Wednesday, October 31, 2018

News on News

SLA Europe has organised an event on 21 November 2018, 18.00-21.30 in London, UK: News on News. It is free to SLA members, £15 to others. It is "an evening with three subject matter experts. Hear from our speakers on the applications of artificial intelligence, solving fake news and the impact of social media on traditional news media.After hearing from our expert speakers, continue the discussions afterwards and network with colleagues and contacts over food and drinks." The three talks are:
- Present and future applications of artificial intelligence for current awareness. Dr Andrew Duchon, Director of Data Science, Manzama Inc
- How social media changed everything and nothing in the newsroom. Martin Buchan, The Guardian
- Fifty shades of fake, 12 months on. Jo Tinning-Clowes
Get your ticket at
Photo by Sheila Webber: taken at the Global MIL Conference last week.

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Free webinar: Impressions of #globalMILweek and UNESCO's MIL initiatives from me and IFLA's Stephen Wyber

At 2pm-2.30 pm (which is 10-10.30am US EST, see for start times elsewhere in the world) Wednesday 31st Oct, I (Sheila Webber, Information School, University of Sheffield) and Stephen Wyber (IFLA Manager, Policy and Advocacy, pictured right) will give our Impressions of the Global MIL Week feature conference. Join the webinar at I presented at the conference, and I will also include a brief talk about #AFMIL - Age-Friendly Media and Information Literate cities

Today! 30 Oct: Twitter Webinar: Tackling disinformation with Media and Information Literacy #GlobalMILweek @Livingstone_S @jesuslau @100yrsofsol

UNESCO has organised an international Twitter event today. experts will post tweets and you can engage with her/him using the hashtag #GlobalMILweek
Sonia Livingstone @Livingstone_S (Professor, London School of Economics) will be engaging 3pm-4pm UK time (see for times elsewhere in the world), Jesus Lau @jesuslau (Professor, Universidad Veracruzana) will be engaging 11am-12.30pm Mexico City time (starting 5pm UK time, see for times elsewhere in the world) and Maha Bashri @100yrsofsol (Associate Professor, United Arab Emirates University) will be engaging 5pm-6.30pm Abu Dhabi time (1pm start UK time, see your local time here

Monday, October 29, 2018

Comment on the draft Global Framework for Media and Information Literate Cities by November 4th #GlobalMILWeek

At the end of the feature conference for Global Media and Information Literacy week, a Draft Global Framework for MIL Cities was put forward and adopted by the conference subject to a very brief consultation period. This sets out some requirements for cities that wish to be Media and Information Literate, and proposes criteria that could be used to judge the level to which they are MIL. You can download the draft framework at and send comments to Alton Grizzle at by November 4th

Thursday, October 25, 2018

Disinformation; Internet Literacy Handbook; Media Literacy #GlobalMILweek

Some more impressions from the Global Media and Information Literacy week feature conference, from a few different sessions, yesterday and today. Maha Bashri (United Arab Emirates University) talked about media literacy and milennials in the UEA. This is a young country with a young population. She reported on a survey of undergraduates. It found that students read news for less than 15 minutes a day, mostly getting it from Instagram. They gravitate towards social issues, entertainment and technology. They were aware of the issue of fake news, but not necessarily looking out for it, and might not have the skills to critically assess the news.
Elizabeth Milovidov talked about the Council of Europe's Internet Literacy Handbook which has recently had a new edition. It is free to download. The handbook aims "to offer families, educators and policy-makers sufficient technical know-how to allow them to navigate, with young people, through communication technology". She also mentioned Digital Citizenship Education project: 10 domains
Lisa Jane de Gara (University of Saskatchewan) talked about Digital falsehoods and analogue consequences. She reflected on how false narratives take hold, for example anti-vaccination, flat earthers, the new world order. She noted that these are not random, e.g. the anti-vaxers feeling that their role and power as parents is being undermined. de Gara talked about emotional narratives associated or provoked by fake news. The picture above is one of the examples she used. She noted that "Understanding the emotional drivers of different communities allows those communities to be unknowingly manipulated".
Polen Turkmen and a colleague from St Andrews University (whose name I did not catch) talked about ways to address the problem of disinformation. One of the things they talked about was the possible use of augmented reality for disinformation. They called for mandatory MIL education at primary and secondary levels, as a necessary condition, but not a sufficient one. They felt that since technological solutions usually address production side and education side, they felt it was important to address both and were also proposing a project to deal with the problem.
Lesley Farmer, in her talk on fake news mentioned her own LibGuide on Fake News which is at which includes a very useful set of links.

Health, planning, youth and cities #GlobalMILweek

Some liveblogged impressions from a session on "Imagining city transporation, healthcare systems, city planners etc. that stimulate MIL cities" at the Global Media and Information Literacy week feature conference.

