Friday, December 15, 2017

The Impact of Information Literacy Instruction on Student Success

The Impact of Information Literacy Instruction on Student Success: A Multi-Institutional Investigation and Analysis is a full text report on a study put online in October: "The GWLA Student Learning Outcomes task force analyzed the data from over 42,000 first-time, first-year freshmen and over 1700 distinct courses from 12 research institutions to determine the impact(s) of information literacy instruction integrated into course curriculum on several student success measures.".
Blake, J., Bowles-Terry, M., Pearson, N.S. and Szentkiralyi, Z. (2017). Greater Western Library Alliance (GWLA) Research Study - The Impact of Information Literacy Instruction on Student Success: A Multi-Institutional Investigation and Analysis. http://scholar.smu.edu/libraries_cul_research/13/
Photo by Sheila Webber: mini snowman, Sheffield December 2017

Thursday, December 14, 2017

(UK) Children and parents: media use and attitudes report 2017 #medialiteracy #fakenews

The 2017 annual research report from Ofcom on Children and parents: media use and attitudes has been published. As usual, it draws on substantial research, both quantitative and qualitative, and covers things like children's consumption and trust of news stories, use of social media, use of devices. "It provides detailed evidence on media use, attitudes and understanding among children and young people aged 5-15, as well as about the media access and use of young children aged 3-4. The report also includes findings relating to parents’ views about their children’s media use, and the ways that parents seek – or decide not – to monitor or limit use of different types of media." Ofcom is the communications and media official "watchdog" in the UK. The report has findings from their own quantitative and qualitative research and some other research, including:
- an online study of 500 children aged 12-15, "which explored children’s awareness, use and perceptions of content providers, and their interest in and ability to make critical judgements about news".
- Analysis of children’s television viewing habits sourced from BARB, the UK’s television measurement panel, 2011-2016.
- ComScore data on the frequency with which the most popular web entities among internet users were visited by children aged 6-14 in May 2017.
- Ofcom's qualitative study of children's media use.
I found an interesting finding was the prominence of YouTube: (p.3) "Double digit increases this year mean that half of 3-4s and more than eight in ten 5-15s now use YouTube. It is the most recognized content brand among 12-15s, and the one they are most likely to think includes their age group in its target audience, saying either that it is aimed specifically at their age group or at everyone. It is the one they would turn to first for all types of content they say is important to them, and the one they say they would miss the most if it was taken away. More 8-11s and 12-15s also say they prefer watching content on YouTube than TV programmes on the TV set" Different age groups prefer different types of video (p.9).

TV is seen as more reliable than social media (p.4) "TV is an important source of news for children, and is seen as more likely than social media to report the news truthfully. Around half of 12-15s say they are interested in the news, increasing to almost all 12-15s after prompting with a list of different types of news, including music, celebrities, sports and serious things going on in the UK and the world. TV is the most popular source of news among 12-15s, followed by social media and friends and family, and those who watch news on TV are more likely to say it is reported truthfully than those who get their news from social media."

Although often aware of personalised advertising and the fact that vloggers may be making paid endorsements "the qualitative research suggests that children can find it difficult to identify these adverts in practice, especially on social media where they may look similar to other kinds of content." This applies also to verifying news stories (p.4) "nearly half of 12-15s who use social media for news agreeing that it is difficult to tell whether a news story is true, and two in five saying they have seen something online or on social media that they thought was fake news. However, most of those who use social media for news have strategies for checking whether a story is true, with the most popular approach checking to see if a story appears elsewhere, followed by looking at the comments to see what people had said about the story. The news brand was also important, with around a quarter looking to see whether the source of the story was trustworthy or whether they had heard of the organisation behind the story."

There are some gender and age differences in value put on channels/devices (p72) "when comparing the device children would miss the most by gender, boys in each age group are more likely than girls to say they would most miss a games console/ player. Girls aged 5-7 (30% vs. 20%) and 8-11 (27% vs. 18%) are more likely than boys to miss a tablet; girls aged 8-11 also more likely to miss books, magazines or comics (8% vs. 3%). Girls aged 12-15 are more likely to miss a mobile phone (68% vs. 47%) as are girls aged 8-11 (22% vs. 14%)."
The report is at https://www.ofcom.org.uk/research-and-data/media-literacy-research/childrens/children-parents-2017
Photo by Sheila Webber: reflection: outside the V&A Museum, London, November 2017

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Blended Learning in Our Library Learning Landscape Workshop

An online workshop from the American Library Association is: Blend It 2018: Blended Learning in Our Library Learning Landscape Workshop, on 18 January 2018 2.30-4pm US Eastern time, which means e.g. it starts at 7.30pm UK time. It is led by Paul Signorelli. Costs are: US $65.00; ALA Member: $ 58.50. "The places where we train, teach, and learn are continuing to expand in dynamic, rewarding ways. Learning that once took place entirely within the physical spaces of our buildings, with clearly-established starting and ending times, now flows through our walls and turns our classrooms into potentially global workspaces at the drop of a tweet or the posting of an observation on a Facebook page. The communication is multi-directional as prospective participants join us informally on Twitter and other social media platforms and formally through live, well-facilitated tweet chats, Google Hangouts, and other synchronous and asynchronous learning tools. Join us for a highly-interactive exploration of how our blended (onsite-online) learning spaces offer continually expanding opportunities to better engage and serve our learners. This session will include a few case studies and plenty of time for participants to share their own efforts to create and facilitate the use of blended learning spaces."
Register at https://www.alastore.ala.org/content/blend-it-2018-blended-learning-our-library-learning-landscape-workshop
Photo by Sheila Webber: frosty fruit, Blackheath Farmers Market, December 2017

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

cfp Teaching for Curiosity, Creativity, and Action

There is a call for proposals for the 17th Annual Information Literacy Summit (at Moraine Valley Community College, USA), which takes place April 20 2018 with the theme Teaching for Curiosity, Creativity, and Action. The keynote is Char Booth, Associate Dean of the University Library at California State University San Marcos. "We are seeking presenters to lead engaging and interactive discussions about information literacy and library instruction. We are especially interested in breakout sessions and panels which focus on this year’s theme: Teaching for Curiosity, Creativity, and Action. How might we engage our learners to help them develop curiosity and creativity? What role does information literacy play in taking action and making change in our communities? How might our own teaching practice reflect these dispositions? We hope to foster conversations across all types of libraries, schools, and other organizations and encourage a diversity of perspectives in this proposal call." Topics include: social Justice; Service Learning; Student Curiosity and Creativity; Student Centered Teaching and Learning; Students as creators; Critical Information Literacy; Critical Pedagogies; Reflective Practice; Communities of Practice; Applications of the Framework for Information Literacy; Programmatic assessments; Instructional design.
Breakout sessions and panels are 50 minutes long and should be interactive. Panel discussions should up to 3 panelists. Submission consist of a 200-300 word description of the proposed session. "Please include learning outcomes and a brief explanation of why people should attend your session and what they will take away." Submission deadline is 12 January 2018. Submit at https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSf9PZ7cb9dITsEurYp1Hv9tJG7wUr_LhOGNXNJFncMjg34toA/viewform
Photo by Sheila Webber: snowy flower, Sheffield, December 2017

