2015 Information Literacy Summit

14th Annual Information Literacy Summit
Revising, Refreshing, Reframing our Practice: Information Literacy, Threshold Concepts, and the New ACRL Framework

Presented by DePaul University Library and Moraine Valley Community College Library
April 10, 2015


What’s the big idea?! Incorporating Threshold Concepts into Your Teaching Practice
Amy R. Hofer, Reference & Instruction Librarian and Assistant Professor at Portland State University
Silvia Lu, Reference and Social Media Librarian and Assistant Professor at LaGuardia Community College, a CUNY institution
Lori Townsend,Learning Services Coordinator for the University Libraries at the University of New Mexico
When introduced to threshold concepts, librarians usually ask “How do I use them?” Yet this question hopscotches another: “Do I understand threshold concepts and how they relate to information literacy?” Threshold concepts are themselves a threshold concept. They are transformative, integrative, irreversible, bounded, troublesome, and – importantly – they take time to traverse. With ACRL’s shift toward more conceptual teaching in the new Framework for Information Literacy, our profession needs to take time to deeply understand what this kind of teaching and learning is all about. We’ll talk about the theory of threshold concepts and making incremental moves towards conceptual teaching and assessment, including how to incorporate the work that instruction librarians already do in this arena and why traditional bibliographic instruction still has a place in our teaching repertoire.

Breakout Sessions

Adapting the Framework for Information Literacy: Threshold Concepts as Metaphors for the Creative Process
Larissa K. Garcia, Information Literacy Librarian, Northern Illinois University
Jessica Labatte, Assistant Professor, School of Art and Design, Northern Illinois University

This presentation will describe the collaboration between a faculty member and a librarian to use the Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education to integrate information literacy into advanced studio photography classes. By using the information literacy threshold concepts as metaphors for the creative process, we helped students contextualize information literacy and the research process as a way to develop their artistic vision and improve the quality of their work. In addition to sharing our experience, we will offer other ideas for using threshold concepts in the classroom and will gather ideas and examples from session participants.

Becoming USERs of Threshold Concepts: Reframing information literacy instruction through a faculty learning community
Amanda Nichols Hess, Assistant Professor, eLearning & Instructional Technology Librarian, Oakland University
Learn how one academic library used a faculty learning community to explore the new Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education while bolstering librarians’ instructional design and technology knowledge. With Booth’s (2011) USER model as a structure for considering information literacy threshold concepts, this learning community helped librarians build theoretical knowledge and gain valuable hands-on instructional technology experience in real-world contexts. Come for the concrete structure that any institution could use to build librarians’ instructional technology capacities; stay for the opportunities to discuss how approach is unique and scalable in other contexts or situations.

Beyond One Shots: LIS 101
Todd Heldt, Librarian, Harold Washington College
In 2012, Harold Washington College offered a 3 credit hour , semester-long information literacy class as part of a learning community on global warming. In creating, marketing, mapping, and teaching the course, we learned much about trends in education as well as about information literacy, itself. I will discuss a number of obstacles to getting a class like this off the ground, strategies for building enrollment, new (for me!) directions in information literacy instruction, and some anecdotes about student learning that made it all worthwhile.

Beyond the Term Paper: Helping Students Understand Scholarship as Conversation
Mahrya Carncross, Instructional Services Librarian, Western Illinois University
How do we get students to think about their research projects in the context of a larger conversation? The ACRL draft Information Literacy Framework begins to address this question. Rather than conceiving of research as a project with a distinct beginning and end, the Framework emphasizes research as contribution to a discourse. This presentation will demonstrate how I have incorporated the Framework threshold concept of Scholarship as Conversation in my 3-credit IL class. I will present several activities, some of which were adapted from the Framework document itself, which introduce students to the idea of the scholarly conversation.

Choose Your Own Assessment: Exploring Varied Techniques for Understanding the Student Research Process
Cathy Lantz, Reference Librarian & Liaison to the Life Sciences, University of Illinois at Chicago
Annie Armstrong, Reference Librarian & Associate Professor, Coordinator of Library Instruction, UIC
Annie Pho, Undergraduate Experience Librarian, UIC
Glenda Insua, Reference & Instruction Librarian, UIC
Many libraries invest valuable resources in instruction programs aimed at teaching information literacy skills to first-year students. Due to the amount of staff hours and effort librarians devote to serving this user population, it is imperative to understand the effectiveness of our instructional approaches to improving the information literacy skills of first-year students. This breakout session will feature a brief overview of our study and the resulting data, descriptions of four different assessment strategies and tools that can be used in various settings, an opportunity for librarians to discuss how they could incorporate these methods into their own library assessment plan and a discussion about what types of assessment will might work in different combinations with students at various levels.