Agnaldo Arroio (University of Sao Paulo, Brazil) reported on a project in Mozambique on the methodology of teaching to use media tools in health education, as part of a project to strengthen teachers' technical and pedagogical skills. Some watchwords were: autonomy, decentralisation and production. Videos can be very useful to show at health centres, for example videos which stories giving health messages in local languages can be shown when people are waiting to be seen in health centres. Since there is a literacy problem, using videos is a good idea. The photo shows one of his slides.
Sherri Hope Culver (Center for Media and Information Literacy, Temple University, USA) was focused on general practical steps towards creating a MIL city. Her steps were: (1) Assemble your dream team (who you want to bring to the table); (2) Align the vision (at the start, before moving forward); (3) Grow the rainbow (4) Place a line in the sand (e.g. finalise deliverables, timelines etc.); (5) Engage and Share (making things timely and relevant, sharing it in an intentional way); (6) Fill the toolbox (thinking about essential elements such as a logo, website, press release templates); (7) Build the excitement (8) Plan the future.
Yunting Zheng (Peking University) talked about health information inquiry habits and health information literacy. She identified that health is a UN Sustanable Development Goal and also presented Harold Lasswell's 5W model (who, says what, in what channel, to who, to what effect). She also presented some definitions and a model of health promoting information literacy developed by Bergsma. Her first research study focused on internal migrants in China (of which there are many millions). These migrants tend to have low socio-economic status and low health literacy. The sample size was 7200. 62% had ever proactively sought health info, risk factors were gender, education, occupation and duration of migration (so highly educated professional females who had been migrated a while were most likely to seek). TV was the most popular source, except for the higher education/ younger group (who used the internet).
The second study looked at service employees in Beijing. The sample size was 2030. Both these studies were drawing on (I think) quantitative data from larger studies. Risk factors were age and education in this group, and 23.5% were judged to have information literacy. One of the recommendations was designing interventions to accord with the different inquiry habits and demographics of the different populations.
Amina Alaoui Soulimani (Blogger, Afrika Youth Movement, Morocco) was the next speaker. She started by talking about the origins and nature of the Afrika Youth Movement The organise forums, bringing together young activists and tackling issues that matter to them. She identifed that "a city is a place where we interact", and the cities where there are hubs are very different. This was youth led, so that their voices were to the fore, and there were various campaigns e.g. #periodnotshame and #ilovemycontinent. There were committees focused on different issues, namely: health, gender, education, peace and security, agriculture.
Sara Haddou Amar (an engineering academic at the Universite Ibn Tofail, Morocco) presented on Introducing MIL in urban planning: a reconsideration of MIL cities and technology, and she started by talking about the importance of efficient structure and information flow in manufacturing, and that similarly a city was a network which needed to function effectively and efficiently. She observed that it was evident from the presentations at the conference, that each country had its own culture and norms: this meant it was difficult and probably undesirable to impose the same ideas about a MIL city in every country. Amar talked about how in her neighbourhood people exchanged and demanded information very actively in the neighbourhood, and distrusted official media. She had done a study in her home country, and found there was very little awareness of media and information literacy, including a lack of awareness amongst academics. There was awareness of issues such as fake news, but not awareness of what could be done to challenge or prevent it. She identified some factors (see photo) for designing and planning a MIL city, and requirements such as strategic planning, easy data gathering and data analysis, reachable services and community.

Safe, inclusive, media and information literate cities #GlobalMILweek

Some more liveblogging today from Global Media and Information Literacy week feature conference, from a session which covered various aspects of MIL cities. The session was chaired by Paulette Kerr (University of the West Indies) who also presented her idea of a smart city (smart - security, town planning, transportation, water & sanitation, infrastructure, energy, healthcare, education, building, governance) and noted that "smart cities require smart actors". She also stressed that a creating MIL cities involved effective creation, storage, retrieval, interpretation etc. of information.
Michele Filippo Fontefrancesco (University of Gastronomic Sciences, Italy) talked about the project aiming to combat online hate speech: Words are stones One of the points he made was that people make assumptions that young people understand social media and the impact they have when they use it: their research showed that this is not the case (so this shows the harm of buying into the "digital native" discourse!) He stressed that what is said online has an impact on what happens offline, and young people, as much as anyone, need consciously to learn how to engage thoughtfully and carefully with each other online as well as offline.
Maximo Dominguez Lopez (Autonomous University of Mexico) started by talking about the importance of learning how to communicate inormation (e.g. using infographics or videos to communicate research results). He then mentioned the initiative to educate citizens about the issue of fake news, at the time of national elections, which also showed how librarians are relevant and active. Lopez moved on to identify the importance of copyright and ethical approaches for academic work. He emphasised the value of public libraries in working for equality, including for migrants.
Supreet Karanjit Singh (Red Dot Foundation, India) talked about the issue of violence against women, and ways of making cities safer for women. Singh stated that you cannot have a smart, MIL city if it is not safe from sexual harrassment. She identified the widespread problem of sexual harrassment and violence, and that 80% of these events do not get reported, and that if you do report incidents you go through a gruelling process that may not end up being successful. This raises the question "how do you solve a problem that is invisible". They created a web app, encouraging people to report sexual harrassment saying what happened and where, so they could develop a map. They have had 11,000 over 4 years. She said "you can use it like a TripAdvisor", which can make you more situationally aware when you visit somewhere. The website is at and you can download the app from that. Singh talked about one practical example, of a road that showed up was a site of a lot of sexual harrassment, and going to the community, engaging with the women and girls' stories. A key outcome was covering a wall with a mural that identified the problem and also the fact that it was illegal, and that led to citizens starting to self-police, and the road becoming a much safer place.

