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Posts tagged ‘information literacy’

Courtesy of the American Library Association

Clarence Maybee, Information Literacy Specialist, Purdue University Libraries

Dr. Clarence Maybee, Associate Professor and Information Literacy Specialist, Purdue University Libraries and School of Information Studies

The Library Instruction Round Table (LIRT) of the American Library Association has selected Purdue University Libraries and School of Information Studies Associate Professor Clarence Maybee as the 2019 recipient of the LIRT Librarian Recognition Award. The Librarian Recognition Award was created to recognize an individual’s contribution to the development, advancement, and support of information literacy and instruction.

Since becoming a librarian in 2005, Maybee (who serves as a information literacy specialist at Purdue University) has made rich contributions to the profession through his strong publication and service record, as well as his exemplary record of program creation and dissemination.

His participation in the Purdue University IMPACT (Instruction Matters: Purdue Academic Course Transformation) program — a course-development program through which classroom instructors collaborate with librarians and others to improve their courses through active learning, information literacy, and other research-based educational practices — was particularly noteworthy. The program was named by The Chronicle of Higher Education as a 2018 Innovator, one of “six programs to change classroom culture.”

Closely aligned is his scholarship on informed learning design, which is intended to guide the creation of assignments so that students intentionally learn to use information sources at the same time that they are learning course content. In 2018, he authored the book “IMPACT Learning: Librarians at the Forefront of Change in Higher Education.

Maybee has also demonstrated his commitment to the library instruction community through his leadership efforts in both the Association of College and Research Libraries’ Instruction Section and the Immersion Program. His contributions to the development, advancement, and support of information literacy and instruction exemplify the values that LIRT embraces.

“It is a tremendous honor to have received the LIRT Librarian Recognition Award. Throughout my career, I have looked to LIRT to inform my information literacy work as a librarian in higher education,” Maybee noted.

The Library Instruction Round Table was started in 1977 with the intent to bring together librarians who provide library instruction across all types of libraries — academic, public, school, and special libraries. This year marks the sixth year that the Librarian Recognition Award has been awarded.

Visit LIRT’s webpage at www.ala.org/rt/lirt/mission to find out more about LIRT, its mission, and the awards.

The LIRT Librarian Recognition Awards Subcommittee included Beth Fuchs of the University of Kentucky (chair & LIRT awards committee chair), Lore Guilmartin of the Pratt Institute, Yolanda Hood of the University of Prince Edward Island, and Melissa Ann Fraser-Arnott of the Library of Parliament, Canada. The ALA Office for Member Relations (AOMR) serves as the liaison to the Library and Instruction Round Table (LIRT).

Clarence Maybee, Information Literacy Specialist, Purdue University Libraries

Clarence Maybee, Information Literacy Specialist, Purdue University Libraries

In Gershwin’s classic “Summertime,” the “livin’ is easy,” and for many who work in education, the summer months may be a bit easier—a time to take a break from the hectic pace of the regular academic year. But many faculty also take advantage of their summer downtime to take part in professional-development activities to advance their skills, hone their expertise, and become better educators for the school year ahead. That is exactly what more than 100 librarians did this summer in the Association of College and Research Libraries’ “Immersion” program.

In 2017, Purdue Libraries Associate Professor Clarence Maybee—who also is the Libraries information literacy specialist—was selected as an instructor for ACRL’s five-day long intensive learning program. The program is designed for those who contribute to the educational role of libraries in higher education.

Maybee is an advisor for IMPACT, or Instruction Matters: Purdue Academic Course Transformation, and he is a zealous advocate for librarians’ roles in higher education. Recently, he authored “IMPACT Learning: Librarians at the Forefront of Change in Higher Education,” a book that presents the ways in which academic librarians are making a difference in student learning and success, using IMPACT as an example.

In the short Q&A below, Dr. Maybee talks about the structure and benefits of Immersion and how he uses the opportunity to teach and to learn.

