Information Literacy As It Relates to
Scholarship, Practice, and Leadership In Elementary Education Jenna Curry
University of Phoenix
Information Literacy As It Relates to
Scholarship, Practice, and Leadership In Elementary Education
The University of Phoenix Scholar-Practitioner-Leader model (SPL) strives to educate future leaders to use their experiences in combination with what they’re taught to conduct and locate research, analyze data, apply theories, and lead diverse organizations in an ever-changing global world. A thorough and proficient understanding of information literacy is necessary to achieve this goal. Scholars of any age need to know how to obtain, apply, and reflect on the vast amounts of information available to them in an efficient and thorough manner. Through meaningful and relevant instruction we can begin this process as early as elementary school. This will help to avoid the generation of scholars who seek immediate gratification in the form of search engine answers whose validity and authority are assumed and not evaluated (Badke, 2009). In short, experience informs practice, and if a weak scholar emerges than consequently a poor practitioner and furthermore an inadequate leader. This paper will serve to further illustrate these findings and provide an example of how information literacy can be taught at the elementary level and furthermore provide an example of how the author is able to do this in her own setting. Information Literacy as it Relates to the SPL Model
The Association of College and Research Libraries defines information literacy as the ability to recognize when information is needed, locate materials in a time-efficient manner, evaluate sources for reliability, and effectively communicate information in a variety of formats (Information Literacy, 2015). These are competencies that are crucial in education at every level. While they are taught at institutions of higher academia, research shows that ideally this information should be taught at the high school level or before (Russell, 2009). Throughout their doctoral journey students at the University of Phoenix are taught to integrate their understanding of information literacy with the components of the SPL model. This model stresses the value of the amalgamation of an individual’s experience with his or her ability to participate as a scholar, practitioner, and leader across diverse professional settings. Information Literacy and the Scholar
As a scholar it is important to be able to identify a need for information, efficiently locate information, and competently evaluate the integrity and value of this information. Russell (2009) explained that while there is value to universities teaching the concept of worthy and reliable sources, ideally this should be knowledge that must be taught at earlier points in a student’s career. Prior to arriving at their first year of college students begin to conduct research. Unfortunately, because of a student’s familiarity with, and constant saturation in technology and the Internet, teachers assume that research will be easily completed. While it is true that many students can locate the answers to questions quickly, this does not mean that they know how to discern whether or not a source is credible. If we have not explicitly taught them how to do this than as educators we are failing them. “Information literacy is not remedial; it is foundational. It should never [be]…on the periphery, when its true home is at the heart of the educational enterprise” (Badke, 2009). These concepts need to be taught before students are set loose on the Internet to seek the answer to the most simple of questions. Information Literacy and the Practitioner
Practitioners are results driven; they analyze and use data to inform and shape their practices. It is important to remember that experience always informs practice; it colors the way a...
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