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Livingstone on media literacy #GlobalMILweek

Sonia Livingstone (LSE, UK) is the keynote speaker in the next session I'm liveblogging from the feature conference of Global Media and Information Literacy week in Kaunas. As usual, I have the caveat that these are my impressions as she spoke. The overall session is entitled MIL empowering active engaged communities and participation in city elections but Livingstone focused on her current thoughts about Media Literacy (she talked about Media Literacy rather than MIL throughout). She talked about the all-encompassing nature of media, and that this made a key question - how do people communicate through and with media in their lives. There was an ever widening group of stakeholders, some of whom are not aware of the existing work in media literacy (let alone information literacy, I would add). This has led to one-shot campaigns from companies or government agencies who want to show they are "on board" with media literacy.
In terms of policy, media literacy has been seen as a policy of last resort: she thought that there tended to be discussions and calls for legislation to start with, with calls to educate for media literacy following on.
Livingstone stressed that she obviously in favour for media literacy education, but she saw challenges. Firstly, education was an investment (including investment in teaching training and assessment), and in many or all countries inadequacies in education systems was identified, and seeing education as the "solution" was problematic. It was unclear what agencies and people would deliver education for media literacy for those outside formal education; which private and public sector organisation would be involved. Secondly, the rhetorical aim for education is democracy and equality, but in fact education is inequal in terms of takeup etc. and in some cases by its structure it fosters inequality.
Then there were also digital challenges. Firstly, digital grows at exponential rate, with more things expected of people (e.g. understanding the way search engine algorithm works, understanding how to protect your privacy on a smartphone). This was a great deal to teach, especially when even experts struggle to explain these matters coherently. "We can only teach people what they can learn" - she gave examples such as understanding the detail of Terms and Conditions. She felt that there needed more transparency in the design of the digital environment, before it became easier for people to learn about this. Secondly: postponing the benefits. Livingstone felt people were too obsessed with the negatives that needed to be battled before the positive things can happen. Then there was sustainability - too many small scale underfunded ventures "start up culture without the venture capitalists". Thirdly there was the lack of robust evidence and evaluative base for media literacy, which she felt would involve research such as randomised controlled trials. Livingstone also felt the need for cost-benefit analysis.
She then moved on to talk about the problem of making individuals responsible for solving media literacy challenges that governemnts etc. cannot solve. This can lead to a blame culture, with calls for people to be dutiful and to fit in, with media literacy as a moralising discourse.
Livingstone ended with suggestions for the positive. Firstly this would involve working with others and making more realistic plans for what could be changed. Secondly, charging the whole variety of agencies that could be working for media literacy to get more involved and think what they could be doing to improve transparency. Thirdly to bear in mind goals of empowerment and critique, so that citizens are empowered to propose new solutions and to protest, not just be dutiful citizens.

#Libraries, museums and Media and Information Literacy #GlobalMILweek #MILcities

I will liveblog a few snippets from a session on Revitalizing city libraries museums and archives through creative MIL actions, from the feature conference of Global Media and Information Literacy week. Aleisa Fishman (Levine Institute for Holocause Tducation, USA) talked about an educational exhibit they had developed on how the Nazis used propaganda, with material available to help educators teach students about the issues arising from that. "We wanted visitors to be better consumers of media". She referred to the website which they had collaborated to produce: Mind over Media which focuses on issues such as recognising propaganda, and analysing propaganda. It also has an interactive element.
Kyoko Murakami (Director of the Asia-Pacific Media and Information Literacy education Centre) talked about Empowering future citizens through MIL in city libraries and social network services. She started by highlighting how libaries are using social media. She went on to talk about the Japanese situation, identifying how everyone is using smartphones, with a dramatic change in the way they use the internet. A map of Japan showed coverage of the internet - with the big concentration on big cities, in particular Tokyo. In terms of use of social media, it is a minority of city libraries that use it. She showed a slide (see picture) which had some characteristice of library use. She used the University of Tsukuba as an example of effective use of social media, a video of a robot helper at a public library, and also use by the National Archives.
She summed up issues for libraries: that communication was mostly one way; that libraries were seen as unattractive; and that only a quarter of Japanese were confident in evaluating information (from one research study). Murakami advocated collaboration with other stakeholders, more understanding of effective use of social networking applications, education for effective use of these applications, and more participative use of the services by libraries.
Monika Straupyte (Culture Manager for Public Relations, Kaunas Municipal Vincas Kurdika Public Library) talked in particular about their computer classes for seniors (with several thousand participants) and their Media and Information Academy for seniors (with 36 participants, 60-80 years old). Activities varied from searching, to editing and uploading. She said that they learned about dangers as well as opportunities. This helped the seniors to become "full members of society". The MIL academy also included public lectures on topics such as fake news. They also had a course in MIL for librarians.
Viorica Palamarciuc (IREX Europe) talked about, in particular, librarians becoming ambassadors of MIL in Moldova. 113 librarians have been trained, so they can then carry out activities in their own (I think, rural) communities. They have organised over 250 events for over 3000 people. They have set up "media corners" in libraries in some cases. She also talked about activities with young people in Moldova.