ACRL's Immersion Program 2018: Plenary Session

ACRL’s Immersion Program 2018: Plenary Session

Q: Why is the program called Immersion?

Maybee: Immersion is an intense five-day long experience in which librarians, who support the educational mission of libraries, take a deep dive into exploring and planning for a change in practice they want to take back to their campuses. This year, we sequestered ourselves at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota. Each day of the week brought a combination of learning about new ideas, receiving constructive feedback from colleagues, reflecting on what we heard, and working individually. Participants were truly “immersed” in their work—ending the week with a plan for what they want to enact when they get back home.

Q. How was Immersion 2018 structured?

Maybee: The 120 participants were divided up into eight cohorts. The program is built upon four cornerstones: critical reflective practice, design thinking, leadership, and information literacy. Before attending the ACRL Immersion program, participants were asked to identify a “change in practice” they are considering in their educational work. The change in practice could be anything, such as a new lesson, a new approach to teaching overall, or a new communication plan. The first few days of the program focused on introducing participants to new ideas related to each of the four cornerstone concepts. At the end of the week, the participants received peer feedback to help them advance their plans. Many participants told me this was the most useful experience of the week—allowing them to draw many ideas together and see things in a new way! As a teacher, I loved seeing what each group came up with on the last day of the program. On this day, the 15 participants in each of the eight cohorts created a visual representation of what they collectively learned through the week. Yes, there were scissors and colored markers involved!

Q. What was the most Tweetable comment/discussion point from Immersion this year and why?

Maybee: A participant pointed out that the program did not explicitly address the racism that exists in higher education learning environments. She volunteered to give a talk to participants about anti-racist pedagogy. Of course, we took her up on that. She introduced the group to many books that aim to help us see racism in teaching and learning situations and various ways of responding to it! I was so grateful for this participant’s willingness to share her knowledge with us. It was a memorable and important addition to the program.

Q. How do you take what you learned at Immersion and apply it to your work at Purdue?

Maybee: It is a two-way street! Many of the insights I have gleaned from working with Instruction Matters: Purdue Academic Course Transformation (IMPACT) helped me in my efforts to support participants in the Immersion program. Specifically, the techniques we use in working with Purdue instructors to think through pedagogic concerns were particularly applicable to working with Immersion participants. Of course, everyone at Immersion brings so much to the table. When working with the teachers and participants in the program, I am constantly learning innovative pedagogic ideas, which I bring back to my work at Purdue.

Q. How did you feel (and why do you think you felt this way) when the program concluded?

Maybee: Although I was very tired by the end of the week, I took solace in knowing that the participants, having really poured their hearts into their work, were even more exhausted. Everyone worked so hard on thinking through the change in practice each wanted to enact back at his or her institution. At the end of the week, everyone was invigorated—excited to get back home and improve education!

Project Information Literacy's Founder Dr. Alison Head discussing how students conduct research at Purdue University, May 17, 2018.

Project Information Literacy’s Founder Dr. Alison Head discussing how students conduct research at Purdue University, May 17, 2018.

For faculty in academic libraries around the globe, understanding how students use information for school—as well as on into their post-college professional working and personal lives—is gold standard stuff. Over the past decade, Dr. Alison Head and her team of researchers at the non-profit Project Information Literacy (PIL) organization have been diligently contributing to this important standard of information literacy data through ongoing research. Since 2008, Head—the founder and executive director of PIL—and her fellow PIL researchers have interviewed and surveyed more than 16,000 undergraduates at over 88 U.S. four-year public and private universities and colleges and two-year community colleges. PIL has published nine open-access research reports as part of the ongoing project, and the researchers plan to publish a 10th study about college students’ news consumption this fall.

Over the 2017-18 academic year, faculty in Purdue University Libraries have had the benefit of working with Head one on one (virtually) through the PIL’s inaugural Visiting Research Scholar program, a unique professional-development opportunity for faculty and staff in the academic library community. Last summer, Head selected Purdue Libraries as the initial site for the program, after a completing a successful pilot phase at University of Nebraska Library. As part of the wrap-up of the yearlong program at Purdue Libraries, Thursday, she was on campus to present, “How Today’s Students Conduct Research.”

