May 4 - June 12, 2015
Writing programs have long been among the most frequent users of library instruction. Similarly, as the information literacy (IL) movement has shifted toward more integrated instructional models, composition programs have arguably been the most commonly involved in efforts at IL integration. The prevalence of such partnerships points to the critical connections between writing, research, and information literacy.
The remarkably parallel histories and concerns of composition and IL instruction, which James Elmborg articulates in the article “Information Literacy and Writing across the Curriculum: Sharing the Vision” (2003), point to powerful ways that composition and rhetoric studies can help inform library instruction programs. Concepts like rhetorical analysis, rhetorical source use, discourse communities, and discursive practices suggest practical ways that IL instruction can emphasize higher order thinking over more mechanical aspects of information seeking. Similarly, research on students’ conceptions of and approaches to “writing with sources” has deep implications for how librarians can teach and represent the research process in order to foster critical thinking and source use.
In this six-week course, participants will explore intersections between information literacy and composition studies, including the theoretical and practical applications these connections have for us as librarians and as educators. The class will be structured around assigned readings, online discussion, and assignments. More specifically, weekly discussions and assignments will invite participants to apply theoretical and pedagogical concepts to developing practical learning activities and lesson plans for library instruction.
This class, first offered in 2013 as a 4-week program, has been expanded to six weeks in order to enable deeper engagement with course materials, assignments, and fellow participants. The expanded course will enable further opportunity for revising learning activities and plans in light of instructor and peer feedback and discussion.