Information Literacy

Information Literacy: Courses flagged for Information Literacy reinforce students' ability to find, evaluate, and reflect on information found in a variety of sources. By critically reflecting on the nature, context, and impact of scholarly and professional information, rather than just the mechanics of finding it, students will be better prepared for research-intensive projects required at the upper-division level and in their major. Information literacy skills include the ability to select information that provides relevant evidence for a topic; to find and use scholarly and discipline-specific professional information (and understand how it differs from popular information); to evaluate resources for reliability, validity, accuracy, authority, and bias; and to document research in an appropriate, consistent, and ethical way. In order to build upon the foundational information literacy knowledge and skills developed in the First Year Seminar and Rhetorical Arts courses, students must take one (1) course satisfying the information literacy flag. Preferably, students will satisfy this requirement by the end of their junior year, in order to be prepared for their senior capstone projects; but it may be taken in the senior year if that is most appropriate for the major curriculum.

Assignments that develop information literacy skills must account for at least 10% of the total course grade to qualify a course to satisfy the flag for information literacy. Examples include (but are not limited to):

  • Annotated Bibliography: Develop and refine a topic, search for, evaluate, and summarize relevant literature, and cite sources in the proper format.
  • Scientific Literature Review: Find, evaluate, and properly cite sources necessary for creating a poster appropriate for presenting scientific results.
  • Journal/Blog: Describe the process of looking for scholarly information on an assigned topic: what steps were taken, what worked and didn't work, and the criteria used to evaluate the information.
  • Web Evaluation: Find a Wikipedia article that has incorrect or poorly documented New University Core information and improve it by incorporating and citing scholarly sources.
  • Use and application of professional reference materials

Course Criteria