Purdue Libraries Associate Professor and Information Literacy Specialist, Project Information Literacy Founder Dr. Alison Head, and Information Literacy Instructional Designer Rachel Fundator pose for a photograph at Purdue Libraries' Wilmeth Active Learning Center, home of the Library of Engineering and Science and the Mullins Reading Room.

Purdue Libraries Associate Professor and Information Literacy Specialist Dr. Clarence Maybee, Project Information Literacy Founder Dr. Alison Head, and Information Literacy Instructional Designer Rachel Fundator pose for a photograph at Purdue Libraries’ Wilmeth Active Learning Center, home of the Library of Engineering and Science, Mullins Reading Room, and the Data-Visualization Experience Lab of Purdue (D-VELoP).

“Purdue Libraries has been the perfect setting for a program like this,” Head explained. “In addition to being known as an innovative and award-winning academic library organization, the opportunity to work individually and collaboratively with the mix of young, excited, and engaged faculty members has been very gratifying for me.”

According to Dr. Clarence Maybee, associate professor and information literacy specialist at Purdue Libraries, bringing in and working with experts such as Head will have long-term results, well beyond the Visiting Scholar program.

“In our educational efforts to teach Purdue learners to use information, Purdue Libraries faculty and staff engage in ‘praxis,’ meaning we apply theory to practice. As a community, we are continually exploring new scholarly ideas. Visits from information literacy scholars, such as Dr. Head, engage Purdue Libraries faculty and staff in the latest research findings and theories, prompting deep discussions of the most effective approaches to information literacy education that we may draw into our efforts at Purdue,” he noted.

Purdue Libraries Assistant Professor Heather Howard

Purdue Libraries Assistant Professor Heather Howard

Faculty members like Heather Howard, an assistant professor and librarian in the Roland G. Parrish Library of Management and Economics, and David Zwicky, an assistant professor and librarian in the Library of Engineering and Science, described working with Head as “very helpful.”

Purdue Libfraries Assistant Professor David Zwicky

Purdue Libraries Assistant Professor David Zwicky

“Dave and I had several phone calls with her while designing some assessment research for the work we do with the Soybean Innovation Competition. We went in with an idea to set up pre- and post-tests for next year, and she talked us through what information we were trying to get and what we wanted to accomplish,” Howard said. “With her guidance, we decided to run mini focus groups this semester with the students who had just completed the competition. We are going to be able to use the information from these focus groups to inform our assessment and instruction next year. She also helped us develop our questions for the focus group to make sure they were on track with our research questions,” she noted.

“She was generous with her time, meeting with us over the phone pretty early in the morning, as PIL is based in California,” Zwicky added.

Purdue Libraries Head of the Humanities, Social Sciences, Education, and Business Division and Associate Professor Erla Heyns

Purdue Libraries Head of the Humanities, Social Sciences, Education, and Business Division and Associate Professor Erla Heyns

“Alison helped me think through the projects, and her extensive research experience allowed me to clarify some details of a couple of my projects. I appreciated her insight, practical advice, and ability to think broadly about the subject of the research,” noted Dr. Erla Heyns, associate professor and Head, Humanities, Social Sciences, Education and Business (HSSE-B) Division of Purdue Libraries.

Although Head and her research team at PIL have plenty on their research “plates”—currently, among the many research projects she is involved in, she’s leading a multidisciplinary team looking into the complex issue of how young adults gather news in today’s world, a study supported by the Knight Foundation and the American Library Association’s largest division, the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL)—she established the Visiting Research Scholar Program to be able to help individual academic librarian researchers in their own information literacy research projects.

Project Information Literacy Founder Dr. Alison Head discussing how students conduct research at Purdue University, May 17, 2018.

In Project Information Literacy’s ongoing examination of college students’ information-seeking practices and behaviors, the researchers have found that students experience the feelings of fear, dread, and being overwhelmed when it comes to conducting research.

