Stewarding Our First Year Students into the Information Ecosystem
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Miller, Rebecca K.; DeBose, Kiri Goldbeck; Merrill, Margaret
Librarians play a critical role in educating undergraduate students, the next generation of global citizens, about navigating the information landscape. This presentation will highlight the collaboration between three librarians and six different departments within the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS) at a large research university to develop a first-year experience course focusing on three learning objectives relating to information literacy: information ethics, effective research strategies, and evaluating resources. Now in its third year, the 1-credit first-year experience course has evolved in order to promote students’ abilities to negotiate multiple perspectives and complexities in the information landscape. The 200+ first year students in the course work in interdisciplinary groups, each strategically comprised of students from at least three different departments within CALS, to develop research posters that they present at the end of the semester. Groups select research topics from a book, “The Atlas of Food,” and must demonstrate the ability to define a research topic, evaluate information for reliability and appropriateness to the project, and incorporate their findings into the group project in an ethical manner. Our main challenge in developing this course was scaffolding the final project in a way that worked within the limited capacity of a 1-credit course. To help students gain the specific skills that they need to succeed with the final project, we applied flipped classroom techniques, which enabled us to assess student understanding and make the most of in-class learning opportunities. We also trained peer leaders to help guide the students, and provided library space for students to showcase their final projects. In addition to discussing these strategies and their impact on the students’ skills and abilities, we will explore how session participants can transfer these techniques to their own institutions and adapt them to fit their own unique instructional needs.
Contributed Papers #2: Information Literacy & Instruction
Collaboration; Information Literacy; Evaluation