Outside the Box

Outside the Box

Originally uploaded by Wandering Eyre.

Opening Plenary, First Morning
As always, my comments to speakers are in [ ].

“Towards and Understanding of Information Literacy as Personal Practice”

Toto we’re not in Kansas anymore. Welcome to the land of Immersion.

[Actually, I have been waiting for the funny Baptism references. Alas, I think no one else wants to make those jokes except for me.

Opening Objectives:
Identify and reflect upon the nature of information literacy in order to begin to develop a personal vision
Review fundamental content, theories, and methods
Practice group processes in order to develop new approaches
Identify the perspectives of a variety of stakeholders
Actively engage in order to prepare for the next 4 days

US Higher ED 1860 –
Classical Curriculum to elective curriculum
Small/no libraries to Extensive research collections
Standard core courses to Variable pathways
Offspring of the elite to More democratic access

The 7 Ages of Library Instruction
Age 1: Reader’s Advisory – General reference service better serves expanding population
Age 2: Orientation/Tours – Growth in the library building slows at end of 1960’s
Age 3: Tools and More Tools – too many tools to remember
Age 4:Concepts – introduction of OPACS and early CD-ROMs points out of need for flexible reasoning
Age 5: Critical Thinking – Scattering of information control die to rapid growth of the Internet
Age 6: Technology – Sense of community/connection necessary for learning is being lost (learners are distributed)
Age 7: Information Literacy – a movement

What about age 8: issues of definition? Issues if leadership? Issues of advocacy?


After our break, we watched a report, originally broadcast on ABC’s Nightline about the IDEO corporation. They were given the task to build a better shopping cart in a week. Their company is designed to be non-linear. The managers are only there as facilitators, but participate on the same level as employees in most situations. What I loved about this video is it showed what is possible when a company or an organization truly tries to be innovative and gives people true freedom.

The shopping cart is tyranny!

The activity after the video is to do brainstorming, or a “deep dive” as IDEO calls it, about a floundering information literacy program. What are the things we would need to do, examine, consider? What actions would we take?

I had a great group and we decided, after much discussion, that library tools are built for librarians, not for students. We wanted a portal of sorts that included:

  • A dynamic tutorial assessment tool – students would take an assessment and then would only be presented with tutorials for areas which they needed help.
  • The ability to create OPML files that would push information to the student based on the classes they were taking.
  • A post-assessment tool to see if the new portal was working.
  • A gateway to the library so that students can connect to a librarian in a variety of ways when they need help.

Lunch was boxed sandwiches from a company I love called Compleat Cuisine. We gave about thirty more minutes of downtime.

Go check out the other TX Immersion pictures here.