Frau Meigs identifies important MIL isues at #GlobalMILweek

Divina Frau-Meigs (Professor, Sorbonne Nouvelle University) gave the first keynote speech which I am liveblogging from the feature conference of Global Media and Information Literacy week.
She felt we needed to change the metaphors and terminolgy. She identified that MIL was important lifewide. She saw it as an ecosystem that has changed drastically. Whereas the first image of the internet was about surfing (being free and open) but as it developed, continents have developed. For example there are social media, search engines, navigators and exploitation systems owned by companies (she saw this as the blue continent) and the orange continent, with similar systems but operated as open access or as alternatives. From the metaphor of surfing, we have gone to the metaphor of mining and what she called the black continent with private and illegal networks and systems. With the black continent have come threats such as cyberterrorism.
Frau-Meigs, went on to talk about the information disorders associate with these developments. The first was: disinformation in the "blue" continent. In some cases it brought back problems that it was thought had been conquered. She highlighted some research in this area, including how people react emotionally to social media and the life cycle of fake vs. true news. Secondly she mentioned use of the "black" continent used to fuel radicalisation and hate, noting how "extremists are early adopters" who also use the "blue" continent to produce their own narratives of victimhood, war etc. Research she was involved in has identified that the internet is not a cause of radicalisation, but it is a facilitator.
Digital engagement, critical MIL, counter narratives, multi-stakeholder engagement were all needed to address information disorders. She noted the rise of fact-checkers as a response to these problems e.g. Whilst she thought this was good for fact checkimg, she was not so sure it was good for MIL. This was because fact checkers were not always really aware of MIL, and there were also other issues: problems of sustainability, lack of clarity of objectives, lack of communication with those involved in MIL, specialisation on text, little evaluation of effectiveness, risk of subjective evaluations, low use of automated solutions.
Frau-Meigs also stressed how it was importance to promote these issues into policy, and not to just rely on good practices: these good practices needed to be promoted into policy. This implied external evaluation of good practice. She noted also that these good practices were often not based on frameworks of MIL competences (whether national, international, produced by associations etc.)
She finished on the opportunities for Media and Information Literacy. MIL has changed, and she acknowledged that MIL is not just about news, but also about all kinds of documents and data: she saw these as three interacting environments. This formed a huge ecosystem of information that could be turned into malinformation, which can go as far as threatening countries' stability and democracy. This had also widened her idea of the scope of MIL. She identified "MIL and digital citizenship education" as being important and presented a "butterfly" of competences associated with it: she also talked of this beig a discipline which was needed from primary school level.
Frau Meigs highlted the EC work she has been involved with and noted one weakness was the current private-sector (rather than public sector) funding.

#GlobalMILweek award winners

I was privileged to be on the international judging panel for the Global Media and Information Literacy awards, which were just announced at the feature conference of Global Media and Information Literacy week. Alton Grizzle (UNESCO) and Carolyn Wilson (GAPMIL leader) presented the prizes.
First Prize: Jane Tallim and Cathy Wing (Canada), for their work on Media Smarts , "Canada's Center for Media and Information Literacy".
Second Prize joint winners: Jordan Media Institute (Jordan) and Hemmo Bruinenberg (Netherlands) for his media production project for young migrants, with the ITHAKA film festival and "video bakery"
Third Prize: Universidad Autónoma del Estado de Morelos (Mexico) for its MOOC aiming to promote information literacy to fight fake news, aiming to reach the public at large.

