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Athabasca University

Library Support for Teaching & Learning

AU Library supports course development, teaching and learning in a number of different ways. The Library supports the University's educational programs and curriculum by identifying, acquiring, making accessible and managing appropriate intellectual resources and search tools. Requests for materials to support new courses and programs can be directed to Elaine Fabbro, Acting Director, Library Services.

Information Literacy

The Information Literacy Competency Standards for Higher Education developed by the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) in 2000 defines information literacy as the ability to:

  • Determine the extent of information needed
  • Access the needed information effectively and efficiently
  • Evaluate information and its sources critically
  • Incorporate selected information into one’s knowledge base
  • Use information effectively to accomplish a specific purpose
  • Understand the economic, legal and social issues surrounding the use of information, and access and use information ethically and legally

Information literate students can successfully accomplish tasks related to:

  • Research
  • Problem solving
  • Reasoning
  • Critical reading
  • Analysis
  • Reflection
  • And the production of new knowledge

Promoting Information Literacy

Librarians are available to collaborate with faculty in the creation of discipline-related tutorials, research guides, instructional modules, resources pages, assignments and tutorials designed to help build the information seeking, research and critical thinking skills of AU students. The Library also has a suite of existing tutorials that can be embedded directly into courses and assignments.

A number of other strategies can be employed in promoting information literacy skill development:

  • Fostering awareness of the library and its resources by incorporating links to the library in course pages and including assignments that require students to locate, evaluate, and use library and other information sources.
  • Creating opportunities for independent learning by limiting course reserves and supplementary materials lists and encouraging students to locate their own materials to enhance the course content.
  • Designing assignments in such a way that students actively consider what is involved in the search process. For example, have students document what search tools they used and what search strategies they tried.
  • Stimulating critical thinking about the nature and quality of information sources. For example, have students post and discuss web-based information sources in an online discussion forum. Or, have students submit an annotated bibliography of course related web sites.
  • Encouraging critical reading and reasoning within the discipline by requiring students to analyze research articles.
  • Considering information literacy as part of a graduated approach that meets the needs of students at different levels and by addressing this at the Centre level to ensure this occurs.

AU Library staff can also be available to offer webinars via Adobe Connect on a variety of topics.

Course Reserves via the Digital Reading Room

The Digital Reading Room (DRR) is designed to provide easy access to course author selected online course resources, including readings, audiovisual clips, and a variety of other materials. A course DRR may include both required and supplemental materials taken from AU Library subscribed resources, and those freely available on the web.

One of the benefits of using the DRR to deliver required and supplemental online readings in courses is that if a link to a resource breaks, the DRR Support Team are able to replace the link quickly, and batch updates of links can be done in the case of a database platform change.

To learn more about the DRR, please go to the DRR page: http://drr.lib.athabascau.ca/.

Guidelines for DRR creation can be found here: http://drr.lib.athabascau.ca/DRR%20Guidelines_for_Use_FINAL.docx.

If you require help creating a DRR, please contact the DRR Support Team.

Updated October 8, 2014, 12:36 am by Library & Scholarly Resources

Athabasca University Library & Scholarly Resources
Phone: (800) 788-9041 ext 6254 | Email: library@athabascau.ca
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