Monday, December 11, 2017

Literacy, Democracy and #fakenews

The latest issue of the open access publication Literacy in Composition Studies (volume 5 issue 2, 2017) is a special issue, on Literacy, Democracy, and Fake News. The main articles are:
- Navigating a Varied Landscape: Literacy and Credibility of Networked Information by Jacob W. Craig ("Drawing on two accounts of information literacy, one from American students and another from teenaged Macedonian fake news makers, I argue that developing an information literacy reflective of the monetized and hierarchical nature of networks is paramount to writing and research. Focusing on the relationship between technological discourse—what is said about technology—and literacy—what people do with technology, I argue that recognizing the influence of corporations and differences between print and digital media are paramount for the development of information literacy.")
- How Automated Writing Systems Affect the Circulation of Political Information Online by Timothy Laquintano and Annette Vee ("This article argues that fake news is only one instantiation of a shift that literacy studies will need to reckon with to understand how people encounter texts on an everyday basis. It argues that looking at the information ecologies in which fakes news circulates reveals a shift to the reliance on computational and automated writing systems to circulate texts and amplify their distribution. The article critically synthesizes existing literature and provides key examples of how algorithms and bots were deployed strategically to pollute the media ecology with fake news in the time immediately preceding the 2016 Presidential election in the United States. The argument ultimately raises a series of questions that literacy studies will need to confront given the importance influence of computation in contemprary information environments, including how people engage in responsible discourse in the face of rapidly evolving technologies that can be exploited and offer a bullhorn to the most detestable of political positions.")
- ‘Globalist Scumbags’: Composition’s Global Turn in a Time of Fake News, Globalist Conspiracy, and Nationalist Literacy by Christopher Minnix ("... This article maps out how global higher education is constructed in the populist rhetoric of the political right, both in accounts from fake news sources and hard right news sources and in the educational policy discourse of conservative organizations like the National Association of Scholars. It then explores the consequences of anti-global education rhetoric for the global turn in rhetoric and composition studies and maps out both a critical and political response.")
- Toward a Theory and Pedagogy of Rhetorical Vulnerability by David Riche
Go to http://licsjournal.org/OJS/index.php/LiCS/issue/view/13
Photo by Sheila Webber: sparkle, Peter Lewis store, London, December 2017

Call for nominations for LIRT awards

The ALA LIRT (Library Instruction Round Table) "welcomes submissions for two awards created to recognize excellence in information literacy and instruction. Submissions from all types of libraries are encouraged. Winners will receive a $1,000 award, a plaque, and a $500 travel stipend to be used to attend the 2018 ALA Annual Conference in New Orleans, where the awards will be presented." As far as I can see, it is not restricted to librarians in North America.
- The LIRT Librarian Recognition Award honours a librarian for her/his contributions to information literacy and instruction.
- The LIRT Innovation in Instruction Award honours a library for their innovative approach to information literacy and instruction.
Deadline for submissions (you can nominate yourself or others) is January 15, 2018. Full information at http://www.ala.org/rt/lirt/awards
Photo by Sheila Webber: snowy hedge, Blackheath, December 2017

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Engaging with the ACRL Framework: A Catalyst for Exploring and Expanding Our Teaching Practices

A workshop at the American Library Association Midwinter meeting in Denver, USA, on 9 February 2018 is: Engaging with the ACRL Framework: A Catalyst for Exploring and Expanding Our Teaching Practices. The registration fees vary from US $255 to $325. More information at http://www.ala.org/acrl/conferences/frameworkworkshop

Friday, December 08, 2017

Translating the ACRL Framework for Information Literacy into Our Teaching Practices

Translating the ACRL Framework for Information Literacy into Our Teaching Practices is a rerun of a 6 week asynchronous online course; part of the Library Juice programme, this course is run by Andrea Baer, and it starts on January 8 2018, until February 16 2018. The cost is US$250. More information at http://libraryjuiceacademy.com/119-framework.php
Photo by Sheila Webber: house, with threshold, Sheffield, November 2017

Thursday, December 07, 2017

Library Instruction by Design: Using Design Thinking to Meet Evolving Needs

The California Conference on Library Instruction will take place on June 1, 2018, with the theme Library Instruction by Design: Using Design Thinking to Meet Evolving Needs, at the University of San Francisco, USA. "Design Thinking involves using a designer’s perspective to improve services through creative problem solving. A fundamental aspect of this process is that it is iterative, in that intermediate “solutions” are potential starting points that allow for experimentation and flexibility in piloting or revitalizing programs. Design Thinking allows for redefinition of the initial problem by stakeholders throughout all points of the design process. “The challenges facing librarians are real, complex and varied. And given the rapidly evolving information landscape, they need new answers, which requires new perspectives, new tools, and new approaches. Design thinking is one of these new approaches” More info at http://www.cclibinstruction.org/
Photo by Sheila webber: the last of the wild strawberries in my garden, a couple of weeks ago

Wednesday, December 06, 2017

2 new PRIMO tutorials of the month: PICO and Academic Integrity

Two new Peer-Reviewed Instructional Materials Online (PRIMO) "sites of the month", both tutorials from the same university library. Firstly: Academic Integrity at
https://www.asu.edu/lib/tutorials/storyline/academic-integrity/story_html5.html - the interview with creators Bee Gallegos & Deirdre Kirmis is at http://acrl.ala.org/IS/instruction-tools-resources-2/pedagogy/primo-peer-reviewed-instruction-materials-online/primo-site-of-the-month/october-2017-site-of-the-month/ "Academic Integrity is an interactive web-based tutorial that teaches students about academic integrity and the consequences of academic dishonesty. It features an interactive game with academic integrity scenarios, a 10-question quiz at the end that can be graded, and a script of the tutorial."
Secondly, PICO: Research Questions for Health Sciences at https://www.asu.edu/lib/tutorials/storyline/pico/story_html5.html The interview with creators Bee Gallegos, Deirdre Kirmis, and Kevin Pardon is at http://acrl.ala.org/IS/instruction-tools-resources-2/pedagogy/primo-peer-reviewed-instruction-materials-online/primo-site-of-the-month/november-2017-site-of-the-month/ "PICO: Research Questions for Health Sciences tutorial is part of a series of general research skills tutorials developed for ASU students. Although the focus, as the title implies, is the health sciences, the PICO framework has value for students in other disciplines who are trying to define a topic and develop a thesis statement or answerable research question. This tutorial is licensed through Creative Commons, so individual branding and other modifications can be made with attribution."
Photo by Sheila Webber: winter berries, November 2017

Playful learning in #LTHEChat 6 December

The next LTHEChat (chat in Twitter about teaching and learning in higher education) is on Wednesday 6 December at 8-9PM (UK time: that's e.g. 3-4pm USA Eastern time). It will be based on questions from Katie Piatt and Fiona MacNeill (University of Brighton) on Playful Learning. To join in, just use #LTHEChat - the website is here https://lthechat.com/ and the Storify should appear at https://storify.com/LTHEchat/

Tuesday, December 05, 2017

New articles in @JInfoLit student research; school library perspectives; distance learning; audience response; #blacklivesmatter

The latest issue of open access Journal of Information Literacy has been published (volume 11 number 2 2017). The articles are:

