Communications in Information Literacy, Vol 9, No 2 (2015)

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Ideology and Critical Self-Reflection in Information Literacy Instruction

Jessica Critten


Information literacy instruction traditionally focuses on evaluating a source for bias, relevance, and timeliness, and rightfully so; this critical perspective is vital to a well-formed research process. However, this process is incomplete without a similar focus on the potential biases that the student brings to his or her interactions with information. This paper describes a case study of a semester-long information literacy course that utilized neo-Marxist philosopher Louis Althusser’s figurations of ideology and ideological state apparatuses as a site of critical self-reflection for students and a method by which students could become empowered to recognize themselves as not just consumers, but shapers of discourse.

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