An Introduction to Information Literacy for High School Educators

Submitted by Josh Rose on January 30th, 2017
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Short Description: 

Through a reading assignment, a brief lecture, and small group discussion, students training to be high school teachers learn about Information Literacy (IL) and Critical Information Literacy, and consider how they can apply these concepts within their disciplines and in their teaching practice. This short, 55-minute session was taught for a course called "Foundations in Secondary Education", offered through the Single Subject (Secondary) Teaching Credential program at Saint Mary's College of California's Kalmanovitz School of Education.

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Learning Outcomes: 

1. Students describe what the term "information literacy" means, where it comes from, and how it works.
2. Students describe a process model of information literacy such as the Big6.
3. Students compare information literacy with critical information literacy.
4. Students discuss how they might apply information literacy or critical information literacy concepts within their discipline and in their teaching practice.
5. Students plan how they might work with a high school librarian or media specialist to teach information literacy concepts in the classroom.


Individual or Group:

Course Context (e.g. how it was implemented or integrated): 

This session was in response to a faculty member's request for a lecture about information literacy.

Prior to the session, students were asked to read James Elmborg's "Critical information literacy: Implications for instructional practice" (2006). During a brief lecture students learn about Mike Eisenberg and Bob Berkowitz's Big6 model of information literacy. Students then form small discussion groups organized loosely by their discipline (i.e. math and science; language arts; social studies) and discuss and answer the following questions:

- What are some potential criticisms of information literacy standards?
- What does information literacy (IL) look like in your discipline?
- How might you apply IL (e.g., the Big6) within your discipline and in your teaching practice?
- How might you apply critical IL within your discipline and in your teaching practice?
- Does your practicum school have a dedicated librarian or media specialist? How might you work with him or her to teach IL or critical IL in the classroom?

Students were then asked to report out to the larger group about what they discussed.

Suggested Citation: 
Rose, Josh. "An Introduction to Information Literacy for High School Educators." CORA (Community of Online Research Assignments), 2017.