- Celebrating Undergraduate Students’ Research at York University by Sophie Bury, Dana Craig, Sarah Shujah
- Using audience response systems to enhance student engagement and learning in information literacy teaching by Paula Funnell
- School library staff perspectives on teacher information literacy and collaboration by Christine McKeever, Jessica Bates, Jacqueline Reilly
- Distance learning as alterity: facilitating the experience of variation and professional information practice by Lee Webster, Andrew Whitworth
- Examining structural oppression as a component of information literacy: A call for librarians to support #BlackLivesMatter through our teaching by Angela Pashia
- Exploring the experience of undergraduate students attending a library induction during Welcome Week at the University of Surrey by Charlotte Barton
Plus a conference review and 2 book reviews. Go to https://ojs.lboro.ac.uk/JIL/issue/view/187
Photo by Sheila Webber: winter rose, November 2017

Monday, December 04, 2017

Young Children’s Digital Literacy Practices in the home and in formal settings

Just published are 2 literature reviews:
- Kumpulainen, K. and Gillen, J. (2017). Young Children’s Digital Literacy Practices in the Home: A Review of the Literature. http://digilitey.eu/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/WG-1-Lit-Review-04-12-17.pdf
- Kontovourki, S., Garoufallou, E., Ivarsson, L., Klein, M., Korkeamaki,R.L., Koutsomiha, D., Marci- Boehncke, G., Tafa, E. and Virkus, S. (2017). Digital Literacy in the Early Years: Practices in Formal Settings, Teacher Education, and the Role of Informal Learning Spaces: A Review of the Literature. http://digilitey.eu/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/WG2-LR-March-2017-v2.pdf [This does include a subsection on libraries and museums as informal learning spaces.]
They are both released as part of the European project. The objectives of this project are "to create an interdisciplinary network that will advance understanding of young children ́s digital literacy and multimodal practices in the new media age and which will build a co-ordinated European agenda for future research in this area." The project website is at http://digilitey.eu
Photo by Sheila Weber: squash, Farmers market, November 2017

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Voting for papers to be in the Innovative Library

The organisers of the conference The Innovative Library Classroom 2018 (taking place at Radford University, Radford, VA, USA, on May 8-9 2018) have put a form online so you can vote on which posters, lightning talks and presentations should be included. Anyone can vote, but perhaps it isn't fair unless you think there is a chance you might be going ..... Read the abstracts and vote by 8 December at http://tinyurl.com/TILC2018vote
Photo by Sheila webber: winter rose, November 2017

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Webinar: Fighting Fake News with the ACRL Framework

On November 30 at 1pm-2.30pm US Central time (which is 7pm-8.30 pm UK time) there is a priced ACRL e-Learning webcast, Fighting Fake News with the ACRL Framework. "In this webcast, explore strategies and techniques for teaching people the literacy skills they need to combat fake news. The interactive webcast will incorporate time for interactive discussion, online polls, reflection, brainstorming, and sharing ideas. Leave the webcast with concrete strategies, materials, and talking points that you can use in your teaching and outreach efforts." The leader is Sarah Morris. Costs are: ACRL member: $50; ALA member: $75; Nonmember: $90; Student: $40; Group: $295. More information at http://www.ala.org/acrl/onlinelearning/fightingfakenews
Photo by Sheila Webber: lost cap, Sheffield, November 2017 (part of the lost item series)

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Presentations on digital and information literacy in Scotland

There are presentations from recent Scottish events. Firstly, from the Digital and Information Literacy Forum organised by the Scottish Information Literacy Community of Practice and the Scottish Library and Information Council (SLIC): Presentations are here https://scottishlibraries.org/about-us/events/digital-information-literacy-forum-2017/ on Scottish Government Digital Strategy; The Digital Footprint MOOC; Health Literacy Action Plan Update; Information Literacy of Scotland's Teenagers; Information Literacy and Syrian New Scots; Wikimedia and Information Literacy  (additionally the video Wikipedia in the Classroom https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lQR_1mZ-gAA)
From the SLIC Showcase & AGM: UWS Information Literacy Journey, presentation at https://scottishlibraries.org/media/1760/uws-info-lit-journey.pdf with student-made videos on library services at https://youtu.be/AITUpsjrU0w and https://youtu.be/aWUbiqK29hQ
Photo by Sheila Webber: Inverness, Scotland, June 2017

Monday, November 27, 2017

New articles: annual review of information literacy literature; marketing training workshops

The latest issue of priced publication Reference Services Review is Volume 45 Issue 4. The main item of interest is the substantial annotated bibliography on information literacy that they publish annually:
- Library instruction and information literacy 2016: Latisha Reynolds, Amber Willenborg, Samantha McClellan, Rosalinda Hernandez Linares, Elizabeth Alison Sterner (pp. 596 - 702).
523 items are listed "The majority, (370) were oriented toward academic libraries. Additional category totals include 4 Legal, 45 Medical, 46 Other, 6 Public and 52 School related publications" The list does have a bias towards North American material, not including papers from the volume of ECIL conference proceedings, as far as I can see (although, the literature generally is dominated by North American academic librarians, so it partly just reflects that). Popular topics include the ARCL Framework for IL, collaboration with faculty and teaching online.

Other articles in the issue which caught my attention
- Creating a sustainable graduate student workshop series: Bettina Peacemaker, Martha Roseberry (pp. 562 - 574) [good for practical insights into running training sessions - they are still doing this and their "Advance your research" site at http://guides.library.vcu.edu/ayr/ provides examples of what they do.
- 8 Years of institutional assessment feedback: students’ satisfaction with library services: Monica D.T. Rysavy, Russell Michalak, Alison Wessel (pp. 544 - 561) [the satisfaction questionnaire included at least one question related to infolit]
Table of contents and abstracts at http://www.emeraldinsight.com/toc/rsr/45/4
Photo by Sheila Webber: hydrangeas, November 2017

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Webinar: Interdisciplinarity and the Liaison Librarian

A free webinar on 29 November at 1pm USA Central time (which is 7pm UK time): Interdisciplinarity and the Liaison Librarian, sponsored by CHOICE in association with ACRL. "As academia splinters into ever more specialized fields of inquiry, access to broad bodies of knowledge has never been greater. How can today's liaison librarian add value to the interdisciplinary research of the faculty they serve? Jeff Knapp, the Larry & Ellen Foster Librarian for Communications at Penn State, will discuss some history of the interdisciplinary research movement, and the ways librarians’ expertise can improve interdisciplinary scholarship."
Registration at http://www.choice360.org/librarianship/webinars/interdisciplinarity-and-the-liaison-librarian
Photo by Sheila webber: beech leaves, November 2017

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Recent articles: transfer students; one box search; wesite usabilty

Seeing the latest issue of (priced publication) Reference Services Review made me realise I hadn't blogged the previous one, so I will do that first. Volume 45 issue 3 included:
- Guiding choices: implementing a library website usability study: Troy A. Swanson , Tish Hayes , Jennifer Kolan , Kelly Hand , Susan Miller (pp. 359 - 367)
- ARL instruction librarians and the one-box: a follow-up study: Ellen L. Rubenstein , Cheryl McCain , Kristal S. Boulden (pp. 368 - 381)
- Through three lenses: transfer students and the library: Anna Sandelli (pp. 400 - 414)
- Transfer student analysis and retention: a collaborative endeavor: Trudi Jacobson , John Delano , Linda Krzykowski , Laurie Garafola , Meghan Nyman , Holly Barker-Flynn (pp. 421 - 439)
- Ensuring a level playing field: creating an information literacy exam for transfer students: Vonzell Yeager , Anne E. Pemberton (pp. 454 - 471)
- Bridging the gap: Developing library services and instructional programs for transfer students at Appalachian State University: Kelly Rhodes McBride , Margaret N. Gregor , Kelly C. McCallister (pp. 498 - 510)
- Connecting information literacy instruction with transfer student success: Mark Robison (pp. 511 - 526)
- Assessing and meeting the information literacy needs of incoming transfer students: Implementing ACRL’s assessment in action program: Karen Stanley Grigg , Jenny Dale (pp. 527 - 539)
There were, in particular, other articles about transfer students, which were a special focus of the issue. Table of contents at http://www.emeraldinsight.com/toc/rsr/45/3
Photo by Sheila Webber: boat on Lake Ashi, Japan, 2005

