Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Back in the saddle

I meant to begin writing when the semester started, but the classes began in earnest as soon as the semester did. So far, I have taught several English 101 classes, along with many Freshman Seminars and other freshman-level classes. It's been nice to teach again, though things are very busy. This semester, I've added Academic Integrity to my list of expertises. I've been fortunate to lead three workshops for the Office of Adult Students, and I'll be teaching about Academic Integrity to some University Studies classes later in the semester. This is very different than the classes I normally teach, but it's nice to flex some different muscles. Hopefully, I'll have time to include some more substantive content as the semester progresses, but for now, this will have to do!

Saturday, May 3, 2008

9,000 Freshman, One Common Foundation: Academic Integrity

Leslee Shell, Joseph Buenker, and Julie Tharp from Arizona State University.

ASU has 60,000 students on 4 campuses. Campuses used to be autonomous, but new president and provost wanted to have "One University in Many Places". Now most students take courses on more than one campus, single accreditation, single Senate, increased collaboration.
Created ASU 101 course, required for all first-semester freshmen. Basically taught what it's like being a freshman at ASU. Also have an FYE program, not required, but for at-risk and other students. Also had Freshman Seminars.
ASU 101 had over 400 sections, taught by faculty, administrators, advisors, etc.
Librarians decided they needed to be involved, and that academic integrity was a good way to do it.
Academic integrity is more than just plagiarism. Surveys show that serious test cheating has become a bigger problem over time, while plagiarism has remained steady.
Peers are largest factors in deterring or encouraging cheating.

Students cheat because of ignorance, not invested in learning, situational ethics, low risk of detection (Auer and Kupar, 2001)
What students say: Time pressure, ease of cut-and-paste plagiarism, dislike for the class or professor (Lester and Diekhoff, 2002), low risk of detection, peer behavior (McCabe, Trevino and Butterfield, 2001)
Who cheats: HS students cheat at a higher rate, more widespread at larger campuses, frat/sorority and college athletes are more likely to.

AI Module: Out-of-class assignment first. They created a scenario for each AI violation, instructors chose 5 that best fit their class, then students watched a PPT, discussion board, and quiz. They wanted students to be able to tell which uses of information were honest or dishonest. Professors could choose which parts were completed online or in class. This one was required of all 400 sections.
They also created a plagiarism module, which wasn't required. Consisted of handout, test, discussion.

My presentation this afternoon

This afternoon, I'm presenting with Sean Cordes and Brian Clark from Western Illinois University. The presentation is called Game On (and on): Adapting and Extending the Open Source Information Literacy Game. I was very fortunate that they asked me to participate in their presentation. Basically, they took the Information Literacy Game, which Scott Rice and I created, jazzed it up and adapted it into a media literacy game. I won't be blogging our session, but I think it will be really good.

Plenary Panel: The Future of Libraries in Higher Education

I'm not truly blogging this panel, but I did want to highlight the most important points.
  • Libraries must market themselves to remain relevant
  • Libraries can't "own" information literacy.
  • Librarians must remain involved on campus especially with regards to strategic direction of the university.
  • Don't be afraid to ask for things.
  • Brand the library's website.
  • Get involved without being asked to.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Fantasy Sports: The Road to Information Literacy Championships

A bit of background: I avidly play fantasy football (my completely obsessed husband would argue with the avidly part). I've played for 5 or 6 years, and I even played fantasy golf for 2 years. So I'm very interested in this idea.

By Paul Waechli (writer of the Research Quest blog) and Sara Holladay
First of all, here is Paul's blog entry on this talk

Fantasy football is research.
New opponent every week, check rosters (strengths/weaknesses), evaluate players, trade if necessary, collect information on matchups, weather, etc, form lineup, see how you did
It's about research, not football
91% of fantasy players play football
96% are male, 91% are white, average age is 40, 71% have bachelor's degree or higher

For people who don't play, you have a draft, then you choose your starting lineup, for which you get points based on how they play (yards rushing, passing, etc.)
Trend is toward drafting individual defensive players instead of whole defenses.

People spend an average of 5 hrs/week researching and playing
They use a variety of sources (magazines, discussion, blogs, fantasy shows)- ACRL standard

Incorporating IL into fantasy football
University of Dubuque- did orientation for football players before other students arrived, typical at first, but in 2007 changed to be football-themed. "Will the Madden curse strike again?"
They talk about where to find information and how to evaluate. They did a 2 minute drill to find as much as they could. Then discussed and decided who should be the overall #3 pick in a fantasy fb draft.
They asked for 3 criteria for evaluating resources, 60% named all 3, 80% named at least 2.
93% had very positive impression of librarians.

