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Best Practices for Engineering Information Literacy Instruction: Perspectives of Academic Librarians

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Conference

2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition

Location

Tampa, Florida

Publication Date

June 15, 2019

Start Date

June 15, 2019

End Date

June 19, 2019

Conference Session

Teaching Engineering Students and Library Staff: New Ideas and Best Practices

Tagged Division

Engineering Libraries

Page Count

18

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/32146

Download Count

11

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Paper Authors

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Jeanine Mary Williamson University of Tennessee, Knoxville

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Jeanine Williamson is the engineering librarian and a professor at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.

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Natalie Rice University of Tennessee

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Carol Tenopir University of Tennessee, Knoxville

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Carol Tenopir is a Chancellor's Professor in the School of Information Sciences, College of Communication and Information, University of Tennessee.

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Jordan Kaufman

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Research Associate for the Center for Information and Communication Studies with an expertise in user-experience research and assessment.

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Courtney June Faber University of Tennessee, Knoxville

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Courtney is a Research Assistant Professor and Lecturer in the Cook Grand Challenge Engineering Honors Program at the University of Tennessee. She completed her Ph.D. in Engineering & Science Education at Clemson University. Prior to her Ph.D. work, she received her B.S. in Bioengineering at Clemson University and her M.S. in Biomedical Engineering at Cornell University. Courtney’s research interests include epistemic cognition in the context of problem solving, and researcher identity.

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Rachel McCord University of Tennessee, Knoxville Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0001-5163-7675

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Rachel McCord is a a Lecturer and Research Assistant Professor in the Engineering Fundamentals Division at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. She received her Ph.D. in Engineering Education from Virginia Tech. Her research interests include the impact of metacognitive and self-regulated learning development on engineering student success, particularly in the first year.

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Abstract

Best Practices for Engineering Information Literacy Instruction: Perspectives of Academic Librarians

Information literacy instruction has long been an important part of undergraduate education. Subject librarians, together with undergraduate instructors, help students identify the relevant information sources in their discipline, plus help them learn how to effectively search for, locate, and recognize high quality information. Information needs and specific resources differ across subject disciplines, however, and information practices and needs vary by workplace and discipline norms. Effective instruction takes into account these discipline variations, so that instructors responsible for information literacy instruction can align instruction to unique needs. This study, funded by the Engineering Information Foundation, focuses on identifying best practices for incorporating unique needs and information behaviors of engineers in the workplace into undergraduate engineering information literacy instruction. We examined the instructional materials on the library websites from universities with engineering programs ranked in the top 25 (according to the ranking of undergraduate engineering programs in the U.S. by U.S News and Report) and interviewed five experienced engineering librarians. The information gained from the website analysis and interviews provide insights into best practices for engineering information literacy materials and instruction. The website analysis revealed the topics, issues, and themes that are addressed by engineering libraries/librarians in regards to generic research and information literacy skills. The purpose of the interviews with experienced engineering librarians was to collect more details about the specific efforts of engineering librarians to incorporate information literacy training into engineering curriculum. The five librarians who were interviewed all work at Highest Research Activity Doctoral Granting universities (according to The Carnegie Classification) and have many years of instructional experience. These interviews were semi-structured in nature and lasted 45 minutes to one hour. The participants described their experiences, instructional practices, and insights based on how they have incorporated information literacy into engineering curriculum. The interviews were analyzed qualitatively and six major themes emerged, which include the need for a strategic approach and the need for information literacy instruction throughout students’ entire undergraduate career. Future work will include the development of instructional modules that can be incorporated into engineering curriculum based on the results from our interview and website analyses. These modules will be assessed and revised before they are broadly disseminated.

Williamson, J. M., & Rice, N., & Tenopir, C., & Kaufman, J., & Faber, C. J., & McCord, R. (2019, June), Best Practices for Engineering Information Literacy Instruction: Perspectives of Academic Librarians Paper presented at 2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Tampa, Florida. https://peer.asee.org/32146

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2019 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015