Opening of feature conference of #GlobalMILweek - vital importance of MIL empasised

I am liveblogging from the feature conference of Global Media and Information Literacy week, which takes place in Kaunas. Lithuania, starting today.
Ineta Dabasinskiene, Vice Rector at Vytautas Magnus University made the opening remarks, identifying the vital need for Media and Information Literacy in the 21st Century, and the general need for people to become media and information literate, within all levels of education, and beyond. She also read a message from the UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador for the Construction of Knowledge Societies, which contrasted the Soviet era which controlled media and polished the image of government, with democratic processes of citizen engagement. He also identified the current risks for democratic openness and participation, and the need for MIL in fostering critical thinking and participation in democratic society.
Moez Chakchouk, UNESCO Assistant Director General for Communication and Information brought the welcome news that the United Nation has endorsed an annual Global MIL week. He also emphasised how member states can no longer assume that MIL is already covered, and how important it was to civil society to address the development of MIL and take account of this in policy and strategy. He identified MIL as a flagship area of UNESCO’s work.
Patrick Penninckx talked about how the digital revolution was more insidious than had been the industrial revolution, the digital “Creeps into our lives”. He felt that the digital was bringing about a paradigm shift, influencing state and society, that we were not prepared for. For example, education was preparing students for the 20th rather than the 21st. He quoted Kofi Annan, saying that literacy was “ a bridge from misery to hope” and vital for culture and development: and now the meaning of literacy had expanded into a multilayered concept. He noted that “the virtual world is also the real world”, for example it may be the first place in which people encounter their life partners. He also noted the importance of taking account of informal as well as formal education, and also the needs for the rights of the child. Penninckx emphasised that the expertise of those at the conference was needed to help transform our environments, each of us needed to think what our own role was in the digital revolution.
Anni Hellman, EC DG CONNECT, talked particularly about the problem of disinformation, the fact that the news media has fragmented, that people don’t seem to have the time to assess the trustworthiness of information. She also mentioned the European Union’s high level expert group and its work, she “hoped that our democracy will not be at stake” because of the problem of people posting untrue information and people’s inability to judge good quality news. This problem has, on the positive side, led to more attention from the European Commission for Media and Information Literacy and more funding possibilities.

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

UK iSchools celebrate #GlobalMILweek including free webinar on 24 October

The University of Sheffield Information School kicks off events to celebrate Global Media and Information Literacy with a webinar from Pamela McKinney and Sharon Wagg on 24th October and my liveblogging from the Global MIL week conference in Kaunas, Lithuania.
Global MIL weeks runs 24-31 October and information about this UNESCO sponsored initiative is here
Webinar details, Wednesday 24 October, 10.15 UK time. Pamela McKinney, a faculty member in the University of Sheffield Information School will present on Information and data literacy of using mobile apps for diet and fitness tracking. Sharon Wagg, a graduate of the University of Sheffield MA Librarianship programme, has worked for the Good Things foundation and is now undertaking a PhD at Loughborough in the field of digital inclusion. The title of Sharon’s presentation is A literature review on the linkages between digital inclusion and information literacy. You can join the webinar live at It uses the Adobe Connect platform, so if you have not used it before, check in a little while in advance and see whether you need to download the Adobe Connect app. The webinar will be recorded, so you can catch up with it afterwards; we will publicise the address after the webinar.There will be further webinars next week.

On the first day of the Global MIL week feature conference, 24 October, I will be presenting on #AFMIL - the age friendly Media and Information Literate city, and also liveblogging here on selected sessions. I was one of the international judges for the Global MIL awards, and these will also be presented tomorrow, so I'll be excited to reveal the winners.

Elsewhere in the UK, the CILIP Information Literacy Group has organised events to celebrate Global MIL week. There are more details and booking links here:
The events are:
Global Media and Information Literacy Week 2018: Emerging directions for IL research and practice
University College London, Department of Information Studies, Monday October 29th 2018, 6pm – 8pm
A range of talks from recent UCL Library and Information Studies Masters’ graduates, highlighting emerging directions for IL research and practice in a range of contexts.

Global Media and Information Literacy Week 2018: Information literacy – an antidote to fake news?
Manchester Metropolitan iSchool, Manchester, Thursday October 25th 2018, 5.30pm – 7.30pm
Geoff Walton and guests will discuss the latest research which addresses this question.

Global Media and Information Literacy Week 2018: Digital competencies for digital citizenship: an emerging agenda for students, academics and libraries in partnership. 
N204 (Meeting Room) in Sir Ian Wood Building of Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen, Wednesday 31st October, 4.30 – 6pm.
Dina Martzoukou will talk on Digital competencies for digital citizenship, Jacqueline Geekie will share the New Definition of Information Literacy and the work of the Information Literacy Group and there will be some time for networking with your fellow professionals before heading home and going out Trick or Treating!

