Thursday, 7 August 2008

Evaluation, evaluation, evaluation

Remember what Tony Blair said ("education, education, education")! I have been saying for several years that evaluation is the key part of Information Literacy in the 21st century. Michael Lorenzen and Stephanie Mathson have an article in the new issue of College and Undergraduate Libraries 15 (1/2) (2008) on critical thinking, entitled "We Won't Be Fooled Again: Teaching Critical Thinking via Evaluation of Hoax and Historical Revisionist Websites in a Library Credit Course." It's not electronic so I look forward to reading it via print.
In addition Kathryn Greenhill posted "Discovery skills versus evaluation skills" recently and eloquently made the case for evaluation. She writes :
"What I have a hard time imagining is *how* to design a series of information literacy classes to bridge the gap between uncritically using Google and a thorough intellectual assessment of scholarly resources. How do we break it into small, engaging components that build on each other to give those critical thinking skills? It is much easier to teach students the mechanics of searching, of discovery.
Is it encroaching on what academics should be doing as part of their course? Should schools have already taught them this by the time they set foot in our libraries? It’s definitely beyond our traditional brief, but given that we no longer have a monopoly on the best discovery tools, is it time we sold the library as a place that has value because there are smart people who can give you personalised help to evaluate your information needs and the resources you find?"

Let's use Web 2.0 tools to help us crack this.

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