I was lucky enough to attend this years LILAC (Librarians’ Information Literacy Annual Conference) this Monday. Here is my summary of the sesssions I attended.
Creating time for learning: strategies for flipping your library classroom.
Erin Davis and Kacy Lundstrom (Utah State University).
Erin Davis and Kacy Lundstrom described their experience with experimenting with this teaching model. Students are sent instructional videos prior to the teaching session so that the teachers don’t spend their time demonstrating. The teaching time is spent with the students working on researching their own projects.
The session was run partly as an introduction to the idea of the flipped classroom and partly as a workshop to enable participants to begin on designing their own session.
There was discussion on how to ensure the students have done the homework in advance (for example making completing the videos monitored in the VLE). At Utah the videos are created so that the students have to click in the relevant part of the screen to continue the demonstration, mimicking the effect of doing the search live.
One interesting suggestion from the floor was to ask students to bring in their own examples of what they have done and showing others. This is beneficial as they nearly always haven’t all done the same thing, and might learn from seeing each others alternative approaches.
The bulk of the teaching I do with the medics, biological sciences and psychology runs along similar lines, although we do both parts in the classroom. At the moment we give students instructions to follow themselves rather than videos, partly because making the videos was perceived as too time consuming. Whether that is the case is certainly worth revisiting though, especially if we are going to use them for many sessions.
It seems that in Utah a lot of the teaching done that would be done by learning development (for instance writing and synthesis of information) was being done by the librarians in their teaching sessions. I have been thinking about how we could work more alongside our colleagues in learning development as there is so much overlap in the skills. Perhaps there is scope for asking them to participate in some of our teaching?
The Keynote Steve Wheeler (@timbuckteeth)
This was one of those zeitgiesty ‘where things are going’ talks done by a speaker who is good at this. As it was full of soundbites and intended to be controversial I’ve listed some of the statements and ideas that stood out to me:
• Einstein quote ‘I never teach my pupils. I only attempt to provide the conditions in which they can learn’. This applies to teaching but also the function of libraries more widely.
• Do we like books or do we like reading? Just because students don’t read books doesn’t mean they don’t read.
• Any library that could be replaced by a computer should be…Libraries are more than storage house of books = content, services, space, skills
• The future is user generated content. In education this allows students to participate in culture.
• Transliteracy defined as the ability to communicate equally well whatever the platform and information literacy is a part of this.
• Students still need to understand how to check if something is true. Darwikianism – survival of the fittest online. Wikipedia = breadth. Peer reviewed content = depth. Students need to know both and cross reference between them.
I particularly like the idea of getting the students to check if something is true as a teaching activity, especially as an opening task to get students attention. It integrates the aspects of where to look as well as evaluation, so I’ll be looking into this.
Embedding digital literacy at Leeds Metropolitan University
Erin Nephin & Wendy Luker
Digital literacy as a graduate attribute for employability was launched institution wide at Leeds Met last year. The graduate attributes at Leeds met are: having a global outlook, being enterprising, and digital literacy. Every module at the University had to be reviewed to ensure that these graduate attributes are embedded and this enormous task was supported from the top of the institution.
The librarians wrote a learning and teaching guide for digital literacy for academics and also ibook which explains the process and stakeholders for instance learning and teaching or learning technologists.
The whole process has resulted in very positive results for the library and information literacy as awareness raising with academics and also staff in other roles such as learning technologists and administrators.
The library also ran training on topics such as ‘Using OERs to support your module’, ‘Current awareness tools and searching’, ‘Finding business and company info for employment’, and ‘Managing your profile online’.
I don’t’ know of many institutions that have moved this far with digital literacy and employability. I liked the training session ideas, there is alot of scope for development.
Supporting information literacy and study skills with Open Educational Resources (OER)
Vivien Sieber and Miriam Tarron,
This workshop was in practice a session in exploring the Jorum website and resources and considering the copyright and practical implications if we wanted to use them.
The fact that producing good elearning is expensive was given as a reason to use OERs. Whilst that might be true, it isn’t a good reason to use either poor OERs, or use good ones in the wrong way, which will be counterproductive and ultimately more costly. I admit I was surprised to learn that powerpoints and word documents are actually OERs, I expected more ‘dynamic’ content. Likewise I was surprised to hear from those sitting around me that the copyright on some of the resources said they could only be linked to rather than repurposed; I had been under the impression that repurposing was a crucial feature of OERs.
I have to confess in the past I’ve looked at this website and not seen much I would really want to repurpose. When I looked again I realised that I could probably make use of things there, in particular quizzes that could be used in teaching or short animations to illustrate a point or put into our own elearning. A resource such as this is much needed. It should continue to grow so I would recommend returning to it to see whats there.