Monday, October 22, 2018

Bursaries for #LILAC19

There are five bursaries available for the UK's LILAC (information literacy) conference in April 2019. They are aimed at places for applicants in certain under-represented sectors and communities, namely: BAME, Schools, Further Education, Public, Health (e.g. NHS; librarians working in Higher Education who support health subjects are not eligible). The bursary "includes 3 days attendance of all LILAC sessions, social events (networking evening and conference dinner) and accommodation at Cripps Hall. Travel expenses up to the value of £100 are also available if required. To be eligible for a place you must be a librarian, volunteer or information professional working in the above mentioned sectors/communities in the UK. You will have to show your commitment to information literacy by writing a short personal statement explaining what benefits you would gain from attending the conference, and how you intend to use your conference experience in your work." Deadline for applications is 19 November 2018, sent to More information and a form at
I notice that when the UK's New Library Professionals Network retweeted this, they linked to their top tips for applying for bursaries, which is worth a look:

#OAweek and #OERs

This is Open Access Week - the website is here
Part of open access are Open Educational Resources, and this post summarises five 2017 articles about OERs and libraries / information literacy:
- Cassity, E. & Renirie, R. (2018, January11). Top 5 Articles about OER [Blog post].

Also, here are some recently published open access/ open access versions of articles or chapters I've co-authored:
- Madden, A.D., Webber, S., Ford, N. & Crowder, M. (2018). The relationship between students’ subject preferences and their information behaviour. Journal of Documentation, 74(4), 692-721.
- Andrews, P., Chapman, E., Elmore, J., Grace, D., Nunn, E., & Webber, S. (2017). Reflections on Running a critLIS Reading Group. In K.P. Nicholson and M. Seale. The Politics of Theory and the Practice of Critical Librarianship. (pp.167-179.) Sacramento, CA: Library Juice Press. ISBN: 978-1-63400-030-7. Open access here:
- Webber, S. & Johnston, B. (2017). Information literacy: conceptions, context and the formation of a discipline. Journal of Information Literacy 11(1), 156-183.

Friday, October 19, 2018

Nominations for PRIMO

The Peer Reviewed Instructional Materials Online (PRIMO) Committee of the ACRL Instruction Section invites submissions of online information literacy tutorials, teaching modules, or other online library instruction project for review and possible inclusion in PRIMO: Peer-Reviewed Instructional Materials Online. Site submissions for PRIMO are accepted continuously, but are reviewed for possible inclusion twice per year. Deadlines for autumn are: Nominations (i.e. you nominate someone else's tutorial, and use the "nominate a site" form): November 2; Submissions (i.e. you nominate your own tutorial, and need to use the "site submissions" form): November 16. More info at
Photo by Sheila Webber: mosaic water feature (Howard Street Rill by Emma Biggs) next to Sheffield Hallam University, which you see when walking down to Sheffield (train) Station. October 2018. I was glad they restored it as it wasn't working for a while.

Online short course: Active Learning Strategies

The Library Juice Academy short online course Active Learning Strategies, taught by Mimi O'Malley, runs from November 5-30 2018, price US $175. "This course will explore active learning strategies for both in-class and online courses and instruction. Cooperative, collaborative, problem-based, and project-based learning will be explored. Reviewing assessments of active learning strategies will also be discussed. The course will conclude with potential barriers along with strategies to keep students motivated during active learning. Participants will complete the course with one active learning activity to incorporate into a class or instruction."
Photo by Sheila webber: autumn leaves, October 2018

Thursday, October 18, 2018

#LOEX2019: Call for Breakout Session Proposals

There is a call for proposals for the major US information literacy conference: LOEX 2019: Up North: Reflect, Reconnect,and Renew. This is the 47th Annual LOEX Conference and will be held May 9-11, 2019 in Minneapolis, USA. "This year’s LOEX tracks are: Lead & Innovate: Blazing New Trails; Collaboration: The S’more the Merrier; Strategies for Outreach & Engagement: Navigating the 10,000 Lakes; Pedagogy & Information Literacy: Jumping into the Deep End; Facilitating Student Research: Igniting the Flame; Assessment: Are We There Yet?
Proposals for 50-minute long presentations and interactive workshops should be submitted through the online submission form. The deadline is November 16, 2018. The primary contact for the proposal will receive a message indicating receipt of the proposal when it is submitted and will be told whether the proposal has been accepted by January 14, 2019. More info at

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Pathways into Information Literacy and Communities of Practice: Evidence Based Nursing and Information Literacy

Two more books I haven't mentioned previously (both priced):
- Sales, S. and Pinto, M. (Eds). (2017). Pathways into Information Literacy and Communities of Practice: Teaching Approaches and Case Studies. Chandos. ISBN 978-0-08-100673-3
- Phelps, S., Hyde, L. and Wolf, J. (Eds) (2018). The Intersection: Where Evidence Based Nursing and Information Literacy Meet. Chandos. eBook ISBN: 9780081012994; Paperback ISBN: 780081012826.
Photo by Sheila webber: wild fungi by Blackheath pond, October 2018

Friday, October 12, 2018

Global Media and Information Literacy Youth Hackathon #globalMILweek #GlobalMILHack

