Document Type

Presentation

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License

Publication Date

3-17-2018

Abstract

While evidence continues to build that information literacy (IL) is taught across university and college curricula at all student levels (Junsbai, Lowe & Tagge, 2016), challenges connecting IL to those curricula in meaningful ways persist (Julien, Gross, & Latham, 2018; Klomsri & Tedre, 2016; Bombaro 2013). Blending IL into social work education beyond traditional one-shot library sessions also remains a challenge as evidenced by the dearth of literature demonstrating sound instruction and assessment practices of IL in social work programs (Bausman & Ward, 2016; Kayser, Bowers, Jiang, & Bussey 2013; Johnson, Whitfield, & Grohe, 2011; Ismail, 2009; Brustman & Bernnard 2007; Bellard, 2005).

In their survey of information literacy in social work education in the United States, Bausman and Ward (2016), report that only 11% of respondents assess information literacy skills of their students, but more than half report a perception that graduates leave their programs with the necessary IL skills for practice in the field. The authors call on social work faculty and librarians to use the Council on Social Work Education’s education standards and the new Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education (ACRL, 2016), to create learning experiences from measurable learning outcomes, that make clear connections to practice. In 2016, the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) replaced proscriptive information literacy standards (ACRL, 2000) with a new, expansive and flexible approach to information literacy. The Framework (ACRL, 2016) is “based on a cluster of interconnected core concepts, with flexible options for implementation,” created to encourage information literacy integration into, “instruction sessions, assignments, courses and even curricula.”

This paper will demonstrate how active engagement strategies and activities in a team-based learning course support student development of information literacy skills when nestled in their Introduction to Social Work course. Information literacy skills are foundational in social work education in that application of policy analysis skills, development of evidence-based practice and implementation of appropriate research methods all hinge on abilities to discern quality sources of information and apply critical thinking skills to a variety of medium. Technology is integrated throughout information literacy as well as the active learning activities illustrated in this paper and this course.

This paper will report on findings from a project undertaken by a social work professor and a librarian over the course of the fall 2017 and spring 2018 semesters. This study employed a pre-and post-test model with a uniquely developed instrument to assess levels of proficiency in information literacy skills prior to and following interventions to build information literacy skills in an Introduction to Social Work class. The interventions includeda unique series of interactive lessons, designed and implemented collaboratively by social work and library faculty to support student information literacy skill development. This series of six lessons was implemented with junior-level social work students and focused on topics such as determining quality of sources, constructing citations, identifying research methodology, utilizing technology, research ethics and search techniques. Preliminary results and potential implications for social work education will be shared.

References

American Library Association, Association of College & Research Libraries. (2000). Information literacy competency standards for higher education. Retrieved from http://www.ala.org/acrl/sites/ala.org.acrl/files/content/standards/standards.pdf

American Library Association, Association of College & Research Libraries. (2016). Framework for information literacy for higher education. Retrieved from http://www.ala.org/acrl/standards/ilframework

Bausman, M., & Ward, S. L. (2016). The social work librarian and information literacy instruction: A report on a national survey in the United States. Behavioral & Social Sciences Librarian, 35(3), 109-122. doi:10.1080/01639269.2016.1243439 Bellard, E. M. (2005). Information literacy needs of nontraditional graduate students in social work. Research Strategies, 20(4), 494-505. doi:10.1016/j.resstr.2006.12.019

Bingham, T. J., Wirjapranata, J., & Chinnery, S. (2016). Merging information literacy and evidence-based practice for social work students. New Library World, 117(3/4), 201-213. doi:10.1108/NLW-09-2015-0067

Bombaro, C. (2014). Overcoming the barriers to information literacy programs. Reference Services Review, 42(2), 246–262. doi:10.1108/RSR-10-2013-0050

Brustman, M. J., & Bernnard, D. (2007). Information literacy for social workers: University at Albany Libraries prepare MSW students for research and practice. Communications in Information Literacy, 1(2), 89-101.

Ismail, L. (2009). What they are telling us: library use and needs of traditional and non‐traditional students in a graduate social work program. The Journal of Academic Librarianship, 35(6), 555-564. doi:10.1016/j.acalib.2009.08.019

Johnson, O. J., Whitfield, J. S., & Grohe, B. (2011). Improving social work students’ information literacy skills: A faculty and librarian collaboration. Journal on Excellence in College Teaching, 22(3), 5–21. Retrieved from http://celt.muohio.edu/ject/fetch.php?id=505

Julien, H., Gross, M., & Latham, D. (in press). Survey of information literacy instructional practices in U.S. academic libraries. College & Research Libraries.

Junisbai, B., Lowe, M. S., & Tagge, N. (2016). A pragmatic and flexible approach to information literacy: Findings from a three-year study of faculty-librarian collaboration. The Journal of Academic Librarianship, 42(5), 604–611. doi:10.1016/j.acalib.2016.07.001

Kayser, J. A., Bowers, J., Jiang, L., & Bussey, M. (2013). Increasing MSW students? Information competencies through online tutorials, application exercises, and course assignments. Journal of Teaching in Social Work, 33(4–5), 578–593. doi:10.1080/08841233.2013.831391

Klomsri, T., & Tedre, M. (2016). Poor information literacy skills and practices as barriers to academic performance: A mixed methods study of the University of Dar es Salaam.Reference & User Services Quarterly, 55(4), 293. doi:10.5860/rusq.55n4.293

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JMU Social Work - Information Literacy Exercise 1 – Evaluating-Sources

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JMU Social Work - Information Literacy Exercise 5 - Describe Why Citing the Work of Others is Important

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JMU Social Work - Information Literacy Exercise 6 - Identify the Elements of Citations

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