How to Help Students be Successful

Two articles and a website, I have come across recently, got me thinking about how libraries can help students be successful students. They show the importance of information literacy (without necessarily using that term). A reminder, then, for students to make use of the library training programme and information desk. You just might learn something you can use in a job!

Knowing What Leads to Student Success | From the Bell Tower talks about some recent research about how students learn.

Project Information Literacy is a [US] national study about early adults and their information-seeking behaviors, competencies, and the challenges they face when conducting research in the digital age. This month PIL published a research report from an exploratory study that investigated how college graduates solve information problems once they leave campus and join the workplace. It found that employers still need workers with traditional methods of conducting research as well as online searching skills – highlighting that there is a gap between what students are learning and employers are looking for.

Beyond employability: embedding life skills in higher education was a live chat about what students need to learn at higher education so that they will, hopefully, get a job when they graduate.

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Library Guide featuring Zombies!

As the new semester approaches and our thoughts turn to innovative ways to teach information literacy, the staff at McPherson College’s Miller Library in Kansas, USA, have come up with one of the most innovative library guides I’ve come across. ‘Library of the Living Dead’ is a library guide in graphic novel format featuring zombies, librarians and two confused students.  Here is the blog post announcing the guide – http://blogs.mcpherson.edu/library/2011/03/our-zombie-guide-is-finished/

Please note: Rest assured that WIT Libraries are a zombie free zone!

Image: http://office.microsoft.com/en-ie/images/similar.aspx#ai:MP900442180|

Information literacy advice for new students

Take it from us! :

 http://www.wnylrc.org/index.asp?custom=reportoutput&reportId=67&outputStyle=committeeHtml&orgId=369&sid=

“High School to College” have produced the above video featuring college students giving advice to new students on information literacy. It explains that much more is expected research-wise from students than when they were in school. It also highlights the fact that many school leavers may not have been taught the necessary information literacy skills needed for research at college level. We have seen the same issue here with new first years students who have come to WIT straight after finishing secondary school.

The two main pieces of advice the college students give are: the need to go beyond Google and Wikipedia for research, the realisation that database and scholarly research is needed and the necessity of  how to cite properly. This is where the library comes in, as one student on the video comes to understand – “everything I need to write a good paper can be  found  in the library or on its webpage and librarians can help me out.”

The High School to College is a collaborative network of Western New York high school and college librarians formed to investigate ways to ensure the continuation of information literacy skills between high school and college.

Photo credit: http://www.freedigitalphotos.net/images/view_photog.php?photogid=1912