Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Interesting Online workshop

I just attended the first part of a really interesting online workshop called "Information Literacy Across the Curriculum", which was given jointly by the TLT group and ACRL. There will be two other meetings, on the 14th and the 21st of this month. There will be three other presenters, each to present a case study of their experiences in their institutions. Today's session was given by Lisa Hinchliffe, who is the Coordinator for Information Literacy Services and Instruction at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

One of the first things I noticed as she was speaking was the size and diversity of their program, or rather as she described it as " multiple IL programs." I may have heard this incorrectly but I thought she said that they had from 20-50 staff teaching classes.* If it got that right, it sounds quite vast.

* Note: Special thanks to Lisa H. who graciously sent me the correct numbers via her comment below:
70-100 librarians

20-30 graduate assistants (library school students)

35-45 library units in 27 different campus buildings. (Wow. That *is* vast.)

It was very interesting though to me because although our university is not as large as UIUC, we still are pretty decently sized (29,125 students according to our website) and I could see how some of the things she spoke about could be adapted in our situation.
My ears perked up at several outreach/marketing activities that she mentioned; the idea of having a person dressed as a book and roaming around campus so students could take pictures with him is very endearing. And apparently they have iconic frisbees they give away as well. That is one area that I would like to learn more about--ways to advertise and get the world out in very creative approaches.

I found the interrelated relationship between their IL program and Reference to be also very intriguing, mostly because what she described corresponded to some observations that I had made about our own situation. She described consultations (I thought she meant individual type research consultations) , workshops (in particular for graduate students), tours in several different languages (Chinese, French, etc), and also very heavy IM use. For us IM usage has been steadily increasing although it isn't exactly "heavy." I have noticed though that our individual consultations are increasing and I wonder if this is something that other folks are seeing.

Some other things that stuck out in my mind (and notes):
  • A graduate level IL credit course--I'd always heard of IL credit courses for undergraduates.
  • She mentioned getting assessment plans for programs on campus--sounds interesting
I may be adding more as time permits, but for the most part felt that this was a very useful presentation.


Lisa said...

Hi. Glad you enjoyed the session. Just FYI - we have about 70-100 librarians who teach different numbers of sessions and 20-30 graduate assistants (library school students) who also do so. We are distributed across 35-45 library units (depends how one is defining "unit") in 27 different campus buildings. :) Big and distributed. The UIUC way. :)

lorin fisher said...


Thanks so much for the corrected figures. That is wonderfully vast! :)