Collaborating with Faculty to Reframe Information Literacy via Evidence-Based Practice
Susan Franzen, Campus Librarian, Illinois Central College
Colleen Bannon, Information Services Librarian, Heartland Community College
Whether librarians liaison to humanities, industrial technology, math, or fine arts faculty, the ability to collaborate, relate, and learn from each other has far-reaching benefits for all involved – librarian, instructor, and student. As librarians rethink information literacy, we have the opportunity to partner with faculty members who may also be reframing their approach to information-seeking. This session will describe the collaborative process and lessons learned from integrating information literacy with evidence-based practice in health science programs. Attendees will learn how to begin a collaboration, build assignments collaboratively, and create active learning library instruction.

Critical Information Literacy in Wikipedia Edit-a-Thons: Theory and Practice
Michelle Guittar, Social Sciences Librarian, Northeastern Illinois University
Freeda Brook, Head of User Services, Roosevelt University Library
In contrast to the typical one-shot library instruction sessions, Wikipedia edit-a-thons can function as an unique form of information literacy instruction, rooted in social constructivist learning and critical pedagogy. This session will cover both the theory and practice of hosting Wikipedia edit-a-thons. The presenters will discuss social constructivist learning and critical pedagogy, and demonstrate how edit-a-thons fit into those learning theories, as well as their relation to the new ACRL Framework. Additionally, the presenters will describe and provide materials on how to develop and run edit-a-thons to bolster student learning and information literacy.

Digging into the Frames: An exploration of context and conversation
Miriam Matteson, Assistant Professor, Kent State University, School of Library and Information Science
Omer Farooq, doctoral student, Kent State University, School of Library and Information Science
In this session participants will join in a conversation about two of the new ACRL frames – “Authority is Constructed and Contextual” and “Scholarship is a Conversation”–
exploring their meaning, how they relate, and challenges in teaching these frames. We will also develop ideas for analogies, examples, and activities to effectively convey these themes to different audiences. By the end of the session, participants will be able to discuss the main concepts included in the frames and be familiar with several theories that underpin those ideas. They will also have teaching examples and activities to introduce these frames to different audiences.

Don’t Flip Out, Just Flip Your Classroom: Upholding Threshold Concepts by Revising Pedagogical Practices Commonly Used in Library Information Literacy Sessions
Ladislava Khailova, Associate Professor, Humanities and Social Sciences Subject Specialist, Northern Illinois University
The new ACRL Framework places increased emphasis on helping students to become active participants in the ever-changing information ecosystem rather than mere consumers of it. The teaching model that directly supports such a pedagogical goal by embodying it is the flipped classroom—it inverts the traditional lecture-homework formula through the use of instructional technology and active learning techniques. Based on the presenter’s experience with flipping an IL classroom, the session will cover the advantages and challenges of the model. Its applicability to multiple types of IL library instruction settings (for-credit classes, embedded and one-shot sessions, and one-on-one research consultations), including relevant design principles, will also be discussed. Session participants will have the opportunity to analyze a specific IL instruction session offered at their institution for the possibility of flipping it.

Embedded Librarians in the Distance Learner’s Classroom
Geoffrey Greenberg, Instruction and Learning Librarian, Roosevelt University Library
E. Mairin Barney, Associate Director of the Writing Center, Roosevelt University
Librarians sometimes walk a tightrope when being embedded in an online class with students. Is the librarian getting in the way of the instructor? Do the instructor and the librarian have the same goals in mind? Is there too much emphasis on library instruction and does it take away from vital learning time? Are you confusing the students with your presence? Is the work too much or too little? Building a plan with faculty, and incorporating library instruction at the right place and time could be beneficial for all. By dedicating a small portion of the online class to library research skills, librarians can whet the students’ appetite for further inquiry and discovery. Moreover, by putting this activity and subsequent discussion in an online forum, the conversation can be a more interactive experience for both students and librarians

Facilitating Metacognition with a “flipped” instructional strategy
Terry Huttenlock, Associate Professor, Educational Technology Librarian, Wheaton College
This presentation will explain the pedagogy and my research informing an instructional strategy used for two years; “Guide on the Side,” and reflective questioning worksheet as a “flipped” instructional strategy. It will also introduce the end-of-project assessment used to evaluate effectiveness. Guiding students in the art of reflective questioning should be one pillar of research instruction giving students a foundation to navigate current changing literacy models and be prepared for the next wave of changes in the information and scholarly communication sphere.

iRead on an iPad
Dorothy Mikuska, Retired English Teacher, Glenbard South High School
Marti Seaton, Retired Literacy Coach, Glenbard South High School
Laura Broderick, Psychology and AP Geography Teacher, Glenbard East High School
Is reading text from a screen the same as reading from paper? Educators expect 1:1 instruction will enrich and transform learning. However, its impact on reading, thinking and research is controversial, based on anecdotal evidence and research data. This presentation will share current research on the differences in brain development, eye movements, behavior, and learning outcomes, as well as ways readers can stay focused, engage in deep reading, visualize concept maps, annotate, and become exposed to complex, layered, and varied text. Everyone promoting literacy needs to know how paper and screen reading impact learning, and strategies for today’s multi-textual readers.

