Information Literacy at WVU?
Yes! Information literacy is the set of integrated abilities encompassing:
- the reflective discovery of information
- the understanding of how information is produced and valued
- the use of information in creating new knowledge and participating ethically in communities of learning.
All University students need these capabilities to succeed in their classes and prepare for a lifetime of information use in the future. First, they need basic information literacy capabilities, and later they must develop advanced, research level abilities.
- The information environment is too complex and changing too rapidly to expect students to acquire information literacy without a planned, systematic, cumulative instructional program.
- The hit or miss process that worked for students and scholars in the past is not effective or efficient today.
- Disciplines are changing, communication is multi-dimensional, and students are expected to employ sophisticated information seeking techniques in the twenty-first century.
Links to initial resources for WVU students and faculty regarding information literacy are ahead. Please explore them and get in touch if there is anything we can do to help you advance student research capabilities and discovery at WVU. As we look to the 2020 Plan and its call for “engaging undergraduate, graduate, and professional students in a challenging academic environment,” nothing less is acceptable.
The Information Literacy Initiative at West Virginia University Libraries
Learning is something the WVU Libraries take seriously. An ongoing effort to formalize all of the many instructional and learning activities that academic librarians are involved in is called the Information Literacy Initiative. The ILI at WVU Libraries began in 2007. Information literacy, broadly speaking, is the ability to find information and use it effectively. But it also means thinking critically and reflecting on the research process, effective searching, retrieval, and resource evaluation skills, and the ethical and legal use of information.
Here are some assumptions about information literacy for broader discussion at WVU:
- Students need to master critical thinking and 21st century research skills to be effective contributors to society.
- Research fluency has a critical disciplinary dimension.
- The libraries have a joint responsibility with the teaching faculty for student learning about academic integrity.
- An excellent teaching program addressing research abilities is integrated in the curriculum, is developmental, and creates transferable knowledge.
- Evaluation of information found is learned over time by comparing and contrasting quality of content and knowing how to recognize the credibility of the original source
All of these activities (under the umbrella of the Information Literacy Initiative) aim to unify the instructional activities of the Libraries into a formal educational program that can be presented to the campus community as a scaffold of learning. In 2013, the Libraries' information literacy committee wrote an Information Literacy Plan. This plan is the first step in clarifying and communicating foundational, intermediate, discipline specific, and expert information literacy outcomes to everyone who is interested in stronger students and better student research results. The Libraries’ information literacy program, once fully developed, will be an action plan for a commitment to learning excellence in information use at West Virginia University.
For further information about this program development, please write:
Resources for Faculty and Librarians on Information Literacy
Academic librarians at WVU (and around the country) are using Research Guides as teaching and learning resources. Basically they are dynamic, mini-websites which point users to relevant library and Internet information. This LibGuide points to definitions, research results, relevant videos, and other sources to assist in teaching the many elements of student research. http://libguides.wvu.edu/infolit
The Association of College and Research Libraries recently released the Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education. This framework replaces the Information Literacy Competency Standards for Higher Education and places more emphasis on students as creators of information.