“I think it is imperative for library and information science research to increase and for the overall quality to become more rigorous, so I started the program to begin working with individual researchers, to help them work toward these goals,” Head explained. “For me, most importantly, it keeps me current and provides me with a much wider view of the kind of research being conducted, as well as what kind of research is coming up and the different kinds of methods being used,” Head explained.

Since the program began last summer, Head has met virtually (over the phone and online) with several Purdue Libraries faculty members, both individually and in groups.

“I think one of my favorite things, which was new for us at PIL, was ‘an early researcher’ brown bag discussion via a Google Hangout. In that discussion, we had about 15 young faculty on tenure track, and we talked about how to put together a first research study for publication. I enjoy playing that mentor role for people who are starting out,” Head noted. “In addition, I had conversations with faculty members who have quite good research publication methods and wanted to know, based on conference presentations and what they’re hearing, where they could take their research for their upcoming publication goals.”

Head and her team at PIL will be taking applications in June from academic libraries for second installment of the Visiting Research Scholar Program. She can be contacted at Alison@projectinfolit.org.

Learn more about Project Information Literacy at www.projectinfolit.org.

Purdue University Libraries Information Literacy Specialist and Associate Professor Dr. Clarence Maybee’s new book, “IMPACT Learning: Librarians at the Forefront of Change in Higher Education,” presents the ways in which academic librarians are making a difference in student learning and success, using Purdue University’s IMPACT (Instruction Matters: Purdue Academic Course Transformation) program as an example.

Clarence Maybee, Information Literacy Specialist, Purdue University Libraries

Clarence Maybee, Information Literacy Specialist, Purdue University Libraries

Maybee’s book describes how academic libraries can enable the success of higher education students by creating or partnering with teaching and learning initiatives that support student learning through engagement with information.

In his book, the author discusses existing models, extracting lessons from Purdue Libraries’ partnership with other units to create a campus-wide course development program, IMPACT, to provide academic libraries with tools and strategies for working with faculty and departments to integrate information literacy into disciplinary courses.

The text will also helps teachers and students deal with information in the context of a discipline and its specific needs and presents an informed learning approach where students learn to use information as part of engagement with subject content.

To order the book, visit http://bit.ly/2oSMrWx. For more information about the information literacy resources offered by Purdue Libraries, visit www.lib.purdue.edu/infolit.

On Tuesday (Nov. 14), Purdue University Libraries recognized the research contributions of Libraries faculty members during its annual “Celebrating Research” event. During the celebration, one of the presenters, Associate Professor and Information Literacy Specialist Clarence Maybee, talked about his new book, “IMPACT Learning: Librarians at the Forefront of Change in Higher Education,” which will be available in March 2018.

The book covers how librarians in academic libraries can help enable the success of college students “by creating or partnering with teaching and learning initiatives that support meaningful learning through engagement with information,” states the book’s description on the publisher’s website.

“Since the 1970s, the academic library community has been advocating and developing programming for information literacy. This book discusses existing models, extracting lessons from Purdue University Libraries’ partnership with other units to create a campus-wide course development program, Instruction Matters: Purdue Academic Course Transformation (IMPACT), which provides academic libraries with tools and strategies for working with faculty and departments to integrate information literacy into disciplinary courses,” the description continues.

At Purdue, Dr. Maybee is among the group of faculty members in the libraries and in other academic areas demonstrating the importance of information literacy not only for college students, but also for new graduates and mid-career and long-time professionals–indeed, for everyone.

To create awareness about this importance Maybee, Libraries Information Literacy Instructional Designer Rachel Fundator, with the help of Julia Smith, graduate assistant, and Teresa Koltzenburg, strategic communication director, implemented “Inform Purdue,” a social media campaign to “celebrate information literacy at Purdue. The campaign features interviews with Purdue students, alumni, and faculty in a series of videos and social media posts.

