Information Literacy at BHCC With an eye on preparing students to succeed not only in the classroom, but in an increasingly technology-oriented workplace, the BHCC Library has developed a series of instruction sessions and interaction guidelines designed to integrate Information Literacy goals throughout the process of library research at BHCC. The BHCC Library follows ALA / ACRL definitions and standards for Information Literacy. We look at Information Literacy as a set of skills that:
- Enables people to recognize when information is needed.
- Enables people to locate, evaluate, and effectively use needed information.
- Forms the basis for lifelong learning.
- Is common to all disciplines, all learning environments, and all levels of education.
This definition informs everything from the style of interactions at the Information Services Desk to the design of Information Literacy workshops. Our goal is always to emphasize the process of research over the outcome of finding an answer.
Step One -- Orientation
The BHCC Library gives instruction on multiple levels. Ideally, the library meets new students with a library orientation sessions. These are not designed as Information Literacy sessions; rather the library sees orientation sessions as an entirely separate type of instruction. Orientation sessions emphasize the technical, basic infrastructure aspects of library research: the basics of getting a library card, the locations of library copiers, etc. We stress to our students and faculty on these orientation tours that we are not attempting to give the entirety of the information-seeking process in on session. Rather, we are giving people the basic technical tools they need to begin discussing the information-seeking process.
Step Two -- Integrate Information Literacy in multiple ways
The Library offers Information Literacy sessions in three main formats:
- One-on-one student sessions -- available via sign-up sheet at the Public Services Desk. Focus on the specific research task of the requesting student.
- Subject-focused workshop sessions -- designed collaboratively with a BHCC instructor, tailored to the specific information-seeking needs and issues attached to a class assignment.
The bulk of the library's work in Information Literacy outreach is accomplished through the Workshop program, which serves 4,000 to 5,000 students per calendar year.