Mapping Information Literacy: Planning for Student Learning and Assessment
Anne Zald, Assistant Head Research & Information Services, Northwestern University Library
This workshop presents curriculum mapping as an analysis and planning process that supports integration of information literacy learning across the undergraduate curriculum. Analyses of student pathways toward degree completion are central to the mapping process. Several worksheets are provided to visualize and analyze the current status of library instruction. Analysis should identify gaps or redundancies and assist identification of strategic opportunities to build into curricula progressively sophisticated instruction on a range of information literacy skills, concepts and abilities. Workshop participants will develop a plan to implement curriculum mapping at their institution as preparation for outreach to stakeholders in student learning.

Meeting Students Where They Are: Individualizing Information Literacy Instruction in a Composition Classroom
Lori Baker, Professor of English, Southwest Minnesota State University
Pam Sukalski, Assistant Professor/Librarian, Southwest Minnesota State University
Our proposed session will have two primary parts. First, we will explain the usefulness of the rhetorical concept of kairos in identifying moments of change and strategies for moving forward. Second, we will describe how our understanding of kairotic moments on our campus led us to a pilot project on individualizing information literacy instruction with an Academic Writing class. The project involves assessing each student’s information literacy level for targeted outcomes related to the course and organizing the students in small groups to ensure skills are introduced at the level needed for each student. We will discuss how the ACRL guidelines and the WPA Outcomes Statement for First-Year Composition helped to shape which concepts and outcomes we narrowed the pilot to include, share the initial information literacy assessment tool we created to determine the groups, and describe the status of the project.

More Than Just Where to Click
Troy A. Swanson, Department Chair and Teaching & Learning Librarian, Moraine Valley Community College
Heather Jagman, Coordinator of Reference, Instruction, and Academic Engagement, DePaul University
How do we move students beyond mechanical searching skills toward more sophisticated ways of understanding information? How can we encourage students reflect on their own beliefs and worldviews as they interact with sources? ACRL’s new title, Not Just Where to Click: Teaching Students How to Think about Information seeks to answer these questions. In addition to providing background on the editorial process, Swanson and Jagman will highlight the connections made by contributors and explore how authors provide a balance of theoretical and applied approaches to information literacy, supplying readers with accessible and innovative ideas ready to be put into practice.

The Problem with “Teaching the Library” to First Years and How Metacognition Can Help
Karen Diaz, Head, Teaching and Learning, Ohio State University Libraries
Beth Black, Undergraduate Engagement Librarian, Ohio State University
Despite receiving library instruction in the university survey course, first-year students regularly struggled to find, evaluate and use information needed for success inside and outside the classroom. In response, we drastically revised the “library assignment” to focus on dispositions. We will discuss the challenges facing first-year students, identify misconceptions of what it means to teach the library to this audience, and observe how dispositions, with a focus on metacognition, are incorporated by completing the revised assignment. We will also share results of surveys of students and instructors who used the assignment in fall 2014 and plans for the future.

A Toolkit for Reframing Services for International Students
Yi Han, Instruction Library and International Student Library Services Liaison, Illinois Institute of Technology
Pattie Piotrowski, Assistant Dean for Public Services, Illinois Institute of Technology
John Dorr, Assistant Head, Research and Information Services, Northwestern University Library
Education statistics show that increasing numbers of international students have arrived in the current decade, and future trends in global education show that more international students will be attending academic institutions in the US than ever before. Some academic institutions have been developing services over the years to meet the needs of this segment of the campus population. The panelists will share a toolkit for reforming services and teaching information literacy concepts to international students that they developed from researching services, programming and staffing in Illinois academic libraries and their own experience while working with international students.

Universal Design for Information Literacy: Accessibility through the Lens of the Framework
Emilia Marcyk, Instructional Technology & Information Literacy Librarian, Michigan State University
Should individual instruction and information literacy librarians concern themselves with universal design (UD) and accessibility in their daily jobs? This presentation will outline ways in which the principles of UD and accessibility align with the ACRL Framework for Information Literacy in Higher Education to inform instruction best practices. Participants will be introduced to current web accessibility standards (WCAG 2.0) and the principles of universal design, in order to communicate with colleagues and administrators about the importance of accessible content within information literacy programs.

Visual Literacy: Standards, Resources and Practical Applications for the Classroom
Sharon Byerly, Librarian, Moraine Valley Community College
Fred Petri, Librarian, Chicago Public Schools, Gary Elementary
Today’s ACRL and Common Core standards include competencies for students in areas of visual literacy. Join in a discussion of these standards and leave with practical strategies and resources to incorporate visual literacy in your instruction. As the visuals we encounter rapidly change and evolve, the need for visual literacy development in ourselves, and in our instruction with students, increases. This session will include a conversation about the variety of visuals we encounter today, strategies and sources for teaching and developing visual literacy instruction, with real world examples and hands on practice in a computer lab.