“Purdue Libraries’ approach to information literacy is to teach students to use information in the context of learning about something—much as they will do on the job, or to make personal decisions after graduation,” Maybee explained. “In the ‘Inform Purdue’ campaign, Purdue students, faculty, former faculty, and staff share their own ‘stories’ of teaching and learning about information literacy, and how it helps them to accomplish their educational and professional goals.”

The campaign concludes today with a final video featuring Dr. Maybee (see above).

You can catch more of the videos online at www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLfiLH31ZZsO3vwygf_oblFiyZfqZzWV1k or via the Libraries’ news and announcements website at http://blogs.lib.purdue.edu/news/category/inform-purdue/.

An assignment to find research about a particular drug ultimately changed the way Cameron Pate–a 2017 Purdue University pharmaceutical sciences graduate–searched for information during his studies at Purdue.

Pate, who recently started a new job with the Dow Chemical Company in Indianapolis, said, for this particular assignment, when he had exhausted Google, he headed to Purdue Libraries.

“Thankfully, personnel at Purdue Libraries showed me the access I had to vast electronic resources, including several well-respected research article databases, because of my Purdue student status. This fundamentally changed how I would search for information the rest of my college career and helped me tremendously,” he noted.

Pate also learned to apply his information literacy skills to other aspects of his college career, including how to get the most of out a job search. As part of the Inform Purdue Information Literacy campaign, Pate talks about how he used information to maximize his job search in the video below.

To see more from Inform Purdue, visit http://blogs.lib.purdue.edu/news/category/inform-purdue/.

Kenny Nguyen (Hilliard, OH), a Purdue University senior majoring in neurobiology and physiology, knows something about applying classroom learning to real-life research work.

“Taking joint lecture-lab science courses not only taught me about the life cycle of cells, but also how to raise them in a real research environment,” he noted.

In 2015, Nguyen experienced a “real” research environment, when he was selected as a Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship intern and received the William H. Phillips Undergraduate Research Grant from the Purdue Department of Biological Sciences. In addition, he completed an internship at the National Institutes of Health.

In the Fall 2016 edition of JPUR (Journal of Purdue Undergraduate Research), Nguyen published “Degeneration of Neuronal Mitochondria in Parkinson’s Disease” (p. 41), the result of his studies examining “the degeneration of mitochondria in neurons and the implications in Parkinson’s disease.”

The information literacy skills Nguyen — who plans to pursue an M.D. or a Ph.D. in the medical field — has developed in his coursework at Purdue has led to his successful research, publishing, and internship endeavors outside of the classroom.

In his answers below, Nguyen talks about the ways he has learned to use information in his undergraduate studies at Purdue, as well as why it will be important for him to continue to develop his information literacy skills throughout his career in the medical field.

Q. What ways are you learning to use information at Purdue that will be useful for your future professional (or personal ) endeavors?

Through Purdue, I am learning how to apply the information I have learned in the classroom into real-life work directly, such as research or in medical centers. These skills will be vital to me in my future career in the medical field, in which physicians are expected to be updated continually on the progress of medical technology, news, and research. I will be expected to understand these findings and apply them directly to my work. I believe that my time at Purdue has strongly prepared me for my future profession.

Q. Describe a time when you learned to use information in a new way to help you accomplish something.

I used to be the managing editor for the “Purdue Review, Inc.,” the premier campus news magazine. In 2015, we decided to venture onto the online platform to provide news for students in a more easily accessible, convenient manner. None of the members in our organization had knowledge on developing a website, so we used the information and resources available to us for our advantage.

The design team had to learn to design not only magazine spreads, but also online pages, and the writers had to learn how to write articles in a succinct, eye-catching manner that is more suitable for online. And I learned how to upload news articles online and manage the operations of the website.

I had knowledge on how to use Microsoft Office, and by applying the information and skills that I was already familiar with, I learned to effectively use an online software that was entirely new to me.

