Information literacy is a set of skills that are important to know, not only during your time at UW-Whitewater, but as a part of the life-long learning you will experience after graduation. Information literacy enables you to recognize the value of information and use it to make informed choices in your personal, professional and academic lives. By the time you graduate from UW-Whitewater you will be expected to have learned to be information literate from various classes you’ve taken. In your library instruction session for English 102 we will focus on items 2, 3, 4, 5, & 8 below.
Consider asking yourself the following questions about your information literacy abilities as though you’ve been assigned a research project. Each question includes an example. Which questions can you answer in the affirmative with confidence now, and in which are you not yet fully experienced?
1. Can you state your topic and transform it into a researchable question?
2. Do you know what type of information would answer your question and what sources may contain that information?
3. Can you break down your question into searchable concepts and efficiently use a resource’s search features to improve your search results?
4. Can you understand and evaluate search results, and then select relevant, credible sources from them?
5. Do you know how to find and retrieve information that is available online or through your library as well as information that is not immediately available?
6. Can you critically evaluate information retrieved from your research?
7. Can you organize, combine, and apply information to address your researchable question?
8. Do you know when your research techniques are efficient and productive, and do you know when and where to ask for help?
9. Do you understand how scholarly and popular information is produced, and that it is organized and distributed differently in various subject areas?
10. Do you respect copyright, know when and how to cite sources, and understand the social and political issues affecting information?