A Global Media and Information Literacy Youth Hackathon will take place in Global MIL week 24 – 26 October 2018. "Disinformation, Sustainable Development Goals, children protection in media, dialogue and social inclusion, these are some vital challenges and opportunities that are present today in the fields of information and communication. How can we tackle these issues through media and information literacy (MIL)? Join the Global MIL Youth Hackathon and find answers together with other young people from around the world and win seed funding from MiSK Foundation and UNESCO to support your youth-led project."
The hackathon is coordinated by DesignEDly and Global Student Square, in cooperation with University of Latvia, Vytautas Magnus University, and University of Tampere, with the support of UNESCO and MiSK Foundation, and in the framework of Global MIL Week 2018.
Deadline for registration is 21 October 2018. This is aimed at young people: it says "Age of the participants have to be within the age criteria for youth respective to the country of origin."
People can participate online, or in person if they can afford to get away to Riga. The options are: "Online: work with your team on Facebook and submit a video presentation of your final pitch." OR "Offline: come join us in Riga and work with your team on-site."
The website is here (you register on a different form depending on the challenge you want to address e.g. "Disinformation")
The Facebook page (that lays out the key information clearly)

Thursday, October 11, 2018

cfp: LILAC conference

There is a call for proposals for the UK's information literacy conference, LILAC, which will be taking place 24-26 April 2018, in Nottingham, UK. The deadline for submission of proposals is 14 November 2018 at 17.00 UK time (they are strict on this!). "LILAC welcomes proposals which address information literacy from all sectors and contexts. In 2019 we invite you to present on any aspect of information literacy, there are no specific themes. We ask that your presentation makes explicit reference to your innovative practice or research in information literacy. LILAC is committed to encouraging diversity at the conference and we would specifically like to encourage proposals from members of the BAME community and other under-represented communities and sectors." For more information about presentation types, go to:
To submit a paper you need to register at - if you already have an account then you just need to login and go to 'my account' where you will see details of how to submit your abstract

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Visualizing the library: extension to deadline for chapter proposals

There is an extension to the deadline for submitting proposals for chapters (to October 31st) for the book Visualizing the Library: A Primer on visual research methods in Library and Information Sciences, to be published by Facet Publishing and edited by Shailoo Bedi, University of Victoria, and Jenaya Webb, University of Toronto. "Part 2 [which is where the contributed chapters will be] will showcase contributions from researchers and practitioners using visual research methods in a variety of contexts (eg. galleries, libraries, archives, and museums). Going beyond a step-by-step “how to” guide, this book will provide readers with practical approaches to applying visual research methods as a methodological approach while providing a grounding in research theories and the overarching theoretical foundations underpinning visual research methods. Thus, readers will come away equipped to apply visual methods in their research and practice along with the ability to frame their research in theory." There is more information at
Photo by Sheila Webber: Michaelmas daisies, October 2018

Tuesday, October 09, 2018

MIL in higher education; online information literacy teaching

A couple of books (not open access, published by Chandos, which is now an Elsevier imprint) - full list of chapters, with abstracts, on the web pages:
- Ingwaldsen, S. and Oberg, D. (Eds). (2017). Media and Information Literacy in Higher Education: Educating the Educators. Chandos. ISBN 978-0-08-100630-6. "written for librarians and educators working in universities and university colleges, providing them with the information they need to teach media and information literacy to students at levels ranging from bachelor to doctoral studies."

- Maddison, T. and Kumaran, M. (Eds). (2017). Distributed Learning: Pedagogy and Technology in Online Information Literacy Instruction. Chandos. ISBN 978-0-08-100598-9. "provides evidence based information on a variety of issues, surrounding online teaching and learning from the perspective of librarians."
Photo by Sheila Webber: apples from my tree, October 2018

Research survey: impact of academic libraries on student success

James Cheng and Starr Hoffman are seeking participants for a survey related to their ACRL Impact Grant-funded research study: Researchers on Academic Library Impact: Characteristics and Perspectives. "This is a research study; its purpose is to explore the perspective and experience of academic library professionals related to library impact, particularly around their experiences conducting research in this area. If you are an academic library professional and have either conducted, will conduct, or used research on the impact of academic libraries on student success, you meet the criteria for this study.
"By exploring the perspective and experience of academic library professionals related to library impact, we aim to enrich the information provided in ACRL’s 2017 Academic Library Impact (ALI) Report. The individual perspectives sought through interviews for the ALI report primarily consisted of library administrators and provosts, not librarians. However, the perspective and experience of library professionals who perform the research upon which the ALI report relies is an overlooked but valuable area of research.
"This project will survey and interview professional librarians and researchers, particularly those who are directly conducting research on the academic library impact of student success, to understand their perspective and research experiences. This project seeks librarians' perspectives on the six ALI priority areas and selected ALI research questions (e.g. “What factors influence librarian communication with academic library users and potential users?” or, “What factors affect librarian decisions regarding the level of confidentiality or privacy of student data?”). This study will also ask how prepared librarians felt to perform this research and how confident they are in the meaningfulness and rigor of their results, to provide a nuanced context for digesting and using this research. Lastly, this project will give insight into this population by defining their demographics and working habits."
The online survey "should take approximately 15-30 minutes, and you will have the opportunity at the end to indicate whether you would be interested in participating in a follow-up interview at a later date." The survey is at
Questions to Starr Hoffman, or James Cheng,
Photo by Sheila Webber: Bessemer converter, Kelham Island industrial museum, Sheffield, August 2018

