Many information literacy sessions are currently offered within the health sciences curricula. Librarians are always willing to discuss integration within other courses. Bracken Librarians also offer sessions to students in non-healthcare disciplines but with a need for health-related resources. Timing is always the constraint, please contact the library as soon as possible to arrange a group session for your class. See below for contact information.
Bracken Library courses are tailored to the subject matter of the course or programme and the emphasis is on providing knowledge and skills that are transferable and will promote life-long learning. In the health disciplines, librarians introduce the concepts of evidence-based practice (EBP) and teach information literacy in relation to the goals of EBP.
Sessions are taught with hands-on exercises; we have found that the most effective learning occurs when classes are divided into small groups of about 15 students, fewer if the session is modeled on the problem-based learning approach. It is also important for the students to use these new skills within an assignment relevant to their course.
Assignments and Evaluation
There are many possible ways of evaluating information literacy skills. Bracken librarians will work with the class instructor to help design an assignment that is relevant to the course and at the appropriate level of information literacy expertise. When appropriate, librarians are also involved in marking the assignments or will provide an answer key to the instructor.
Assignments do not need to be "attached" to a library session. After students have had formal training in the library, instructors can assume that they are able to apply the skills to another course assignment. Again, librarians can help with the design of such assignments, especially since it would be important to make sure that the library has enough resources to answer the students' questions and avoid much frustration if the needed material can only be obtained via interlibrary loans. For more information and ideas for original assignments see Effective Research Assignments: Library Guidelines for Instructors at the following address - http://library.queensu.ca/services/faculty/assignments.
To book a class session you should contact us well in advance. Fall term sessions should be arranged by the first week of July and winter term sessions, by the second week of November. Allow much more time if you need to discuss assignments as well. To arrange a session time or to meet about assignments, please contact Suzanne Maranda at extension 74522 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Myths About Information Literacy
Myth #1: students know how to find information by the time they come to university.
University libraries are complex organizations. There are many buildings with subject specialized collections. There are many different sources of information, each with its own interface, which may or may not be user friendly. Librarians teach skills to navigate all this information effectively and obtain the best results for the least amount of time spent doing the research.
Myth #2: all the information students need is on the Internet.
There is actually so much information on the Internet that users need skills and patience to locate and evaluate the information found. The latter is the greatest pitfall of the Internet: is the information found reliable? Is it of academic standing or more like popular press? Librarians teach skills in evaluating web sites but also in using other reliable information sources, print or electronic.
For more information about Information Literacy see: http://library.queensu.ca/webedu/il/.
For guidelines on how to evaluate Internet Resources click here.
Last Updated: 08 September 2011