Sunday, May 26, 2013

What is information literacy?

The topic for week two of the Swimming in the Information ocean is defining information literacy. One of the tutors introduced a document that I wasn's aware of (probably should have been!) called the Australian and New Zealand Information Literacy Framework which contains 6 core standards. Follow the link to read more.

This isn't just a skill for librarians or students - now that so much information is available to everyone, information literacy has become a necessary life skill.
I created the following based on some course notes - everytime librarians was written, I replaced it with I, just to see how I felt about it. Hope I can live up to it!

I am the ultimate search engine. I know how to find the best information whether it’s in a book, a video, a pamphlet or on a website. Teaching others how to find and evaluate information is a unique skill that I bring to a society encountering a bewildering avalanche of information.

Information literacy beyond library 2.0 is an article by Peter Godwin that had some interesting ideas that reflect our times. For example, instead of making students into librarians, we should concentrate on giving them the necessary tools for building up their understanding of their chosen discipline. We should be aiming to light sparks rather than fill vessels.

Although, I'm still not sure how this works in practice. Are the two really that different? The author blasted purely theoretical positions and drew attention to the divide between researchers and practicioners, but I didn't get anything practical out of the article. Maybe the following chapters illuminate his ideas a little.

I see the students where I work struggle with finding information and I want to help them. I had a look at some universities chosen information literacy tools, like Edith Cowan's PILOT and QUT's Online tutorial. These are nice packages, but I have the feeling that students prefer to learn by experience within their subject. Still, I'm keeping an open mind...

YAY! I got 100% on my first attempt in the Week 3 quiz  :)