Communications in Information Literacy, Vol 5, No 2 (2011)

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Guiding Students from Consuming Information to Creating Knowledge: A Freshman English Library Instruction Collaboration

Carolyn B. Gamtso, Susanne F. Paterson

Abstract


In this paper we examine how faculty and librarians’ own approaches to and attitudes toward library tools, as well as their assumptions about student research practices, impede students’ ability to view learning as a recursive, creative, and ongoing inquiry. We propose first that librarians and faculty examine the assumptions of knowledge that characterize their respective university constituencies; second that they dismantle some of the disciplinary boundaries that separate these constituencies; third that they collaborate to craft analytical assignments that stress knowledge as process; and fourth that they transform library instruction from tool-based demonstrations to analytical, problem-based learning exercises. Finally, we describe how we have collaborated to craft a Freshman Composition library instruction session that moves beyond developing students’ information-gathering expertise by focusing on the development of transferable knowledge and critical thinking skills.

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