Visual Literacy Standards in Higher Education: New Opportunities for Libraries and Student Learning

“Visual literacy is essential for 21st century learners. Across the higher education curriculum, students are being asked to use and produce images and visual media in their academic work, and they must be prepared to do so. The Association of College and Research Libraries has published the Visual Literacy Competency Standards for Higher Education, which, for the first time, outline specific visual literacy learning outcomes. These Standards present new opportunities for libraries to expand their role in student learning through standards-based teaching and assessment, and to contribute to campus-wide collaborative efforts to develop students’ skills and critical thinking with regard to visual materials.”

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Transforming Information Literacy in the Sciences Through the Lens of e-Science

“In 2011, the ACRL Science & Technology Section (STS) completed its five-year review of the Information Literacy Standards for Science and Engineering/Technology. Predicated by the evolving nature of scholarship and research in the sciences, the reviewing task force strongly recommended that the standards be revised. This paper considers the broad recommendations of the task force, using the framework of e-Science – team-based, data-driven science – to address areas of necessary transformation in information literacy: an advanced team-based model that crosses disciplinary boundaries; a recognition that individuals and groups not only consume information, but also produce it; and stronger interplay between information literacy and complementary literacies. This paper also extrapolates beyond the sciences, referencing broader trends within higher education.”

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The Neoliberal Library

“Information literacy, from its emergence to its recent formulation, has and continues to uncritically adopt and reproduce neoliberalism within a closed discursive system that works to deny alternative conceptions of library pedagogy and instruction. The knowledge produced by librarianship and information literacy discursive practices is an enactment of power that naturalizes and authorizes neoliberalism and constrains the questioning of inequalities. Library instruction and pedagogy specifically and librarianship more generally need to begin promoting an awareness of the fields’ embeddedness within a neoliberal political and economic context, and engaging critically with that context.”

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Proposing a Metaliteracy Model to Redefine Information Literacy

“Metaliteracy is envisioned as a comprehensive model for information literacy to advance critical thinking and reflection in social media, open learning settings, and online communities. At this critical time in higher education, an expansion of the original definition of information literacy is required to include the interactive production and sharing of original and repurposed digital materials. Metaliteracy provides an overarching and unifying framework that builds on the core information literacy competencies while addressing the revolutionary changes in how learners communicate, create, and distribute information in participatory environments. Central to the metaliteracy model is a metacognitive component that encourages learners to continuously reflect on their own thinking and literacy development in these fluid and networked spaces. This approach leads to expanded competencies for adapting to the ongoing changes in emerging technologies and for advancing critical thinking and empowerment for producing, connecting, and distributing information as independent and collaborative learners.”

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Beyond the Physical Archive: Imagining Primary Source Literacies in the Digital Age

“In this paper, we propose strategies for outreach and collaboration with faculty and archivists that are centered on digitized primary sources. These strategies are based on our experiences and informed by a review of the literature of teaching faculty in several disciplines, as well as the archival literature, to identify current methods of teaching and supporting undergraduates’ research with primary sources.4 Next, we present examples of activities, assignments, and approaches to digitized primary source pedagogy that are linked to relevant information literacy and visual literacy standards. Finally, we offer concluding thoughts on the development of primary source literacies, not just in an era of digital abundance, but at a time in which the rapidly expanding field of digital humanities has the potential to complicate and alter students’ relation to sources even more dramatically.”

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“I Will Not Be a Tourist in the Land of Images”: Adding the Visual to Information Literacy Instruction

“… the creation of separate standards for IL and visual literacy (VL) suggests a disconnect between these constructs, despite the fact that words and images often function together as information carriers. IL standards seem to address verbal literacy, while visual or media literacy addresses the information associated with visual media. Given the increase in visual content carriers, a logical step for IL instruction would be the integration of VL and IL into a seamless literacy program (Harris, 2010). The presenters will suggest ways to combine VL and IL into a rhetorically based, critical-thinking approach to information. This approach can enrich IL and critical-thinking instruction, as learners are taught to apply rigorous criteria to texts regardless of their media form.”

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Picture This, Imagine That: The Literary and Pedagogic Force of Ekphrastic Principles

“My thesis is comprised of two articles, titled “Interpreting Britomart’s Encounters with Art: The Cyclic Nature of Ekphrasis in Spenser’s Faerie Queene III,” and “Picture This, Imagine That: Teaching Visual Literacy in the Disciplines.” To communicate the urgency of the need for students to enrich proficiency at visual literacy, I provide a literature review that narrates the growing need expressed by visual literacy scholars, composition theorists, visualization theorists and specialists, and the library community for an overarching visual literacy framework that provides scaffolding and common language for students.”

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