At Athens State, we have three courses that are designed to assist students with information literacy. We recommend students take these courses within the first year of attending Athens State.
Students will research a specific topic and collect sources to create an annotated bibliography for the subject. Specify whether all sources need to be peer-reviewed or if popular sources are acceptable. The student will then cited and annotate their choices including how the content was obtained, why the content is appropriate, and be able to support their choices. (Smith College Libraries)
Find the original source of a footnote in a course reading. Locate the source and compare it to the arguments made in the course reading. (Willliams College)
Find the original article for a research study mentioned in the popular press. Compare the news story to the study. Did it correctly summarize the research findings? Alternatively, have students find a research article and write a summary announcement suitable for the popular press. (Williams College)
Let the assignment allow for a variety of sources. Students should be free to incorporate information created and communicated in various ways (e.g. articles from popular sources and peer-reviewed journals, primary and secondary sources, etc.). This requires students to engage with their sources and consider when and why information is useful in different contexts. (e.g., Authority is Constructed and Contextual; Information Creation as a Process; Searching as Strategic Exploration)
Scaffold the research process by assigning checkpoints. Having students turn in an annotated bibliography or outline before the final assignment is due provides formative assessment for you. It also helps students by requiring them to start early and by getting them to think about how individual sources do and do not relate to their research questions. (e.g., Research as Inquiry)
Reinforce ethical scholarship. Students should understand the ethical use of information and follow proper citation practices. This helps clarify the differences between citation and attribution in an academic setting. (e.g., Information Has Value; Scholarship as Conversation)
Update an existing bibliography or review of the literature. What has been learned since the original bibliography or review was written? What questions remain unanswered or unaddressed?