Tag Archives: Literacy

Taking Information Literacy on the Road

Bridging Information Literacy (IL) Across Libraries has become our CMLE tag line for work we have been doing with high school media specialists and college librarians. CMLE is in a unique position to convene important conversations across library types, and IL is the first bridging topic we have chosen. The group first met in April to get acquainted and get their draft assignments. By using a wiki and email, both groups finished  draft documents by the end of May. Then, a face-t0-face meeting in July really bonded this group in ways the wiki may not have been able to do.  Initially, we were uncertain how much the groups had in common. As we talked in July however, the group acknowledged the many commonalities, and that they want to do more around this subject. They did not want to end their work!

We wanted others to hear of our “bridging experiment” and laid plans for sharing what we had learned through MLA and MEMO Conference presentations. We believe it is useful to share the process we used, some outcomes, and some exciting plans for the future. We concluded that it is not helpful to “preach to the choir”  about IL….our colleagues already get it!  Somehow, the group felt it was worth a try to reach students. To that end, we recently developed a survey for college students asking them to offer advice to younger students. Specifically, we asked “Based on your experience, if you could tell a high school student three things to help them prepare for college-level research, what would it be?” We are hopeful that younger students will heed the advice of their older peers and engage more deeply in IL . We hope to produce a short video of college students sharing their message, with quiet  supported by a librarian message, and share it broadly through You Tube.

CMLE will continue this IL work, and hope to grow the circle of involvement and engagement. In the meantime, we are on the road sharing the message, and have opened the group wiki up so others can see the draft documents.  We hope to share a polished executive summary within the next couple of months. Visit the wiki to get the draft version of the  following:

  • Media/information literacy power standards (according to three high school media specialists)
  • Typical student profiles and research frameworks for high school freshmen, sophomore, junior and senior
  • Suggested skill sets for incoming college freshmen
  • The MLA conference handout which shares key points of the work of this group, and steps going forward.

Tip: Check out the New Insights documentation on the site, which captures shifts in thinking and understanding of IL and the work of  other librarians.

Would you be interested in participating in an event where we convene a larger group of high school media specialists, college librarians, and public librarians around the topic of information literacy? Let us know in the comments….or send email to papost@stcloudstate.edu

Five Tech Skills Every Student Should Possess

Recently, eSchool News asked its readers for their thoughts on the top five technology skills that all students should learn. A big part of what came through loud and clear is the ability to easily  adapt to change. Tip: the comments at the end of the article are probably as interesting as the article itself. The full text of the article is available at  http://tinyurl.com/ckb63x5

What do you think the top five technology skills are for students?

Registration Open for Reading Rocktober

Announcing Reading Rocktober! Registration now open!

School’s back in session and there’s no better time to rock out with your favorite book! Our friend, Read-it, has been reading across Minnesota all summer, and now you can join him in a NEW reading adventure!

Reading Rocktober is an exciting new program where learners of all ages can receive prizes just for doing what they already love, READING! It’s simple: By setting reading goals and meeting them, students become eligible to receive rewards from participating sponsors.

By instilling a love of reading at a young age, students will develop a greater appreciation for reading that will continue their whole lives. Even more important, improved literacy and reading skills can help a student improve in other subjects as well.

Educators, sign up your students and encourage them to:

•Read for fun

•Read more often

•Improve their reading skills and overcome reading obstacles

Join Read-It, grab a book and Rock on!

To register: http://readingrocksmn.com/index.html

This program is offered in collaboration with Clear Channel Media and Entertainment and community sponsors.

For more information contact:

Kari Ross

Reading Specialist

MN Department of Education


ACRL/IRIG Visual Literacy Competency Standards Draft Released

The ACRL Image Resources Interest Group (ACRL/IRIG) has released a draft set of standards for visual literacy competency in higher education. The ACRL/IRIG believes that visual literacy standards are necessary due to the pervasiveness of online images, and the use of images within student learning and research. According to ACRL/IRIG, visual literacy is defined as a

…set of abilities that enables an individual to effectively find, interpret, evaluate, use, and create images and visual media. Visual literacy skills equip a learner to understand and analyze the contextual, cultural, ethical, aesthetic, intellectual, and technical components involved in the production and use of visual materials.

In all, there are seven standards, and each of the seven standards include performance indicators and learning outcomes.  The learning outcomes, in particular, seem to be the most useful and concrete.

The concept of visual literacy standards is not exactly a new one. The ACRL/IRIG reports that there is a large body of literature on visual literacy and visual studies. In addition, there are some K-12 and other higher education documents that include at least a few standards that are recommended by the ACRL/IRIG; however, the group feels that the “learning goals”, in particular, had not been well defined, and they aim to fill this gap.

The ACRL/IRIG Visual Literacy Standards definitely deserve a glance, and the interest group hopes for feedback and commentary on their blog.

I tend to think that a set of ACRL standards for visual literacy is necessary. Librarians hopefully will use the standards to plan their interactions (one-on-one assistance, reference interactions, workshops, etc.) with students, and also in conversations with faculty, deans, and other interested parties. Additionally, academic librarians will be “speaking the same language” by having one clear set of visual literacy standards to reference.

What are your thoughts? Are the standards necessary? How are they different from general information literacy or transliteracy standards? Is there a standard or a learning outcome that really catches your eye/interest?