EDUC 766

Instructional Strategies & Assessment Methods

Project Overview

The questions librarians answer during a reference consultation range from very basic to very specific. The latter are best answered with the help of a librarian, and the former are questions that require little guidance but, frequently, make up the bulk of the questions a librarian answers. According to studies by Project Information Literacy and by ESBCO, librarians aren’t fully meeting the needs of their students through instruction and reference consultations. First, students aren’t always coming to librarians when they need to do research, and second, even if they are trying to use library services, those services are too complicated and they might not be available during the times students need them the most. In order to address these concerns, this project will attempt to meet students’ information needs in a manner that allows for continual assistance whether or not librarians are available while using existing library resources and materials.

Considering how confusing and overloaded library websites can be, this project intends to be a one-stop place where simple research and library-related questions can be answered through the use of videos, presentations, and/or guided tutorials. The primary users of this resource are expected to be first-year and international college students. These students are between the ages of 18 and 22 years of age, have a high school diploma or equivalent, have little or no experience using an academic library and are just beginning to learn about the research process. According to Project Information Literacy, a big portion of students in this age range use mobile devices to access information resources; therefore, particular attention and testing will be given to the mobile version of the resource to ensure users are using it as intended and instructional needs are still being met. Use of the instructional materials developed for this resource won’t be restricted to the primary audience. The content therein will also help other college students, community users, and faculty members that need to learn about library services or the research process.

Content delivery will take place online and, depending on how it is used, without much guidance from an instructor; therefore, concise and thorough explanations and guidance will be provided while still encouraging critical thinking whenever possible. It should be noted that use of this resources is not a requirement; instead, this resource is being developed to cover any gaps that library instruction and reference might leave. As such, additional steps will be taken to promote the project and its benefits and advantages. In short, this project will:

Create an organized, concise, and informative online platform where college students can independently answer simple research and library related questions through the use of text, multimedia, and interactive content, and learn about the research process and the many library services available to them.