Q. Have you learned to use information in a course that you have applied to a different situation?

During my freshman year I took a course called COM 217, “Science Writing and Presentation.” In this course, I learned the basics of presenting science to informed and lay audience members, how to craft compelling and informative posters, and write science articles. I used the skills and information I learned in this course to present my research poster for the first time at the Purdue Undergraduate Research Symposium, and publish my work in the 2016 edition of JPUR. Had I not taken this course, I would not have known how to present science, both orally and through writing, effectively.

This article is part of the Inform Purdue 2017 information literacy campaign. Read more about it at blogs.lib.purdue.edu/news/2017/10/12/inform-purdue-2017/.


In his college career at Purdue University, Austin Coon–a senior double economics Honors and management major–has found participating in case competitions to be an excellent way to apply what he’s learned in the classroom and to real-world business scenarios.

“Taking part in case competitions has vastly improved my public-speaking skills and given me confidence to succeed in job interviews. In a typical case competition, participants are given anywhere from four hours to two weeks to solve a case with a team. During that time, you are tasked with becoming an expert in the given problem and industry. Oftentimes, you have to start right at square one, as you will be presented with an issue that you know nothing about,” he explained.

Coon is one of many Purdue students whose learning activities outside of the classroom require information literacy skills. In the brief Q&A below, he talks about how he has applied those skills to his areas of study in economics and management.

Q. What are ways that you are learning to use information at Purdue that will be useful for your future professional (or personal) endeavors?

A.  Case competitions allow students to expand their knowledge by challenging them to learn as much about a topic or industry as possible in a short time frame. Purdue offers several competitions a year—such as the annual Midwest Business Libraries Case Competition (formerly known as the Parrish Library Case Competition)—that target students who have never competed in a case before.

Furthermore, as you improve your ability to perform in the introductory case competitions, Purdue offers more advanced competitions, for which they will fly you around the country to compete. During my sophomore year, I was fortunate enough to be taken to the University of Connecticut to compete in a competition there.

Q. Describe a time when you learned to use information in a new way to help you accomplish something.

A. A couple of years ago, I competed in an international case competition about big data and applying the data to the human resource (HR) practices of a company in the auto industry. At the time, I knew nothing about big data, had never taken a class on HR, and had very little experience with the auto industry. My team members and I were all in the same boat. We spent that week diving as deep as we could in those three topics and then were able to build a presentation that we were incredibly proud of when we were finished. We ended up earning second place, which was the best placement a Purdue team has ever achieved in the competition.

Q. Have you learned to use information in a course that you have applied to a different situation?

A. Purdue and case competitions have strengthened my ability to process large amounts of information and condense it. For example, in my internship this past summer, I worked with large sets of data. One of my tasks was to turn the data into a “meaningful story” to present to the company’s senior leadership team.

To explain, I was tasked with creating a scorecard that tracked our relationship health with our different clients, so I would track to see which of our clients were happy with us and which were upset, as well as what made them happy or upset.

To create this scorecard, I analyzed data on the hundreds of different metrics that my company recorded for each client, as well as conducted interviews with client contact leaders in the organization to get a holistic understanding of what made clients upset.

After understanding this, I was able to design a scorecard that was automatically populated with objective metrics and organized in an easy-to-understand color code and format for each of the 180 different clients that we tracked internally.

By doing this, I was able to give our leadership a way to pinpoint quickly any pain points we had with our clients. With this knowledge, they could then focus their efforts on any key issues to improve client satisfaction.

My experiences at Purdue have given me the confidence to believe in my own abilities and to trust that I will produce a product of high quality. My time at Purdue has also made me feel properly prepared to work with several other full-time employees that are high in the organization’s hierarchy.


