Bristol Community College

Bristol Community College

Faculty Information Literacy Tools

What is Information Literacy and How does it apply to my class?

Information literacy is one of the “critical analysis” competencies in the College’s General Education requirements. All students benefit from this skill in college and throughout their lives. When our students transfer to senior institutions, they are expected to have basic IL competency. The LRC uses the national standard established by the ALA/ACRL. This means that students can:

  • Determine the nature and extent of information needed.
  • Access needed information effectively and efficiently.
  • Evaluate information and its source critically.
  • Incorporate selected information into their knowledge base.
  • Use information effectively to accomplish a specific purpose.
  • Access and use information ethically.

There many ways that faculty can build information literacy into their courses. The LRC’s instruction librarians are eager to assist and collaborate with faculty to create successful IL outcomes.

Assessing Students’ Information Literacy Skills
There are many assessment instruments out there, as a quick search on the internet reveals. Librarians have a great interest in partnering with faculty to help students develop IL skills. Obviously, faculty are the ones who see how students did on the assignments involving IL.  Several BCC faculty recently piloted 3 assessment tools, and the library extends thanks to Jeanne Grandchamp, Michelle Kelly, and Howard Tinberg for taking the time to work with us on this project. You are welcome to try out the examples below and adapt them as you like.

Assessment tool from Mount Wachusett Community College:

A Self-Rating Scale for Students from Towson University:

The CONNECT IL rubric:

Information Literacy Services at the LRC

We welcome faculty to arrange to bring their classes to the LRC instruction area for hands-on classes that can include:

• Using the SAILS online catalog to obtain books and media.
• Searching our online databases for articles from magazines, journals, newspapers, and books.
• Evaluating web sites.
• Understanding periodical citations.
• Citing sources.
• Understanding the difference between scholarly and popular sources.

 Each session is customized to meet the needs of your class. We are also available to conduct mini-sessions in your “smart” classroom, where we can focus on a particular research issue related to an assignment. Instruction for day classes in New Bedford and Attleboro can be arranged, subject to staff availability.

Scheduling Your Class

Linking the instruction session with an upcoming class assignment is strongly advised, as it makes the experience more meaningful for students. We usually require a week’s notice to prepare for your class.

 You may schedule an instructional session in a variety of ways:

From the LRC Web page:
Select Information Literacy Request under Library Services.  You are welcome to visit the library anytime and speak with reference staff.  Contact a staff member by e-mail or phone:

For day classes, Mon-Fri contact:

Emily Brown
 or 508-678-2811 ext. 3040
or by Campus Mail

For evening and weekend classes contact:

James Emond
 or 508-678-2811 ext. 2316
or by Campus Mail

Web Resources for Information Literacy Tools and Standards

"The new video, produced by Project Information Literacy (PIL) , is the latest in a public service video series, created for use in classes, training sessions, and meetings to spark further discussion about information literacy. The series also includes video shorts about what students say about Wikipedia (2:11) and what they say about procrastination (2:11)."

For more details about Information Literacy standards:

To see how Information Literacy fits into the NEASC standards (n.b. standards 4.6 and 7.8):

Core Competency Standards for Information Literacy
Librarians from the five CONNECT institutions and Massachusetts Maritime met and developed the matrix, modeling on the English composition matrix as developed by the English CONNECT group.

Teach Information Literacy and Critical Thinking
"Are you spending a lot of time helping your students do information research? Do they know the differences between scholary and popular materials?"

Marshall University Faculty Assignment Guide
"This is a short guide to developing assignments which promote information literacy."

Creating Information Literacy Assignments
"To become information literate, students need repeated practice in applying research and critical thinking skills to assignments throughout their college career. While the end-of-the-semester research paper is probably the most common research assignment, there are many other possibilities that allow students to practice these skills."

InfoLit Dialogues: Project Information Literacy Presents its Findings on Undergraduate Research Habits

What Students Say about Wikipedia 

What Students Say about Procrastination