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Presentations from Global Media and Information Literacy week #globalmilweek

 reproduced under a Creative Commons license. Berezhnaya, T (2017). Global Media and Information Literacy Week 2017, https://flic.kr/p/ZE34fd
Some of the presentations from the Global Media and Information Literacy Week conference (held in Kingston, Jamaica in October) have been published at https://en.unesco.org/global-mil-week-2017/conference-resources and also there are photos at https://www.flickr.com/photos/139453419@N05/sets/72157688708494891/with/38486926696/
The conference started with a youth conference, and there is a report of this at https://en.unesco.org/news/building-cloud-critical-minds-global-media-and-information-literacy-week-2017-youth-agenda
Photo by Tina Berezhnaya/UNESCO, reproduced under a Creative Commons license. Berezhnaya, T (2017). Global Media and Information Literacy Week 2017, https://flic.kr/p/ZE34fd - I'm in the front row behind the MIL CLICKS poster, you can just see my head and my hands above the UNESCO logo

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Libraries & SDGs for Media and Information Literate Lives in the 21st Century #globalmilweek

I forgot to post my own presentation from the  Global Media and information Literacy Conference Kingston, Jamaica, 26 October 2017, so here it is. It is entitled Libraries & SDGs [that's the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals] for Media and Information Literate Lives in the 21st Century. There is a short report here on the IFLA site about this session (which was sponsored and chaired by IFLA) 


Monday, November 20, 2017

Free places at #LILAC18

There is a free place at the LILAC conference on offer for a librarian in each of the following sectors: Schools; Further Education; Public libraries; Health (e.g. NHS - please note; librarians working in Higher Education who support health subjects are not eligible to apply). LILAC will be held in Liverpool  4-6 April 2018. The conference place includes 3 days' attendance at all LILAC sessions and social events. Accommodation and travel expenses up to the value of £250 are also available if required. You "must be a librarian or information professional working in the above mentioned sectors in the UK or Ireland. You will have to demonstrate your commitment to information literacy by writing a short personal statement and explaining what benefits you would gain from attending the conference and how you intend to use your conference experience in your work." More information at http://www.lilacconference.com/lilac-2018/bursaries

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Information Literacy and Instruction: a Global Overview.

I flagged up this article before RUSQ went open access, but now that it is open access it is worth mentioning again:
Grassian, Esther (2017). Information Literacy and Instruction: Teaching and Learning Alternatives: A Global Overview. Reference & User Services Quarterly, 56(4), 232-239. http://dx.doi.org/10.5860/rusq.56.4.232  Abstract: "Your communities need your help more than ever, in so many ways—job, healthcare, and college and occupational study applications, workplace research and problem solving, research paper and homework help, and many other community-related issues, like accessing laws and regulations. How do you address these needs when there are so many people needing your help, at any time of the day or night, almost anywhere in the world, but also right in front of you at a physical reference desk? Face-to-face personal help is still invaluable, but reference work has expanded in many ways. It includes, but goes beyond, fact finding. Reference librarians help people learn how to learn so they can participate fully in their societies as informed and knowledgeable citizens. This column takes a look at how librarians and others around the world are identifying what people need to learn for this purpose, and how to help them learn it. This column and the sites listed at the end of it provide ideas and approaches that could be used or adapted to help the people in your communities achieve this goal."
Photo by Sheila Webber: hydrangeas, November 2017

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Presentations from #ECIL2017

Many presentations from European Conference on Information Literacy (ECIL) that took place on September 2017 are now on the website http://ecil2017.ilconf.org/
Go to the Speakers and program tab, and if the presentation is there, it will be linked in its place in the programme. Lots of of aspects of information literacy are covered, and with presentations from many countries around the world.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Call for #LOEX2018 breakout sessions

You only have 2 more days (deadline 17 November) to propose sessions for LOEX 2018, theme New Frontiers: Exploring and Innovating in Uncharted Territory, which takes place May 3-5, 2018 in Houston, Texas, USA. Proposals should be for for 50-minute long presentations or interactive workshops. "This year’s LOEX tracks are:  
Pedagogy: Space Camp - Techniques for Preparing the Next Generation;
Learning & Assessment: Is There Life Out There? - Evidence of Learning Through Assessment;
Leadership: Ground Control to Major Tom - Directing the Mission;  
Technology and Innovation: Moonshot - Ambition through Technology & Innovation;
Collaboration: International Space Station - Working Together for the Greater Good;  
Failures and Problem Solving: Houston, We Have a Problem - Radical Solutions for When Things Go Wrong 
(I think I spot an underlying theme there!) More info at http://www.loexconference.org/breakoutproposals.html
Photo by Sheila Webber: Hydrangea, November 2017

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Recent articles: Information behaviour of cult media fans; three teaching methods

Recent articles from the priced publication Journal of Information Science, Volume 43, Issue 5, 2017 include:
- Price, L. and Robinson, L. 'Being in a knowledge space’: Information behaviour of cult media fan communities, pp. 649–664
- Dolničar, D. et al. A comparative study of three teaching methods on student information literacy in stand-alone credit-bearing university courses, pp. 601–614
Contents page at http://journals.sagepub.com/toc/jisb/43/5
Photo by Sheila Webber: St James Church, November 2017

Monday, November 13, 2017

#milclicks live Facebook session 14 November

As part of the #MILCLICKS campaign (to encourage people to use their Media and Information Literacy before clicking and sharing!) there is a live webinar on the MILCLICKS Facebook page. There was already a session on 9 November (and you can see the comments from that on the Facebook page) and the one on the 14 November takes place at 11am Paris (France) time which is 10am UK time, and it will be led by Philippe Coen, President of Respect Zone (France). The topic is Privacy online: how important is it? Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/MILCLICKS/ and webpage at https://en.unesco.org/MILCLICKS

Friday, November 10, 2017

Recent articles: public libraries and infolit; how well do librarians cite

Reference and User Services Quarterly is now open access, and volume 57 number 1, 2017 includes:
- For Your Enrichment: Developing a Reflective Practice Template for Citation Management Software Instruction - Steven D. Milewski, Jeanine M. Williamson
- Information Literacy and Instruction: For Your Information: Using Information Literacy in Public Libraries - Sonnet Ireland
- Giving Credit: How Well Do Librarians Cite and Quote Their Sources? - Peter Genzinger, Deborah Wills [the answer is - not perfectly well!]
https://journals.ala.org/index.php/rusq/issue/view/657
Photo by Sheila Webber: autumn rose, November 2017

Scottish fact checking combating #fakenews

From a recent CILIP Scotland conference - an informative presentation, with examples, from Alastair Brian of Ferret Fact Service (which happens to not-coincidentally abbreviate to FFS) Combating ‘fake news’ – Separating fact from fiction in an ever-changing world . FFS is "Scotland’s first fact-checking service, set up after funding from Google, but editorially independent" and has been accepted into the international fact checking network: https://theferret.scot/category/fact-check/


Wednesday, November 08, 2017

#ECIL2018 call for papers - and 4000th blog post!

