Resources for Information Literacy Instruction in the Sciences

This site is a large collection of information and resources for IL in the sciences. Too many resources to post individually (although a few have been), there is a wealth of information here for those willing to search and dig a little.

Go to materials

Strengths

A one-stop shop for (most) all your science IL needs.

Concerns

None.

Recommendations for use

You’re on your own!

IL Tutorials for Biology Students

Seven tutorials provide an IL overview aimed at Biology students but may be useful to other students as well.

Go to material

Strengths

Has a unique slant toward biology and science students.

How to READ a scientific paper

Reading scientific papers is not easy, especially when students try it for the first time. This tutorial explains the purpose of each section of a scientific paper and the best order in which to read them.

Go to material

Strengths

Useful to help novice students approach a scientific paper for the first time.

Recommendations for use

Use in science seminar and research courses

Becoming a Savvy Scholar

Aimed at science and technology students this MITopencourseware provides a complete IL overview course with syllabus, assignments, and video tutorials.

Go to material

Strengths

A complete IL course for science students.

Concerns

It’s almost 10 years old. Some updating may be needed, but I didn’t notice anything.

Suggestions for use

Assign videos for students. Adapt assignments for your course.

YouSeeU

A video-based online tool designed for assessing oral communication. Instructors can assign students a variety of video activities. Some of these activities take over the students’ webcam in order to create the video of the student speaking. Here are a few of the activities available:

  • “Question & Answer- Capture an authentic response in our asynchronous environment to any question including case discussion, interviews, oral exams, role-play, and checks for student understanding. YouSeeU software takes control of student’s webcam in a one shot to answer scenario which cannot be paused, stopped, or re-submitted.
  • “Video Presentation– Enable students to deliver speeches and presentations including synchronized visual aides like power-point slides.
  • “Synchronous Activity– Students can schedule a real-time virtual meeting with classmates or individuals not enrolled in the course.  These meetings can include up to 7 shared webcams.
  • “In-class Recording– For the traditional classroom or communication course lab where presentations and speeches are recorded for peer review, self-analysis and time-stamped feedback.” (http://www.youseeu.com/platform-work-flows/)

Go to material

Strengths

You can set up the class, add students as group members, define the objective, and evaluate the process. You can also have the students involved evaluate each other during the project.

Concerns

Although the educator account is free, there is a fee for students to use this resource. For students to use this tool, they need a webcam and microphone, although they could also use an iPhone or tablet.

Recommendations for Use

This can be a particularly useful tool for people teaching students to speak a language, because students can record conversations they have online with other students or with native language speakers.

The video below provides a quick overview of how instructors can use YouSeeU. It was created by Michael Acatl, a designer and instructional technologist in higher education.

Copyright and Creative Commons (video)

Video explaining copyright and creative commons.

Go to material

The video is the first one on Richard Byrne’s blog on the topic. A copy of an evaluation version of the video is available here.

Strengths

Short video (less than 4 minutes) that explains the basics of copyright and creative commons.

Concerns

The material is very basic. Fair use is not discussed.

Recommendations for use

Because the focus of this video is on images, it may be particularly beneficial to have students watch this video if they are completing an assignment that may include images (e.g., a PowerPoint presentation).

Information Literacy VALUE Rubric

Rubric created for institutional-level use rather than for grading; however, you can easily adapt this rubric for grading.

Go to material

Read about and preview the rubric

Download the rubric. Although this link will take you to AAC&U’s store, there is no cost for the rubric.

Strengths

The VALUE rubrics were developed by Association of American Colleges & Universities (AAC&U) and refined through field testing at educational institutions across the country.

Concerns

Because the VALUE rubrics were meant to be used for institution wide assessment rather than for grading, the categories may seem rather broad. In addition, the rubric’s categories do no perfectly match the SLOs associated with Simpson’s IL designation.

Recommendations for use

View the rubric when developing an assignment. Be sure to add or remove categories so that the rubric fits your assignment.

Sample Assignments for IL

Provides Word files for assignments about topic selection, best source essay, information source comparison, periodical comparison, editorial assignment, annotated bibliographies, knowledge inventory, scholarly versus popular periodicals, summarize versus analyze, and portfolio reflective questions.

Go to material

The links to the files are located just above the references. Please note that the links look like text, they don’t look like links until you mouse over them.

Strengths

Because each assignment is in a Word file, assignments can be quickly adapted for any course. The site also includes a Word file that provides suggestions for assignments to use if you want your students to think critically, develop problem-solving skills, develop communication and presentation skills, understand the literature in a discipline, or minimize plagiarism.

Concerns

The assignments include cryptic references to the IL standards from the Association of College & Research Libraries. The standards being referenced can be view here: http://www.ala.org/acrl/standards/informationliteracycompetency.

Recommendations for use

Start by viewing Word file containing the assignment ideas that develop information literacy skills. After you have determined the type of assignment you want to use, select the appropriate assignment file.

Selecting Good Information

This tutorial describes the information cycle, publication formats (10 types), publication modes (3 types), expertise (3 types), categories of information by purpose (4 types), and selecting information. The tutorial includes video, quizzes, and links.

Go to materials

Strengths

Provides a very detailed break down of categories of information in many different ways.

Concerns

None.

Recommendations for use

May be assigned for students to work on their own. Includes material worth discussing in class.

Smart Research Strategies

A short tutorial on research strategies, includes games and quizzes. Focuses on where and how to find good information depending on your topic. When to use newspapers, encyclopedias, books, web pages, asking experts, etc.

Go to material

Strengths

Use quizzes to reinforce concepts. Focuses strongly on SLO#3.

Concerns

None.

Recommendations for use

Something students can do on their own.