Monday, October 08, 2018

Information Literacy and #librariesweek

In the UK it is national libraries week this week (8-13 October). The website is here and this is the twitterstream
The focus is on wellbeing, with the infographic on the right having been produced for the week. Initiatives highlighted in public libraries include Reading Well, and of course there are the health and medical libraries that can showcase what they are doing e.g. The School Library Association is running a library/wellbeing photo competition
Obviously there can be a link between information literacy, libraries and wellbeing. I was reminded first of all about the Augustana Human Library in Canada, and as another example there are presentations concerning libraries and wellbeing here.

Saturday, October 06, 2018

ALA Library Instruction Round Table awards - call for nominations

The ALA Library Instruction Round Table (LIRT) "welcomes submissions for two awards created to recognize excellence in information literacy and instruction. Submissions from all types of libraries (public, school, special, academic) are encouraged. Winners will receive a US $1,000 award, a plaque, and a $500 travel stipend to be used to attend the 2019 ALA (American Library association) Annual Conference in Washington, DC, where the awards will be presented. The LIRT Librarian Recognition Award honors a librarian for her/his contributions to information literacy and instruction. The LIRT Innovation in Instruction Award honors a library for their innovative approach to information literacy and instruction. Submissions will be accepted until January 15, 2019. For full details on how to apply for these awards or to nominate someone to receive them, please see the LIRT Awards site ("
Photo by Sheila Webber: cat at UCL, Louvain la Neuve, September 2018

Thursday, October 04, 2018

What's my approach? Deciding on the approach to use for your research #ecil2018

This is the presentation that formed the introductory part of the workshop that Pamela McKinney and I gave at the European Conference on Information Literacy , in Oulu, Finland, on September 26 2018. The objectives of the workshop were:
"(1) To identify key characteristics of selected qualitative and mixed-methods research approaches, and to show what kinds of research questions and problems each approach is most suited to. The research approaches covered were: action research; case study; phenomenography; ethnography; autoethnography.
(2) To enable participants to understand the issues, advantages and disadvantages of different approaches, by looking at a practice-based information literacy problem, and asking participants to identify the implications of choosing one approach or another."

Wednesday, October 03, 2018

All You Need to Teach Information Literacy 8-10+

Just published on the platform issuu are "review copies" (i.e. with huge watermarks on them) of two publications by Macmillan Education Australia:
- Braxton, B. All You Need to Teach Information Literacy 8-10
- Braxton, B. All You Need to Teach Information Literacy 10+
The publications have tips, worksheets and lesson plans. Publishing them like this gives you a good idea as to whether you would want to buy them, as you can sort-of read them, and it is certainly easy to see the type of material they contain.
Also on issuu in the same format, published 6 years ago, is the version for teaching 5-8 year olds
Photo by Sheila Webber: Moonmins at Helsinki airport, September 2018

Tuesday, October 02, 2018

Miriam Dudley Instruction Librarian of the Year Award

Nominations are now being accepted for the Miriam Dudley Instruction Librarian of the Year Award, which honours "a librarian who has made a significant contribution to the advancement of instruction in a college or research library environment". As far as I can see it is not restricted to US librarians. Winners receive a US $1,000 prize. Deadline for nominations is Friday December 7, 2018. More information about the award criteria is at
Nominations must include (1) the name, mailing address, email address, and telephone number of the nominee (2) a letter of support detailing the nominee’s qualifications for the award (3) the nominators own name, mailing address, email address, and phone number. "Additional letters of support (up to three) are encouraged and will be considered as part of the nomination packet." Nominations should be sent via email to Merinda Kaye Hensley at
Photo by Sheila Webber: Weston Park, Sheffield, September 2018

Monday, October 01, 2018


Today is the United Nations' International Day of Older Persons - see - the websites notes that "By 2050, 2 billion people, over 20 per cent of the world’s population, will be 60 or older. The increase in the number of older people will be the greatest and the most rapid in the developing world, with Asia as the region with the largest number of older persons, and Africa facing the largest proportionate growth. With this in mind, enhanced attention to the particular needs and challenges faced by many older people is clearly required. Just as important, however, is the essential contribution the majority of older men and women can continue to make to the functioning of society if adequate guarantees are in place. Human rights lie at the core of all efforts in this regard." Bill Johnston and I are giving a presentation at the forthcoming Global Media and Information Literacy conference about Age-Friendly Media and Information Literacy (#AFMIL) - specifically age-friendly MIL cities. We are also considering setting up a blog around the theme of #AFMIL, so watch out for that!