strategies for teaching information literacy skills to K–12 students."

Currently they also have a call for papers on "Critical information literacy" reported at
Photo by Sheila Webber: Busy bee, Sheffield Botanic Gardens, June 2012.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Journal of Information Literacy new issue

There's a new issue of the open access Journal of Information Literacy, volume 6, number 1 (2012) at It includes the following, plus a conference report and book reviews:
- The experiences of Chinese PhD students in Australia: Encountering information literacy challenges: Jinghe Han
- Business information literacy teaching at different academic levels: An exploration of skills and implications for instructional design: Mariela Gunn, Cynthia E. Miree
- Active and reflective learning initiatives to improve web searching skills of business students: Alison E Lahlafi, Diane Rushton, Erica Stretton
- Learning Literacies through collaborative enquiry; collaborative enquiry through learning literacies: Jo Ashley, Freya Jarman, Tunde Varga-Atkins, Nedim Hassan
- Looking to the future: Developing an academic skills strategy to ensure information literacy survives in a changing higher education world: Helen Howard
- Creating an online tutorial to develop academic and research skills: Sara L Thornes
- The Welsh Information Literacy Project: Phase 2: Cathie Jackson
Photo by Sheila Webber: Alium heads, Sheffield Botanic Gardens, June 2012

Information literacy in e-environments: Proposal of a holistic approach

A new article I co-authored with a former PhD student (afraid it is a priced publication). Nazari, M. and Webber, S. (2012) “Loss of faith in the origins of information literacy in e-environments: Proposal of a holistic approach.” Journal of Librarianship and Information Science, 44 (2), 97-107. "The original concept of information literacy (IL) identifies it as an enabler for lifelong learning and learning-to-learn, adaptable and transferable in any learning environment and context. However, practices of IL in electronic information and learning environments (e-environments) tend to question the origins, and workability, of IL on the grounds that the generic models of IL are inadequate for the complex and evolving context of e-environments. Conducting an analytical review of the literature on the approaches taken to adapt IL in e-environments, we discuss how a failure in understanding the dynamic context and components of e-environments and IL have resulted in the emergence of a marginalised way of viewing and practicing IL in these environments. Drawing on Nazari’s (2011) contextual study of IL in an online distance learning programme, we propose a holistic way of viewing and practicing IL in EL environments which is aligned with IL origins; it enables the e-learner to conceptualise IL and customise it to their actual learning style and needs. This study can be of value to IL scholars and practitioners who are interested in the concept and practice of IL in e-environments."
Photo by Sheila Webber: Fountain, Sheffield, June 2012

Monday, June 11, 2012

eagle-i and information literacy

Thanks to Lyn Parker for this reference to an open access article:
Haendel, MA, Vasilevsky, NA and Wirz, JA (2012) "Dealing with Data: A Case Study on Information and Data Management Literacy." PLoS Biology, 10 (5): e1001339. doi:10.1371/journal.pbio.1001339 which can be found here
I'd say it was a description (rather than a case study) OF eagle-i"a US$15 million NIH-funded pilot project with the aim of facilitating biomedical research by creating a network of research resources repositories".

Thursday, June 07, 2012

Poster: let she who does not Google cast the first stone!

I've got a bit fed up with student-bashing about search habits. There is an Infographic that loads of people are tweeting at the moment that crams in some statistics about search habits, plagiarism etc., and when I looked at it I thought ... hmmm.
For one thing, I don't think it is a terribly good infographic: it is rather more like several Powerpoint slides one on top of the other (as opposed to something which conveys a clear message in a powerful graphic style; see e.g. Edward Tufte, the godfather of information graphics).
Secondly, although I too experience students who start by thinking they know more about searching than they actually do etc. etc., they are human, they learn, and it should be remembered that the vast majority of them do not plagiarise.
And thirdly, I use Google every day, loads of people use Google every day. I know it's also about how you use Google, and I grumble about the way Google search is going, but still ... the fact remains that you often find good stuff via Google. Using Google is often a rational choice.
So I made this graphic/ poster. If you like it, feel free to download etc., under a non-commercial Creative Commons licence from here.
P.S. "numpty" is an expressive Scottish word meaning fool or idiot (I'm not Scottish but I lived there for a while).

Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Articles: faculty collaboration; tutorials; revised ACRL standards

Having highlighted an article from a current issue of College and Research libraries news (which is open acess) yesterday, here's a few articles from back issues, this year.
From the April 2012 issue: Adam Balcziunas and Larissa Gordon "Walking a mile in their shoes: Librarians as teaching faculty" (volume 73, no 4, pp192-195); Bruce T. Sajdak "Let the faculty do it: Responsibility and collaboration in developing an information literacy program" (volume 73, no 4, pp196-199)
From the May 2012 issue: Catherine Palmer, Char Booth and Lia Friedman "Collaborative customization: Tutorial design across institutional lines" (volume 73, no. 5, pp243-248)
Perhaps most notably, in January: The ACRL Standards for Libraries in Higher Education Task Force (2012) "Standards for libraries in higher education: Approved by the ACRL Board of Directors, October 2011." College and Research libraries news, 73 (1), 34-48.
Photo by Sheila Webber: Foxgloves, June 2012.

Tuesday, June 05, 2012

Using Pinterest: article

Dudenhoffer, C. (2012) "Pin it! Pinterest as a library marketing and information literacy tool." College and Research Libraries News, 73 (6), 328-332. Talks about use of Pinterest by the library at Central Methodist University (USA) and also more genrally how it can be used in teaching. I found the Pinterest of their careers centre here:
Photo by Sheila Webber: photoshopped picture of the Queen's Jubilee celebration edition of Marmite (for non-Brits, "Ma'am" is what you are supposed to call the queen).

Monday, June 04, 2012

Libfocus Irish Library Blog

Thanks to Eva Hornung for alerting me to a lively and interesting collaborative blog, Libfocus Irish Library Blog, that has a broad scope: The regular contributors are Eva herself, Michelle Dalton, Ronan Hegarty, Jane Burns and Alexander Kouker, and they also have guest bloggers.
Photo by Sheila Webber: Foxglove buds, June 2012

Friday, June 01, 2012

Digital literacy in social sciences: articles

Just published, the lasted issue of the open access journal ELiSS - Enhancing Learning and Teaching in the Social Sciences (Volume 4, Issue 2, May 2012) focuses on Digital Literacies. The home page for the issue is at The editorial Digital literacy: digital maturity or digital bravery? summarises the range of articles, authored by UK academics and educational researchers, which are entitled:

- Making digital literacy a success in taught marketing courses (Robin Johnson, David Edmundson-Bird and Brendan J Keegan)
- Institutional strategies for supporting learners in a digital age (Rhona Sharpe and Greg Benfield)
- Learning journeys: exploring approaches to learner digital literary acquisition (Lyn Greaves, Claire Bradley and Debbie Holley)
- The process and affective environment of students personal information management (Sara Robinson and Frances Johnson)
- Bravery, technological literacy and political philosophy: replacing oral presentations with student­-created video presentations(Pete Woodcock)
Photo by Sheila Webber: Jubilee in Tescos, June 2012

Réaliser un travail de recherche: Infographic

The Groupe de travail du Programme de développement des compétences informationnelles du réseau [information literacy working group] de l’Université du Québec (Canada) have produced a nice (French language) infographic showing the stages in searching for a topic. You can even download a zip file with the documents to print oout and paste together. The blog post explaining it (in French) is at
Actually if you speak French (or are adept at Google Translate) the blog as a whole is of interest:
Note: the picture is from the blog posting, copyright the authors on the blog post I just linked to. It shows the final stage of making the infographic from their downloaded files, namely "Relax!" ;-)