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Integrating Information Literacy Across The Engineering Design Curriculum

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2009 Annual Conference & Exposition


Austin, Texas

Publication Date

June 14, 2009

Start Date

June 14, 2009

End Date

June 17, 2009



Conference Session

Information Literacy Integration and Assessment

Tagged Division

Engineering Libraries

Page Count


Page Numbers

14.760.1 - 14.760.9



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Paper Authors


Barbara MacAlpine Trinity University

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Barbara MacAlpine is Associate Professor and Science Librarian at the Coates Library of Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas. She received a B.A. in Psychology from Earlham College and a M.A.L.S. from the University of Wisconsin--Madison.

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Mahbub Uddin Trinity University

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Mahbub Uddin is a Professor in the Engineering Science Department at Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas. He received a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from Oklahoma State University. Dr. Uddin's research interests include stochastic modeling, pollution control, two-phase flow and engineering education. Dr. Uddin is a fellow of the ASEE.

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Integrating Information Literacy Across the Engineering Design Curriculum


This paper will examine the components of information literacy instruction at all levels of Trinity s engineering program, indicating how they build upon each other and identifying what still needs to be added to integrate information literacy fully across the curriculum. Assessment of the engineering students in this area will be discussed, based on testing that began in the fall of 2007 and continues through the 2008-2009 academic year. The comments of the authors, representing both a librarian and an engineering faculty member, will provide a wider viewpoint that may inform planners at other institutions who are interested in expanding and integrating information literacy instruction across their engineering curriculum.


The need for information-literate engineering students continues to be addressed in the literature as well as by the ABET standards regarding the ability to engage in life-long learning.1,2,3 Freshmen/first-year students are often targeted as the logical beginning for an information literacy program4,5,6, but additional instruction over succeeding years is highly desirable to build on that initial introduction to library research. While some repetition of resources and concepts is valuable to include in classes with sophomores and upper level students, a balance must be know about Examples of information literacy across the curriculum of specific engineering departments have been described.7,8 This paper addresses efforts to fit information literacy into a more general design cu

At Trinity University, a small liberal arts university with an engineering science department, a formal campus-wide information literacy program has been adopted that targets all students, at all levels of the curriculum and even across co-curricular activities (international programs, campus publications, athletics, community service, etc).9 Its five major goals for students are that they learn to access, understand, and evaluate information, use it ethically, and create new material (papers, presentations, or other products) based on that information. While the university program started in the spring of 2008, progress toward its goals was already underway several years before within the eight-semester engineering design course sequence.

The engineering science design curriculum

The Engineering Science program at Trinity University requires a minimum of 129 hours consisting of a 51-semester-hour engineering core, 33 hours in math and science, 33 hours in the common curriculum, and 12 hours of elective, leading to a Bachelor of Science in Engineering Science degree. Engineering students are also awarded a mathematics minor.

The multidisciplinary core engineering science courses emphasize critical and creative thinking and the development of Engineering design, specifically creative design, is the central focus of the program. An eight-semester design course sequence

MacAlpine, B., & Uddin, M. (2009, June), Integrating Information Literacy Across The Engineering Design Curriculum Paper presented at 2009 Annual Conference & Exposition, Austin, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--5433

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