A new report from the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario (HEQCO) attempts to measure the effectiveness of various information literacy (IL) initiatives.
The study involved 500 undergraduate students at Georgian College and tested four different models for IL, including providing specific information literacy courses, embedding information literacy into existing curriculum, online tutorials and non-mandatory tutorials. As they state on the announcement,
The study calls for institutions to adopt information literacy strategies that focus on teaching styles, delivery models, human resource requirements, outcome measurements and defining the benefits to student, institution and employer. Many faculty suggested more time be allotted to skill development as well as additional resources including online tutorials.
As may be expected, students’ comfort, accuracy and ability to utilize information literacy skills increased over their two years of study. While the overall results showed no single method of delivery to be particularly advantageous, the students who had information literacy training embedded in their course curriculum did show significantly higher ability to accurately cite source material.