Past Event details

Information Literacy and the Digital University

Friday, 05 May 2017

Speakers and session titles

On The Move: transitioning information skills into the workplace
Dr Charles Inskip, Department of Information Studies, UCL; Dr Sophia Donaldson, UCL Careers
Information literacy is a key life skill for students and graduates. Understanding the disconnect between Higher Education and the professional world will help university services when preparing students for the career path ahead. On The Move is a 12 month project, funded by the CILIP Information Literacy Group, which aims to foster engagement between stakeholders (careers staff, librarians, academic staff, employers, job-hunters) and help them understand the information skills graduates need in their early careers. This presentation introduces the project and discusses preliminary findings from the work, which focuses on information practices in the insurance sector.

“You know, students love videos!”: designing for digital literacies from the pedagogic shadows
Dr. Emma Coonan, FHEA, Information Skills Librarian

 This presentation explores some of the pedagogic and strategic challenges in designing meaningful online learning from a position outside the academic mainstream. Since 2015 UEA Library has begun to develop both standalone and integrated credit-bearing online courses, all of which are designed to help students enhance their digital and academic practices and literacies. Containing significant active, discursive and reflective elements, the courses strive to move away from a staff-led, passive-transmissive model of ‘telling them stuff’ towards a student-led, situated and contextual approach in which participants are co-creators of and agents in their own learning.
However, much of the strategic impetus - and therefore the licence to create these learning spaces - has come from pragmatic drivers. These range from a need to use librarians’ teaching time more efficiently to a growing shortage of teaching space, and have at times conflicted with the pedagogic agenda of making the programmes a platform for reflective learning and critical literacy development. This presentation will look at how these tensions in the institutional dialogue manifested, how they were negotiated, and to what extent the Library has succeeded in creating teaching that supports situated meaning-making rather than service delivery.
Ignorance and Epistemic Harm: Lessons for Digital and Information Literacy    
Alison MacKenzie Lecturer in Education, Queen’s University Belfast, Ibrar Bhatt Lecturer in Education, Queen’s University Belfast
Current trends in the study of digital and information literacy demonstrate that people largely seek out, collect, and consume information through their social media networks and online searches. Whilst such search results may seem to be autonomously chosen, they are, in fact, increasingly influenced by algorithms that determine what news, information and opinions are viewed online. This creates polarising ‘bubbles’ which inevitably amplify certain information narratives whilst silencing others by re-circulating partisan information which can limit the opportunities for a person to encounter conflicting views. Polarising bubbles thereby help create protected and unchallenged worldviews. What seems like casual membership of a community of the like-minded may hinder an information seeker’s ability to make fully informed decisions.
If people are restricted in what they can know because they are unaware of exogenous actors, such as algorithms, and the extent to which they guide our choices and shape our worldly experiences, then one of the key issues that theorists and researchers of digital and information literacy must contend with is how to educate users to be critically aware. We argue in this talk that forms of ignorance through certain kinds of digital literacy practices may result in epistemic harm whereby users either grant credibility excess or insufficient credibility to persons/authorities on the basis of their status, identity or institution, for example, and because they do not accord with the views they have had endorsed by their ‘chosen’ social media networks. 

Network: Digital University
Date(s): Friday, 05 May 2017
Times: 11:30 - 16:00
Location: SRHE 73 Collier Street, London, N1 9BE
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Ignorance and Epistemic Harm Lessons for Digital and Information Literacy
Dr Ibrar Bhatt Lecturer in Education @ibrar_bhatt Dr Alison MacKenzie Lecturer in Education
On The Move: transitioning information skills into the workplace
Dr Charles Inskip, UCL Department of Information Studies, Dr Sophia Donaldson, UCL Careers,
designing for digital literacies from the pedagogic shadows
Emma Coonan University of East Anglia
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