Frequently Asked Questions
How does this instruction benefit students?
A 2017 survey of 42,000 students in more than 1,700 courses at 12 major research universities showed that:
Retention rates were higher for students whose courses included information literacy instruction.
Students whose courses included information literacy instruction reported higher average first-year GPAs than those whose courses did not.
Students who took information literacy instruction successfully completed 1.8 more credit hours per year than students who did not.
What exactly is being taught?
Information literacy refers to the ability to recognize a need for information and to find, analyze, and synthesize related material from books, articles, websites and more. Exactly what is covered in a librarian-led instruction session for your course is completely customizable. Here are some ideas of topics we often cover:
- Defining key vocabulary. (ex. Scholarly, Peer Review, Empirical Research, Database, Key Word, Limiter)
- Research leveling – primary vs. secondary vs. tertiary
- How to identify the type of source in front of you (ex. “Does this count as scholarly?”, “Is this literary criticism?”)
- Evaluating the credibility of sources
- Where to find credible and scholarly sources
- How to effectively search an academic database and access the full text of articles
- Developing key words from a research question
- Narrowing, broadening, or generally reworking your topic based on search results
- Using Advanced search and Boolean operators
- Narrowing or broadening your topic based on initial search results
- Linking Google Scholar to our CSR paid access
- Utilizing Interlibrary Loan
- Using a database thesaurus
- Understanding how to use search history to garner more complex and specific search results
What if I don’t have enough class time to dedicate to this?
We understand that class time is precious and it can sometimes be a challenge to find time to work in an instruction session with a librarian. However, we have options for every time constraint!
A full class period is ideal for an instruction session. That being stated, we can also design an impactful 20-30 minute presentation.
If you do not have any time for a live presentation, a librarian can also prepare a pre-recorded video to be embedded in Canvas as a resource for your students.
What is the process?
The first step in the process is to complete the Library Instruction Request Form. A librarian will then reach out to you to confirm details and gather additional information. This is a collaborative process where faculty share information about their course and assignments along with anything specific they are hoping to have covered in the session. In turn, the librarian will often offer suggestions on what to cover to best prepare your students for your assignments.