Information Literacy Roundtable: Let’s Talk about Handouts!

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A sampling of the variety of handouts discussed at the first IL Roundtable.

On April 4, Katherine Hanz and Jill Boruff hosted the first Information Literacy Roundtable for McGill librarians.   This event, which will be held on a monthly basis, provides a forum for librarians to share their teaching materials and experiences with one another.   We hope that these informal monthly discussions will help to improve our teaching practice and foster a strong information literacy tradition in the McGill Library.  Information literacy is defined as the ability to recognize when information is needed and to have the necessary skills to find, evaluate and use this information effectively (ACRL).  For some more information on teaching information literacy skills, check out these titles available in the McGill collection:

At our first meeting, participants were invited to bring examples of handouts used in their own information literacy instruction sessions (see the image to the right for some great examples!).  The wide variety of materials shared by participants prompted a lively discussion on the purpose and use of handouts in teaching.  We discussed how handouts can be used both as workshop outlines and as supplements to the material covered in class.  Talk eventually turned to using activity sheets as a tool for promoting active learning in the classroom. For further reading on active learning in information literacy workshops, take a look at Joan R. Kaplowitz’s Transforming information literacy instruction using learner-centred teaching.

At the next roundtable—to be held on Friday May 10th from 10am-11am in the Redpath Conference Room—we’ll talk about Quick Classroom Assessment.  We look forward to hearing how McGill librarians assess students’ knowledge and understanding in their information literacy workshops. Future suggested topics for the roundtable include: active learning techniques, coordinating with course instructors, and teaching IL skills through online instruction.

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