Thursday, December 03, 2009

New Report on Information Literacy

I know this isn't really an information literacy news blog (yet?), but this seemed worth sharing: the folks over at Project Information Literacy have published a new report, "Lessons Learned: How College Students Seek Information in the Digital Age." Here's a quote from the abstract (via Resource Shelf):

A report of findings from 2,318 respondents to a survey carried out among college in six campuses distributed across the U.S. in the spring of 2009, as part of Project Information Literacy. Respondents, while curious in the beginning stages of research, employed a consistent and predictable research strategy for finding information, whether they were conducting course-related or everyday life research. Almost all of the respondents turned to the same set of tried and true information resources in the initial stages of research, regardless of their information goals. Almost all students used course readings and Google first for course-related research and Google and Wikipedia for everyday life research. Most students used library resources, especially scholarly databases for course-related research and far fewer, in comparison, used library services that required interacting with librarians. The findings suggest that students conceptualize research, especially tasks associated with seeking information, as a competency learned by rote, rather than as an opportunity to learn, develop, or expand upon an information-gathering strategy which leverages the wide range of resources available to them in the digital age.
I haven't really looked through the report enough to know what I think of their methodology, but they seem to have a tone of optimism that, frankly, surprised me. (E.g., "As a whole, our findings strongly suggest that many of todayʼs college students dial down the aperture of all the different resources that are available to them in the digital age." All?)

Worth reading! Full text pdf, 3MB

1 comment:

  1. You're right--this is worth a read. And these behaviors are what I'm seeing with my first-year students, even though I've gone through lots of info on researching with them. Thanks for posting this, Kyle!