Posts filed under ‘Information literacy’

Playing games in libraries

Max & TylerHow cool! Over at Carnegie Mellon University, there are library games that centre around helping students development information literacy skills particularly in identifying and evaluating sources of digital information . Called “Library Arcade”, there are two games: Within Range and I’ll Get It.

Within Range is simple enough for me! In this game you are putting books back on the shelf in the correct Library of Congress order. It’s a race against the clock as you move to more complex levels. I’ll Get It is based on the game Diner Dash (have to confess I’m not familiar with it) and the main character is Max, who is a student helping other students answer reference questions. You search at a computer terminal, finding results from a variety of different sources, and the challenge is to answer the reference question with the appropriate resource.

Go check the games out here at Carnegie Mellon University’s Library Arcade. Screen shots from the games are shown below:

Source: Research Quest

October 7, 2007 at 3:00 am 1 comment

Visual literacy

Lalida in ThailandAn IT work colleague put me onto the Visual Literacy e-learning programme. The site focuses on the ability (a critical one I would suggest) of creating, evaluating and applying conceptual visual representations. The challenge of visualizing knowledge for successful communication is one we grapple with on a daily basis.

If you log-in as a Guest, you can check out some demo tutorials and, in the Maps section, you can find a great resource – A Periodic Table of Visualization Methods – which you can download here. What’s great about this Table is the breakdown into categories of visualization methods: Data Visualization; Information Visualization; Concept Visualization; Strategy Visualization; Metaphor Visualization; and Compound Visualization.

So under Metaphor Visualization, for example, you’ll find a Story Template, Iceberg, Heaven ‘n’ Hell Chart; under Compound Visualization, you’ll find a Knowledge Map, a Rich Picture, a Learning Map etc. It’s really fascinating stuff – Information Lense, Semantic Networks, Soft System Modeling, Evocative Knowledge Map – they’re all there; just place your mouse over whatever you’re interested in and enjoy!

August 9, 2007 at 3:00 am Leave a comment

Information literacy

Flower - ThailandI’m currently preparing an Information Literacy programme for a client, so have been heavily researching. I’ve come across some great resources that are well worth sharing with you. First up is University of South Australia, InfoGate 2007 – a programme designed to open gateways to information. Online information literacy tutorials cover topics such as: filtering and evaluating information; search strategies; determining your information needs; types of sources; point of view etc. Obviously aimed at University students, this programme is a great starting point to equip students with the critical skills necessary to become independent lifelong learners. Victoria University (New Zealand) has a similar programme with useful pre-and post-module exercises to self-check understanding.

The International Information Literacy Resources Directory (IFLA) is a database stuffed full of information literacy materials for sharing from all around the world. Here I found a fabulous resource – 21st Century Literacies – which is a curriculum built around the theme Managing Information in a Digital Age. Here you can see lesson plans are broken down by Grade K-12 level.

I also found the ALA Information Literacy Competency Standards for Higher Education of interest, particularly the performance indicators.

And finally, I came across the Information Fluency wiki and a list of the Top 25 Web 2.0 search engines, which I found an eye-opener. I’m probably “behind the times’ as I wasn’t aware of Huckabuck or Kartoo. And this led me to having some fun with KWMap and Mnemomap. KWMap describes itself as a “keyword map for the whole internet”. If you type in a keyword, let’s say knowledge, an interface pops up, which basically depicts associative relationships. Here’s the KWMap showing knowledge. Clicking on any node in the visual map takes you off to another layer of concepts – I got lost in this for quite some time, it’s fascinating. Try it yourself!

Then there’s, Mnemomap, which is still in alpha but combines social networking concepts and search engines to refine search queries by providing alternative or additional search parameters on-the-fly. Live search results are shown. This is funky stuff! try searching knowledge and see what happens before your very eyes.

May 13, 2007 at 3:00 am Leave a comment

Information literacy

photo taken by Kim in NamibiaCame across a fantastic resource: 21st Century Information Literacy Project (21CIF) from the Illinois Maths and Science Academy (IMSA) and funded by the US Department of Education. 21CIF is designed for educators and learners who wish to know more about the essential steps of locating, evaluating and ethically using digital resources. Free online modules and webinars explore the full range of information literacy skills needed in a digital world.

Online tutorials provide hands-on practice with Digital Information Fluency Concepts and are 10-15mins in length, often with supporting video or audio. Topics covered include: copyright; how to search the invisible or deep web; using search engines; using keywords effectively. The Search Challenges are internet research problems you can solve by testing your search strategies and tactics.

Over in the Resources area, you can find the Digital Information Fluency core competencies model; top tips to empower your information skills in searching, evaluation and ethical use; and teacher lesson plans. The IMSA Full Circle Resource kit provides further resources to sharpen digital information fluency. And there’s also a blog.

Although designed primarily for secondary students, the digital information fluency skills covered in 21CIF could be tailored to the corporate training environment.

April 24, 2007 at 3:00 am Leave a comment


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