All library sessions are tailored to specific class assignments and most often include hands-on active learning activities that enable student to practice their research and information literacy skills, as well as begin their research with the librarian and course instructor present. Library sessions may cover any number of topics, such as how to search the library's databases and how to critically evaluate sources.
In the Classroom
Classroom sessions are best scheduled to take place at the point of need for students; so, realistically, a couple of weeks before a paper or project is due. They may also be scaffolded to fit within a research process or sequence, such as a session on literature reviews prior to an annotated bibliography assignment, a session on advanced search strategies before the due date of a first draft, and an open lab session before the due date of a final draft. These sessions could be an entire class period or shorter depending on the needs and requirements of the course and assignments.
The purpose of the library classroom, located in the upper level of Geisel Library, is to provide an active learning space for students' information literacy development. Up to 24 persons fit comfortably in the space with moveable furniture that may be configured to support various pedagogical needs. The space includes laptops to facilitate hands-on exploration and is equipped with a wide range of instructional technologies that make sessions more interactive and effective. Technologies in the classroom include:
- a wifi touch-enabled projector/screen,
- document camera,
- wireless keyboard/mouse,
- surround-sound audio system, and
- instructor console.
Contact John Dillon with questions or for more information about the technology in the classroom.
Classroom Use Policy
Use of the classroom is limited to purposes that support the mission of the library’s Research and Information Literacy Instruction program. The space is not intended for use as a regular classroom for faculty and instructors. Exceptions to this policy will be reviewed on an as needed basis.
Contact Hannah Cabullo with questions or for more information about using the Library Classroom.
Librarians may be "embedded" in a particular course through Sakai. This is useful for research-intensive courses where students would benefit from ongoing access to research help from a librarian, extending beyond a single library instruction session. The departmental liaison may be given a "Librarian" status in any Sakai course, which enables him or her to provide help in the following ways:
- Create announcements
- Add links to relevant resources, including websites, articles, and databases
- Respond to student follow-up questions after a library session
- Create polls and quizzes to assess students' information literacy
Embedding a librarian in Sakai is the only way for librarians to provide research support for online students.
Librarians may also be "embedded" in face-to-face courses by attending classes as a participant observer to field students questions about their research, or provide periodical and scheduled 1:1 or small group instruction outside of class as students work on research projects, etc.
SLIPs are Short Library Instruction Presentations.
The format and purpose of SLIPs varies widely and is customized to the specific needs of a course or assignment. SLIPs are a great option to provide students with targeted instruction on a single skill or type of resource at the point of need. They can either provide a crash-course on how to use a handful of resources needed for a particular assignment, or focus on a specific issue such as choosing and refining a topic, researching current events, evaluating websites, finding primary sources, or using the EndNote citation manager.
SLIPs are most effective when used as "refreshers" or "reminders" for students within a broader information literacy landscape within a discipline. For example, if a particular resource or skill was introduced in the Freshman year, a SLIP may be used in a Sophomore year course to provide students the opportunity to practice the skill or their knowledge of a resource before an assignment or paper is due.
There are numerous ways that librarians may support faculty in facilitating students' information literacy skill development, such as:
- Assignment co-development: A librarian works with an instructor to develop a research assignment, then conducts hands-on sessions in which students are introduced to the best resources for completing the assignment and given time to work on their own topics.
- Evening workshops: The instructor encourages students to attend a research workshop outside of class time, in which students are given basic instruction followed by an opportunity to work on their research with a librarian available to help.
- Individual or group appointments: The instructor encourages students to make one-on-one or group appointments with a liaison librarian for help on any aspect of the library research process.
Online Research Guides
Librarians can develop web-based guides to the best library and online resources for a particular research assignment. These guides are created on the LibGuides platform, which is visually appealing, easy to navigate, and allows for the incorporation of multimedia and dynamic content.
Not just simple lists of resources, these teaching-oriented guides include annotations explaining the value of particular resources and guidance on how to use them. They also place resources in the context of the larger research process. Course guides can either stand alone as instructional tools or reinforce and supplement the lessons of a library instruction session.
Subject Guides and Tutorials
Geisel Library has created a number of guides and tutorials that are available on the Research Guides webpage. These include guides on how to find specific types of sources, evaluate websites, and distinguish scholarly from popular sources, among others. Also available are video tutorials with audio voice-overs that explain how to use the most important library tools and how to find items in the library. Faculty may wish to link to relevant guides and tutorials from their Sakai course pages.