Ideas for outreach: Library league, draft prep workshop
Other places incorporating fantasy football: University of Central Missouri, Cuyahoga County Public Library

Roadblocks: NCAA can pose problems. It's not prohibited unless there are prizes or an entry fee.
Students may not know much about FF
Librarians: limited experience
Faculty/Admin: Perceived value, gambling
They're putting together a Fantasy Football toolkit for ALA.

This was a fun session with some great ideas for taking something students already do and incorporating it into information literacy instruction.

Breakout: We Go Together

Presented by Val Ontell, Mesa San Diego College (a large community college)

They do workshops, a 1-hour, and one-shots

She got together with an ENG 101 instruction about setting up a learning community with Val's 1-hour class.
Combined syllabus, met back-to-back, had combined learning outcomes
ENG instructor asked for research dialogue, she asked for an annotated bib, including an evaluative part, did they use it in their research dialogue or not.
Marketing- flyers to everyone, posters, counseling center ads in course schedule, school newspaper.
Problem: students had to register for both classes separately, so some just registered for one
Used both classroom and library lab, though they didn't take up lab space unless it was necessary.

13 out of 15 students made it to the end of the semester. ENG instructor felt the quality of final projects was better than his normal 101 classes.
After third try, they finally got combined course registration number.

What they learned: Find someone with whom you are compatible, allow plenty of time for planning, expect to encounter problems, get one course number, be prepared to compromise, get the support of the administration, be prepared for small classes, publicize publicize publicize.

What a cool session! It was everything I hoped. This totally makes me wish we had the one-hour LI class so we could do cool stuff like this. This is the class/lab model I would love to be a part of.

Breakout Session: We're Out of Time! Extending the One-Shot Session VIrtually

By Eric Garcia and Danielle Skaggs, California State University, Northridge

Wanted to create tutorials because of lack of time in one-shot.
Asked students to complete short survey after class, then sent tutorials based on responses (basically a one-minute paper).
Some responses were about the resources, many questions were about the assignment. They let professor know about confusion.
After pilot, they got rid of one question and changed the second question to be more clearly about Library materials.

Used Camtasia because they already had it, ADA compliance
Compliance: Captioning, Description of visuals, keyboard commands
Reality: Camtasia 4 isn't very compliant with keyboard commands
Other problems: Sometimes in rooms with no computers, ran out of time, tech problems
Changes: paper form, changed to movie file (instead of Camtasia file)

The idea they presented was interesting, but I wanted more. The presentation was very brief, and they weren't planning to show a tutorial until someone asked.

Breakout Session: Assessing One-Shot Instruction

Jennie E. Callas, Randolph-Macon College

Interested in assessing teaching effectiveness.
She teaching introductory English classes
All freshmen take year-long interdisciplinary FYE course.
Students take Eng class along with FYE course.
Eng class has 5 required assignments, one of which is annotated bib.
Jennie was new at position and wanted to see how she was doing. Also she wanted students to think about the library instruction after the assignment was completed. Mostly Likert scale questions, with a few open-ended questions. She hoped to show results to instructors if she noticed that any part was particularly difficult.
Started in Spring 2006.
That first semester, she learned that students didn't know why they were doing assignment. Some said library instruction was too far in advance of due date. Some students thought particular types of resources are hard to find, so they wanted more time devoted to that. She suggested a follow-up Q and A session where students could ask questions about resources they were having difficulty locating.
Changes to assignment: Resources were divided into print and online. Newspapers were under print, but sources were online. Heading should be removed. She suggested they remove requirement to find scholarly article that isn't available in print. Also, clarifying corporate authors was important.

Fall 2006: Likert scores were higher
Spring 2007: Likert scores were a little lower, but that was since it was in the spring 40% had already had library instruction.
Fall 2007: Met with Eng instructors before semester began. Told them about evals, timing, etc.

Changes: Some instructors are willing to make changes, others less so. Professors have taken advice on how to explain assignment, and some bring classes to class more than once. She has changed the way she approaches spring classes if cohort has already been there with FYE class.

Benefits of post-assignment assessment: Helps students reflect on whole process. Provides faculty with evidence of difficulties.

Jennie provided some great ideas for assessing teaching. I really like the idea of assessing instruction after the assignment was due, because then students really understand how the session influenced the product. Very cool ideas!

