Developing Lifelong Literacy Skills

You'll evaluate your current information literacy skills, reflect on developing these skills through attendance at workshops and the production of evidence showing critical evaluation of the research methodology.

Outline of Activity

There is a need for all students to acquire appropriate skills to successfully find, evaluate, manage and use information in order to become truly independent lifelong learners. We all operate in the 'Information Age' where being able to locate and use information effectively is highly prized in our knowledge economy. The ability, therefore, to demonstrate these critical transferable skills to potential employers and professional associations will greatly enhance future employability.

Learning Outcomes

A successful student will be able to:

  • Identify the key concepts on the chosen topic
  • Select suitable keywords/subject terms for each concept (eg. mind mapping; brainstorming etc.)
  • Identify appropriate information sources (primary and secondary sources) -
  • Develop a suitable search strategy (application of Boolean operators; phrase searching;
  • Truncation/wildcard searching; proximity searching etc.)
  • Select useful references (based on quality, relevancy, bias; currency etc.)
  • Review the search strategy (refining as necessary)
  • Organise and manage potentially useful references (eg. manual referencing or RefWorks)
  • Communicate and present main findings effectively and appropriately.

Assessment Details

Each student will have an initial meeting with their Subject Librarian to help assess their current level of information skills (using Newcastle University's self-assessment test) and to plan out each student's activity schedule.

Part of the student's engagement may be accounted for through participation in:

  • 1 hour library/IT induction workshop
  • A separate information skills (subject) workshop lasting at least 1.5 hours
  • A 2 hour RefWorks class

The assessment process will be managed by recording attendance and participation in library workshops and the successful completion of a body of evidence which reflects on the approach adopted in the research methodology for a current topic of interest.

The evidence may be produced in one of two ways, either a reflective portfolio or a presentation. Assessment will be based on the key skills outlined in SCONUL's Seven Pillars of Information Literacy.

Level of Commitment

20 hours to include:

Engagement which will include the production and presentation of evidence.

It will also be expected that students attend at least one information skills (subject) workshop and a referencing workshop delivered by their Subject Librarian.


Subject Librarian: