Notes from Info Lit Discussion at 09 ACRL OR/WA Menucha Conference

These are notes from the Information Literacy discussion Thursday night at the 2008 ACRL OR/WA conference at Menucha. Thanks for taking notes, Camila! And thank you to Anna, Corey, and Allen for sharing information about your current projects. I’ll paste notes here and attach as a word doc. 

Notes from Info Lit discussion at 2009 ACRL OR/WA Conference at Menucha

Dr. Allen McKiel from Western Oregon University introduced the Cooperative Library Instruction Project (CLIP)

  • Allen began with a refresher on comprehensive (vertical and horizontal) information literacy instruction that ACRL has listed as a “best practice” for the better part of 10 years.
  • For many of us, this was untenable when first announced and subsequently dismissed by many librarians.
  • Technology has changed the feasibility of IL integration and online tutorials offer hope that this might be manageable.
  • Even with technology, staffing limitations may prevent tutorials from being produced and maintained.
  • Benefits of tutorials:
    • Do not take up class time
    • Can provide “just in time” instruction, embedded where the students can access and re-access the materials.
  • Downside of tutorials:
    • Creation and maintenance
  • Can cooperation work?
    • Previous efforts have failed
    • Everyone has favorite tools & techniques
    • We have to compromise
    • Effort, patience, time required
    • Also need commitment of resources and management buy-in
  • Thoughts on what might work
    • Standards and procedures for cooperation
      • Must permit multiple
        • Technologies
        • Pedagogical methods
        • Content priorities
    • Still need to be able to promote sharing & the ability to reuse
    • Also need an effective repository
  • CLIP grant (Cooperative Library Instruction Project)
    • starting with 4 institutions (diverse)
    • trying to create an initial model/ set of standards
    • initial offering of tutorials
    • an administrative framework for continuing the cooperative
    • hoping to use structure under the  Orbis Cascade Alliance and eventually make accessible to institutions outside of the Alliance as well
  • Is there a specific platform in mind? No.
  • People who are motivated to make tutorials, usually have the skills or will learn them, it is the content/pedagogical stuff that takes the most time. A basic text file with info like ‘include this this and this’ would be a big help
  • Where is the pedagogy coming from? Hopefully this will come from the ideas of the participants. Also, we are asking for input from faculty.
  • See for updates and to add your input  
  • Annotated, vetted list on the literature on this topic would be really useful. Perhaps a wiki? Where folks could share their opinions and reviews.
  • Many libs are creating institutional repositories as a library service. Part of the issue of getting folks interested is having content already there. If this project could take advantage of an existing repository, that could be a win-win. That would enable the project to focus more on the content.


Corey Johnson from Washington State University introduced the Information Literacy Project

  • Has created a space geared toward 5 information literacy standards, includes assessment
  • The WSU library works with professors on their research projects and directs students to this space to take tutorials in the context of their courses
  • These tutorials are available for anyone to view
  • Students pick out their class and section
  • Work through 4 areas
  • Mix of tutorials and handouts
  • Intermediate page that explains how to use the subsequent pages (which may come from a variety of places)
  • Last part is assessment (multiple choice quiz or textbox, which is an assignment)
  • Instructor side lets professor view scores and answers
  • Quizzes and essays are written to a database. Quizzes are graded automatically, although open-ended answers have to be graded.
  • To get some classes started, they have volunteered to grade answers.
  • This has given them data, something that they have not previously had.
  • With this project, they were trying to find a scalable way to reach thousands of students
  • How many people working on it? 1.5 FTE librarians and one student for about 8 hours/week
  • This semester, there are about 3500 students working in the space
  • The project is about 1.5 years in
  • There is the potential for students to see the same tutorial information more than once, so WSU is trying to provide a customizable assignment.
  • Also working on providing “skins” so that students do not say that they have done it before just because it looks the same

Anna from Mount Hood Community College (MHCC) introduced the articulation work of the Greater Portland Areas Information Literacy Group

  • Representatives from PSU, and three Portland Area feeder schools (Mount Hood Community College, Portland Community College and Chemeketa Community College) have been meeting to work on articulation
  • For the past 2 years there has been a state-wide Information Literacy Summit and last year state-wide standards were adopted.
  • Michele’s blog has a link to this project
  • This project is exciting due to lots of overlap in student populations and shared-students
  • Also “arms” librarians who hear “I did this already”

 Also in WebCT and Blackboard, modules can be released one at a time, so she is working with the distance education person to embed a basic tutorial they have to take so that before they can get to their class. Works for distance education, but not really a way to do it face-to-face yet.


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