Related

“Inform Purdue,” Purdue Libraries’ Information Literacy Social Media Campaign, to Launch Oct. 16
Inform Purdue: Purdue Libraries’ Information Literacy Celebration
Inform Purdue: Applying Information Literacy to Interior Design

To access all the Inform Purdue posts, visit http://blogs.lib.purdue.edu/news/category/inform-purdue/


Inform Purdue: Purdue Libraries 2017 Information Literacy Campaign

Check out Inform Purdue posts at go.lib.purdue.edu/informpurdue17

One of the pillars of the Purdue University Libraries’ learning model is to cultivate information literacy among students to support Purdue University’s goal to deliver student-centered learning. Student-centered learning requires that learners know how to find, evaluate, interpret, and apply information to solve problems and construct new meanings.

According to Purdue Libraries Associate Professor and Information Literacy Specialist Clarence Maybee, to support learners in today’s information-rich environment, the Purdue Libraries faculty and staff members are committed to enhancing student information literacy by advancing educational practice and research.

To highlight the importance of information literacy, on Monday, Oct. 16, Purdue Libraries is launching “Inform Purdue,” an information literacy social media campaign. In a series of videos and images, the campaign will feature Purdue University faculty and students talking about how they have applied information literacy in their courses and research.

“Purdue Libraries’ approach to information literacy is to teach students to use information in the context of learning about something—much as they will do on the job, or to make personal decisions after graduation,” Maybee explained. “In the ‘Inform Purdue’ campaign, Purdue students, faculty, and staff share their own ‘stories’ of teaching and learning about information literacy, and how it helps them to accomplish their educational and professional goals.”

Content in the “Inform Purdue” campaign will be posted on Purdue Libraries Facebook page and Instagram and Twitter feeds (see www.facebook.com/PurdueLibraries/; twitter.com/PurdueLibraries; and www.instagram.com/purdueulibraries/). Purdue students, faculty, and staff will be encouraged to share how they apply information literacy in comments and in retweets (with the hashtag #InformPurdue).

For more information about Purdue Libraries’ information literacy resources, visit www.lib.purdue.edu/infolit, Purdue Libraries’ Information Literacy blog at http://blogs.lib.purdue.edu/infolit/, or contact Maybee at (765) 494-7603 or via email at cmaybee@purdue.edu.

Andrew Whitworth

Andrew Whitworth

Later this month, the Purdue Libraries Seminar Committee will present “Xenophilia: How the Love of Difference Is Essential for Information Literacy,” a lecture delivered by Andrew Whitworth, director of teaching and learning strategy, Manchester Institute of Education, University of Manchester, U.K.

Whitworth’s talk, which is set from 10-11:30 a.m. Tuesday, Aug. 29 in the Purdue Memorial Union’s West Faculty Lounge, will focus on the notion of “xenophilia” and how it can support information literacy practices. Online registration is available at https://purdue.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_1MTFxeCG7hEppVb.

“We should see information literacy as a set of practices that emerge as practitioners in various settings learn to navigate ‘information landscapes.’ As with real landscapes, while these may come in particular types, each is essentially unique; thus, information literacy—the ability to make critical judgments about the relevance of informational resources—is a set of context-specific practices,” Whitworth explained.

According to Whitworth, although this view compels attention to the role of brokers and boundary zones that allow dialogue between different contexts, in these zones, different practices are negotiated and shared visions can potentially emerge.

“What is required to make best use of these zones is not an information literacy focused on searching strategies, but on an openness to difference and variation—thus ‘xenophilia’: the love of difference,” he added.

Whitworth’s presentation will expand on the notion of xenophilia—not only how it can be defined as a moral and ethical principle, but also as a pedagogy and a feature that can be designed into information systems.

“In a world where political currents took notable shifts toward insularity in 2016, it may be one basis for practical strategies of resistance to these trends,” Whitworth said.

Whitworth, whose scholarship focuses on critical theory and education, information practice and information literacy, mapping of information landscapes, and workplace and community learning, is the author of two books on digital and information literacy, “Information Obesity” (2009) and “Radical Information Literacy” (2014). He is also a co-author of the 2012 “Moscow Declaration on Media and Information Literacy.”

For more information, contact Clarence Maybee, associate professor and information literacy specialist, at (765) 494-7603 or via email at cmaybee@purdue.edu.