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Information literacy Inspiration

Some MERLOT with PRIMO for inspiration

This post presents the PRIMO (Peer-Reviewed Instructional Materials Online) and the MERLOT (Multimedia Educational Resource for Teaching and Learning) projects.

Under the ALA/ACRL umbrella, one can find the PRIMO Committee of the Instruction section. Of the many things they do, they offer a database of Peer-Reviewed Instructional Materials Online – aka the PRIMO database.

Peer-Reviewed Instructional Materials Online Database

I remember in the past that a team at Concordia University Libraries (of which I was a member) was awarded the “site of the month” award for June 2006 from the PRIMO Committee for our InfoResearch 101 project.

I remember stumbling on the MERLOT (Multimedia Educational Resource for Teaching and Learning) repository about a year ago. It contained a few interesting sites relating to business, such as Stanford’s Educators Corner or the Beginner’s Guide to Business Research.

According to their site, MERLOT is a

MERLOT is a free and open online community of resources designed primarily for faculty, staff and students of higher education from around the world to share their learning materials and pedagogy. MERLOT is a leading edge, user-centered, collection of peer reviewed higher education, online learning materials, catalogued by registered members and a set of faculty development support services.

Assessment Concordia University Guidelines - recommendations

AACSB Accreditation Standards

I am very lucky to be a business librarian at Concordia University – this is true on so many levels! Of all the reasons, the fact that the John Molson School of Business is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) may be a boon to work towards integrating information literacy in the curriculum.

As their website shows, the AACSB has Accreditation Standards to which JMSB must adhere to. These include the concept of total quality management – or making the most of the resources you have. It also assists in comparing business school together. Every so often, accredited schools must undergo a review process (audit), which serves as a nice entry point should you want to propose changes to how things are done – an external review fosters the feeling of continuous improvement.

For example, the “Assurance of Learning Standards” offers a few points where a library could have a positive impact… these are straightforward issues that school educators must report back on – so they are easily actionnable!

Blended Learning Information literacy Read Me

Case study on blended learning at McMaster U.

The most recent volume of the Canadian Journal for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (CJSoTL) offers many interesting articles about new ways to teach and think about teaching. This one caught my eye:

Sana, Faria; Fenesi, Barbara; and Kim, Joseph A. (2011). A Case Study of the Introductory Psychology Blended Learning Model at McMaster University. The Canadian Journal for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, 2 (1).
Retrieved from http://ir.lib.uwo.ca/cjsotl_rcacea/vol2/iss1/6

It caught my eye not only because of the title and abstract, but because one of the authors has presented the paper in a TEDx conference and the video is posted on YouTube:

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q8vxpI5P4lM&w=560&h=315]

Bibliographies Information literacy Open education Videos

Flip’n library instruction

“To flip” is getting a new definition in the education setting: that of delivering lectures via video or other out-of-classroom vehicles and using class time for exercises and other active learning exercises. At least, that’s my sense for a series of articles discussing the developments around Kahn Academy.

First off, Clive Thompson provides a fascinating description of the initiative in August 2011’s Wired Magazine. In a nutshell, Kahn Academy provides free training videos and exercises mainly in the math, sciences or economics fields and has been deploying classroom “operating systems” or dashboards that allow teachers to monitor in real-time the progress of each student. As Thompson points out,

Khan’s videos are anything but sophisticated. He recorded many of them in a closet at home, his voice sounding muffled on his $25 Logitech headset. But some of his fans believe that Khan has stumbled onto the secret to solving education’s middle-of-the-class mediocrity. Most notable among them is Bill Gates, whose foundation has invested $1.5 million in Khan’s site. “I’d been looking for something like this—it’s so important,” Gates says. Khan’s approach, he argues, shows that education can truly be customized, with each student getting individualized help when needed.

Not everyone agrees. Critics argue that Khan’s videos and software encourage uncreative, repetitive drilling—and leave kids staring at screens instead of interacting with real live teachers. Even Khan will acknowledge that he’s not an educational professional; he’s just a nerd who improvised a cool way to teach people things. And for better or worse, this means that he doesn’t have a consistent, comprehensive plan for overhauling school curricula.

More recently, The Economist offers a few articles this week on the subject of education reform (The great schools revolution ), education theory (The horse before the cart) and Kahn Academy (Flipping the classroom).

I have to admit that Kahn Academy is the main inspiration behind the library training videos I’ve built for the John Molson School of Business (with the invaluable help of John Bentley, at Concordia University’s Center for Teaching and Learning).


So long Tumblr and thanks for all the fish!

Outfind.ca was briefly hosted on tumblr.com, a free blog hosting website. It was great – I enjoyed the ease of use and the free site mapping (having my own Internet address). But I have been using the WordPress platform for my other blogs for years and I miss some of the advanced features… so I moved my blog over there before I had too many posts and ponied up the 12 bucks for domain mapping… so long tumblr!