Librarians and faculty at Lafayette are increasingly concerned about the need to graduate “information literate” students, those who know how to find, evaluate, and use information and who understand the ways in which information is created, disseminated, and organized in our society. The goal of the Lafayette Libraries’ Information Literacy Grants is to encourage faculty to develop more classes in which students have these opportunities to develop information literacy skills.
Lafayette students are introduced to a few information literacy concepts in their First Year Seminar meetings with librarians, and some have an additional opportunity to develop information literacy skills in upper-level classes as faculty teach them how to use discipline-specific sources of information. But students need additional and repeated opportunities to find and evaluate information, to learn from experts how information is disseminated and gathered in a field, to examine their own methods and skills in seeking and using information, and to explore some of the economic, social, legal, and ethical issues that arise from new methods of producing and distributing information. Since 2002, 47 faculty have received information literacy grants.
Faculty who wish to add information literacy to any existing class above the 100-level to be taught in the spring semester are invited to apply for a grant. Those who are awarded the grants will receive a $1,500 stipend. To be eligible, the class must include projects in which students gather, evaluate, and use information; involve collaboration with a librarian; and provide opportunities for students to do at least one of the following:
Ideally, information literacy concepts will be woven into class discussions throughout the semester and each project that involves gathering or using information, but the class should also include one or two sessions devoted to information literacy. Students’ work on information literacy should be part of their grade.
To apply for a grant, write a two to three page description of how you plan to enhance a class with an information literacy component and send it to Lijuan Xu at Skillman Library. Include the name and number of the class that you are planning to enhance as well as the name of the librarian with whom you plan to collaborate. The deadline for spring 2021 will be announced in fall 2020. Questions may be addressed to Lijuan Xu at email@example.com or extension 5152.