How does the Library foster Information Literacy?

by Sara Baron, Ed.D., Dean of the University Library

Diagram of information literacy acquisition, starting with the development of practical skills and expanding through increasingly complex processes.(2)

Diagram of information literacy acquisition, starting with the development of practical skills and expanding through increasingly complex processes.(2)

This week The Chronicle of Higher Education’s Wired Campus blog posted a short article about a 2013 survey of library directors entitled, “What Matters to Academic Library Directors? Information Literacy.”1 The survey found that 97% of the 400 respondents consider undergraduate information literacy training a vital part of the library’s mission. Regent University Library falls into this category. Teaching students, both undergraduate and graduate, research skills is essential to the role of the Library. Partnering with teaching faculty in educating students, instructing them in the best research practices, and encouraging effective information-seeking behavior is what we do. Regent University Library has a long history of working with faculty through our liaison program and the online Information Research and Resources course.

There is a wealth of online training tools on the Library website, as well as our own YouTube channel, which offers training tutorials from the Library faculty and database vendors. We offer course-integrated instruction, during which we create specialized instruction in the classroom or in the Library. We also create research guides for subjects and even specific courses, providing an easy starting point for students in a particular class or program. The Library offers several general training sessions on research-oriented topics each semester, both on-campus and online through Google Hangouts.3 In addition, the reference librarians are available for one-on-one research consultations in person, by telephone, or online via Google Hangouts. We have worked with students all over the world through Skype and Google Hangouts! Our goal is to empower our students, staff, and faculty with the research skills to become self-sufficient, life-long learners. These information literacy skills, in turn, will help Regent graduates become Christian leaders who can change the world.

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1Jennifer Howard, “What Matters to Academic-Library Directors? Information Literacy,” Wired Campus (blog), in The Chronicle of Higher Education, March 11, 2014, http://chronicle.com/blogs/wiredcampus/what-matters-to-academic-library-directors-information-literacy/51005.

2Emma Coonan, “Four seasons pizza,” A New Curriculum for Information Literacy (blog), March 30, 2012, http://newcurriculum.wordpress.com/2012/03/30/four-seasons-pizza/.

3Permanent link for all Library Hangout events: https://plus.google.com/hangouts/_/event/c0lnc83s5ok7tecuqdcnjg0mcno?authuser=0&eid=100028809078157626561&hl=en.