Faculty Voices on Information Literacy: Interview-Based Research Exploring Information Literacy Instruction Practices, Attitudes, and Perceptions among University Faculty. Conference presentation given at WILU 2011, University of Regina, 1-3 June, 2011.
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This presentation will share highlights from a qualitative research study at York University, based on semi-structured interviews, and conducted primarily during the researcher’s recent sabbatical leave. Study participants include twenty four faculty in different disciplines including business, social sciences and humanities, and the sciences. Participants in this study all teach undergraduate courses where library research is an expectation in assignments and projects. 50% of the faculty interviewed currently arrange for information literacy (IL) instruction with the library, while 50% do not. The researcher will review results of this study in aggregate, while also reflecting on differences in perceptions and behaviours of those interviewed based on broad disciplinary affiliation and participation/non-participation in the library’s IL program. The session will also examine the extent to which the findings of this study either corroborate or differ from results of similar studies uncovered by a recent review of the library literature. Implications of the study for research and practice will be shared. Specific findings emerging from this study to be explored in this presentation include faculty perceptions of the meaning and value of IL instruction and faculty experiences of IL competency levels among undergraduate students. Faculty’s observations on how undergraduate students approach the research process, including challenges they experience, will be shared. The role of the research assignment in fostering IL competencies in faculty’s estimation will be discussed. Findings regarding the level and nature of faculty engagement in teaching IL competencies, either by themselves or in collaboration with a librarian, will also be reviewed. Finally, faculty beliefs regarding optimal models for future planning and delivery of IL instruction in a university context will be shared.
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