Live from LOEX: "Creative collaboration: Setting the course for the future of library instruction"

This is the Friday morning plenary session, by Laurel Ofstein from the Department of Management at DePaul.
Roadblocks to creativity: "It's not in the budget.", "We've always done it THIS way."
Collaboration is here to stay. In order to collaborate, be open to possibilities, including many viewpoints, start with unusual ideas.
The climate for creativity: Challenge and involvement, freedom, idea time, idea support (resources vs. automatic no), degree of conflict, discussion, humor and play, trust and openness, risk-taking.
Dreaming of an ideal tomorrow: Opportunity statement should be broad, brief and beneficial, consider the outcomes: "wouldn't it be nice if..." (WIBNI).
How to improve the MBA program, use WIBNI to brainstorm. She picks the craziest one and looks at who would be affected, then look at In What Ways Might We...
We did activity where we did WIBNI for the future of library instruction. Our ideas tended to involve online learning, integration at the course or university level,
Assumption reversal: Make three basic assumptions and reverse one assumption.

This session provided some great ideas about ideas and creativity. It definitely got me thinking about how to start thinking about an ideal situation and work backward to a logical beginning step.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

LOEX bound!

I'm hopping in my car very shortly to drive to the airport, to fly to Chicago, to get to LOEX. I'll be blogging the sessions I attend while I'm there. I can't wait!

Monday, April 21, 2008

Last Session of the Semester!

On Wednesday, I taught my last library instruction session of the semester. When that happens, there's always that brief moment of "how am I going to fill my time for the next four months?" panic, but that's always quickly replaced by my huge mental to-do list. Before I get swept up into that, I wanted to reflect briefly on my library instruction evolution.
I'm happy with where I am on my journal away from traditional bibliographic instruction. I'm glad I'm letting students explore on their own before I jump in with my two cents. I'm also glad to be incorporating more discussion and group work into these sessions. It's still hard to "let go" sometimes, but students have definitely seemed more engaged in the sessions. There have definitely been far fewer sleepyheads in my classes this semester, despite the large number of 8:00 classes (what's up with that?). So my journey, while not complete, is definitely headed in the right direction.
Also, I'm heading to LOEX at the beginning of May, which I plan to blog, and Immersion this summer, which will probably provide me with plenty of work to do. I'm really excited about this, and even starting to look forward to the whirling chaos that is the fall semester. I guess that's how I know I'm in the right field!

Friday, April 4, 2008

Busy teaching

I haven't posted in a while because I've been busy teaching. I figured that was a reasonable excuse. The class load is slowing down and the conference load is picking up. As far as the classes go, I'm still providing as much exploration time as I can and supplementing that with tips from me to search more efficiently. I don't have any data on how it's working, but students seem more engaged in what they're doing. Even at 8 AM. And that's not bad.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Information literacy and future librarians

My colleague Lynda and I recently taught a session to our reference interns on information literacy. A bit of background: our library has an internship program where LIS students help to staff the reference desk. As part of this program, they also have weekly, one-hour training sessions on a variety of topics relating to using various reference tools (databases, reference books, etc.). All that being said, a session on information literacy seems a strange fit. After all, we're not teaching information literacy skills per se at the desk. But, most of these students hope to work in academic libraries after graduation, so learning the basics of information literacy is vital. Many different librarians in academic libraries teach, not just reference librarians. We felt that getting students thinking about information literacy would help them when they begin their careers, even if it doesn't improve their skills at the reference desk.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

On Boring Database Demos

There was an interesting thread on the ILI listserv a few weeks ago about "boring database demos". It ended up as a discussion of how to make library instruction sessions more interactive and less show and tell. And while the discussion centered on large classes where students do not have computers in front of them, it got me thinking about the sessions I do in our library's computer lab. I know students are following along with me, typing and clicking when I do, but is that enough? I think the answer is yes. And no.

I think the Follow the Leader approach to library instruction is helpful, but it's most effective when used in conjunction with opportunities for student exploration.

For a recent class, I adopted an idea from my co-worker Lynda where I divided a class into small groups, gave each a simple topic, and told them to find a relevant article in a database they'd never used before. I also asked them to note what they liked and didn't like about the database and how it was like or different from other databases we'd used. Background: I was teaching them America: History and Life (ABC-CLIO), and in a previous session with the same class, we'd used EBSCO databases. This brief exercise led to students having their first successful experience without my help and led to some discussion about the database and its features. I followed up with a more complex search that students seemed to understand pretty well. This is certainly something I would try again.

In my next post, I'll talk about some other activities I've come up with or adapted from my wonderful colleagues.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Why blog?

As an avid blog reader, I guess it should have occurred to me before now to start one myself. I guess I'm not so concerned with anyone actually reading this, I just think a blog is a good way to record my thoughts on library instruction and information literacy as I have them. I often have good ideas (or at least I think they're good ideas), which I promptly forget. Hopefully, this will help with that. Also, since I'm a confirmed lurker on many blogs and listservs, I want to use this space to react to things I read elsewhere. We'll see if I actually do that.