Information Fluency in the Discipline

Folke Bernadotte Memorial Library

In 2008, the library faculty committed to working with specific departments and programs to develop information fluency components.? We believe information fluency skills are best learned in a comprehensive, systematic method, with particular skills & outcomes tied to courses within the major.

We work with faculty in specific departments to identify the learning outcomes related to information fluency that department faculty would like to see in their graduating seniors.? The program is in its infancy and the library faculty is eager to continue conversations and implement initiatives in a variety of departments and programs.

To start the conversation in your department, please contact your library liaison.? We will probably be contacting you, too! Since research is discipline specific (and since departments and programs have a range of structures and other considerations), the key to any program is flexibility.? What works for one department won?t necessarily work for another.? We think this flexibility is a defining strength of the information fluency program.

Political Science
Our most sustained effort involves a weekly lab component of POL 200: Analyzing Politics. The lab grew out of a collaboration between Chris Gilbert & Kate Knutson in Political Science and Julie Gilbert in the Library and their shared interest in developing student research skills within a specific discipline. Assessment data (published in several studies - links coming soon) prove that the lab has a high impact on student research skills. The lab can be tailored to fit other disciplines and can also be shortened.

The library seeks to implement similar components in other disciplines, so please chat with a librarian if you are interested in pursuing this option.