Magazine article Information Outlook

College Librarians Value Role in Information Literacy, but Faculty Demur

Magazine article Information Outlook

College Librarians Value Role in Information Literacy, but Faculty Demur

Article excerpt

An overwhelming majority of directors of academic libraries consider teaching information literacy skills to undergraduates to be a very important role for their libraries, but faculty members are considerably less enthusiastic, according to surveys conducted by Ithaka S+R, a consulting firm that specializes in online teaching and scholarship issues.

More than 250 library executives at four-year colleges and universities completed the Ithaka S+R Library Survey, which was conducted late last year to identify the directions in which administrators want to take their libraries. Ithaka researchers compared the results of the library survey to those of a 2009 poll of attitudes of faculty members and found areas of broad agreement as well as divergence, including the following:

* More than 90 percent of library directors at all types of institutions see supporting teaching and learning as one of their primary missions, and many would also like to work more closely with faculty members on supporting classroom instruction. However, fewer than 60 percent of faculty members value the library for its teaching support role.

* A sizable number of library directors (more than 75 percent) feel strongly that their libraries should be seen by users as the principal starting point in the discovery process, though they recognize that faculty members and students increasingly are using non-library resources to access information and content. …

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