Skip to main content

Instruction for Faculty

Library Instruction Sessions for Classes

What Are They?

Faculty can schedule library instruction sessions for their classes. We can work with you to decide what you would like us to cover in these sessions. The classes are usually taught in the library’s electronic classroom. These are "hands-on" sessions, to encourage the students to learn about and feel comfortable with the library’s resources. Generally, students are introduced to research strategies, and learn how to use the library’s resources and evaluate their results.

What Happens In These Classes?

We tailor the content of these classes to meet your specific objectives. Realistically we can’t cover everything in one session, but there are several combinations of areas that we can focus on depending on how much time we have and what you and your students want.

Some of the possible areas we can cover:

  • Physical tour of the library
  • Using Ignacio effectively to find books and journals available in the library
  • Using general databases, such as Fusion or ProQest
  • Using subject specific databases, such as PsycINFO, ERIC, or Medline
  • Searching for and evaluating information on the web

How Can I Make Library Instruction Sessions More Effective?

  • Have the students working on specific topics so they will be able to apply and understand the concepts more readily.
  • Faculty should accompany the class for the session, so we can have a more dynamic, three-way interaction.
  • Let the librarian know the topics beforehand: it helps them to more effectively use examples that draw the students in to the process. 

How Long Do The Classes Last?

Library instruction sessions usually take one class period. We have experimented with offering two sessions, one on more "traditional" library resources like the catalog and journal indexes, and a second session just on using search engines more effectively and evaluation of web sites. We can work with you to determine the optimal amount of time your class will need.

Who Teaches the Sessions?

Librarians have been assigned subject liaison areas. Generally, your subject liaison, working with the Coordinator of Library Instruction, will teach them.

When Should I Schedule A Class?

Library instruction sessions are offered throughout the year. They should be scheduled at least one week in advance. As you put together your syllabus, it is better to contact us as early as possible, because the class schedule fills up. 

Our experience has been that a common mistake is for faculty to schedule the class too early in the semester, before the students have a clear sense of what is expected of them and what they will be working on. Rather than speaking in broad general terms about information, it helps the learning process of students to be working on a topic that matters to them and learning these concepts by applying them in these sessions.

How Do I Schedule A Class?

Just fill out the Class Instruction Request Form.

One-On-One Instruction

In addition to teaching group instruction sessions, librarians are available to meet with faculty, staff, and students for one-on-one to assist with your research needs. These sessions can be as general or specific as you wish. 

To request one-on-one instruction, fill out the Meet with a Librarian form, and we will attempt to get back to you within two business days to suggest a time to meet.

Information Literacy

With the growth of new information technology, there has been a growing perception of the need for information literacy competencies. Here are some links to different aspects of information literacy.

The Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) has published a Framework for Information Literacy. A seminal article published in 1996 looked at "Information Literacy as a Liberal Art."