For my four thousandth post on this blog I announce the call for papers for the European Conference on Information Literacy. This is due to take place September 24-27, 2018, in Oulu, Finland. Information Literacy in Everyday Life is the main theme (e.g. IL in hobbies, arts, self-development, sports, physical exercise, cooking), but as usual there is a range of information literacy themes that you can choose to address e.g. Information literacy for different groups, in different cultures and countries, ethical/social issues, IL and the neoliberal agenda, IL and the digital empowerment, IL and trans/inter/multiculturalism. There are various options: full-papers, posters, PechaKucha, best practices, workshops, panels, special sessions, and doctoral forum. Abstract submission deadline is 15 February 2018. More information at http://ecil2018.ilconf.org/
Photo by Sheila Webber: autumn leaves frame the sky, November 2017

Monday, November 06, 2017

Librarian engaging with first year undergraduates?

Lisa Hinchliffe is seeking participants for online (90 min) focus groups about student information literacy misconceptions. "The process of learning includes not only success in developing knowledge, skills, and abilities but also mistakes and errors that impede such success. In any domain of learning, instructors will have developed a sense of the typical errors learners make. Wiggins and McTigue, in Understanding by Design (2005), term these “predictable misunderstandings” and encourage consideration of them in the instructional design process in order to anticipate and overcome learner misconceptions. There has been limited systematic investigation and documentation of predictable misunderstandings in information literacy learning in higher education. This research project is intended to begin to fill that gap." If you engage with first years about information literacy you can sign up here https://illinois.edu/sb/sec/4521807 and any question to Lisa Hinchliffe (ljanicke@illinois.edu)
Photo by Sheila Webber: autumn branches, Sheffield, November 2017

#DigitalLiteracy Impact Study

The New Media Consortium (NMC) released Digital Literacy Impact Study An NMC Horizon Project Strategic Brief

This "uncovers the learner’s perspective of how digital literacy training influences work life after graduation. ... More than 700 recent graduates from 36 [North American] institutions responded to an NMC survey that addressed the experiences they gained at colleges and universities, and how their proficiencies or lack thereof have affected their careers." They ask about what respondents felt they learnt about in the undergraduate courses, and how valuable they find aspects of digital literacy in their workplace. Their framework overlaps with information literacy, but IL isn't mentioned (except for referring to the ACRL Standards for IL (not the current ACRL Framework) as useful further reading) which seems a missed opportunity. In fact, finding and evaluating information are aspects that emerge as better covered in undergraduate programmes. NMC also note that "Funding for this independent research endeavor and publication was provided by Adobe."
https://www.nmc.org/publication/2017-digital-literacy-impact-study-an-nmc-horizon-project-strategic-brief/
This links up to the NMC Digital Literacy Report released recently, which outlined aspects of digital literacy https://www.nmc.org/publication/digital-literacy-part-ii-an-nmc-horizon-project-strategic-brief/
Photo by Sheila Webber: Firth Court, Sheffield University, November 2017

Friday, November 03, 2017

The Game is On! #copyright

The Game is On! is "a series of short animated films that put copyright and creativity under the magnifying glass of Sherlock Holmes, providing a unique, research-led and open access resource for school-aged learners and other creative users of copyright. Drawing inspiration from well-known copyright and public domain work, as well as recent copyright litigation, these films provide a springboard for exploring key principles and ideas underpinning copyright law, creativity, and the limits of lawful appropriation and reuse." There is also related material that can be used by educators. The website is " an independent online resource aimed at making UK Copyright Law accessible to creators, media professionals, entrepreneurs, students, and members of the public. The goal is to provide answers to the most pressing concerns creators have about copyright, helping them understand their rights." The website is at http://www.copyrightuser.org/educate/the-game-is-on/

Thanks to Jane Secker and others who linked to useful resources in a recent Twitter discussion as part of https://twitter.com/hashtag/LTHEchat?src=hash


The Game is On! - The Adventure of the Girl with the Light Blue Hair from CopyrightUser.org on Vimeo.

Thursday, November 02, 2017

MOOC from #futurelearn - Making Sense of Data in the Media

The Sheffield Methods Institute (based at my own University, the University of Sheffield, UK) is running once more a three week MOOC, starting on November 6 2017: Making Sense of Data in the Media. You can follow and participate in the MOOC for free, but if you want access to the material after the course is finished, or if you want a completion certificate, you have to pay a fee of £32. "The course is created by the Sheffield Method’s Institute, part of the Q-Step Programme which is dedicated to improving understanding of quantitative social science skills in the UK and abroad. To learn more about the course, watch the trailer and sign up for free please visit the course page here."
Topics are: Recognising the ‘size’ of numbers that are reported in the media; How change and risk are reported; How social statistics are created, paying particular attention to survey data; What we can learn from census categories; the different ways that surveys can be conducted and the impact that different formats can have on the results; How to draw a representative sample from a population.; Sources of measurement error in surveys; Measuring sensitive or difficult subjects; Checking whether data is trustworthy by reviewing the methodology; How to calculate the Margin of Sampling Error (MoSE); The difference between correlation and causation; Where to find existing sources of data; How to develop a quantitative research project.
Go to https://www.futurelearn.com/courses/media-data/
Photo by Sheila webber: autumn, Sheffield, October 2017

Wednesday, November 01, 2017

Events: The Innovative Teacher; Introduction to Design Thinking; New Directions in Information Literacy

The CONUL Teaching & Learning Seminar The Innovative Teacher takes place on 16 November 2017 in Dublin, Ireland. Keynote speakers are Emma Coonan (talking on New tricks? Negotiating the librarian identity) and David Streatfield (talking on How can you tell if it is working? Evaluating the impact of educational innovations). Information at http://www.conul.ie/annual-seminar-2017/

Also Library Juice Academy online (asychronous) courses coming up in November include:
- Introduction to Design Thinking (Carli Spina) US $175
- Informal Learning in the Academic Library (Lauren Hays and Teresa Slobuski) US $175
- Online Instructional Design and Delivery (Mimi O'Malley) US $250
- New Directions in Information Literacy: Growing Our Teaching Practices (Andrea Baer) US $250
Details at http://libraryjuiceacademy.com/courses.php
Photo by Sheila Webber: Michaelmas daisies, October 2017

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Digital Savvy Citizens

There is a new publication from the Carnegie Trust
White, D. (2017). Digital Savvy Citizens. ISBN: 978-1-909447-75-2. https://www.carnegieuktrust.org.uk/publications/digital-savvy-citizens/
"How do we navigate information, privacy and security issues online? Digital Savvy Citizens presents new research data which looks at where we find information on breaking news stories and local services; how we use public wifi; and how we manage privacy and security settings on our phones. The data, compiled for the Trust by Ipsos MORI, highlights key differences in behaviour by age, gender and socio-economic group, as well as differences between England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and Ireland."
There were indeed interesting variations by age group, by socio-economic group, and by home nation.
Photo by Sheila Webber: hydrangea, October 2017

Monday, October 30, 2017

Playful learning in libraries #uklibchat

The next uklibchat is Playful learning in libraries. The chat takes place in Twitter using the #uklibchat hashtag, on 7 November 2017, between 18.30 and 20.30 UK time (which is e.g. 1.30pm to 3.30pm US Eastern time). "This chat will be focused on the possibilities of playful learning approaches and pedagogies for engaging clients, teaching information and digital literacies as well as developing and managing staff, inspired by the latest Playful Learning conference" There is an article introducing this chat topic at https://uklibchat.wordpress.com/2017/10/27/feature-post-45-playful-learning/ The chat agenda, that you can read and add to, is at https://docs.google.com/document/d/1F8ypObziBhP89WRnEB-EonMbWVTcUPBXRZpsDk6dXk8/edit?usp=sharing

Friday, October 27, 2017

MIL CLICKS Twitter discussion #GlobalMILWeek

As one component of Global MIL Week 2017, the MIL CLICKS Twitter Webinar is being held tomorrow 28 October 2017 on the topic Privacy online: How important is it? in the form of Twitter Q&A sessions. The webinar will virtually gather a group of experts in the field of media and information literacy and privacy, as well as youth leaders, to discuss the topic through tweets and to answer questions from interested people around the world.
There are three time slots for different time zones. Each slot has a duration of 1 hour. Each presenter (intervening via Twitter) can choose one or several slots to participate. The detailed time slots are below:
- Asia-Pacific: 15:00 – 16:00 (Beijing and Singapore Time)
- Africa and Europe: 14:00 – 15:00 (Cape Town, Cairo, Belgrade and Paris Time)
- North America and South America: 11:00 – 12:00 (Washington and Kingston Time)
During the allotted time, the presenters along with the UNESCO @MILCLICKS Twitter page will tweet around the topic using the hashtag #GlobalMILWeek.
Presenters will tweet to discuss the topic and share relevant resources.Anyone holding a Twitter account can tweet to ask questions in connection with the topic to any of the presenters in using the @ function (a list of presenters' Twitter handles will be made available on social media and on the webpage of the MIL CLICKS webinar)
Tagged presenters who receive a pertinent question shall respond and give an answer, comment or opinion in one or several tweets with the hashtag #GlobalMILWeek.
Presenters will tweet on their own Twitter page. The @MILCLICKS Twitter account will also post relevant content. See more about MIL CLICKS at: https://en.unesco.org/milclicks.

MIL in Latin America, CIS, China, Sweden #globalmilweek

The last plenary at the Global Media and Information Literacy Week conference is on Incorporating MIL in education policies and other social policies and programmes.
The session was moderated by Carolyn Wilson (Chair, GAPMIL International Steering Committee, Lecturer, Western University, Canada). The first speaker was Tomas Durán-Becerra (National Research Director, National Unified Corporation of National Education, Colombia) who talked about MIL in Latin America. He started by acknowledging the work of Jesus Lau. They had undertaken a content analysis of documents relating to policies, curricila etc. in 11 Latin American countries, as well as a literature review, and examination of relevant statistics. They identified whether there were relevant national agencies or campaigns. A questionnaire was produced: asking questions about MIL curriculum, policy, MIL industry and telecommunications industry, MIL and civil society, and other MIL activities. The speaker presented findings in terms of literacy rates, internet users etc.
In terms of some larger conclusions: on the good side, for example, there is a variety of OERs, all countries have departments for education and access to and policies on technology, but there were problems in a number of MIL-specific areas e.g. few countries had MIL agencies/departments, there were few MIL policies, there is a huge emphasis on digital skills, but little development of media competence. (There was lots of detail in this presentation, I couldn't capture a lot of it)
Out of all this they calculated the MIL-readiness, Costa Rica came out as the most MIL ready and Ecuador the least (using the UNESCO assessment framework). There were big differences in some specific categories, e.g. Civil Society.

Wang Tiande (Zhejiang University of Media and Communications, China) presented on the research status of China's media literacy education. He said that media literacy was effectively introduced into China in 1997 as a research topic. In 2003 the first international media literacy conference was hosted in China. Strands of ML research included: developing ML theory and focusing on ML practice (including looking at ML education in schools and teacher training). Distinctive specialisms, relating ML to other subjects, also have emerged.

Monika Johansson and Tobias Ruhtenberg (University of Borås, Sweden) talked about Media and Information Literacy in education. They described a course, of the same name, based on the UNESCO Media and Information Literacy framework. It is an online course, with the target learners being educators and librarians. Topics include the MIL concept, digital tools, professional development, collaboration between teachers and school librarians, social media and big data, source evaluation, the digital divide, action research, and sustainability of MIL development.
Collaborators are the Swedish Media Council, the Swedish Educational Broadcasting Company, Filmpedagogerna, and the Nordicom Clearinghouse at the University of Gothenburg. Additionally the two speakers come from different departments (librarianship and education). Course work consists of a report on a practical MIL project and a wiki-page demonstrating critical skills. Following on from this they are talking with Kenyan partners on extending the course and incorporating intercultural dialogue.

Tatiana Murovana (UNESCO Institute for Information Technologies in Education, Russia) was the next speaker. She identified that there had been an increase in activities and awareness of MIL in the Commonwealth of Independent States. For example, there are secondary school curricula incorporating MIL in Moldova and Armenia, Russia had a government programme on the information society (but the latter only focusing on media literacy, rather than MIL). There has been localisation and promotion of the UNESCO MIL curriculum for teachers in Russia.
Nevertheless , media education is a sensitive issue as regards values and social effects, which can hinder its acceptance and development. The speaker felt that there was a need to have a more unified MIL brand and definition,
Finally Leo Pekkala talked about Shifts in Media Literacy education paradigms. He contrasted school education in the 1950s with the current Finnish approach which supports learners constructing their own reality, and this includes developing multiliteracies. He said that there had been a Media Literacy Week for 6 years in Finland, and there is also a gaming week. As an example, one thing they developed to help develop media literacy in politics is http://www.populismibingo.fi/en On the other hand he warned against seeing ML as a solution for everything. Pekkala referred to the term “expansive learning”, which is required for being able to learn about/discover new ways of doing things in a changing world. Finally, Media Literacy was not needed for itself, but for what it can support or enable e.g. peace.
Photo by Sheila Webber

Thursday, October 26, 2017

MIL in the workplace #globalmilweek

I just gave my own talk at the Global Media and Information Literacy Week conference, and I'll do a blog post on that session later.
Following that, I attended a session on MIL in the workplace. The presentaters were all packing a lot of interesting material into a short time, so I hope this account is reasonably accurate. Yanqiu Zhang (Communication University of China) talked about a study of Chinese government officials' training in media literacy. The Government has encouraged public sector agencies to engage with social media to deliver better services etc. There were differences by region and by profession. Similarly there were variations on what was studied and the approach to teaching. Mostly the people who received training were spokespersons, with responsibility for communication. One of the conclusions was that there was an aspect specifically to do with using social media as an organisation rather than as an individual.

