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Information Literacy Month!

Information Literacy Month!

Posted by: on October 1, 2014   |Comments (0)|Announcements

For the second year in a row, October is Rhode Island Information Literacy Month!  Last year, some intrepid librarians got Governor Lincoln Chafee to sign a proclamation officially declaring: Screen Shot 2014-09-30 at 11.35.21 AM

  1. Information literacy provides the tools and skills to find, evaluate and use credible sources.
  2. The ability to find, decipher and analyze different forms of information is a key component of effective decision making
  3. Information literacy is a critical part of education.
  4. Using information acquired through technology…promotes and engaged and informed citizenry

These are skills that are not only crucial to being a successful college student, but also to being a successful and productive member of society.  Far too many students are leaving college with lackluster information literacy skills, and find themselves unable to secure meaningful employment.

We thank Governor Chafee for recognizing these crucial skills!

If you worry that your skills are lacking, do not hesitate to contact a librarian!  Librarians are the mavens of information, and we are always here to help PC students learn and grow as researchers.

 

 

For the second year in a row, October is Rhode Island Information Literacy Month!  Last year, some intrepid librarians got... MORE

What is Information Literacy Anyways?

Posted by: on October 10, 2013   |Comments (0)|Tips and Tools

informationtechnologyWhat is Information Literacy?

Information Literacy (IL) can be a tricky concept to understand for those of us working in a library environment, never mind for those outside of “library-land”!  The Association of College & Research Libraries (ACRL) has an excellent definition of IL, but here I will attempt to give you the SparkNotes version.

IL is the ability to combine the following skills in order to meet academic, professional or personal goals:

  • The ability to recognize when you need informationWhat sources do I need to complete my research paper? Articles? Books? Primary sources? etc.

  • Understanding the ethical use of information – Respecting copyright & citing your sources

  • Evaluating information – Is this article scholarly or not? Is this relevant to my topic? Is this a reputable source? Is this research valid? Is it reliable?

  • & synthesizing the needed information – Being able to pull multiple sources together to form an argument or support your thesis

Why should I care?

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IL is an essential survival skill in a world that is overloaded with information.  As the amount of information that is readily available at our fingertips continues to grow, how can we tell what can be relied upon and what can’t?

Who and what can we trust?  Despite arguments to the contrary, Google won’t always be able to meet our information needs.  Our library alone subscribes to over 250 databases – how can you figure out how to navigate them?  As technology advances, how much will the way we access information now change?

Whether you realize it or not, you will hone your IL skills as you progress through your time at PC and be able to apply them to your future careers and academic ventures.

Additional Resources:

References:

American Library Association. (1989). Presidential committee on information literacy. final report. Chicago: American Library Association. Retrieved from http://www.ala.org/acrl/publications/whitepapers/presidential

Information Literacy. (2004). In Encyclopedia of Distributed Learning. Retrieved from http://0-literati.credoreference.com.helin.uri.edu/content/entry/sagedl/information_literacy/0

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

What is Information Literacy? Information Literacy (IL) can be a tricky concept to understand for those of us working in... MORE

“Email is a sinkhole, where knowledge goes to die…”

Posted by: on October 2, 2013   |Comments (0)|Tips and Tools

The title is a quote snipped from a recent NYT article on technology and college students. Nearly everyone has a horror story (read: an opinion) about emailing and more importantly, how NOT to do it.  This started me thinking about how much we use technology to communicate and, of course, some of the pitfalls to avoid. Despite email being declared a dead technology, for many of us in academia and also for those of you who will soon be heading out into the corporate sector, it is still the mainstay of communication.  In fact, email is an important form of communication of official college business at PC.

nfil-badge-ri-stars-stripes_0 October is also Information Literacy Awareness month, and over 20 states (including Rhode Island) across the country are marking the occasion with literacy events throughout the month.  Lincoln D. Chafee, the Governor of Rhode Island, even signed a proclamation.  What is information literacy?  In a nutshell, it is the ability to effectively find, evaluate and use trustworthy information.  There are many types of literacies including digital, financial, and health, to name a few.  Throughout the month of October, we will  highlight some aspect of information literacy here on the blog.  Digital literacy is particularly buzz worthy these days, as it typically involves technology.  Which brings us back to where I began…email and the college generation.  While it is doubtful that emailing will ever be as easy and convenient as texting, it persists as the standard for most professional communication.  Why not gain some proficiency with it while we wait for the next technological marvel to replace it?

Select Best Practice Examples and Tools:

  1. CBS MoneyWatch’s 9 Keys to Email Etiquette  
  2. Virginia Tech Career Services Email Guidelines and Etiquette  – Good tips for students communicating with prospective employers.
  3. Grammarly Lite is a free plug-in for Chrome, Firefox and Safari that will check your spelling and grammar, and also give you access to a thesaurus and dictionary — all in the cloud.  It also will work in your Gmail, and social media tools like Twitter.  It is a good extra set of eyes to check your emails before you hit send.

 

The title is a quote snipped from a recent NYT article on technology and college students. Nearly everyone has a... MORE