Julie Roberge (a poor photo of one of her slides of herself is shown) talked about MIL in the context of the Canadian Armed Forces (she had been Senior Public Affairs Officer), and specifically in serving in Afghanistan. She talked about the low literacy rate, and the lack of schooling, especially for girls. Only 14% of Afghani recruits were literate, so that had issues for training them (which is what they were doing). Roberge stressed how important cultural understanding was, particularly in this situation where they were there to train. It was difficult to know who to trust, and it was a challenge to convince the local population that you were there to help. There were seven local languages, and a translator was needed, especially as communication had to be verbal.
Thus she felt that the development of intercultural skills prior to a mission was vital, including for the mental health of soldiers on their return. Roberge felt that use of mobile phones did combine with MIL to give more hope, enabling Afghani citizens to connect internationally. There is also a serious game on cultural competency in Afghanistan which soldiers can take prior to deployment

Daniela Cornelia Stix (University of Applied Science and Art, Germany) talked on Perception and usage of online social network (OSN) sites in youth work and its influence on educational relationships. She saw OSN as "performatively constructed spaces". She used ethnographic methods including interviews and a grounded theory approach for analysis. I think there were about 20 interviews of youth workers. For the youth workers who were subjects of the study, there was more emphasis on informing and creating a profile, rather than social interaction. She looked at how the youthworkers were using social media in the context of engaging students educationally. For example, by being on Facebook the youth worker can create communication offers, and also individual barriers (e.g. expressed worries from a young person about clashing with some other people) can be overcome (e.g. saying what alternative spaces could be used). Thus OSN provide a direct channel, a personal one, and also one that can be maintained.
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Better Internet experiences through MIL #globalmilweek

I'm attending the second day of the Global Media and Information Literacy Week conference in Jamaica, and the first plenary focused on Better Internet experiences through MIL (opportunities for learning, engagement, and advocacy; respect for privacy, cyber security and safety. It was chaired by Keith Campbell (CEO,Public Broadcasting Corporation of Jamaica)

Hopeton Dunn (Jamaica, Director, Caribbean School of Media and Communication) was the first speaker. He pointed out the widespread adoption of the internet globally. There were numerous positives and opportunities, and he noted that these (with other technological developments) have led to “the fourth industrial revolution”. However he noted that digital productivity and literacy are not necessarily outcomes of investment in high-end digital infrastructure; it does not necessarily address the digital divide (which replicates the economic divide). For example, Africa accounts for just 10% of internet users. It can be noted that, in particular, use of networks via mobile phone is growing in Africa, that still is likely to be the more affluent section of the population. As an example, in Nigeria, challenges include “rights of ways”, distance and equipment cost. In Africa, the Caribbean and elsewhere although people may have access, they may not have sufficient access to be able to use the internet effectively for education etc. High roaming charges were also a barrier.
Dunn proposed various policy and regulatory changes, and also measures such as including MIL in the curriculum, to counter these barriers. He presented a model of the 21st century media practitioner. He felt that MIL offered the best chance to enable people to navigate the challenges of the 21st Century successfully. It was important not to become the "tool of our tools" i.e. we should be focusing on what technology is good for, it should not be vealued for its own sake. Dunn also emphasised the importance of identifying indigenous solutions, not relying on solutions from putside ("uploading and not downloading")

Gabriella Thinsz (Executive Producer, UR, Swedish Educational Broadcasting Company), talked about a media education toolkit aimed at Tunisian young people. It is available in English, French and Arabic, as an app and a website, and has four themes. The website with more information is here https://www.edumedia.tn/en/. They had involved young Tunisian people, educators and media professionals in creating the project. She gave an example of where a vlogger had cooperated in a humerous film that highlighted how vloggers may be biased in recommending items they've been paid to recoemmend. The speaker also noted that there had been a lot of media literacy education in schools, and the result was that young people seemed to be more aware of issues than adults.

Monowara Begum Moni (Vice president, German Journalist Union, and freelance journalist) talked about ICT and its effect on the young generation. She defined "communication" and identified how it can arise from words, singing, movement etc. and also that conflict tends to involve communication problems. To solve problems, there is a need to keep people engaged and communicating. Technology has had a significant impact on communication. The speaker felt that effective communication between young people and their parents was important, and have discussion around issues of identity and use of technology.

Aichurek Usupbaeva and Nazira Sheraly (Media Support Center Foundation, Kyrgyzstan) made the final contribution. They had undertaken research to find out how young people use the internet, the vast majority used social media on their mobile phones (spending 1-4 hours a day). Whatsapp and Instagram were the most popular social media. The majority did not have control from their parentsd over their use. Critical thinking seemed to be lacking. Following on from this the are developing a training programme, including a programme for teachers: this will be done through an online platform. It will have resources on media literacy: tutorials, videos etc.
Photo: reflection of me taking a photo here

Global MIL week conference awards #globalmilweek

Yesterday morning at the Global Media and Information Literacy Week conference the  GAPMIL (Global Alliance Partnerships for Media and Information Literacy) global media and information literacy awards were presented. The recipients were: Professor Jesus Lau (pictured here), to the Media Support Foundation in Kurdistan, to the Media Initiatives Center (Armenia) and to Rose-Marie Farinella a French teacher.
Before this, the speakers at the opening session had emphasised the vital importance of MIL in society today. We were all urged to develop MIL and to pressure our governments to support and develop it. The speakers emphasised that critical minds are necessary for peaceful and equal society, as well as access to information. The speakers (pictured) included Ruel Reid (Jamaica) Minister of Education, Olivia Grange (Jamaica), Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sports, Glòria Pérez-Salmerón (Spain), President, International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA), and Luz Longsworth (Jamaica) Pro-Vice-Chancellor, University of the West Indies.

Resetting MIL #globalmilweek

This is the second part of my report on the n Resetting MIL session at the Global Media and Information Literacy Week conference.
Meri Seistola (Metka Centre for Media Education, Finland) talked about Make Kids Win. She introduced the concept of phenomenal learning, for which MIL was important, and which could take place with or without technology. She mentioned aspects such as learning analytics, the increased use of educational technology including virtual reality, "the power of joyful learning and games" and also the concept of hacking the classroom. They have developed some learning modules using the CLANED app, including one addressing MIL. Also she mentioned the SEPPO platform for educational gaming.

Wesley Gibbings (Association of Caribbean Media Workers) put forward the value of journalists as heros, and valuable (in contrast to people who saidthat journalists were no longer needed). He felt that resetting MIL should “force us back to our societies” and cause us to reboot our societies: the viability of societies was stake. Gibbings felt that unless there were enlightened populations who wanted to move forward (and that entailed media and information literacy) then there were serious problems. People did not just need information, they needed understanding and ability to take action. He specifically talked about the recent natural disaster that had depopulated islands in the Caribbean region.
Fundamental questions like “What is MIL for”? needed to be asked: it was not enough to have a mechanical process, just to keep media going as before. Gibbings felt that the media industry, which had lost its monolopy, needed to take a hard look at itself, but this didn’t mean abdicating to “citizen journalism” (which he felt was a misnomer). Gibbing felt that media practitioners themselves needed to pay more attention to MIL (so it was about educating the MIL practitioners, not just educating other citizens).

The last speaker in this plenary session was Itay Weiss (Youth representative, Networks of Mediterranean Youth Israel). He talked about the dangers to democracy of social media, for example enclosing you in a filter bubble. So what can be done? Education, not just of young people, was the obvious response, using a variety of tools, and also face-to-face meetings of people from different paths of life.
Photo by Sheila Webber: lunctime at the conference, Kingston, October 2017

Resetting MIL; MIL in China #globalmilweek

The second plenary session at the Global Media and Information Literacy Week conference was on Resetting MIL in the present information and media landscape. I was liveblogging, but the wifi connection went down, so this posting has been delayed, sorry.
Zhang Kai (Media Education Research Center, Communication University of China) talked about Research on MIL in China. She mentioned that there is an increasing interest in MIL in China. They carried out field research and mapped the position against the UNESCO MIL Assessment framework,and then reflect on how it suited the Chinese cultural context. They carried out their research in various provinces, and focused of specific schools, at primary and middle school level, plus a normal college. There was a questionnaire for just over 2000 students and parents. There were questions about media usage showing e.g. the dominance of mobile phones (83% using it to access the internet), over 90% used the internet at home. There were questions to identify MIL capabilities, and the researchers found there were differences at school level (actual primary level came out best) and between areas of the country (parents' awareness of what children were doing on media also varied by region: those from the East were less aware). 5% of parents felt digital media is detrimental, 56% said "it depends". Teachers were also unsure about what they were going to do in teaching about digital media, and again there were regional differences in what was taught and how (and about half students found media literacy courses unappealing). MIL educational practice was identified as "lacking sustainability" (relying on the interest of those managing the school). MIL lacked support from government, but also from the grass roots level.
They had looked at Country's MIL readiness (relating this to the UNESCO indicators): access and use was very favourable, MIL policy favourable, but MIL education and MIL supply less favourable.

Renaud de la Brosse (Linnaeus University, Sweden) talked about the need to prevent hate content and propaganda in a terrorist context, specifically in Tunisia. There was the issue of how journalists could avoid the trap of having the narrative they present in the media exploited by terrorists or by political agenda of Governments. An example is how/whether statements by terrorists should be covered. This is a relationship which exists (although not sought by the media) and has to be addressed. Also, pressures to gain coverage and prominence can lead to make media coverage more sensational. The terrorists (and politicians) are also creating their own news media streams (through social networks etc.)
Brosse felt that media /journalists must act responsably and self-critically in presenting the story of terrorist acts. In the Tunisian revolution context, there were numerous prolems in how events and people were represented, breaches of confidentiality, hate messages etc. Brosse linked the way in which media represented the terrorist acts with success in the development of Tunisian democracy (i.e. poor unprofessional representation could harm the development). A bloggers movement was highlighted as a positive development, it focused on checking and countering false information.
Photo by Sheila Webber: Sign at Miami Airport, October 2017

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

MIL and gender equality #globalmilweek

Media and Information Literacy as a tool for gender equality and advocacy in information environments was the session I attended after lunch at the Global Media and Information Literacy Week in Jamaica, where I'm liveblogging.
Stephen Wyber (Manager, Policy and Advocacy, IFLA) started off by talking about Making the link between information and development: libraries, gender and media and information literacy. He asserted that information can be power, and obviously libraries have been contributing to this for a long time through access to information. However, access alone is not enough if people are unable to use the information etc. Lack of connectivity, lack of acces to technology and social and cultural norms can all be barriers to women having access to information. For example, women may stay in rural (low connectivity) areas while men go to the city, cultural norms may mean girls and women being prevented from their male relatives from using the internet. He cited the World Wide Web Foundation report which said that women are 1.6 more times more likely than men to report lack of skills as a barrier to using the internet. The gender digital divide is also growing, not getting better.
Wyber put forward libraries as being effective "one stop development shops", experienced as welcoming, safe places by women. There were reports from a number of countries that, whereas men tended to use places like internet cafes more, women used libraries more. This enables many of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (apart from the one specifically to do with gender equality, this helps with supporting health etc.)

Secondly, there was a presentation from Isabel Moya (Department of Hender and Communication, International Institute of Journalism, Cuba). She highlighted that photographs provide an essential record of collective and individual memory. From early days this was not just something for the rich. Today it might be that the use of photos has contributed to a narcissistic culture, but certainly it is a background to life now.
However, stereotypes of female images persist, including in selfies. The project Moya was talking about aimed to encourage Cuban teenagers to express themselves playfully in photos. The teenagers became sensitised to the issues, through the project, and also produced a large number of photos, which expressed individual views of themselves and of their community. I think she said that they had been exhibited.

Hilary Nicholson (World Association for Christian Communication, Jamaica) then talked on Gender focused media monitoring for building critical media and information literacy skills. She talked about the Global Media Monitoring Project, is a news monitoring project which is carried out every 5 years. It uses "a gender lens to monitor news worldwide". Various elements are analysed (see the slide at the top of this post). 22,136 stories were analyed from over 100 countries (with trained local team), in the 2015 survey. In traditional news 24% women were covered: the male domination was linked to the coverage of politicians, businessmen etc. Spokesmen and experts (e.g. quoted in news stories) in particular were predominantly male. These differences seem to persist across countries and over time (there was little change from the 1995 survey). The gender gap in those reporting news is closing, but still only 37% of news reporters are female. Women were more likely to appear in stories written by women (so perhaps if there were more female reporters, perhaps more women would be in news stories). Additionally, women are three more times more likely than men to be portrayed as victims, and their family status is more likely to be mentioned. The website is http://www.whomakesthenews.org

Propaganda, campaigns, misinformation, MIL #globalweekweek

I'm continuing to liveblog the session on MIL as a defence against misinformation etc.at the Global Media and Information Literacy Week (this is a photo of break time).
Renee Hobbs (University of Rhode Island, USA) talked Finding truth in an age of digital propaganda, talking about the new media forms. She proposed relacing the term "fake news" with more precise terms like propaganda, satire, errors, hoax, disinformation etc. The motives and potential outcomes for these forms of "fake news" were different. Hobbs talked at more length about propaganda. She felt that "virality" (as a process of interpersonal influence) was something that should be taught at schools, encouraging citizens to think about who influences them and who they influence. She mentioned the tool Videoant https://ant.umn.edu and her own website http://mindovermedia.ushmm.org
Tara Susman-Pena from IREX talked about their Learn to Discern campaign, which included training the trainers, a distance learning course and various other activities. https://www.irex.org/projetlearn-discern This was a 9 month pilot project in Ukraine, and there was a lot of evaluation afterwards: people self reported increased discernment, and 90,000 people were reached indirectly. They also did some qualitative research into the project. The initiative seemed to work because it followed demand: of people's joy in teaching (a detailed curriculum was developed, but there was flexibility in how it was taught) and in learning (ownership of the project by teachers and learners was encouraged). Great care was taken in choosing examples to study, aiming to find relevant examples that was not going to ignite conflict. People were also encouraged to move from "shock" to action. Susman-Pena finished by flagging up future developments and also cautioning us not to encourage people to distrust everything.
The final speaker was Ana Kozlowska (a librarian at Dickinson College, USA) who talked about Is fake news the only problem? How information literacy helps first year students develop critical habits of mind while evaluating information found online. She talked about how they had created a programme on teaching undergraduates to detect bias, to understand the implications of their action on social media and also that information has value. The librarians selected four classes in which they would teach these elements. They had pre class activity (reading and 48 social media monitoring). Then they had discussion in classes focused around issues of polarisation, bias etc. This did have some limitations, such as self-censoring in reporting media use and also faculty's hesitation about the project. Then the students had to find two news articles covering the same issue from different angles and pose themselves critical questions about both articles. There was evidence that the students became more aware of differences in ways of presenting information.